The Best Health and Fitness Articles of the Week #165 – Signs of Folate Deficiency, Living a Frugal Life, and Dirty Marketing Tricks of the Fitness Industry


Are you getting enough folate? If you eat as many avocados as I do, then you probably do 😉

This weeks update includes:

  • Information about folate deficiency
  • How to live a more frugal life (with my own health and fitness tips added)
  • Why the mainstream medical community no longer thinks cholesterol is bad
  • How physical fitness helps older people maintain healthy brain function
  • A fitness insider discussing the dirty marketing tricks of the industry

9 Signs of Folate Deficiency & How to Reverse It

I don’t suffer from any of the symptoms of folate deficiency (poor immune system, low energy, poor digestion, anemia, canker sores, irritability, pale skin, developmental problems, premature gray hair), but folate supplementation has been top of mind for me recently because we just learned that our daughter might not be getting enough folate in her diet. My daughter drinks goat milk instead of cow milk because cow milk gives her bad constipation, but goat milk has only a fraction of the folate that cows milk has. My daughter doesn’t suffer from any of the symptoms either, but we want to make sure she doesn’t in the future.

There are also some useful tips in this article about how much folate we should get daily, as well as the foods that are highest in folate, such as avocados (yes!), oranges (yes!), and beef liver (boo!).

30 Fast Tips for a More Frugal Life

As I mentioned last week, my wife just recently had knee surgery, which is extremely expensive as you can imagine. This means that we will be on a super-tight budget for quite some time. This article isn’t entirely about health and fitness related frugal tips but there are a few mixed in.

Here are some tips, with my own examples added:

  • Buy used: Workout gear and kitchen devices
  • Pay with cash: This prevents you from overspending on groceries
  • Skip the gym membership: Go running, do body weight workouts, or watch routines on YouTube
  • Shop with a list: This can keep you from buying junk food too
  • Have a weekly meal plan: Cooking at home saves money and buying ingredients that work for several meals saves money too
  • Stockpile on groceries: When something you eat regularly is on sale, buy a bunch of it and freeze it
  • Use Ziplock bags for snacks: Take snacks with you instead of buying overpriced food when you’re out
  • Make your own cleaning products: This is much healthier than the toxic stuff from the store anyway
  • Garden to save money: You might not be able to reap the benefits right away, but you’ll be happy when it comes! Plus you get to be outside in the fresh air and get a little exercise while you’re at it.
  • Commute with public transportation: I do this already. It’s better for the environment and I get a lot of exercise walking to the bus stop.

Why Doctors Finally Called A Truce On Cholesterol in Food

The paleo community has known this for years, but finally the mainstream medical community is starting to understand that cholesterol isn’t bad at all. In fact, it’s vital. The US Department of Health’s Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee has announced that “cholesterol is not considered a nutrient of concern for overconsumption.”

It’s about time!

Cholesterol is important for cognitive function, it is essential for ALL sex hormones, HDL cholesterol reduces oxidation of particles to protect arteries from plaque formation, and cholesterol can reduce inflammation in the body.

Physical activity linked to greater mental flexibility in older adults

There’s a new study that shows that older adults who regularly exercise have more brain activity than those who don’t exercise at all. The researchers looked at 100 adults between the ages of 60 and 80 and used an MRI to evaluate white brain matter fibers to determine that more active adults have more brain activity and better white-matter structure.

Butter In Your Coffee and Other Cons: Stories From a Fitness Insider

This is a long read, but definitely worth taking the time to finish the whole thing. The author discusses how marketers trick consumers into believing their products are backed by science, when in reality they aren’t much, if at all. He calls out marketers such as Dave Asprey, D.H. Keifer, The Food Babe, and others. To be fair, I feel like he has distorted the claims of both Keifer and Asprey (I don’t recall Asprey ever claiming that eating butter will result in weight loss, ha ha), but nonetheless…

I’m not mentioning this to call out any of the health experts mentioned, but what I really like about the advice here is that we all need to be cautious of what we read, especially when the source is selling something. Personally, I think Dave Asprey and Keifer both provide great advice a lot of the time, but I always make sure to read the studies and any conflicting research before implementing anything into my health or fitness routine.

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