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Tuesday, August 21st, 2012 - Shane Doll

While health gurus and physicians continue to debate over the real causes of heart disease and cardiovascular health issues, the pharmaceutical industry is plowing ahead with research and development of new drugs.

The latest drugs they’re working on now are designed to raise HDL (high density lipoprotein), also referred to as “good cholesterol.”

And for good reason as numerous studies have shown a correlation of higher risk of heart disease in individuals with low HDL levels. I say that loosely as there seems to be a “correlation,” but low HDL levels haven’t been shown to “cause” heart attack or stroke.

As we should have expected all along, it’s a much more complex issue. Why do some people with higher cholesterol numbers (both LDL and HDL) not always develop heart disease? Why does the guy with accepted “normal” ranges of cholesterol drop dead of a heart attack?

The truth is, regardless of what one camp tries to say, we simply don’t have all the answers yet.

Instead of being upfront about that, the mainstream medical community speculates in their own circles and the pharmaceutical industry naturally follows along seeing the potential for hefty profits to be made with new drugs.

More after the jump…

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Monday, August 13th, 2012 - Shane Doll

Last week I wrote a post on the link between genetically modified crops and increased obesity rates.

While we obviously can’t exclude the role of exercise and lifestyle habits in weight management, I am of the belief there must be other factors contributing to the sharp rise in obesity and chronic diseases like type II diabetes.

This belief may open the door to criticism by those who assert our nation’s health problems are simply the result of fast food, inactivity, and the over-consumption of calories in poor diets.

I don’t think we can exclude these factors from the equation, however new research is increasing our understanding of changes in the body that result in metabolic syndrome.

The bottom line is as a species, the way we live, the way we eat, the foods we eat, how the food is produced, etc, has all changed dramatically in the past century. To think that the human body wouldn’t be experiencing biological adaptations in the process would be short-sighted to say the least.

In today’s post I’ll be discussing the possible role of bacteria in the rise of obesity rates.

More after the jump…

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Friday, August 10th, 2012 - Shane Doll

Most health experts now agree that inflammation is the root cause behind most all chronic illnesses and disease.

While there are a variety of causes for chronic inflammation in the body, the outcome is always the same. Over time and left unchecked it leads to premature aging and diminished health.

Quite frequently when individuals set out to lose weight the last thing they’re thinking about is inflammation. The focus is all on calories and exercise. This is a big mistake.

In my experience as a fitness coach and weight loss consultant, inflammation is without question one of the most overlooked hidden obstacles that keep people stuck in a plateau.

In today’s post we’ll look at inflammation in more detail and I’ll provide you with my top tips on how to reduce it.

More after the jump…

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Tuesday, May 29th, 2012 - Shane Doll

I get quite a few questions regarding what the best diet is for middle age adults. While this is sort of a “it depends” question, there are some physiological factors to consider. One of the big issues is insulin sensitivity. As we age insulin sensitivity tends to go down and this can impact dietary choices. In short, the way you ate in your twenties and thirties may not be optimal for your forties, fifties, and beyond.

In this post we’re going to talk about insulin sensitivity and how it relates to diet and exercise for middle age adults. For starters let’s briefly discuss the role of insulin. As you know our bodies run mostly on fatty acids and blood glucose (aka blood sugar). As sugars and starches are digested and broken down into glucose molecules, the body needs a way to get the base elements in to the cells for energy production.

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Friday, May 18th, 2012 - Shane Doll

For years now the so called experts have been telling us we need to be concerned about cholesterol levels in order to prevent heart disease. This whole correlation about cholesterol levels and heart disease is suspect to say the least, but here’s what we’ve been told to do.

Look to increase our consumption of foods with HDL cholesterol (aka “good cholesterol”) and minimize foods with LDL cholesterol (aka “bad cholesterol). This meant to eat more avocados, nuts, seeds, and fish while minimizing red meats, fatty animal proteins, and fried foods.

Well now the experts are telling us they may have had it all wrong. Apparently there’s no correlation behind eating foods high in HDL cholesterol and reducing the risk of heart disease. Ok, so that means we shouldn’t eat these foods? Say what?

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Tuesday, May 8th, 2012 - Shane Doll

As a fitness coach who has spent years counseling with clients struggling with weight problems and food addictions I’ve always tried to maintain a measure of empathy. We turn on the TV and see celebrity trainers yelling and screaming at their clients in attempts to change behavior in some twisted way.

Sure it makes for good TV but anyone who has spent some time in the trenches will tell you this is poor coaching. Trying to humiliate or use “tough love” tactics to change diet and lifestyle habits certainly doesn’t empower the individual in a positive way.

Being bold with conveying the consequences of a person’s actions if they don’t change is something altogether different. The role of a coach is to help uncover the issues that are keeping a person stuck in an unfit and unhealthy body. Often times these issues transcend far beyond a willful desire to overeat and avoid exercise.

At the core you’ll find emotional pain and complexities with behavior and actions. That’s a subject for another day but in this post I want to discuss the connection between food addiction and obesity.

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Monday, May 7th, 2012 - Shane Doll

Attention all adults taking a statin drug to lower cholesterol levels as prescribed by your doctor. After piles of evidence and research have been compiled on the side-effects of long-term use of these drugs, the FDA is finally acknowledging the issues and will be now requiring the use of new warning labels.

Let me be the first to say if you are taking a statin drug don’t run out and stop taking your meds altogether. You will however want to educate yourself on the long-term risks of taking these drugs and begin exploring how you could possibly eliminate the need to take them.

I can’t emphasize enough the importance to doing your own research and accepting personal responsibility for your health. I see far too many people just blindly accepting the recommendations of their physician without asking any questions.

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Tuesday, May 1st, 2012 - Shane Doll

I heard a commercial over the weekend that delivered all kind of promise for middle aged women who’ve been unsuccessful with weight loss. Of course this caught my attention because weight loss and body transformation for middle age men and women is my area of expertise. I decided to do a little research into this product called Amberen to see what’s behind the curtain.

Let me preface this discussion by making sure I’m clear that this is NOT a review of Amberen and how it relates to menopause symptoms. I’m going to be digging into the weight loss claims as that’s what the commercial was promoting.

Does Amberen help alleviate menopause symptoms? Your guess is as good as mine. During my research I found quite a few arguments on both sides. Some users report a distinct improvement in symptoms, while others cite the product did nothing for them.

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Friday, April 27th, 2012 - Shane Doll

If you’ve followed my fat loss coaching for any length of time you’ve undoubtedly heard me discuss the impacts of low insulin sensitivity and insulin resistance.

I get quite a few questions regarding this subject and figured it would be a good time to expand on it. Most of the questions revolve around, “How do I know if I’m insulin resistant?” While there’s some pretty good indicators to see if you’re likely to have blood sugar and insulin imbalances, there’s also some inexpensive and simple tests you can have done.

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Monday, March 26th, 2012 - Shane Doll

Think you can run on 5 hours of sleep or less at night and get through the day with coffee or other caffeine products? You may be able to get away with it for a while, but make no mistakes it’s taking a tool on your body.

I have to chuckle when people give me the tough guy lingo of “I’ll sleep when I’m dead.” My response is you’re heading there sooner if that’s what you really want. The human body needs rest and recovery for regeneration and when insufficient sleep occurs over a prolonged period of time, hormonal balances get completely out of whack. Here are some great snoring solutions to help you get a better nights sleep.

Recent research published on MySleepyFerret has shown that individuals who habitually sleep six or fewer hours a night are at an increased risk of developing diabetes and coronary heart disease. At the crux of this is the association of sleep deprivation and insulin resistance. This seems to be the common denominator and precursor leading to inflammation in the body.

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