14 January 2013


"There was a theory, increasingly well supported, that eating is what killed you. They found that rats on extremely restricted diets, rats who ate very few calories, lived impressively long. They saw the same results with other animals, up to and including chimpanzees. They suspected, but could not prove, the same was true of humans. Every little bite of food was another step towards death."

Read more: digitaljournal.com/article/341150#ixzz2Htq0xcah


ketones via low-carb diet (for example: meat or fish with salad, but no sugar, grains, rice, starchy vegetables)


And those over 70 who walk an average of 4,500 steps a day have a risk that is 77% lower than those who walk less than 2,000 steps a day.

Actually, the broader conclusion of the study is that if you are retired you should buy some kind of pedometer or step counter, keep track of how much you move, and try to move more.

(Incidentally, you don’t need to spend much on a pedometer either — despite the marketing. I’ve worn for years a wrist pedometer that cost $15—the brand is no longer available on Amazon, but it looks identical to this one, costing $22—and it’s excellent. Long battery life, you can recharge it without a cable, and when I tested the accuracy it beat many of the expensive ones.])

The study was quite limited. It covered 452 participants who wore step counters for three or more days, for 10 or more hours, and then did follow-ups over the next 3.5 years. The average step count per day was 3,500. Some 7.5% had a heart attack or stroke or got heart disease. But among those who took fewer than 2,000 steps per day, that figure was 12%.

Among those who walked about 4,500 steps a day, that was just 3.5%.

The average age of the participants was 78, some 59% were women, and 20% were Black.

The study adds to the growing evidence that exercise, even just walking, are powerful at keeping us younger and healthier.

The caveat with studies like these is that they leave a lot of questions unanswered. That’s inevitable. Just 452 people may not be fully representative of the population. A test run over a few days may not be enough to show long-term trends. And what exactly is being measured?

Investing Insights with Global Context Understand how today’s global business practices, market dynamics, economic policies and more impact you with real-time news and analysis from MarketWatch. SUBSCRIBE NOW: US $1 FOR 4 WEEKS MarketWatch on Multiple devices The common sense conclusion is that the kind of people who tend to walk a lot tend to move a lot and be more active generally. They spend less time on the sofa. That’s good for heart health, especially at older ages. Meanwhile the people who walk very little tend to move very little overall, and they tend to be sedentary and spend a lot of time on the sofa. And that’s bad for heart health.

What gets measured gets managed, as they say, which is why the simplest takeaway from the study is to buy a step counter, wear it every day, and keep track of how much you move around. And just try to get the numbers up.

I programmed my cheapo step counter with a daily steps target of 10,000, and it buzzes and alerts me on days I hit it. If I make it to my 70s maybe I’ll cut that to 5,000.

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