New Study Suggests That Belly Fat Is Worse Than Obesity For Your Heart Health


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The Body Mass Index (BMI) is generally used to assess overall fitness, however, a new study has found that weight concentrated around the middle can be more harmful than obesity itself.

The waist to hip ratio is proving to be a better predictor of heart disease and other illness than BMI alone.

Participants were divided into six groups based on which of the three BMI groups they fell into, and whether they had a normal or high waist-to-hip ratio. Men whose waist measurement was 90 percent or more of their hip measurement were considered to have a high hip-to-waist ratio. The same was true of women; those with waists that were 85 percent of their hip size were classified as having a high hip-to-waist ratio.

Participants with normal BMI but a high waist-to-hip ratio had the risk of dying of cardiovascular disease, and the highest risk of dying from any causes among the six groups.
The risk of cardiovascular death was 2.75 times higher, and the risk of death from any cause was 2.08 times higher among normal-weight people with “central obesity,” compared with normal-weight people who had a normal waist-to-hip ratio.
“The high risk of death may be related to a higher visceral fat accumulation in this group, which is associated with insulin resistance and other risk factors,” said study researcher Dr. Karine Sahakyan, also of Mayo Clinic.

Men can be highly susceptible to accumulating belly fat and inactivity, poor diet and stress contribute to visceral fat.

Keeping your abs toned and your middle “whittled” is the best way to avoid disease and keep your heart strong.

Three Health Issues Every Man Should Discuss With His Doctor


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Most men are squeamish about discussing their concerns about testosterone, erectile disfunction or trouble urinating, however these embarrassing topics could shed light on deeper more serious health issues like heart disease, cancer or hormone imbalance.

Since most visits to the doctor last less than 20 minutes, getting warmed up can take some effort.

Be armed with a list of questions and concerns to get the most out of your time with your physician.

Testosterone’s time sensitive side effects

Low testosterone (T) symptoms may include low sex drive, erectile dysfunction, fewer sexual thoughts, mood problems, fatigue, loss of muscle, poor concentration, sleep disturbances, and fewer morning erections. Low T is also associated with several chronic medical conditions, including obesity, diabetes, osteoporosis, depression, and cardiovascular disease.

Men who get treated for low T have a very positive experience. The changes in appearance and mental state can be very profound. Interestingly, these positive changes associated with T therapy, have been found to occur at different times. A study from the University of Koln in Germany analyzed the relationship of time following administration vs. the effects on sexual functioning and mood on forty subjects. Researchers found sexual thoughts and fantasies occurred within weeks of initiating T therapy. Total number of erections rose steadily and peaked at 9 weeks. Ejaculations per week steadily rose and plateaued over 12 weeks. Depression decreased gradually and leveled off at 6 weeks. Mental concentration improved within the first 3 weeks, but overall mood did not improve until weeks 6 – 9.
The Aging Male 2009, 12: 113-118

Exercise induced hormone changes do not promote muscular gains

Exercise induced endogenous hormone levels have been studied extensively. Researchers have examined how the different components of training including sets, repetitions, load and rest intervals affect serum levels of hormones such as testosterone, growth hormone and cortisol. Many studies have demonstrated there is an acute increase in serum levels of anabolic hormones after intense resistance exercise.

To be more specific, high intensity exercise coupled with short rest intervals that is performed with large muscle groups are associated with large rises in these hormones when compared to other training methods. Conversely, training small muscle groups like the biceps has been shown to have no effect on serum hormone levels. Because of the findings in many studies, training programs have been constructed to maximize the post-exercise rise in these hormones based on the assertion that exercise-induced increases in hormones like testosterone and GH will enhance muscle size and strength. But, considering the fact that these increases in hormone levels are very small and of short duration, will they produce muscular gains.

A study from the Kinesiology Dept. of McMaster University in Canada found that exercise induced hormone levels had no effect on muscle size or strength after 15 weeks of resistance training.

There is evidence that a minimal basal level of testosterone is required to support strength and hypertrophy gains, which are otherwise attenuated. Therefore, the hormone-sensitive processes that underpin muscle anabolism at hypo- and supra-physiological hormone levels are not being activated appreciably by exercise-induced increases in hormone availability or at least do not result in any measurable enhancement of strength or hypertrophy.

(J Appl Physiol 108(1); 2010)

Time to get out of the cave and head into the garden!

The evolution of the male’s diet has led us to a small selection of

testosterone approved vegetarian recipes.

We found a list of easy vegetarian food for even the most manly of appetites!

Follow the link for easy healthy recipes.
The Conquistador

John Deere Sandwich

Smoking Barrel Burritos

4×4 Pizza

Having trouble sleeping, try wool

You can have the healthiest lifestyle, but if you’re not getting enough sleep, over time you’re setting yourself up for disaster. Sleep deprivation can cause depression, increased risk of diabetes, weight gain, heart disease, head aches, aching muscles, confusion, and memory lapses or loss just to name a few.

If you are having sleep problems, or you simply want to improve the quality and quantity of your sleep, there are many things you can do, including:

* Go to bed around the same time each night, ideally around 10 PM.
* Avoid snacking just before bedtime, particularly grains and sugars.
* Keep the temperature in your bedroom no higher than 70 degrees F (ideally between 60-68 degrees F.
* Eat a high-protein snack several hours before bed. This can provide the amino acid L-tryptophan, a precursor to melatonin and serotonin.
* Avoid caffeine as much as possible, especially in the PM.
* Make sure you exercise regularly, but not near bedtime.

There is one more thing however, that has been shown in scientific studies to improve your sleep. Wool has been proven to outperform both synthetics and down. Dramatic results demonstrated that wool bedding such as comforters and pillows:

* Breathes more naturally than any comparable synthetics, so you reduce the thermal stress on your body AND avoid creating a hospitable environment for dust mites.
* Increases the length of your REM sleep meaning you benefit more deeply from this vitally important stage of sleep every night.
* Helps create the most optimal body temperature the body gets to a comfortable sleeping temperature more quickly and stays there longer.

And, if that weren’t enough, recent studies have shown that the resting heart rate of people who sleep under wool versus those who use synthetics is 20 beats per minute less creating a more restorative sleep experience from beginning to end.

Mercola.com

Hormones and heart health

If you had to rank the most important factors for a healthy heart, hormones would likely show up last on your list. But the truth is that these chemical messengers have a strong influence on just about every single one of your body’s delicate systems… and your cardiovascular system is no exception.

You may not realize it, but your blood vessels are lined with estrogen receptors, which play a key role in regulating healthy blood pressure, cholesterol and normal clot formation in both men and women.1 This may be one reason why pre-menopausal women enjoy more optimal heart health statistics than their male and postmenopausal counterparts—and why heart health becomes an important focus for women as they grow older.

Read The full article

The dark side of soy

The vast majority of soy at your local market is not a health food. 91% of soy grown in the US is genetically modified (GM) soy that is contaminated with large pesticide residues. The genetic modification is done to impart resistance to the toxic herbicide Roundup, so they can spray it over the soy plants to improve crop production by killing the weeds. This is solely meant to increase farming efficiency and provide you with less expensive soy. In other words, cheap as opposed to healthy.

For centuries, contrary of what Americans have been told, Asian people have been consuming non-GM fermented soy products such as natto, tempeh, and soy sauce in SMALL amounts. Western food processors separate the soybean into two commodities?protein and oil. And there is nothing natural or safe about these products that many Americans consume.

Dr. Kaayla Daniel, author of The Whole Soy Story, points out thousands of studies linking soy to malnutrition, digestive distress, immune-system breakdown, thyroid dysfunction, cognitive decline, reproductive disorders and infertility?even cancer and heart disease.

Here is just a sampling of the health effects that have been linked to soy consumption:

* Breast cancer
* Brain damage
* Infant abnormalities
* Thyroid disorders
* Kidney stones
* Immune system impairment
* Severe, potentially fatal food allergies
* Impaired fertility
* Danger during pregnancy and nursing

Soy proponents will argue that soy-based foods (they lump the fermented ones with the unfermented) will protect you from everything from colon, prostate and breast cancer to strokes, osteoporosis, and asthma. However, proponents never mention the studies that illuminate soy?s downside and all of the dangers posed to your health, which are based on sound research.

Another unfortunate fact is that 80 percent of the world?s soy is used in farm animal feed, which is why soy production is contributing to deforestation. Some soy propagandists have suggested that the solution to this is for all of us to become vegetarians?a reckless recommendation rooted in total ignorance about nutrition?whereas a far better solution is a major overhaul in how farm animals are fed and raised.

Soy and demasculinization

The male offspring of rats fed diets containing genistein, a chemical found in soybeans, developed abnormal reproductive organs and had sexual dysfunction as adults. This finding may indicate a need for further research to determine whether exposure to genistein while in the womb and during breastfeeding influences human reproductive development, according to researchers.

Researchers found that while the sperm counts of genistein-exposed males were normal, they had smaller testes and a larger prostate gland than unexposed rats. They also had lower testosterone levels and were less likely to ejaculate than unexposed rats.

The effects of genistein exposure continued long after the rats were exposed, leading researchers to say that exposure during reproductive development may have negative, long-term consequences in males.

It is thought that genistein may act as an estrogen or an anti-androgen, blocking the function of the sex hormones, known as endogenous androgens, necessary for males to develop a normal reproductive system.
(J urol2003;169(4):1582-6)

Eating sugar linked to testosterone levels

Symptoms of low testosterone levels in men include decreased libido, erectile dysfunction, depression, osteoporosis, weight gain, muscle loss, diabetes, heart disease, and decreased physical performance. Unfortunately, 1 out of 4 men above the age of thirty in the US has lower than normal testosterone levels and will experience some of these symptoms.

Age, which we have little control over, obviously plays a big role in lower testosterone. Are there other factors that we can control, such as nutrition?

A study involving 42 men with normal blood sugar levels, 23 with pre-diabetic blood sugar levels, and 9 with type 2 diabetes was performed to make testing for testosterone levels more accurate. In the process however, researchers discovered that eating sugar cuts a man’s testosterone levels significantly.

Each participant was given a sugary solution and then had their testosterone levels checked. Regardless of whether the participants had diabetes or not, blood levels of testosterone dropped by as much as 25% and remained low for a period of 2 hours. 15% of the participants with normal testosterone levels before the test experienced a drop in testosterone so low they could be classified as having hypogonadism, which would require hormonal replacement therapy. (Alternatives.13(9);2010)

If nothing else, you’ll lose body fat and achieve a higher level of overall health by cutting out sugar. Sugar has been associated with diseases like cardiovascular disease, diabetes, cancer and many more. Now you can add improved testosterone levels to the list

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