Mackie Shilstone has been the sports performance, fitness, and wellness consultant of choice to thousands of top athletes – such as Serena Williams, Peyton Manning, Ozzie Smith, Roy Jones Jr, and Bernard Hopkins – to name a few. Mackie’s helped them all.Now you can look to Mackie—a name you can trust—and his weekly Maximum Wellness podcast to sort through the mountains of daily health misinformation to provide you accurate summaries of the most important wellness findings… news that can put you the right path to health ownership.
Episode 114: Young Swimmers Are at Increased Risk to Overtraining Injury
It’s estimated in the U.S. that five million young athletes compete on high school swim teams – with an additional 336,000 competing on club teams. The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), says between 2015-2016, 22,000 college swimmers were participating in competitive leagues. Master level swimmers, who may reenter to compete in the sport at an older age, number about 65,000.
According to Swim-Training Volume and Shoulder Pain Across the Life Span of the Competitive Swimmer: A Systemic Review, which appeared in the January 2020 issue of the Journal of Athletic Training, “injuries in competitive swimming primarily arise from repetitive strain and microtrauma. This is not surprising, when one considers the amount of swimming to which the athletes are exposed.”
The investigators from the Department of Rehabilitation Sciences and Physiotherapy, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, University of Antwerp, Belgium, and the Department of Physical Therapy, Arcadia University, Glenside, Pennsylvania, note that, “because of these demanding and time-consuming training programs, competitive swimming has essentially developed into a year-round intensive sport, with athletes at young ages focusing solely on swimming.”
It’s also pointed out that in 10 to15-year swimming careers swimmers often practice 5 to 7 days per week and sometimes twice daily, which led to overtraining, and increased the risk of soft tissue injury, pain, and dissatisfaction. Shoulder pain is particularly frequent - with prevalence rates reported as high as 91%, is a major cause of missed practice.
These researchers sought to determine, if there was a correlation between a specified amount of swim training and shoulder pain in competitive swimmers, by examining relevant studies within PubMed, Web of Science, and Medline.
It was determined that 12 studies met the qualified criteria, as grouped by age: young (less than 15 years old), adolescent (15-17 years), adult (18-22), and masters (23-77).
Based on the data of this first of a kind analysis, the researchers concluded that, “evidence suggests that swim-training volume was associated with shoulder pain in adolescent competitive swimmers.”
As for recommendations, it was stated that, “year-round monitoring of the athlete's swim training is encouraged to maintain a well-balanced program. Developing athletes should be aware of and avoid a sudden and large increase in swimming volume.
It was also pointed out that additional research is necessary to determine cutoff values, in order to make data-based decisions regarding the influence of swim training.”
From my own experience helping both high school and collegiate swimmers, especially female athletes, there is a consistent anterior (front) shoulder dominance resulting from the volume of overhead, forward strokes - with inadequate posterior shoulder stabilization exercise during the dry land training.
In other words, if your throw, hit, or swim forward, you need to train in reverse to rebalance the shoulder to reduce the risk to unnecessary shoulder injury.
Be sure to check out maxwellnutrition.com – a science-driven, wellness content & nutritional supplement platform – where you will be able to see important, timely nutrition research and order, with direct shipping, the highest bio-available nutrition supplements, made in the United States.
Episode 113: Determining the Correct Diet Post Cancer Diagnosis
In 2018, the World Health Organization said the prevalence of a cancer diagnosis reached 18.1 million people – with 9.6 million cancer deaths. Positive lifestyle – such as exercise and diet – reduce the risk to certain forms of cancer.
Adherence to a Mediterranean-style eating strategy – higher intake of fruit, vegetables, and whole grains, limited lean meat, fish, and olive oil - reduces the risk to colon and breast cancer.
Research is still searching for the optimum plan once an individual is diagnosed with cancer. According to "The Facts About Food After Cancer Diagnosis: A Systematic Review of Prospective Cohort Studies," which appeared in the August 2020 issue of the online, peer reviewed journal Nutrients, “to prevent malnutrition, energy and protein requirements for cancer patients are largely widespread by international guidelines, but little is known about the food choices and dietary regimen a cancer patient should benefit from.”
The Italian study researchers point out that, “many ‘cancer diets’ are often restrictive, avoiding a whole nutrient class (i.e., meat or dairy products) in the misleading belief that certain foods “feed the tumor.”
The Italians sought to determine any possible associations between diet patterns, after a cancer patient’s diagnosis, that is affected by a solid tumor, relative to outcomes – mortality, cancer progression, and recurrence.
Those study criteria included a meta-analyses (similar studies) that used an adult population over 18 years of age diagnosed with breast, gastrointestinal, gynecological, lung, and urological cancers; post-diagnosis dietary patterns – such as consumption of fruit, vegetables, diary, meat, fish, and cereals; prospective or retrospective cohort studies; over-all survival, all-cause mortality, cancer-specific mortality, death from a non-cancer cause, cancer progression, disease-free survival, cancer recurrence, and recurrence-free survival.
The study authors determined that, “the overall results of this systematic review highlight that none of the food categories should be eliminated by cancer patients. Especially, there is no clear association between consumption of meat or animal products and cancer progression/recurrence or CSM (cancer specific survival), after a cancer diagnosis.”
However, the Italians also emphasized there was, “a significant positive association between detrimental dietary patterns, such as Western-type Diet (characterized by processed meats, sugar-sweetened soft drinks, and refined grains) and cancer progression.”
Note the investigators, “on the contrary, high consumption of fiber, such as whole grain cereals, green and cruciferous vegetables, seem to be protective against cancer progression and mortality.”
In conclusion, “detrimental dietary patterns, such as the Western Diet and the high consumption of some food categories (saturated/trans fats, high-fat dairy products) could worsen prognostic outcomes in breast, colorectal and prostate cancer patients. Nevertheless, animal proteins, such as fish, poultry, low-fat dairy products and meat, should not be excluded from cancer patient’s diet.”
More research is needed relative to a cancer post-diagnostic diet, as it applies to the most common forms of cancer – lung, stomach, gynecological, bladder, and pancreatic cancer.
For more information, go to maxwellnutrition.com.
Episode 112: Nutrition & Physical Activity Status Can Define Covid-19 Risk
With the surge of the Delta Covid-19 variant, the world has a new pathogen enemy among us—the hidden terrorist that spares no one, especially those unvaccinated. What began in Wuhan, China in December of 2019 and declared in March of 2020 a pandemic, Covid-19, the disease spawned by the SARS-CoV-2 virus, has transformed life as we know it. It’s here to stay in some form or another.
The effects of lockdowns, the use of protective masks, social distancing, and more has had a direct impact on an individual’s nutrition status and movement pattern.
A person’s susceptibility to Covid-19 has as much to do with their nutrition status, as it does to any comorbidities on board, such as obesity, hypertension, pulmonary dysfunction, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease.
Researchers, from Spain, Columbia, and Greece, used a narrative review, “with the aim of collecting published literature and articles regarding dietary patterns, body composition, nutritional deficiencies, vitamin interventions, and physical activity in the COVID-19 pandemic.”
The study—Nutrition in the Actual Covid-19 Pandemic. A Narrative Review—which appeared in the June online issue of Nutrients, found that the COVID-19 lockdown promoted unhealthy dietary changes and increases in body weight of the population, showing obesity and low physical activity levels, as increased risk factors of COVID-19 affection and physiopathology.”
What’s more, “hospitalized COVID-19 patients presented malnutrition and deficiencies in vitamin C, D, B12 selenium, iron, omega-3, and medium and long-chain fatty acids, highlighting the potential health effect of vitamin C and D interventions.”
The search methods, from February 1st, 2020, through April 13th, 2021, included PubMed, Embase, SciELO, Science Direct Scopus, and Web of Science, employing MeSH-compliant keywords including, COVID-19, Coronavirus 2019, SARS-CoV-2, 2019-nCoV, Nutrition, Diet, Dietary Patterns, Body Compositions, Vitamins, Nutritional, Immunology, Physical Condition, and Physical activity.
Here’s the summary of the findings, as noted in the narrative review of the data base:
The COVID-19 lockdown promoted unhealthy dietary changes (inactivity, daily intake, snacks, alcohol), increasing body mass and fat, and showing obesity-overweight people poor diet habits.
Obesity is a risk factor for COVID-19.
A healthy balanced diet is an integral part of personal risk management.
Vitamins C and D improve health-related outcomes in COVID-patients.
Sufficient vitamin intake and an active lifestyle are strongly recommended as a preventive measure to the general population.
There is a large prevalence of malnutrition among hospitalized patients with COVID-19.
Nutritional support and rehabilitation exercise are needed to avoid muscle atrophy and sarcopenia in COVID-19 hospitalized patients. They should be considered as an integral part of the therapeutic approach.
Deficient states of vitamin C, D, B12 selenium, iron, ω-3, and medium and long-chain fatty acids increase the probability of hospitalization and mortality from COVID-19.
The gut microbiome profile is altered due to COVID-19, being involved in the magnitude of COVID-19 severity via modulating host immune responses.
A healthy gut microbiome serves as a preventive and protective factor, appropriate nutrition and probiotics are good strategies for its enhancement.
Active lifestyle and physical activity allow a lower risk, and mortality rate in COVID-19 patients, due to its positive effect on metabolic health and inflammation.
The reviewers were quick to point out that more research of this evolving disease and its variants is needed relative to the impact of nutrition and other lifestyle modifications consistent with risk stratification.
Read more at MaxWellNutrition.com
Episode 111: Nutritional Factors Modify Risk of Covid-19 Infection
Covid-19—the infectious disease initiated by SARS-CoV-2—that primarily attacks respiratory (breathing) function—has not only spread rapidly over the prior year, but also has spawned more contagious variations, such as the current Delta variant.
The human immune system—innate and adaptive—activates the body’s response to the Covid-19 antigen. Individuals with comorbidities, like obesity, hypertension, pulmonary dysfunction, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease, are at increased risk to adverse complications.
Supporting the body’s challenge to the invading antigen is an individual’s dietary behavior that influences nutritional status.
With respect to Covid-19 and the association of dietary behaviors, researchers from the Department of Preventive Medicine, Research and Information Services, and the Department of Medicine, Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University in Chicago, chose to use data from the UK Biobank (UKB) to examine the dietary behaviors measured in 2006-2010 and Covid-19 infections in 2020.
The American researchers linked the UKB geo-data to UK Covid-19 surveillance data to account for Covid-19 exposure.
The UKB is an international health resource of over 500,000 participants aged 37–73 years at 22 centers across England, Wales, and Scotland.
The UKB participants, who underwent physical measurements, assessments about health and risk factors (including lifestyle and dietary behaviors), and blood sampling at baseline (2006–2010), agreed to follow-up on their health status. Country-wide surveillance data was used to identify UKB participants exposed to COVID-19.
Based on the data analysis, it was determined that, “consuming more coffee, vegetables, and being breast fed, as well as, consuming less processed meat intake were independently associated with lower odds of COVID-19 positivity. These associations were attenuated (reduced), when accounting for the UK’s COVID-19 case rate (i.e., exposure).”
The data analysis reflected that, “habitual consumption of 1 or more cups of coffee per day was associated with about a 10% decrease in risk of COVID-19, compared to less than 1 cup/day,” while, “consumption of at least 0.67 servings/d of vegetables (cooked or raw, excluding potatoes) was associated with a lower risk of COVID-19 infection.”
The UKB American investigators found that processed meat consumption (refers to any meat that has been transformed through salting, curing, fermenting, smoking, or other process to enhance flavor or improve preservation) of as little as 0.43 servings/day was associated with a higher risk of COVID-19.
However, comment the Americans, “red meat consumption presented no risk, suggesting meat per se does not underlie the association we observed with processed meats.”
Finally, it was found that, “a long-term favorable association between being breastfed as a baby and COVID-19 infection in UKB contribute to the growing evidence in support of nutrition early in life for optimal immunity for life.”
The study analysis concluded, “our results support the hypothesis that nutritional factors may influence distinct aspects of the immune system, hence susceptibility to COVID-19.”
To read this study, you can find it under the “open access research” on maxwellnutrition.com.
Episode 110: Creatine Monohydrate Is Not Just for Athletes Who Want to Build Lean Muscle
In 2007, my book, Lean & Hard – the body you’ve always wanted in 24 workouts, was published by John Wiley & Sons. L&H offered a comprehensive six week, four workouts per week diet, nutritional supplement schedule, resistive exercise, and sprint-interval program, all designed to increase lean muscle mass.
The L&H book was based on a research study of my concepts that followed a cross section of athletes and non-athletes over six weeks, when I was an Associate Professor in the LSU School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine.
One of the nutritional supplements tested in the applied research study and utilized in the book was creatine, an organic acid that is created internally from the action of the amino acids arginine, glycine, and methionine, which are constructed in the liver and regulated through kidney function.
Creatine predominantly resides in skeletal muscle—mostly as phosphocreatine—with roughly two percent degrading to creatinine, a metabolic by-product, which is why too much creatine may skew a creatinine clearance test assessing kidney function.
Creatine use by athletes has been widely studied for its side effect of weight gain, which was initially thought to be fluid gain, but after years of research, has now been determined to be lean muscle development—when used correctly.
I came to the conclusion, after seeing the results of the LSU applied study and my continued research on creatine, that someday creatine monohydrate would offer additional benefits to an ageing population—specifically to address sarcopenia—the age-related loss in muscle strength (dynapenia), muscle mass, muscle quality, and physical performance (frailty issues).
That day has now arrived.
New research, “Current Evidence and Possible Future Applications of Creatine Supplementation for Older Adults,” appearing in the March 2021 online, peer-reviewed journal Nutrients, comments that, “sarcopenia typically occurs in 8–13% of adults ≥60 years of age, and, is associated with other age-related health conditions, such as osteoporosis, osteosarcopenia (muscle related bone loss), sarcopenic obesity, physical frailty, and cachexia (muscle loss due to disease).”
Muscle mass decreases by 0.45% in men and by 0.37% in women. However, these decrements climb to 0.9% for men and to 0.7% for women starting in their seventh decade.
The age-related decrease in muscle strength—a strong predictor of poor health outcomes, such as mobility disability, falls, fractures, and mortality in older adults—occurs more rapidly (2–5 times fold faster) than the reduction in lean (muscle) mass.
The Canadian and Australian study authors performed a narrative review evaluating the current research involving creatine (CR), with and without resistive training (RT), on properties of muscle and bone in older adults, “in order to provide a rationale and justification for future research involving CR in older adults with osteosarcopenia, sarcopenic obesity, physical frailty, or cachexia.”
Here’s what was determined.
As it pertains to addressing sarcopenia, “CR (≥3 grams/day) and RT (≥7 weeks; primarily whole-body routines) can improve some measures of muscle accretion, strength, and physical performance in older adults. Independent of RT, a CR loading phase and/or high relative daily dosage of creatine (≥0.3 g/kg/day) may be required to produce some muscle benefits in older adults.”
Relative to creatine usage with osteoporosis—the age-related loss of bone mineral density – “collectively, the vast majority of studies show no greater effect from CR, with and without RT, on properties of bone in older adults.”
To read the rest, go to maxwellnutrition.com
Episode 109: Green Tea & Coffee Consumption May Hold Benefits for Type-2 Diabetics
Prior research has established that the consumption of green tea or coffee has been said to reduce the all-cause mortality in the general public. However, as to the similar effects in those with health challenges, such as diabetes, research is either controversial or devoid – until now.
Japanese researchers publishing the “Additive Effects of Green Tea and Coffee on All-Cause Mortality in Patients with Type-2 Diabetes Mellitus: the Fukuoka Diabetes Registry”, which appeared in October 2020 in the open-access online BMJ (British Medical Journal) Diabetes Research & Care, determined that, “higher consumption of green tea and coffee was associated with reduced all-cause mortality: their combined effect appeared to be additive in patients with type-2 diabetes.”
The Japanese researchers from the Departments of Medicine and Clinical Sciences, Graduate School of Medical Sciences and the Division of Internal Medicine, Fukuoka, Japan, comment that green tea derives benefits from fresh leaves of Camellia sinensis - containing various chemicals, such as phenolic compounds, theanine, and caffeine, which possess antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, or anti-bacterial properties.
Coffee, note the Japanese, contains phenolic compounds and caffeine that offer antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and ant-mutagenic benefits – especially, to type-2 diabetics, those with abnormal lipid profiles, and malignancy.
To reach this conclusion, the investigators, after appropriate exclusion criteria, used data from 4923 study participants enrolled between April 2008 and October 2010, in the Fukuoka Diabetes Registry, “a multicenter prospective study designed to investigate the effects of modern treatments and lifestyle on the prognoses of patients with diabetes mellitus.”
Using a self-administered questionnaire, the participants provided information regarding their diagnosed diabetes duration, smoking habits, alcohol intake, leisure-time physical activity, sleep duration, depressive symptoms, and history of coronary heart disease, stroke, and cancer. Their smoking habits and alcohol intake were classified as either current or not.
Body weight, height and body mass index were ascertained – along with blood pressure. Medical charts were reviewed for all medications, including insulin, oral hypoglycemic agent, antihypertensive drugs, antiplatelet drugs, and statins.
The Japanese used self-reported answers to dietary questions to categorize the participants into the following four groups by beverage: green tea - none, ≤1 cup/day, 2–3 cups /day, ≥4 cups/day, and coffee - none, 1 cup/day, 1 cup/day, ≥2 cups/day.
There were no questions about the consumption of decaffeinated or caffeinated drinks because decaffeinated beverages are uncommon in Japan.
From a laboratory perspective, blood and spot urine samples were obtained to establish the levels of Hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c), serum low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, creatinine, urinary creatinine, and albumin – along with the glomerular filtration rate (GFR) and calculations of the urinary albumin-creatinine ratio levels.
The Japanese investigators said, “results suggest that consuming green tea and coffee may have beneficial effects on the longevity of Japanese people with type 2 diabetes.”
How this data translates to all of us outside Japan, will require further research. Until then, keep my green tea and black coffee consumption – in moderation – flowing.
For more information, go to maxwellnutrition.com.
Thanks machine for being evidence based in your practice.
I’ve really enjoyed Mackie’s weekly podcast. It’s been informative to say the least. So many things he covers, I had no idea about, but I can tell you, I’m now implementing them into my daily regimen. Must listen! Helped me tremendously all the way out here in Los Angeles.
Incredible source of relevant fitness info!
Mackie’s podcast is a perfect balance of vital, but often overlooked or misunderstood, fitness information presented in concise segments. His easy to understand explanations allow even a knuckle-dragged like myself to advance my knowledge base.
Applying the advice and recommendations detailed in his podcasts has no doubt made my workouts more precise, effective and efficient.