We teach about “Sunski – The Ecuador Art of Healthy Living” in all of our courses and one important part is nutrition. Good nutrition is a key in good health and good health is a foundation of all success.
The cornerstone of nutrition is a good, well absorbed diet. Eating bad food or eating good food that is not properly metabolized creates numerous health imbalances that science continually looks at in complex ways.
A recent New York Times article shows a new complex approach to balancing the cardio system. Here is an excerpt from “In Single Gene, a Path to Fight Heart Attacks” by Gina Kolata. (1)
Two major studies by leading research groups published on Wednesday independently identified mutations in a single gene that protect against heart attacks by keeping levels of triglycerides — a kind of fat in the blood — very low for a lifetime.
The findings are expected to lead to a push to develop drugs that mimic the effect of the mutations, potentially offering the first new class of drugs to combat heart disease in decades, experts say.
Statins, which reduce LDL cholesterol, another cause of heart disease, became blockbusters in the late 1980s. Since then, there have been no major new drugs approved for lowering heart disease risk. But experts caution that drug development takes years and that there are no guarantees that new treatments will work as hoped.
Of course there are likely to be side effects. Statin side effects include muscle pain and damage, rhabdomyolysis can cause severe muscle pain, liver damage, kidney failure and death, digestive problems, rash or flushing, increased blood sugar or type 2 diabetes and or neurological side effects.
Statins and mutated genes? That sounds pretty complex to me.
Why not simply take a walk after meals instead?
Both Indian and Andean health routines suggest light physical activity after meals. This activity should not be so heavy after eating, that it interferes with digestion. The light activity burns up blood sugar and helps to avoid a 10:30 and/or 3:30 crash caused by an insulin rush which deals with too much blood sugar. The insulin rush creates a desire for carbohydrates.
Western science is confirming this wisdom. Light exercise following a meal helps in many ways.
Research has found that the timing of meals and exercise is important for glycogen loading, muscle maintenance and nutrient uptake and use. The research suggests that even a little light exercise creates healthy hormonal shifts that improves the way nutrients are metabolized. The exercise appears to help balance triglyceride levels.
One study looked at the difference between exercising before and after meals.
The subjects did only low intensity exercise that almost anyone can do, walking for about 1/2 hour. The experiments tried exercise both before and after meals.
Triglyceride levels were reduced by 25% with pre-meal exercise. The levels dropped 72% with post-meal exercise.
The Mayo Clinic did another experiment with subjects both with type 1 diabetes and without.
The subjects walked after two of their daily meals, but sat after the third meal. The meals chosen were varied. All subjects were found to have higher glucose level when they did not walk.
The researchers at the Mayo Clinic suggest that light exercise after meals, even something as minimal as washing dishes, may help decrease glucose levels.
We live in a complex world but the key to happiness, health and wealth is simplicity. Following meals with an enjoyable easy walk is a simple way to kick start the simple process of good nutrition.
We look at “Sunski – The Ecuador Art of Healthy Living” in the Super Thinking sessions at our Writer’s Camp.