Wednesday, March 24, 2010

newsflash: commercials lie!

image courtesy of

When I get sick, as I have been for the past 3 days, I tend to watch more TV than usual. More TV = more commercials, at least for the tivo-less. This morning I saw a new (for me) commercial that made me want to hurl my snotty kleenexes at the TV: the corn lobby's commercial in defense of high fructose corn syrup.

The setup wasn't terribly memorable. I think it had something to do with two earnest twenty-somethings deciding whether or not to have dessert. Or, maybe I'm getting confused with the commercial in which the earnest twenty-something is trying to decide between oil-based whipped cream out of a tub or dairy-based whipped cream out of a can.

Anywho ... The punchline of the corn-lobby commercial was that high fructose corn syrup is "just sugar" and 100% natural. The earnest narrator on the commercial didn't go quite as far as telling viewers that sugar is good for you, but that was certainly the implication.

Setting aside, for a moment, the assumption that natural = good for you (umm, arsenic is 100% natural, too...), a new study from Princeton shows that HFCS generates more weight gain among rats than comparable amounts of table sugar. But wait, there's more:

"In addition to causing significant weight gain in lab animals, long-term consumption of high-fructose corn syrup also led to abnormal increases in body fat, especially in the abdomen, and a rise in circulating blood fats called triglycerides."

The full study (via stumptuous) may be behind a subscription wall, but the summary is here.

Of course, plenty of other researchers have noticed that obesity rates have risen in parallel with consumption of HFCS. See this graph, from the CDC:

But the Princeton study is important insofar as it moves us a step closer to understanding that correlation may, in fact, be causation.

Monday, March 8, 2010

weekend workouts

Photo by

I haven't been using this blog as a space to record my workouts, because (a) I don't take my laptop to the gym, and (b) reading about *other people's* workouts is about as exciting as watching glaciers calve.* But, it seems I've been lax in posting about other stuff, so ....

Saturday: CF-inspired squat, dip, and pullup extravaganza for time (21' and some change)
  • 10 squats @ 65 lbs
  • 3 pullups
  • 6 dips
  • 15 squats
  • 6 pullups
  • 12 dips
  • 20 squats
  • 9 pullups
  • 18 dips
  • 15 squats
  • 6 pullups
  • 12 dips
  • 10 squats
  • 3 pullups
  • 9 dips (yeah, I know, I broke the pattern)
Pullups were definitely the weak link, not that this is a surprise. Not being the brightest tool in the shed, I had done 15 pullups as part of my warmup, bringing my pullup total for the day to 49. Should have just done one more for an even 50!

Sunday: CF "Helen"

Buy in: 2 rounds of CF warmup, minus pullups.
  • 3 rds for time (13'38")
  • row 400m
  • 15 DB swings @ 35
  • 10 pullups. after rows and swings, I had to do these assisted. Started at 40 'lbs assist, by end was struggling at 100 lbs. assist. Pathetic.
Cash out: 45 minutes of pool play with DH and The Boy. Swimsuit barely fits over my ass.

b. strong //

*This may not be the best analogy. Tourists in AK pay exorbitant money to take boat tours of glaciers, with the hope of seeing them calve. I suppose it is kind of exciting, especially if the reference point is a John Deere show at the local 4H club. But it's ice. Melting.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

hot dogs, health, and science

News flash! Hot dogs cause heart disease, Type II diabetes, and detached retinas!

And, in other hot-dog related news, B. Strong Hoagie Roll Science Experiment is still underway. Yes, the hoagie rolls are still on my counter, and they are still virtually unchanged from when I took them out of the freezer 2 MONTHS ago. And people put this garbage in their bodies?

b. strong