Category Archives: Physical Health

Melatonin Affects Muscle and Exercise

Impact of Melatonin on Skeletal Muscle and Exercise – free full-text /PMC7072499/Cells. Feb 2020

Skeletal muscle disorders are dramatically increasing with human aging with enormous sanitary costs and impact on the quality of life.

Melatonin, the indole produced at nighttime in pineal and extra-pineal sites in mammalians, has recognized anti-aging, anti-inflammatory, and anti-oxidant properties.

Mitochondria are the favorite target of melatonin, which maintains them efficiently, scavenging free radicals and reducing oxidative damage. Here, we discuss the most recent evidence of dietary melatonin efficacy in age-related skeletal muscle disorders in cellular, preclinical, and clinical studies.
Continue reading

The HPA – Immune Axis in the Brain

The HPA – Immune Axis and the Immunomodulatory Actions of Glucocorticoids in the Brain – free full-text /PMC3978367/ – Front Immunol. 2014;

In response to physiological and psychogenic stressors, the hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal (HPA) axis orchestrates the systemic release of glucocorticoids (GCs).

By virtue of nearly ubiquitous expression of the GC receptor and the multifaceted metabolic, cardiovascular, cognitive, and immunologic functions of GCs, this system plays an essential role in the response to stress and restoration of an homeostatic state.

GCs act on almost all types of immune cells and were long recognized to perform salient immunosuppressive and anti-inflammatory functions through various genomic and non-genomic mechanisms.   Continue reading

The Surprising Science of Walking

Book Review: The Surprising Science of WalkingBy M.R. O’Connor June 2020

Walking on two legs remains a special adaptation of our species; it freed our hands to engage in other activities such as carrying food or weapons, which further fueled our exceptional evolution.

walking has not only been crucial to human evolution but is essential to our health.

We are always told that walking is good exercise and we should do more of it, but  I can’t walk too long because of the repetitive hip motion. Why is that aspect of walking never mentioned? Continue reading

Effects of Social Distancing on Body and Brain

The Effects of Social Distancing on Body and Brain — BrainPost | Easy-to-read summaries of the latest neuroscience publications – Post by Anastasia Sares – June 2020

This virus is a true biopsychosocial disaster – very similar to the impact of chronic pain when we can no longer participate in active social lives or our favorite pursuits – but I don’t see anyone suggesting we are catastrophizing about it.

Humans evolved to be social with one another, and we function best when we have strong relationships and regular social contact.

However, in many cities, half or more of the inhabitants live alone, and in the current COVID-19 pandemic, people are additionally deprived of in-person interactions at work and social gatherings.

It is a good time to remind ourselves of the far-reaching impacts of loneliness and find ways to mitigate it.  Continue reading

Single Session of Exercise Alters 9,815 Blood Molecules

A Single Session of Exercise Alters 9,815 Molecules in Our Blood – The New York TimesBy Gretchen ReynoldsJune 10, 2020

Wow! The extensive molecular changes that occur during and after working out underscore how consequential activity is for our bodies and health.

When we exercise, the levels of thousands of substances in our bloodstream rise and drop, according to an eye-opening new study of the immediate, interior impacts of working out.

The study is the most comprehensive cataloging to date of the molecular changes that occur during and after exercise and underscores how consequential activity — and inactivity — may be for our bodies and health.    Continue reading

How Coronavirus Spreads in Cities

Does city living spread coronavirus? It’s complicated. | Grist – By Shannon Osaka on Jun 22, 2020 

Here’s another reasonable discussion about risk. It doesn’t deny reality, but it shows how we can reduce our risk.

Turns out, the virus mainly spreads

  • indoors,
  • in close contact,
  • with prolonged exposure.

It’s not like someone jogs by you outside and you inhale some particles they’ve exhaled and get sick. The virus is so diluted outdoors that you won’t get enough of it to be sickened.  Continue reading

The Critical Importance of Corticoid Hormones

e.hormone | The Hormones : CorticoidsTulane University – 2007 or later

Here’s some basic information on corticoid steroids, like prednisone, which can often provide dramatic relief from inflammatory pain.

Unfortunately, these steroids act by suppressing our whole immune system, not just inflammation, so they become dangerous if taken too regularly for too long. For me, they can be the best pain relievers with the worst long-term consequences.

In my darker moments, I’m willing to make this pact with the devil: relieve my pain now and I’ll deal with the fallout later – especially since I don’t expect to have a particularly long life because my body is literally disintegrating due to the faulty collagen from EDS.  Continue reading

Can a Parent’s Life Experience Be Inherited?

Can a Parent’s Life Experience Change the Genes a Child Inherits? – The Atlantic – June 2018

Cells use their genes to make proteins and RNA molecules. And to keep some genes active and some silenced, they surround them with other molecules.

Some molecules, called methyl groups, can coat part of a gene. They are often involved in keeping genes shut down. Other molecules coil up long segments of DNA, hiding the genes they contain.

The study of genes is genetics; the study of the molecules that control genes is often referred to is epigenetics.   Continue reading

Basic Explanation of Epigenetics

What is Epigenetics? – The is a whole website dedicated to the science of epigenetics. These two fundamental articles are a perfect introduction to the topic.

A Super Brief and Basic Explanation of Epigenetics for Total Beginners

DNA gives the instructions for various functional proteins to be produced inside the cell — this process is also known as the central dogma of molecular biology.

Epigenetics affects how genes are read by cells, and subsequently whether the cells should produce relevant proteins. Continue reading

FACTS about the Wuhan Coronavirus

A Primer on the Wuhan Coronavirus  | American Council on Science and Health by Henry Miller – Feb 2020

I’m so sick of seeing all the sensationalist coverage of the new coronavirus and found this article to get a more reasonable accounting of what’s going on with it. To me, this is just another flu or cold virus like all the others that lead to death for a small percentage of people every single year.

To put things in perspective:

2017–18 United States flu season – Wikipedia

The 2017-2018 flu season was severe for all populations and resulted in an estimated 959,000 hospitalizations and 79,400 deaths. This is the highest number of patient claims since the 2009 flu season.

Despite almost a million Americans hospitalized and almost 80,000 Americans dying, there was no panic, no sensational headlines, no rush to buy masks, or any other craziness spread by fear-mongering media. Continue reading