Sunday, April 08, 2012

The Coming Gluten-Free Craze

More Gluten-Free Sports Star Successes

The rapid rise of Novak Djokovic to #1 in the tennis world after he adopted a gluten-free diet shook up the tennis world (The Diet That Shook Up Tennis?), but a single case could be dismissed as a fluke. Now other tennis pros like Sabine Lisicki and Andy Murray and other prominent athletes like Steve Nash, Raul Ibanez, and Cedric Benson (, have reported that they avoid gluten and experience benefits as a result. Jefferson Adams of rightly foresees where this is likely heading in the tennis world:

"After five months on a gluten-free diet, top professional tennis player Andy Murray has more energy than before, a faster recovery time, and a new-found ability to wake up early, according to comments Murray made when asked by reporters.

The Scot says that he is amazed by the energy he's gotten from his gluten-free diet. He also says that his change in eating habits is proving beneficial on the court. ….

[I]f Murray sees anything like benefits experienced by Novak Djokovic, who credits a string of big victories to his gluten-free diet, the tennis world is in for some gluten-free excitement!" (Gluten-free Diet Now Fuels Tennis Star Andy Murray)

Once other athletes realize that not just people with celiac disease or severe gluten intolerance, but most people, can experience performance benefits from eliminating gluten-rich processed foods from their diets, it will likely become a craze amongst athletes, and once most people's favorite sports stars are touting gluten-free, I expect it will become a societal craze.

Most people don't pay much attention to scientific studies, but many do pay attention to their sports idols. Sales of gluten-free foods will likely skyrocket, with resulting temporary shortages and increasing prices. Eventually many folks will figure out that processed gluten-free foods aren't all that great either and natural, whole foods like meats, seafood, fruits and veggies are better.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Richard Feynman on Science

Science is the belief in the ignorance of experts.” - Richard Feynman

From: "What is Science?", presented at the fifteenth annual meeting of the National Science Teachers Association, in New York City (1966) published inThe Physics Teacher Vol. 7, issue 6 (1969)

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Ahem! Avoid Margarine

In Ireland there used to be a children's insult-rhyme with lyrics implying that people who eat margarine are no good and sickly (butter and lard were apparently the preferred fats):

Me Mother Is Gone to Church

Ahem! Ahem!
Me mother is gone to church.
She told me not to play with you
Because you're in the dirt.
It t'isn't because you're dirty,
It t'isn't because you're clean,
It's because you have the whoopin' cough
And eat margarine! [or "from eatin' margarine"]

The Clancy brothers tell a bit of the story and recite the rhyme here starting at 3:27 -

This poem was an oral folk news warning to not eat the new-fangled margarine because people had noticed that those who did were more likely to get the sometimes-deadly whooping cough that reached epidemic proportions in the early twentieth century. 

The Irish were right to link manufactured margarine to ill health:

You'd butter believe it: Margarine consumption is linked to lower IQs in children

People have forgotten this poem and its lesson and vaccination rates have been declining, so the whooping cough is slowly on the rise again:

Number of whooping cough cases doubles this year (Ireland)

Whooping cough epidemic declared in Vermont (USA)