The Cultured Warrior Newsletter #010
Thoughts to Ponder:
If all you can do is crawl, start crawling.~ Rumi
Everyone starts somewhere, exactly where you’re at. The best times to start anything are 10 years ago, yesterday, and today. Many people placidly accept the hand they’ve been dealt in life. Others greet the same fate with a resounding, “no.” You can blame an oppressive society. You can blame your family. You can blame a malicious employer. All of those things may indeed be valid barriers. Typically there is always somewhere, even if we’re not seeing it, to keep moving. If we can’t move and all we can do is breathe, keep breathing — one of many lessons from jiujitsu to life.
Problems that remain persistently insoluble should always be suspected as questions asked in the wrong way.~ Alan Watts
You could take this as big or as small as you want, from the meta to the micro, the personal or the cultural, individual or global. Substance abuse, for example, is never as simple as “just stop it.” This quote help elucidate my view on (many things, but) substance abuse in particular that it’s seldom (or only a very small part) about the substance. Rather, the “disorder / dysfunction”, is perhaps about a state of mind being sought after or sought to avoid. Likewise, depression isn’t a matter of “just cheer up.” In other words, it’s quite easy to ask the wrong (and unhelpful) questions. You could apply this to business as well. Do you need more followers and likes, or do you need a sale? Do you need to keep swiping and looking of one-night-stand on half a dozen dating apps, or do you need to spend more time with people you already know and care about?
Things I’m Reading:
“The findings showed that (emotional intelligence) influenced the (cognitive outcome)s directly and indirectly during the pandemic. In the forms of self-regulation (SR) and social skills (SS), the high levels of (emotional intelligence) improved the (cognitive outcome)s of the students. Further, the aspects of EI, such as SR, self-awareness (SA), empathy (E), motivation (M), and SS were found to improve the (relational engagement) of the students. The (relational engagement) was positively correlated with the (cognitive outcome)s, indicating its potential for improving critical thinking among university students. Finally, the (relational engagement) was a key mediator of the relationship between the (emotional intelligence) and (cognitive outcome)s.” This is fascinating in that it demonstrates the vast impact of social / relationship dynamics on many arenas of the human experience from self-awareness and regulation to cognitive performance and motivation. Once again, “isolate and medicate” doesn’t seem like such a good idea.
There are several neat things to come out of this study. First, yes, a ketogenic diet reduces depressive and anxious symptoms in patient’s with Alzheimer’s disease. As I’ve pointed out in other newsletters, there is a neuroprotective factor here as well regarding Omega-3 fatty acids and preventing diabetes. What’s also neat is that the authors demonstrated that ketone bodies (such as BHB) . So much for the naysayers that claim intense / high performance requires high sugar / carbohydrate content. One should note that the “therapeutic” levels of a ketogenic diet used here were ~90% fat. In a practical environment, you’d be looking at something more in the arena of 70% fat if you’re prioritizing protein — which you should! Of course, the authors warned that such a protocol will raise cholesterol, specifically LDL, though that has been written about and debunked many times over.
“Total dietary cholesterol intake was not associated with the risk of mortality. Surprisingly, the findings of the associations of egg-sourced and non-egg-sourced cholesterol intakes with mortality among the hypertensive patients appeared completely opposite.” Even with eggs (finally!) being acquitted, (red) meat is vilified for fear of saturated fat — see my previous comments on Alzheimer’s Disease. Now, the authors do appropriately note covariate and causal limitations. In short, what do you think the probability is that people who were eating eggs were also eating other animal products, you know like meat! On the transverse, many covariates were covered (activity level, smoking, alcohol), but what about percent of calories from vegetable oil or refined sugar?
A Few COVID Things:
As you all have, hopefully, gathered I try to keep this blog / newsletter / podcast as apolitical as possible. However, I’m finding that more and more difficult to do as there’s a growing disparity between medical literature and what the media curates and trademarks as “The Science.” So, I’ll simply leave these:
No Significant Difference in Viral Load Between Vaccinated and Unvaccinated, Asymptomatic and Symptomatic Groups
Mendelian randomization analyses show that higher acetyl-carnitine and carnitine levels in blood protect against severe Covid19
Resources to Thrive:
- I found two (more) great (and lengthy) PDFs discussing how you can “vote with your dollars” and support regenerative agriculture; both for the planet’s and your health. You’ll have to enter your email address to get the guides, but at 46 and 29 pages respectively, there’s quite a lot of information being offered from Kiss the Ground (Purchasing Guide), and Rodale Institute (Power of the Plate). They’re both chock full of factoids and graphs for visual folks like myself. Kiss the Ground goes a bit more into lifestyle (clothing, cleaning, water, etc.) and Rodale sticks a bit more to farming (and crop distribution). They’re both great resources and worth reading.
- Precision Nutrition (who I’m certified with) recently put out an article about “Rest & Recovery.” As with most things they produce, I think it’s full of pretty good general recommendations and certainly enough for a creative mind to get started and apply to the nuances of their training routine. Recall that in my first “big study” with a carnivore diet the two most important variables I found effecting performance were recovery and protein intake. In short, in order to perform well you have to recovery well. The more you plan on performing (or training hard) the more emphasis you’ll need to put on recovery if you plan on putting a full effort into each of those session. Conversely, if you’re not fully recovered between sessions, you’re not getting as much out of your training as you could.
- As we get into fall, and I posted a picture of myself in a cryotherapy chamber, I’ve gotten into a few discussion and received several questions about various cold immersion therapies. I’ll be sending out a specific newsletter on this later this week since I haven’t looked at the literature myself in a while.