[ExI] Fwd: CrossFit picks up the WSJ article

Bryan Bishop kanzure at gmail.com
Fri May 29 15:54:54 UTC 2009

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: JonathanCline <jncline at gmail.com>
Date: Fri, May 29, 2009 at 10:50 AM
Subject: Re: CrossFit picks up the WSJ article
To: DIYbio <diybio at googlegroups.com>

Calorie restriction is still in doubt for humans and at least one
recent paper has refuted its beneficial effect.  Though there are
people trying it and studying it.  As for diabetes, a recent BBC
article summarizes at least one recent study claiming it is induced by
virus(es) - this is still in stages of verification, though
interesting.  The idea that "people need lots of protein" has been
shot full of many holes as well ("cavemen" obviously did not eat
animals of today's size or genetic selection, and did not have
vegetables of today's size or genetic selection, and perhaps ate in
monthly gorge/starve cycles).  Drinking green tea or mint tea is
reportedly a simple mechanism (and an ancient tradition) for healthy
teeth, to add to the previous comment about cavities -- tea lessens
bad bacteria; though sure, no one should be eating such large
quantities of sugar as is common in modern diets.  And the SENS
perspective is to scoff at resveratrol until better proven.  My point
in listing all the trivia is to add some perspective, hoping for a
better answer, since the data continually argues against all sides and
sorting the fluff from well-researched fact is difficult.

On May 29, 2:22 am, Scott Kerr <uwsk... at gmail.com> wrote:
> Interesting, 100% of Cavemen in the 60+ age bracket were dead.

Exactly!  Hindu cow-milk-drinking vegetarians lived to ~90 years(?)
(documented around 500 BC?  Not cavemen of course).  Both Zone and
Atkins diets often involve eating some type of powerbar as way of
consuming 3+ meals per day, and cavemen surely didn't have access to
powerbars.   Neither cavemen nor vegetarian hinduists ingested
pesticides, growth hormones, industrial contaminants, etc. in their
food -- if ingesting these has any effect on us today (biased
profiteers claim there is no effect).  Many of the arguments don't
hold up well.

On May 28, 11:29 pm, "Daniel C." <dcrooks... at gmail.com> wrote:
>  But yes, I agree - I will
> admit that I have drunk the kool-aid on the Zone diet without doing a
> lot of research into how factual the science behind it is.  I am
> entirely guilty of the "Well this works for everyone else, I guess I
> should do it" line of thinking in this case.

What I find most interesting is that diet is a sort of religion: as
you mention, following it rather blindly rather than studying it
first.  Generally, discussing diet is bound to start a big argument.
"The China Study" was on the best seller lists for 2-3 years (claiming
that eating any form of animal protein will drastically increase the
odds of cancer and processed grains are bad as well).  The "Zone diet"
is also a bestseller.  When I say "diet" I am not referring to
something which causes weight loss (weight loss can be caused in many
ways at the expense of health).   When I say "diet" I am referring to
"what people eat to be healthy".   I presume that proper diet will
automatically biofeedback to attaining normal weight for healthy
individuals.   So why is diet more of a religion than a science?  One
answer could be massive bias towards particular diet from
socioeconomic sources, and even highly trained microbiologists are
subject to this bias to the extent that the data is misinterpreted,
misrepresented, or ignored -- it would be great to get better data-
comparisons.  "What to ingest, what not to ingest" is a fairly basic
question after all.

Since the Zone/paleo diet (preferred by crossfitters who are at the
forefront of physical health and a very progressive group in general)
is a sharp contrast to a vegan diet, it seems there could be a simple
conclusion, such as:  several body types exist and these process food
differently with different effects; or, it doesn't matter what anyone
eats as long as it's not gorging, so might as well deep fry some
liver.  Crossfitters scorn the Atkins diet as unbalanced.  What do
smart crossfit athletes think of "The Thrive Diet", which is vegan and
written by a well-studied athlete for other athletes?  There is a
vegan-Zone diet, though participants usually claim that it's difficult
to eat without soy -- which is a non-paleo ingredient.

Since the central dogma of biology implies that genes are expressed in
the presence of a biological context, wouldn't diet be the simplest
mechanism of biasing gene expression and biofeedback?

## Jonathan Cline
## jcline at ieee.org
## Mobile: +1-805-617-0223

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