Vitamin D and Aging

This study looked at 2 age groups; 55 to 65 (725 people) and 65 to 88 (1237 people). The idea was that since vitamin D is directly connected to muscle health, would the resulting decrease in muscle affect people’s ability to do normal things like; dressing, walking up or down stairs, cutting their toenails, standing from a sitting position, driving their car, or walking for 5 minutes.


After factoring for things like age, physical activity, and chronic disease, they looked at two vitamin D subgroups… those with vitamin D blood serum levels <20 ng/ml (deficient) and >30 ng/ml. The vitamin D deficient folks from both age groups had significantly greater number of physical limitations after the follow-up period (3 years for the older group and 6 years for the younger group).


It’s very common for people, especially the further north you live, to be under 20 ng/ml. Even if you are taking a vitamin D supplement, you should be tested.


Kids Bedtimes and Brainpower

This study from the University College London looked at the sleep habits of 11,000 kids between the ages of 3 to 7. It found that 3 year olds with irregular bedtimes tested lower on reading (3 year olds read?), math, and spatial awareness. By age 7, just the girls tested lower. Other research from Australia has shown that poor sleep is associated with lower math and literacy skills, as well as behavioral issues.

From ages 3 to 5, kids need about 11 to 12 hours of sleep… and 10 to 11 hours during elementary school. Sleep needs vary from kid to kid, but that’s the general rule.


A Simple Guide To Understanding Your Fiber Needs

Bran Muffin

Fiber is a very mysterious component of our diet.  Generally, people seem to know that it’s good for them, good for their heart, will help keep them regular, and they should eat “more” of it.  Maybe the delicate nature of the topics relating to fiber have caused advertisers to confuse the public even more than usual.  Do you remember the SNL skit with Phil Hartman about Colon Blow cereal?

Rather than a wordy article reviewing the studies behind fiber, I decided to write this in a way that I hope you can actually use.


How much fiber: 25-40 grams per day


Types of fiber:  Soluble and Insoluble (we need both)


Soluble fiber:  Dissolves in water and forms a gel.

  • Binds to cholesterol - Bile acids are used in digestion and also as a way to remove cholesterol from our bodies.  Soluble fiber binds to the cholesterol and carries it out of the body.  In absence of soluble fiber, much of...

If you’re still not paying attention to your Vitamin D levels…

sunJD Hancock

With the overwhelming amount of information and misinformation being thrown at us on a daily basis, especially in regards to our health, how do we figure out what we really need to pay attention to?  One expert will sound the alarm and then the next will cry BS.  We’re left confused and frustrated... plus if everything is so important, then nothing is, right?  

My goal is to wade thru the clutter and highlight topics and research that matter to your optimal health.  With that said, science is showing that VITAMIN D is one thing we all need to pay attention to for 2 reasons... it’s critical to our health and about half of us are deficient.


Below are 5 critical points on vitamin D and 1 outstanding non-profit project we can all participate in to battle the problem.

  1. Our bodies are designed to produce vitamin D from sun exposure.  Most of us are spending more and more time indoors and when we are outside, we’re either covered...

The Quest for Optimal Health…



The goal of this article is to explain the purpose behind what I write for you.


Nearly all of the topics I write about are aligned with the goal of Optimal Health.  I define Optimal Health simply as the best state of body and mind possible, with respect to factors that are truly within our control.


Optimal Health is a personal quest that has nothing do with how much you can bench press or how fast you can run a 5K.  The Optimal Health for the 18 year old athlete is different than the Optimal Health of a 76 year old person diagnosed with cancer.  It changes as we change, but there’s always an Optimal Health level at every each stage of our lives.


We live, we die, and our level of health effects every aspect of our lives in between. If it’s so obviously important, why are so many people living in health poverty?  That’s an extremely complicated question, but here are some big factors:


1. Information...

Coconut Oil is a Must Have: 6 Possible Benefits

 Coconut OilJoe Shlabotnik

Coconut oil was given a bad rap for years because 90% of its oil is saturated. Most of the saturated fats in our diets are long chain triglycerides (LCT) and have 14 to 18 carbon atoms. Coconut oil is a Medium Chain Triglyceride (MCT) containing just 5 to 12 carbon atoms.  While LCTs are hard for the body to metabolize, MCTs are easily converted to ketone bodies by the liver, and used as alternative energy source to glucose.  Here is just a handful of the possible benefits of consuming coconut oil:


1. Brain Health - A famous 2004 study looked at the effects of coconut oil on a small group of people with either Alzheimer’s or mild cognitive impairment.  They found a measurable difference using cognitive tests with just ONE dose.


Our brain cells use glucose as their primary fuel, but as we age it seems that our brain’s ability to use glucose is reduced, especially for those with insulin resistance.  Ketone bodies...

Deficiency in This May Make You 70% More Likely to Die of Heart Disease


Can you name the nutrient that 80% of Americans are deficient in, that is found on an ER crash cart, and used in hospitals for pre-eclampsia and seizures?


This nutrient is found in over 300 enzymes, including the ones that synthesize ATP... the battery power we live on. While most drugs have 1 function, a recent study showed that 3,751 binding sites on proteins have been found for this. This nutrient isn’t sexy, but it’s vital... it’s magnesium.


The study I referenced in the title looked at the magnesium levels of 7,664 “healthy” people and tracked them for 10.5 years. With all other risk factors figured in, the people with lower levels of urinary magnesium were 70% more likely to die from heart disease.


Cholesterol seems to get all the attention, but a study that looked at 136,000 heart attack victims found that about 75% had normal LDL levels, and about 50% had optimal levels. Cholesterol is a factor, but clearly not the only factor.


There’s a mountain...

What the Heck is the ALCAT Food Sensitivity Test and Why Should I Care?

VeggiesMasahiro Ihara

This is a universal issue that we all need to be aware of.  Sensitivities to foods and other substances cause a reaction by our immune system and over time, this can result in a host of problems.  

Even though we sell the Alcat test, please don’t dismiss this as a sales letter... you never have to take the test to benefit from this article!  Below, I will cover:

  1. What is a food sensitivity and how can it affect me?

  2. How does the Alcat test work?

  3. What can I do today, even if I don’t take the test?


What is a food sensitivity and how can it affect me?

If you learn just one thing from this article, then let it be this... you can be sensitive to anything you put in or on your body.  The results of that sensitivity can be subtle and delayed, making it very tricky to figure out.  However, just being aware to the fact that you could be sensitive...

5 Ways to Sleep Better Tonight

5 tips for a good nights

Sleep is a fundamental key to our health and our success.  It’s vastly underrated and undervalued, and I’m going to keep hammering that point.  Being tired is just the body’s way of saying... “yo, dumb dumb... go to bed already.  I have a lot of repairs so you can be ready for tomorrow.”


Habits are by far our best friends and worst enemies.  The fact that you are even reading this is proof that you care about your health.  Well, I’m here to tell you that habits, not will power will make all the difference.  Awareness and discipline when life is going smoothly, will create habits that see us through the crappy times.  This is true with everything, including sleep!

1.  Get Physical

Even if you’re working out 4 times a week, don’t completely skip your off days.  On those off days, you’ll reduce your stress and sleep much better by being active.  Sometimes it helps to...

2 Minute Look at the Mediterranean Diet – Can it Lower Cardiovascular Risk?

Mediterranean dietnitdoggx

The New England Journal of Medicine recently published the results of a clinical trial that asked the question; Does eating a Mediterranean diet reduce the likelihood of having a cardiovascular event in people with high risk factor?


The trial included 7447 people age 55 to 80 (57% women) and spanned 4.8 years. None of the participants had known heart problems before the trial began, but all of them were at risk. This meant that everyone in the study had either Type II Diabetes or at least 3 cardiovascular risk factors (hypertension, high LDL, low HDL, overweight, family history, or smoking).


Everyone was split into one of three groups: a Mediterranean diet supplemented with extra-virgin olive oil, a Mediterranean diet supplemented with mixed nuts, or a control diet (just advised to reduce dietary fat).


When the dust settled and they excluded the ones that didn’t stick to the diet, they found that the folks eating a Mediterranean diet had a 29% lower risk...