Tag Archives: exercise

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.
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Exercise Hyped as Universal Solution to Chronic Pain

Is exercise the new snake oil? or just a dirty word? | HealthSkills Blog – by Bronnie Thompson – Aug 2020

This is a great article explaining that while exercise is generally “good for you”, it does very little to relieve pain and disability. The studies that supposedly prove this are problematic and cited more than they deserve to be.

Exercise can do all these wonderful things – help you lose weight, reduce heart disease, moderate insulin and blood glucose levels, improve your mental health, and yes! reduce pain and disability when you’re sore. (check this list out)

The claims sound suspiciously similar to the claims made by old snake oil merchants.

Qualitative researchers have often investigated how people with pain view exercise: Continue reading

Physical Activity as Cause and Cure of Muscular Pain

Physical Activity as Cause and Cure of Muscular Pain: Evidence of Underlying Mechanisms – free full-text /PMC5473374/ – July 2017

This article interested me because I’ve long noticed that exercise both increases and decreases pain, usually initially increasing but over time (days or weeks) decreasing.

I’m always having to balance my activity and rest to keep a positive effect, doing both, but not too much of either one.

I had not paid attention to the difference between occupational (or physical) therapy (OT) and “leisure time physical activity” (LTPA). This article explains why I haven’t progressed much in my physical therapy routines: they involve static load, repetitive movements, and high peak forces, All of these are damaging to a body with a connective tissue disorder, like EDS.  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

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 the loss of estrogen impacts muscle strength

Here are 3 studies on how estrogen can prevent muscle wasting and improve mitochondrial function.

Aging of the musculoskeletal system: How the loss of estrogen impacts muscle strength. – PubMed – NCBIJun 2019 

Skeletal muscle weakness occurs with aging and in females this is compounded by the loss of estrogen with ovarian failure.

Estrogen deficiency mediates decrements in muscle strength from both

  1. inadequate preservation of skeletal muscle mass and
  2. decrements in the quality of the remaining skeletal muscle.

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Forced Exercise Less Beneficial than Voluntary

The Effects of Voluntary, Involuntary, and Forced Exercises on Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor and Motor Function Recovery: A Rat Brain Ischemia Model – free full-text /PMC3035657/ – Feb 2011

I was happy to find that what I have personally experienced has been proven to be true: forced exercise is not as beneficial as voluntary. Sometimes science actually proves our intuitions correct – surprise!

Stroke rehabilitation with different exercise paradigms has been investigated, but which one is more effective in facilitating motor recovery and up-regulating brain neurotrophic factor (BDNF) after brain ischemia would be interesting to clinicians and patients.

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Physical Activity and Brain Health – Part 2

Physical Activity and Brain Health – free full-text PMC6770965/ – Genes (Basel).  Sep 2019 – continued from Part 1

Exercise-Dependent Production of Dopamine, Endocannabinoids, and Opioids: Effects on Mood, Analgesia, and Happiness

In addition to an improvement of body fitness and learning and memory skills, it is well documented that PA (Physical Activity) can induce changes in the mental status, reducing anxiety and producing a general sense of wellbeing.

Moreover, it can induce analgesia.

Really? When I engage in physical activity, it’s usually a painful endeavor. If I didn’t enjoy some activities so very much, like hiking, bicycling, and dancing, I can’t imagine I’d have the will to do them.
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Physical Activity and Brain Health – Part 1

Physical Activity and Brain Health – free full-text PMC6770965/ – Genes (Basel).  Sep 2019

Physical activity (PA) has been central in the life of our species for most of its history, and thus shaped our physiology during evolution. However, only recently the health consequences of a sedentary lifestyle, and of highly energetic diets, are becoming clear.

It has been also acknowledged that lifestyle and diet can induce epigenetic modifications which modify chromatin structure and gene expression, thus causing even heritable metabolic outcomes.

About 50 years ago, scientists first learned that genetics has another layer, epigenetics. It matters not just what your genes are, but also on whether they are turned on or off.  Continue reading

Muscle impairment in women with hEDS – Part 2

Muscle mass, muscle strength, functional performance, and physical impairment in women with the hypermobility type of Ehlers‐Danlos syndrome

This is a continuation of the previous post of Part 1, and picks up at the “Discussion” section:

This study demonstrates severely reduced quantitative muscle function and substantial impairment in physical function in patients with EDS‐HT compared to age‐ and sex‐matched controls.

muscle pain and muscle fatigue were omnipresent in the patient group, increased remarkably due to the muscle strength tests, and decreased very slowly after each test.   Continue reading