Lion of the Blogosphere

Jayman’s blog posts on health

Jayman has an excellent blog post in which he discusses how there’s nothing you can do to prevent heart disease. He especially focuses on how there’s no proof that exercise helps to prevent heart disease, and also points out the little-known fact that a certain small percentage of the population has absolutely no cardiovascular improvement from doing aerobic exercise.

I also followed the link to his previous blog post showing that higher IQ is correlated with lower BMI. Note that his nifty chart doesn’t distinguish between fat-BMI and muscle-BMI, but I strongly suspect that both fat and muscle are negatively correlated with IQ and life expectancy. People assume that muscle must be healthy because the current aesthetic is that muscle looks good. Muscle probably falls into the same category as suntans. People think it looks healthy, but in fact it means that you have exposed yourself to carcinogenic UV radiation.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

August 19, 2013 at 8:29 AM

25 Responses

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  1. Thanks. Well, in concert with the following post, IQ and Death, the post on Obesity and IQ shows that the observed association between obesity and reduced lifespan may be entirely a result of the negative association between obesity and IQ.

    In other words, it’s not that obese people die sooner; it’s that lower IQ people die sooner, and they are more likely to be obese. We need a study that examines mortality association with obesity while controlling for IQ. The one study I found that did that found obesity’s impact on lifespan was negligible.

    JayMan

    August 19, 2013 at 9:09 AM

    • Good post, dude.

      It all ties into “poor future time orientation”. If you are stupid, you have trouble understanding that your current actions have long term consequences.

      I bet that there are correlations between obesity and unemployment, obesity and welfare, obesity and dropping out of school, etc. etc. etc. They’re all related to poor future time orientation, which itself is dominated by IQ.

      Buzzcut

      August 19, 2013 at 2:21 PM

  2. fitness -> higher SMV -> happier -> better health

    Fiddlesticks

    August 19, 2013 at 9:44 AM

  3. My husband is not particularly fit, doesn’t exercise much, is over 50. He went for a physical with some heart scan. The technician said she had only ever once seen a heart so totally free of any plaque etc. and that person was a teenager.

    not too late

    August 19, 2013 at 10:20 AM

    • Makes me wonder if he is a genetic anomaly with a naturally high level of circulating HDL or suppressed LDL production.

      Latias

      August 19, 2013 at 4:19 PM

  4. Nero Wolfe didn’t worry about any of this fat stuff. And his IQ was stratospheric. Oh, OK, he wasn’t actually ALIVE, but, hey. I know – Orson Welles!

    Maximo Macaroni

    August 19, 2013 at 12:36 PM

  5. As I get fatter am I also getting dumber?

    XVO

    August 19, 2013 at 12:45 PM

  6. When are suntans ever supposed to look healthy? duhfuq. Westerners

    TheAsianPersuasion

    August 19, 2013 at 1:04 PM

  7. Nothing about taking a daily aspirin in that study. I take aspirin everyday. I hope it’s doing some good.

    Daniel

    August 19, 2013 at 1:21 PM

  8. i totally agree w/ your posts that the current anti-fat crusade is an aesthetic issue, not a health issue. People are embarassed to say that they hate fat because it makes people ugly (how superficial can you get?), so they say, w/ many scientific words, that it makes people unhealthy. I have seen no sign of that in my own observations. Lots of fat people live to be quite elderly, and lots of skinny people die young, and vice versa. I don’t think there’s a correlation one way or the other.

    It’s all about snobbery, I agree w/ that. Being pale was considered healthy in the 19th century, when peasant women worked in the fields. Being tan was /is cosidered healthy in the 20th century, when poor women are stuck inside in factories or offices, and rich women can spend the summer at Martha’s Vineyard (obviously none of this applies to black people, who don’t tan).

    I think a certain amount of exercise, namely walking, is natural and good for a human being, and eating a relatively healthy diet can’t hurt. Beyond that, it’s a society-wide cult.

    Park Slope Pubby

    August 19, 2013 at 1:37 PM

    • The sort of people who in the past would have believed
      in God now believe in exercise, and in eating right.

      silberstreak

      August 27, 2013 at 10:22 PM

  9. I think muscle is MORE related to low IQ than fat is. I know a lot of really fat smart people, but none of the hyper-muscular people I know are smart. In fact the association between low IQ and high BMI might be entirely caused by muscle. In the book the 10,000 year Explosion, they cited genetic evidence showing an evolutionary trade off between muscle and intellect.

    Bottledwater

    August 19, 2013 at 2:21 PM

  10. Somewhat off-topic:
    http://www.cnn.com/2013/08/19/health/weight-loss-tim-mccarty/index.html?hpt=hp_c3

    Here’s a guy, prole as all get-out, who shed 125 lbs. in under one year. The article makes sure to emphasize that he’s won $27,000(??) in weight-loss competitions.

    What is it, specifically, about a prole-mindset that needs competition-for-cash to serve as motivation for weight-loss?

    An obese woman I went to high school with won a weight-loss contest organized by her employer for several hundred dollars in prize money. She apparently dieted and exercised religiously for six months and said she felt great and loved her slimmer physique. To give herself an extra edge, the night before the final weigh-in she popped diuretics that she procured from her alcoholic, liver-cirrhosis suffering father. In a matter of weeks after the competition’s conclusion, she had (all too predictably) resumed her sedentary and junk-food filled ways.

    I just don’t get why a competition over what amounts to a few cheap trinkets is a more effective motivator than one’s own sex appeal and/or health. Thoughts?

    anon

    August 19, 2013 at 2:45 PM

    • Women receive far less negative feedback than men for being out of shape. That’s why gyms are saturated with dudes. Males also need to be able to defend themselves from being bullied in a way even teen girls do not. A scrawny/fat kid not in AP classes would likely experience this in school “hey faggot what are you looking at faggot” followed by being pushed down and laughed at. Women even average/overweight ones never experience this sort of hardship.

      eradican

      August 19, 2013 at 6:03 PM

      • bro is that a joke. those are prole values youre talking about. thats why proles overwork themselves. pathetic self esteem issues

        but srsly, women get it just as bad if not worse. no decent guy would fuck a fat chick. but fat guys can make up for it with money or power. and you talk about teens like fat chicks dont get bullied by mean girls

        TheAsianPersuasion

        August 21, 2013 at 12:05 AM

      • The vast majority of people are proles and not HYPS types.

        Women seem to be the “victims” of everything including war.

        eradican

        August 21, 2013 at 3:10 PM

  11. How many fat, stupid people have I heard say “It doesn’t matter what you do; when your time comes, it comes.” Maybe exercise and diet have a negligible effect on warding off *heart disease,* but there are lots of other health problems that can either kill you or decrease quality of life.

    Vince, the Lionhearted

    August 19, 2013 at 3:45 PM

    • Sigh, exercise might extend your life, but those will be your old years anyway, so who gives a shit?

      Laziness pays off now.

      ScarletNumber

      August 20, 2013 at 11:38 AM

    • Maybe. A certain fraction of the longevity boost high IQ people seem to possess is probably due to the healthier behaviors of high IQ people, but much of it, perhaps most, is due to the intrinsic healthiness of the higher IQ, on average.

      JayMan

      August 23, 2013 at 12:42 AM

  12. Jayman has an excellent blog post in which he discusses how there’s nothing you can do to prevent heart disease. He especially focuses on how there’s no proof that exercise helps to prevent heart disease, and also points out the little-known fact that a certain small percentage of the population has absolutely no cardiovascular improvement from doing aerobic exercise.

    I don’t believe this; I would think strict adherence to caloric restriction would reduce cardiovascular disease, or at least improve the biomarkers indicative of cardiovascular disease. But since fidelity caloric restriction is difficult, the fatalistic attitude is practically justified.

    What is it, specifically, about a prole-mindset that needs competition-for-cash to serve as motivation for weight-loss?

    An obese woman I went to high school with won a weight-loss contest organized by her employer for several hundred dollars in prize money. She apparently dieted and exercised religiously for six months and said she felt great and loved her slimmer physique. To give herself an extra edge, the night before the final weigh-in she popped diuretics that she procured from her alcoholic, liver-cirrhosis suffering father. In a matter of weeks after the competition’s conclusion, she had (all too predictably) resumed her sedentary and junk-food filled ways.

    I just don’t get why a competition over what amounts to a few cheap trinkets is a more effective motivator than one’s own sex appeal and/or health. Thoughts?

    Nice anecdote. But there is a demographic correlation between obesity and socioeconomic standing that seems quite dubious for one to ascribe to genetic differences in basic metabolic processes or homeostatic satiety signaling; it probably has more to do with the environment and behavior (since you noted proles are sedentary and like to indulge in junk food) than a direct biochemical mechanism directly influenced by genetics.

    Latias

    August 19, 2013 at 4:06 PM

  13. I rather look aesthetically pleasing and super strong for 75 years, than living a extra 5 years looking weak all my life.

    r,javier11@gmail.com

    August 19, 2013 at 6:02 PM

  14. “I don’t believe this; I would think strict adherence to caloric restriction would reduce cardiovascular disease, or at least improve the biomarkers indicative of cardiovascular disease. ”

    I’m wont to agree. The two main studies on calorie restriction (in rhesus monkeys) showed lowered cardiovascular disease in the hungry monkeys VS the well fed ones.

    Exercise doesn’t help weight loss for a variety of reasons, some of them psychological as well as physiological. Studies of the Hazda show that we burn fewer calories at a cellular level when subjected to intense and prolonged activity. Psychologically, we probably eat more when exercising because we think we “deserve it.” This may well be an unconscious effect as much as conscious.

    I too am skeptical about studies involving calorie restriction outside a controlled environment. I seriously doubt the obese diabetics in the study mentioned in this blog entry adhered to 1200 calorie a day, unless this was verified through isotopic water. Fat people tend to under-report their food consumption while thin people tend to over-report it.

    islandmommy

    August 19, 2013 at 6:37 PM

  15. LOTB:
    because the current aesthetic is that muscle looks good.

    Social conditioning theory doesn’t suit you well, Lion. Male muscularity has *always* looked good, and was an aesthetic to strive toward in nearly every period of human history if artwork depicting the male form was an indication of the public’s real life preferences. Michelangelo’s David is not exactly a weak, noodle-armed nerdling.

    Now HUGE muscle, as began to become more of a common sight starting around the 1960s when gyms and steroids became popular, is an historical anomaly. Perhaps that’s what you should be referring to in your claim that “muscle” is just a reflection of the current aesthetic. And scientific studies reveal that women prefer muscular but lean men, i.e., most women aren’t turned on by those roided behemoths OR those enfeebled bookworms. So the science is vindicating the artistic record as a measure of women’s real world preferences for types of male physicality.

    i am spindly nerd jealousy of his alpha betters

    August 19, 2013 at 6:39 PM

  16. There’s a big problem with this blog post. It relies on a study which relies on self-reporting. Fat people fib about what they eat.

    “The diet involved 1,200 to 1,500 calories a day for those weighing less than 250 pounds and 1,500 to 1,800 calories a day for those weighing more. The exercise program was at least 175 minutes a week of moderate exercise. . . .

    The study participants assigned to the intensive exercise and diet program did lose about 5 percent of their weight and managed to keep it off during the study.”

    If a 250 pound person honestly stuck to a diet entailing 1500-1800 calories a day and 175 minutes a week of exercise, he would lose a lot more than 5% of his body weight.

    So it’s clear just from the face of the newspaper article that the study in question is of questionable value due to under-reporting of food intake and/or over-reporting of exercise. Which is a nice way of saying that fat people fib about what they eat.

    Studies which (1) don’t rely on self-reporting of food intake; and (2) filter out people with pre-existing health problems, generally show that fat = unhealthy.

    sabril

    August 20, 2013 at 4:15 AM

  17. Another post in Lion’s never ending struggle to justify pot bellies and spaghetti noodle arms.

    Perhaps heart disease is a genetic issue and not one of weight and diet.

    Is there any contrarian opinion on type 2 diabetes? Everything I’ve read or seen indicates that T2D can be controlled through diet and exercise.

    If that has been shown to be wrong, it changes everything.

    ibejeph

    August 20, 2013 at 10:46 AM


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