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Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Science News: The Body

So I've been arguing with my body a bit. It seems to have a mind of its own when it comes to what I weigh. Back in 2006, I randomly dropped a bunch of weight. Since then, I've put it back not gradually, but in fits and starts where I suddenly gain 5-8 pounds in a month. I don't get it, because usually it's not like anything has radically changed over that month. The calories in/calories out equation just doesn't seem to balance.

It's looking like that though exercising 20-30 minutes a day, 3 days a week will give you a lot of basic health benefits, it won't necessarily keep you lean unless you go for calorie restriction. I'm not good at being hungry all the time, so I need more exercise. This article was a bit disheartening though: an hour a day, 7 days a week will keep you even IF you are already a normal weight. If you need to lose, it needs to be more than that. Ugh. So, I did 150 sit-ups, 20 minutes of hand weights (up to five pounds now!), and climbed the Clark Center today. Almost an hour. Oy.

Meanwhile, it appears our expectations for what makes a decent meal have continued to upsize over history, and not just in the last 20 years. The depictions of the Last Supper have ever increasing amounts of food on the table the later the painting was made.

The human body is a seriously weird thing. Research shows that we are actually less capable of learning during puberty. Our brains are too busy coping with hormones.

Speaking of hormones, turns out there's a hormone that controls why we aren't thirsty at night when we're sleeping (and are hopefully peeing less!).

In other weird body news, it turns out our tummies may like a nice French Roast better than other coffee. Our tummies like N-methylpyridinium, a chemical created in the roasting process. The darker the roast, the less acid our tummies produce.

Mmm... coffee.

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