There is a lot written in the medical literature about the overdiagnosis and overtreatment of prostate cancer. Most prostate cancers are very slow-growing and remain confined to the prostate gland, and as a result, a man may go years or even decades without having clinical problems from it. And especially in the case of older men, the wisest course may be to just do nothing. And that is certainly my attitude. I am 70 years, and I don’t know if I have prostate cancer or not. I could. They say that if you live long enough that you’re likely to get it, that 90% of men who die over the age of 80 have some cancerous tissue in their prostate. But, as long as I am feeling good and have no pain and can pass my urine fine, I’m not that interested in finding out.

Treating prostate cancer is an industry, and it is self-propelling. However, the overtreatment is not entirely their fault because some men, upon being told they have prostate cancer, panic. They want it out. Cut it out, burn it out, get it out of me. They want aggressive treatment. They can’t stand the thought of doing nothing. They become obsessed with it. They can almost feel it growing inside them. But, it’s all in their mind.

The fact is that most of us have probably already had cancer. It starts with just one malignant cell. That doubles to 2, the two double to 4, the 4 to 8, etc. etc. but it takes a long time to reach significance, and before it does, the immune system may tackle it and get rid of it. Some of us may have already recovered from cancer several times in our lives, without ever knowing it. So, if I knew I had prostate cancer, I would not freak out about it, and I would not assume the worst.

However, I am very much in favor of a pro-active approach to prostate cancer. This involves lifestyle, diet and exercise.  For diet, it’s unrefined plant foods. I have to think that animal proteins stimulate growth within the prostate much more than plant proteins.  And there are studies showing reduced risk of prostate cancer from switching to plant proteins, such as nuts, seeds, and beans. And then there are the many anti-cancer compounds in fruits and vegetables. If you eat primarily or exclusively unrefined plant foods, you will not only lower your risk of getting prostate cancer, but you will greatly reduce your risk of developing aggressive prostate cancer. So, eating the right foods is priority number one.

Then, exercise is important because it relieves vascular congestion within the prostate. When you’re sitting a lot, a lot of people work sitting at computers and whatnot, blood tends to pool in the prostate. And that pooling of blood, that chronic vascular congestion, is conducive to morbid changes, including cancer. So getting up and running around, which drives blood from your core to your periphery, to your arms and legs, relieves that congestion, and helps keep the prostate healthy.  So, wring out your prostate with a good workout, and do it regularly.

Weight control is also important. Get lean and stay lean. Obesity is a major risk factor for aggressive prostate cancer. But, if you are eating whole natural plant foods and exercising, obesity is probably not going to be a problem.

But, more specifically than that, avoid having a pendulous abdomen. Don’t carry extra weight there. That’s because the prostate is the low man on the totem pole. The weight of everything else is weighing on it. And when that happens, it results in poor vascular drainage. And that results in a chronic torpid state of the gland.  And that encourages cancer.

So, stay light, stay lean, and stay active, and you’ll be treating your prostate gland properly.

There are many good prostate formulas that are meant to be taken preventively. I take one. I take the one that we sell called Prostathera. It is a very good product, although there are similar ones from other companies that are just as good. They usually contain botanicals like saw palmetto, pygeum, stinging nettle, plus nutrients like lycopene. And these ingredients have been shown to help mitigate benign prostatic enlargement, which is even more common than prostate cancer.  

https://klaire.com/prt-prostathera

I want to finish this by discussing the role of sex in prostate cancer. Some men fear that having sex and ejaculating too frequently may stimulate prostate cancer. Obviously, during sex, your prostate does become engorged.  But, it is just as likely that having sex and orgasms too infrequently is a culprit.  There is no doubt that staying sexually active, with a relatively high rate of frequency, is healthy for men and in numerous ways. But, there’s a caveat, and it is: DON’T ALLOW YOURSELF TO BECOME AROUSED IF THERE ISN’T GOING TO BE A RELEASE.  There is a prostatic congestion that happens, and that congestion dissipates after orgasm and ejaculation.  But, if you get aroused without climaxing, then the congestion does not go away.  Eventually, it will, but it happens much more slowly.

I’m sure you’ve heard that chronic inflammation is a progenitor of cancer; that it leads to cancer. Well, engorgement of the prostate gland during sexual arousal isn’t exactly the same as inflammation, but, it has features in common with it. And you definitely want that engorgement to go away when you’re finished having sex. So, only let yourself get sexually aroused when you know it is a situation in which completion is going to occur. Otherwise, hold off, and don’t even get started. That’s my best advice. Don’t toy with your prostate.  

 

  

You know about the Covid outbreak in the White House, with the number of cases currently at 34 people. It’s quite incredible, if you think about it because it’s been widely reported that they have strict protocols there, with masks available to anyone who needs it, and sanitizer stations all around. A big deal has been made about Trump not wearing a mask during the announcement of his Supreme Court nominee, but let’s keep it in perspective. Right now, for instance, my movie His Stretch of Texas Ground is being shot in Texas, the sequel to my first movie, My Stretch of Texas Ground, and strict Covid protocols are being followed on the set. It’s masks, social distancing, temperature taking, hand sanitizing, etc. But, when it’s time for the actors to act, the masks come off, and they do whatever they have to do, whether hugging, kissing, fighting, or whatever. Then, once the scene wraps, the masks go back on.

But, getting back to the White House, remember that Trump, he’s not like you or me. He lives in cloistered environment. He doesn’t have to go to the supermarket to buy food, and he doesn’t have to go to Walmart to buy household supplies. So, his exposure to social closeness to the public is zero. I presume the idea is that his luck ran out at that Rose Garden gathering because there was a lady there who tested positive. But, when you think about the mathematical odds; the fact that he lives in a highly protected and controlled environment compared to the rest of us,  HOW ARE ANY OF US AVOIDING GETTING COVID IF HE GOT IT?

So, am I suggesting that he never really had it? I think it’s possible. He only had mild symptoms. He was only hospitalized for 3 days, even though he is in a high-risk group. I just don’t know what really happened to him. I don’t think there is anything they report that can be taken without suspicion.

But, we need to think about the future. Currently, there are great expectations that a vaccine will be available by the Spring, although some are pushing it to late Spring, like June. Then, presumably, everybody takes the vaccine; the vaccine works; and life goes back to normal. I hope you don’t believe that because I sure don’t.

What reason is there to think that a Covid vaccine will be any more effective than the flu vaccine? And the flu vaccine is not very effective, which even the CDC admits.

They claim that last year, the flu vaccine was 37% effective against Influenza-A. That would mean that for every 3 unvaccinated persons who got the flu, 2 vaccinated ones also got it.  By their own admission, the flu vaccine works except when it doesn’t.  They could very easily do double-blind, placebo-controlled studies of the flu vaccine, but they refuse. What reason is there to think that the Covid vaccine is going to be any more effective than the flu vaccine?

And think about how the flu is still with us despite the vaccine. The last flu season was one of the worst on record. And that’s true even though compliance rate was high. About 60% of adults took the shot. That was a very good year. Often, it’s only 40%.

And there is already talk about the Covid virus mutating. So, does that mean that the Covid vaccine, like the flu vaccine, is going to have to be a yearly ritual?

And let us not rule out the possibility of disaster from the Covid vaccine, as was true of the swine flu vaccine in 1976. Safety cannot be established in short trials, not for drugs and not for vaccines.  Think about all the medical drugs that have been taken off the market because of disastrous side effects. All of them passed short-term safety trials. If they find out the hard way that the vaccine is harmful, then what? They’ll probably try another one. Meanwhile, as long as they keep relying on the PCR test, there are always going to be people who test positive for Covid. Inanimate objects have tested positive for Covid.

So, when is life going to return to normal? It’s not. That’s my prediction. I really think this could go on for years and probably will. So, better get used to the Covid world in which we live because it’s not going away any time soon, and in all likelihood, life is never going to get back to normal. We have crossed the Rubicon with this, and there is no going back. 

A federal judge in Pennsylvania has ruled that the governor’s lockdown measures are unconstitutional, that certain lines can’t be crossed, that people have the right to assemble, to move freely, and earn a living. In Ohio, a lawsuit against the governor is underway that is citing not only Constitutional arguments but medical, scientific ones, demonstrating that the Covid PCR test, on which the claims about case loads, deaths, and epidemiology are based, is flaky. It is arbitrary. It is fraught with windows for error. And, if you run enough cycles, ANYBODY will test positive for Covid.

Then I learned something that is really disturbing. Do you recall that a few months ago, we were hearing voluminous tales about Covid-induced extreme hypoxemia, also called Happy Hypoxia? That’s because the patient wasn’t in distress. Remember how we were told that shortness of breath is a cardinal sign of Covid? It turns out that that’s not true. Many patients have no shortness of breath at all. Quite a few have no respiratory symptoms at all. But, doctors were reporting frighteningly low oxygen levels, like in the 70s. Normal is 98 or 99. And yet, these people were moving around freely, talking normally, and showing no signs of distress. Yet, a doctor talked them into undergoing anesthesia; then being drugged to paralyze their muscles; and then having a ventilator installed to breathe for them. THAT’S IN A PERSON WHO WAS NOT IN DISTRESS. So, what was going on? It turns out that those pulse oximeters aren’t very accurate, that at low readings, they can go haywire and give bogus readings. They are admitting that now.

Fact: They killed untold thousands of people with those ventilators. It wasn’t Covid that killed those patients; it was Medicine.

The federal government announced that they would pay for Covid patients, even if they had no insurance. They set $13,000 as the payout for hospital treatment, but if you included ventilating the patient, you got $39,000. And this was at a time when hospitals were losing millions from the loss of elective procedures. Hence, the pressure to err on the side of ventilating.  In a doubtful state, ventilate.

We now know that the death rate from Covid is a tiny fraction of 1%, and that’s even when you include all the people who died not from Covid, but with Covid.  And remember that what Covid is, at its essence, is a positive Covid test and nothing more. It is also admitted now that 40 to 45 percent of Covid sufferers suffer no symptoms at all.  On what basis then can you declare that those people are sick? It’s just a test, for Goodness sake. A man-made test. Moses didn’t bring it down from Mt. Sinai.

And now for the big lie. The media has been saying that asymptomatic positives have lungs that look as bad as those with symptoms. THAT IS IMPOSSIBLE! They would have symptoms if their lungs were that bad. It’s not as though there is no association between symptoms and pathological tissue changes. The two go together.

Rising case numbers are due to increased testing. The vast majority of positive testers have either no symptoms or extremely mild symptoms. I heard a guy on television say that he had a mild sore throat for a couple days, but he still had to quarantine for 14 days. A relative of mine who is away at college had a fever for about 24 hours, and that’s it. But, her Covid test was positive, so she had to quarantine for 14 days too, which in her case meant being confined to her dorm room. When you consider everything, including the fact that the test they are relying on to declare these cases Covid is flaky as hell; the inventor of it even said it cannot be used for this purpose; and very simple steps can easily demonstrate how unreliable it is.  For instance, all you have to do is repeat it. If you get a positive Covid test, just have it repeated at another lab. It will probably come back negative.

What is going on is insane. Now, they are once again pushing the flu vaccine, even though its track record absolutely stinks. It will protect you--unless it doesn’t. They refuse to do double-blind/placebo controlled-testing of the flu vaccine- even though they very easily could. And there really is no excuse that they don’t.

They have already had to halt one of the Covid vaccine trials because of adverse effects. And be aware that it often takes longer than the test period for the deleterious effects of drugs to manifest. If you think about all the drugs that have been taken off the market because of adverse effects, including lethal ones, they all went through and passed drug trials in order to get on the market. The truth is that the public at large- the ones who start taking new drugs- are the real guinea pigs.

I am much more fearful of Medicine than I am of Covid.  And I’m 70 years old.

Wheat is certainly a food that people love to hate, especially on the internet. For sure, there are people with gluten-sensitive enteropathy or celiac disease who cannot eat wheat, period. They must avoid it. But what about others?

There’s a growing trend to adopt the view that wheat is bad for everyone, that it hurts some people more than others, but it hurts everyone.

Well, if that’s true, then there has either been a change in people or a change in the wheat because there have been cultures that relied on wheat heavily. For instance, the Roman legions conquered the world on a diet that centered on wheat and barley. Wheat was the mainstay of the diet of the slaves who built the Egyptian pyramids.

For sure, no one has to eat wheat. There is no nutrient in wheat that cannot be obtained from other foods.

Besides the gluten, there is concern about the phytic acid in wheat which binds minerals. But, that’s less of a problem when wheat is leavened, allowed to rise, as in leavened bread. But, not all the wheat people eat is leavened, for instance, there is pasta and also wheat cereals. And, eating Vitamin C-rich vegetables with wheat neutralizes the phytic acid to a great extent. 

If you consider the history of wheat, you know it’s a grass and it was originally grown to make grass for grazing animals. Yes, cows can graze on wheat grass, and they love it, and I have seen them do it. I used to live in a small Texas town that was agricultural, but mostly towards raising cattle. And in the winter, they would grow wheat and rye as winter grasses for the cows. It was quite a sight to be driving through dormant winter landscape and then come upon an emerald green field of lush winter wheatgrass, a green sea of it in the dead of winter. It was amazing. 

So, wheat was cultivated, at first, to feed animals, but then, perhaps at a time of deprivation, they figured out how to make the stuff consumable by humans, and bread was born.

So, wheat is certainly not a primordial food for humans, like fruits and nuts. It’s a makeshift food.

So, what should we do with it? Why are we even talking about it? Throw the damn stuff out. 

Well, the thing is: some of us do enjoy some good hearty whole grain bread, which is going to be made with wheat or mostly wheat. And I admit that I enjoy good whole grain bread. With some tasty avocado and some vine-ripened tomatoes and red pepper, those sandwiches are delicious. 

So, I sometimes do eat such bread. But, I’ll add that I went ahead and did the antibody test for gluten sensitivity, and it came back negative. And, I really wasn't surprised because eating wheat never seemed to bother me.

But, there is another consideration, and that is that some people gain weight very easily if they eat bread- even whole grain bread. So, I recommend no bread to those who are struggling to lose weight.

But, I think it’s important to keep one’s perspective about this because whole wheat is a whole, natural, plant food (assuming it’s non-GMO and preferably organic). And as a whole, natural plant food, it does contain a host of nutrients and a lot of accessory chemicals collectively called phytonutrients, including antioxidants, plus plenty of fiber.   

I have to believe that whole wheat is non-atherogenic, non-diabetogenic, and non-cancer causing. And heart disease, cancer, and diabetes are still the three biggest killers. Unless you get some unusual disease, heart disease, cancer, or diabetes are the most likely way you are going to die.  So, if whole wheat is on the right side of those 3 diseases, it’s worth noting.

So, the bottom line for me is that some people should avoid wheat completely, and nobody should eat it wily-nily. And basically, the less of it you eat, the better. However, so long as you aren’t allergic to it, and assuming you don’t have a weight problem, if a little whole wheat bread is the worst thing you ever eat, you are likely to live a long time. There are a lot worse things you could be eating.  

 

 

There were hundreds of anti-vax protesters this weekend in Mass. protesting the new law requiring all kids in school from K to 12, including pre-schools and nurseries with babies as young as 6 months, to have flu shots. Of course, it was provoked by the Covid crisis. Hmmm. So if they are going to mandate a flu vaccine because of the Covid crisis, I presume they are going to mandate the Covid vaccine because of the Covid crisis- as soon as its available.

And the mandate applies to college students and graduate students as well up to age 30. So, even though one is a legal adult at 18, with the right to vote and enter the military, etc., you can’t decide what goes into your own body up to the age of 30 in Massachusetts.

And think about how arbitrary it is. What’s the difference between a 30 year old and 31 hear old? What, dd they just draw a number out of a hat?

Why, Why, Why do they call this a free country? Why do they ever use the word ‘liberty’ any more?

And what do the vaccinated have to fear from the unvaccinated? If the vaccine is effective; if it protects you when you’re exposed to the virus; then you’re not at risk from anyone who isn’t vaccinated. Right? And if you are at risk because the vaccine isn’t really effective, then of what use is the vaccine, and why should we bother with it at all?

Now, keep in mind that I completely deny the effectiveness of the flu vaccine. If it were effective, they would be willing to test it. I mean by taking, say, 2000 people who are comparable to each other, who don’t have any special risks, and administering the flu vaccine to half of them, and giving the other half a dummy vaccine; a placebo. Then, you see how many in each group get the flu.

But, that’s only one kind of testing that should be done. They should also do long-term testing of the flu vaccine, that is, comparing health outcomes over a long period of time between people who are vaccinated and those who are not, comparing their risk for cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, and much more.  For instance, one prominent researcher found a much higher risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease among those who repeatedly take the flu vaccine.

Look: if you want to take flu shots, go ahead; take them. Take any shots you want. Take every shot there is.  Take every new one that comes down the pike. I don’t care. It’s your body. Do what you want with it. But, no one should be forced to have something injected into them against their will. That is the worst possible thing. That is the ultimate Orwellian nightmare, more frightening than the flu and Covid combined. 

There are no guarantees in life, and there are certainly no guarantees when it comes to health. And if there is anything for which there are no guarantees, it is vaccines.  If you want them; take them. But, hands off other people. Let us decide for ourselves.  Tyranny in the name of Science is still tyranny.  Medical coercion has got to stop.

https://www.yahoo.com/gma/hundreds-protesters-gather-against-flu-003556645.html

I have written before about the supplements I like as sleep aides. And I am not in favor of any kind of knock-out pills. I consider all pharmaceutical “hypnotics” as they call them to be dangerous and detrimental, not only because of their toxicities, but because they interfere with and corrupt the sleep process. They dig you in deeper. Truly, it’s like being stuck in a hole and digging yourself in deeper when you take those drugs.

But things I do feel comfortable taking and recommending are melatonin, magnesium, the amino acid taurine, the amino acid glycine, and some of the calming herbs, my favorite of which is lemon balm. Another good thing is the amino acid L-theanine from green tea. You could take every one of those things- every night- and it wouldn’t hurt you or pose a problem.

But, what I really want to talk about at this time are other things you can do to foster good sleep. The first is to ensure that you have good bedding. You want a firm mattress. Not too firm, but firm enough to support your spine and allow your body to lengthen, as much as possible, on the bed.  And remember that mattresses don’t last forever. Think about replacing your mattress at 10 years, and if not then, at 12 years. You don’t want to be keeping a mattress for 20 years.

The second thing is darkness. Get your sleeping room as dark as possible. There is light from electric alarm clocks, from phones, cell phones, etc. And people have computers in their bedrooms, which may emit light from modems and routers, even when the computer is turned off. Of course, light may also be entering the room through windows. So, do everything you can to make the room as dark as possible.

The third thing is temperature. A lot is written about keeping the room temperature cooler at night, since body temperature drops during sleep. But obviously, being chilled is no good either and may prevent sleep. So, pay attention to room temperature on both sides of the spectrum and make sure you aren’t being affected by a room temperature that is too high or too low.

The fourth thing is quietness. But, I realize that there is a limit to how much people can control noises. How many times has my sleep been interrupted by a neighbor’s barking dog? Numerous times, but fortunately, it hasn’t been a problem lately. Absolute quiet is the goal, and you should try to establish it as much as possible. But, definitely have ear plugs available because you never know. And by the way: I think you should avoid Motel 6 and motels like it when you’re traveling because they are invariably built very close to major freeways, and the traffic roar is likely to keep you awake all or most of the night.

The fifth thing is particularly valuable if you have a problem sleeping, if you know you are inclined to insomnia. Realize that a vicious cycle occurs in which your worrying about sleep raises the bar of difficulty for you to fall asleep. Your insomnia becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.

I’ll confess that I am not the best sleeper, by nature. I have struggled with sleep issues all my adult life. It started when I was in college, and I have never really been free of it. But, what helps me is to always have good reading materials available at my bedside. Nighttime before sleep is when I do my enjoyable reading; when I read for fun.  I don’t favor novels so much, but rather, biographies and non-fiction, including history. Currently, I am reading a book about World War II, which is a period of history that I am very interested in, and the book is so interesting to me, that I look forward to going to bed at night so that I can read some more. I start reading and continue until my eyes get heavy, and then I turn out the light. But, having good, interesting reading materials takes the pressure off. It distracts you. And it allows the natural sleep process to take place spontaneously without interference.  

I let my cell phone charge at night, but put it in another room. You don’t have to do it in your bedroom. And with my landline, I turn off the ringer at night, and I silence the answering machine too, although it is still operational. And people ask me: what if there is an emergency?  Well, if there is an emergency, then I am just going to have to find out about it the next morning. If that is a selfish act, then so be it.

Well, I hope this has helped you some. And remember that despite everything you do, sleep results are going to vary. You are going to have good nights, great nights, but also not so great nights, where you wrestle with sleep despite doing everything you can that is constructive. But, don’t be tempted to start taking drugs because that is not the answer. You want to avoid that like the plague. Safe supplements yes;  drugs no.

I presume that most people who read this blog are on the older side, like me.  And you know it’s important to stay active for many reasons, including the prevention of atrophy. And atrophy starts young- even in your 30s. I kid you not. I have gotten letters from people in their 30s, both female and male, complaining about not having the round, toned buttocks they used to have when they were young, which for them was not too long ago. They even made an episode of King of the Hill about it, an adult cartoon about life in a fictional mid-sized Texas town called Arlen. And note that I am the creator of a fictional small Texas town called Arlettsville in My Stretch of Texas Ground. But, in one episode of King of the Hill, Hank Hill, who is in his 40s, and is a former high school athlete, discovers that his butt has become totally flat and wasted.

So, what causes the flattening of the butt? First, the person has stopped exercising, and second, it’s a natural tendency. The gluteus maximus tends to atrophy. It is one of the first muscles to go. And there may be a genetic component to the tendency.

To fight it, you should exercise as in bicycling, stair climbing, sprinting. There are various weight-lifting exercises you can do, but let’s note that young people can have very well-toned butts without lifting weights.  It’s not fundamentally about heavy weightlifting.  It’s more about how you move your own weight around.

But, it’s an example of a decline that can take place when a person is still relatively young.  And obviously, the tendency to atrophy only gets worse as we get older. There is a term for it Medicine: sarcopenia, which is skeletal muscle wasting. And it goes hand in hand with bone wasting called osteopenia. And it makes sense that they would go together because it’s all one continuous stream of functional tissue.

But, here’s what I’m getting at: say you have two people, same age, same gender, doing the same exercise. But, one is living healthfully, eating nutritious food and avoiding bad habits like smoking and drinking. The other is eating crap and doing everything else that’s bad. That person is likely to get a flat butt at a younger age,  even doing the same exercise. Why?  Because that person is aging faster overall, and the flattening of the butt is an aging thing. So, it’s not just about exercise; it’s about your general health and how you are living your life.  

So, what exercises are best? Especially for older people who are trying to stay younger? I mentioned weight lifting, and it is very efficient. But, I don’t go to a gym. I have a light weight set in my garage, which I use sometimes.  But, I have mixed feelings about older people lifting weights because it is very easy to hurt oneself. For instance, you should never arch your back. The back wasn’t meant to be arched.  You have about 5 degrees of back-bending before the facet joints lock, and it’s all strain after that.  The window is so small, you should just forget about arching your back at all. Just don’t do it.  Make it a rule: don’t arch your back. But, if you try to lift a heavy weight overhead, you are almost certain to arch your back. And the same goes for a bench press, because it’s very easy to arch your back when you’re lying down.  So, the best way to press a weight is to do it on an incline where the support behind you keeps you from arching your back.  Therefore, yes to incline presses, but no to military presses and bench presses.

And I’ll give one more example and that is curling weight with the forearm supinated- the traditional biceps curl.  In life, the biceps is more of a supporting muscle than a prime mover. There aren’t too many movements in life in which it’s practical to flex the arm with the forearm supinated. For instance, if you were pulling yourself up a tree to climb the tree, you couldn’t do it with your forearm supinated. You’d have no way to get up and over. The only practical way to do it is with the palm rotated internally; i.e. pronated. So, if you are going to pull yourself up on a pull-up bar, you should do it with the dorsal side of your hand facing you. In other words, your hand should be internally rotated, not externally rotated. And note that you are much more likely to tear a muscle if you do it the other way.

But, what about developing big biceps? That shouldn’t be your objective. That muscle is going to be worked some even if you do the exercise the right way. But, the hallmark of a “gym rat” are big biceps. It’s not something that comes from other athletics or strenuous physical work. Gymnasts get big biceps because they often work-out on the high bar underhanded.  Otherwise, a more balanced muscular conditioning takes place that I think is more normal. And again: you’ll be less likely to get hurt because bicep tears are very common when you twist your arm out and flex. 

So, if you are going to do weight-lifting, don’t just do anything that you see other people doing. I hope you have someone good advising you who knows something about body mechanics and kinesthetics.

So, what else? There are competitive sports like tennis and golf, but realize: people get hurt doing those things. Tennis is harder on the body than golf, but they are both hard. Tennis is a disaster biomechanically. There are few things that cause dystonia and dyskinesia more than tennis.  Just watch professional tennis players, and I don’t mean when they’re playing; I mean when they’re just walking. They’re spastic. They’re a dystonic mess.

So, what’s good? Bicycling is good because it’s easy on your joints. The important thing is to have a good bike that fits you properly and a comfortable seat. You should also know how to ride without crimping your neck and thwarting your linearity. But, let’s face it: short of crashing, you’re not likely to hurt yourself riding a bike.

Walking? Well, that's the best; there is nothing better. Walking is better than running because it calls for a more balanced use of the lower extremities. In walking, you actually straighten your leg, that is, your knee joint, which calls upon the anterior thigh muscles. When you run, your leg remains bent all the time; it never straightens; which means that you are using your posterior muscles very much more. It’s unbalanced. Obviously, human beings have the ability to run; it is a natural movement. But, I believe it’s really part of your “fight or flight” mechanism to run. Normal locomotion for a human being- to get from place to place- is to walk.  It doesn’t mean you can never run, but don’t do it every day because if you do, you are going to get hurt.

Now, if you’re concerned about walking being too “easy,” and you want to make it harder, don’t consider carrying something. That’s a terrible idea. Walking is a natural movement that involves cadence and rhythm and freedom, which you lose completely if you are carrying something. So, don’t even think about doing that. What you should do instead is: walk up hills. If you include some hills in your course, you can get everything you need from walking. And of course, I mean walking up the hills. It’s not important to walk down. It would be OK to skip that. 

Swimming is excellent, and that’s another natural movement. A human being does not know how to swim instinctively, but some animals do. I’ll never forget the first time I put my dog Firsky into water, as a puppy, and he started doing the dog paddle, and it was beautiful. And, it’s very easy to teach the dog paddle to children. It’s really the first stroke they should learn.

The crawl (which is often mistakenly called the free-style, but that is really just a competitive distinction; the movement is the crawl) the back stroke, and the breast stroke are all very good and biomechanically sound. Don’t do the butterfly- unless you want shoulder problems. You really should skip that one or else it's going to be impingement syndromes and rotator cuff tears. 

So, what do I do? I follow my own advice. I walk, including up hills. I bicycle. I swim. And I do some working out with weights but in a very controlled, non- straining manner. And I do calisthenics like pull-ups and push-up, but again, with a lot of attention to form.  I always do my pull-ups over-handed.

And as I approach my 70th birthday, I am feeling good; strong like bull.

 

 

 

 

Why would the body want high blood pressure? Because it may need it in order to circulate the blood.

 

You know that blood moves from large wide vessels to small, narrow vessels. Think of it like a 4 lane highway being reduced to 2. What happens then? Traffic crawls. Right? But, the situation is made even worse if the person has plaquing in his or her arteries. Then, it takes even more pressure to get the blood through it.

 

And there’s a special situation involving the kidneys. There, specialized capillary networks known as glomeruli are designed to be porous so that the liquid portion of the blood (meaning not the cells and not the proteins) can pass through the pores forming the initial urinary filtrate. But again, if you have a lot of plaquing, then it may take more arterial pressure to get the process going. And that is why the kidneys have so much control over blood pressure. Some of the popular pharmaceutical treatments involve neutralizing hormones that are secreted by the kidneys, such as angiotensin. But, it’s the body that is secreting those hormones, and it’s not doing it by mistake. It think it needs the higher pressure. And it isn’t wrong.

Most of the pharmaceutical treatments for high blood pressure involve thwarting something that the body is trying to do. So, you really are going to war with your body when you take those drugs. 

And  it’s all so very arbitrary and capricious. You could go to a big medical building with a slew of doctors. The only thing they are going to agree on is that you need drugs to treat your hypertension. But, which drugs? And which combination of drugs? It’s all a can of worms.

Blood pressure rising should be taken as a sign that your arteries aren’t in good shape. In other words: they are diseased. And they’re still going to be diseased even if you do take drugs. They may become more diseased from your taking drugs.

Unless it is a medical emergency, where your blood pressure is so high that you are on the verge of having an imminent catastrophic blowout, I think it’s best to skip the medical approach. Don’t take any drugs. Instead, start doing things- in your life- to make the condition of your arteries better. In other words, start trying to reverse the damage.

And if you succeed and your arterial blood flow improves, then your body will turn off the mechanisms that are causing the higher pressure. In other words, your blood pressure will become lower naturally and spontaneously- without any forcing measures. And you will be so much better off.

So, I think it raises a serious question: Are the millions of people who are taking blood pressure drugs on a routine basis, are they being helped or hurt? Are they actually better off for doing what they are doing?

I doubt it.

 

 

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