Health & Wellness

Black Magic

Calorie myths we should all stop believing

Many people think weight loss is simply about cutting calories. They believe that to lose weight, you must reduce calories (either eat less or burn more), to gain weight you must add calories, and to maintain weight you keep calories constant. To these folks, calories in, calories out is the only thing that matters. They usually oppose the Primal Blueprint because they assume that we "deny" the importance of calories in weight loss.

Well, they're wrong. I don't deny the importance of calories. Calories absolutely count. And if someone has lost weight, they have necessarily expended more calories than they consumed. That said, there are some major misconceptions about calories, body weight, fat loss, and health. These calorie myths are often rooted in truth but presented in black-or-white terms that are useless at best, harmful at worst, and do little to help the average person lose body fat.

Let's dig right in.

Calories in, calories out is all you need to know

Simple is nice. Simple is good. But overly simple is dangerously inaccurate, so let's break this statement down.

What does "calories in" refer to?

Calories in - what we eat. We can't metabolize sunlight or oxygen. We can't feast on the souls of the damned. The food we eat determines "calories in" entirely. Simple.

Comment: Don't miss Why we get fat - Gary Taubes for more information.

Taubes reveals the bad nutritional science of the last century, none more damaging or misguided than the calories-in, calories-out model of why we get fat, and the good science that has been ignored, especially regarding insulin's regulation of our fat tissue. He also answers the most persistent questions: Why are some people thin and others fat? What roles do exercise and genetics play in our weight? What foods should we eat, and what foods should we avoid?


Mind over matter: Thinking about exercise can regulate muscle strength

For some people, having the discipline just to make it to the gym is half the battle in staying fit. But new research suggests that the simple act of thinking about working out without actually doing it may be enough to tone muscle and even promote muscle growth.

Researchers from Ohio University discovered this after testing the power of intentional thought on a group of volunteers. Two groups of participants were given wrist casts for four weeks, immobilizing the use of one hand, with one of the groups told to sit and think intensely about working out for 11 minutes daily, five days a week.

SOTT Exclusive - The ultimate dietary terror threat in 2015: Red meat (again)

Delicious Steak
Don't be fooled by this delicious looking piece of perfection. This is none other than a pan-seared portion of Satan himself!
Where food science and dietetics are concerned, there has been a major hate-on for red meat in the mainstream media and academia since the 1950s. And when you scrutinize the issue, as I have done, you find that there is no (and has never been) solid reasoning behind it. But, with their constant need to acquire grants or sell headlines, or simply justify their own existence, these people need an enemy. Red meat seems to fit the bill, at the moment. Think of it as the ISIS of your dinner plate.

This all goes back to the ridiculous hubub that started in the 1950s when seemingly clear-headed nutritional scientists decided to ignore all their schooling (and rational thought) to lend their support to really shoddy science "showing" how saturated fat was related to heart disease. I won't go into the nitty-gritty of it here (there are ample expositions of this story already).

The public's perception of red meat never really recovered from that, and the "beat 'em when they're down" media continue to relentlessly take shots at their victim. Pair this ancient knack for blaming scapegoats with the politically-correct trending mythology of the necessity of a "plant-based diet" and you've got the perfect recipe for a 'bad guy' to end all 'bad guys'. Truth be damned: red meat is Hitler (props to Fox News for that one).

Researchers find that electronics in children's bedrooms negatively affects sleep

Parents concerned about their children not getting enough sleep may want to remove televisions and other small electronics from the kids' bedrooms, according to a new study.

Children who slept with televisions or other small-screened devices in their bedrooms ended up getting less sleep than children without those electronics in the room, researchers found.

"While more studies are needed to confirm our results, we know that too much screen time is bad for children's health in multiple ways," said Jennifer Falbe, the study's lead author from the University of California, Berkley.

Past studies found that having televisions in kids' bedrooms is tied to less sleep (see Reuters Health story of April 14, 2014 here: Less sleep is ultimately tied to other issues, including obesity and academic performance.

But few studies have looked at the presence of other small electronics in bedrooms, the researchers write in the journal Pediatrics.

Comment: Parents and children would be best served by keeping electronics out of the bedroom altogether, especially television, and turning smaller electronics off when going to bed.


How the vagus nerve operates in the immune system inhibiting inflammation and stress

Vagus nerve
© Unknown
The vagus nerve inhibits inflammation and stress by regulating the immune system reactions
In the brilliant scientific paper, 'The pulse of inflammation: heart rate variability, the cholinergic anti-inflammatory pathway and implications for therapy,' Dr. Jared M. Huston, Department of Surgery, Stony Brook University Medical Center discovered a neural control circuit that acts to keep the body's cytokine production, and therefore inflammatory response, in check.[1]

During the 1990s, the authors of this review quietly opened up an entirely new way of looking at inflammation. Inflammation is intimately connected to all the major diseases of our times shortening lives and causing pain on a persistent daily basis so this is crucial information that sadly is ignored by contemporary medicine.

The vagus nerve is a very long nerve running from the hypothalamus area of your brain, chest, diaphragm, and to our intestines. It wraps around our heart and solar plexus center so it is very involved with our feelings and thinking. We have an extraordinarily hard time healing and even learning when the vagus nerve is disturbed.

Comment: In order to heal your body and mind it's important to make dietary changes and take care of your emotional health and well-being. With our meditation program Éiriú Eolas you can activate the vagus nerve, which will have anti-inflammatory and trauma releasing response in your body.

Here's more articles about the importance of vagus nerve:


Psychiatric drugs: Time bombs in the medicine cabinet

© unknown
Prescriptions for anti-psychotic drugs handed out like candy.
Psychiatric drugs are more dangerous than you have ever imagined. If you haven't been prescribed one yet, you are among the lucky few. If you or a loved one are taking psychiatric drugs, there is hope, but you need to understand the dangers and how to minimize the risk.

Anti-psychotic drugs, including both older and newer ones, have been shown in many human brain scan studies and in animal autopsy studies to cause shrinkage (atrophy) of the brain. The newer "atypicals" especially cause a well-documented metabolic syndrome including elevated blood sugar, diabetes, increased cholesterol, obesity and hypertension. They also produce dangerous cardiac arrhythmias and unexplained sudden death, and they significantly reduce longevity. In addition, they cause all the problems of the older drugs, such as Thorazine and Haldol, including tardive dyskinesia, a largely permanent and sometimes disabling, painful movement disorder caused by brain damage and biochemical disruptions.



Fructose is more toxic than table sugar, cuts lifespan and reproduction

The sugar in corn syrup is more toxic to female mice than regular table sugar, new research has found.

Sensitive toxicity test used sugars in doses like what we eat
When University of Utah biologists fed mice sugar in doses proportional to what many people eat, the fructose-glucose mixture found in high-fructose corn syrup was more toxic than sucrose or table sugar, reducing both the reproduction and lifespan of female rodents.

"This is the most robust study showing there is a difference between high-fructose corn syrup and table sugar at human-relevant doses," says biology professor Wayne Potts, senior author of a new study scheduled for publication in the March 2015 issue of The Journal of Nutrition.

The study found no differences in survival, reproduction or territoriality of male mice on the high-fructose and sucrose diets. The researchers say that may be because both sugars are equally toxic to male mice.

Both high-fructose corn syrup found in many processed foods and table sugar found in baked goods contain roughly equal amounts of fructose and glucose. But in corn syrup, they are separate molecules, called monosaccharides. In contrast, sucrose or table sugar is a disaccharide compound formed when fructose and glucose bond chemically.

Potts says the debate over the relative dangers of fructose and sucrose is important "because when the diabetes-obesity-metabolic syndrome epidemics started in the mid-1970s, they corresponded with both a general increase in consumption of added sugar and the switchover from sucrose being the main added sugar in the American diet to high-fructose corn syrup making up half our sugar intake."

Comment: See also: High-Fructose Corn Syrup is Evil: 7 Key Findings.


A letter from America: Living with GMOs

© Liam Wilde via Flickr
With GMO agriculture, a walk in the countryside could be like this in the future.
NGOs, scientists, anti-GM groups, celebrities, food manufacturers, and others representing 57 million Americans today publish an Open Letter to the UK and the entire EU warning of the serious and manifold hazards of GMO crops - and promising their support in our fight against them.

We are writing as concerned American citizens to share with you our experience of genetically modified (GM) crops and the resulting damage to our agricultural system and adulteration of our food supply.
Heart - Black

New York City mandates flu shots for all children attending school or day care

© Prevent Disease
Unless their parents opt for a medical or religious exemption, young school children in New York City will soon be required to get a flu shot in order to attend preschool or gain access to a child care facility.

As outlined by the New York City Health Department (NYCHD), children aged 6-59 months will be barred from attending classes or being around other children in an institutional setting if they don't first get jabbed for the flu -- this, despite warnings by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that this year's flu shot doesn't even work.

According to, children living in New York City who fall into this age grouping will have until December 31 to either get a flu shot or file a medical or religious exemption, which parents can learn more about here.

Comment: Research has shown that not only are vaccines ineffective, but they predispose individuals to contract the very diseases they were meant to prevent.


Physical exercise found to lower risk of Parkinson's

Research evidence continues to mount that physical exercise may help lower a person's risk of developing Parkinson's disease. In a new study that followed 43,368 men and women in Sweden for about 13 years, moderate daily exercise was found to be associated with a lower risk of Parkinson's.

Parkinson's belongs to a group of conditions called motor system disorders, which occur when the brain loses dopamine-producing cells. It affects more than one percent of people aged 60 years and above.

Symptoms include trembling in the arms, hands, legs, jaw, and face, stiffness of arms and legs and trunk, slowness of movement, and impaired balance and coordination. Eventually, walking, talking, and everyday tasks become more challenging.

Parkinson's disease is the fourteenth leading cause of death among Americans, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Comment: In addition to exercise, one of the best ways to prevent or ameliorate Parkinson's disease is to adopt a gluten-free ketogenic diet.

Dramatic recovery In Parkinson's patient with gluten free diet

Is the Ketogenic Diet the cure for multiple diseases?