...cut out the soda

From The Cooper Institute and Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas

Don't think, just do. - Horace


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Written by July 2, 2015

Steve Farrell, PhD, FACSM

Science Officer
The Cooper Institute

If you watch television, you might have seen and heard a “non-attorney spokesperson” plead with persons who have been prescribed statin drugs to call the number provided due to the “dramatic increase in cases of type 2 diabetes caused by statin drugs.” Statin drugs are commonly used to decrease blood levels of LDL-cholesterol and triglycerides, and have been shown to significantly decrease the risk of cardiovascular morbidity (illness) and mortality (death). In an earlier blog, Do Statin Drugs Increase the Risk of Diabetes?, we found that the benefits of reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease by taking a statin were

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Written by June 25, 2015

Steve Farrell, PhD, FACSM

Science Officer
The Cooper Institute

It’s pretty much accepted far and wide that regular aerobic exercise is good for you. From the earliest studies by Drs. Jeremy Morris and Ralph Paffenbarger in the 1950s up to the present time, there have been thousands of publications documenting the beneficial effects of regular aerobic exercise on health and well-being. A partial list of these benefits (from our Personal Training education course) can be found in Table 1. Current public health guidelines for aerobic activity recommend a minimum of 150 minutes per week at a moderate intensity, or a minimum of 75 minutes per week at a vigorous

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Written by June 18, 2015

Steve Farrell, PhD, FACSM

Science Officer
The Cooper Institute

For well over a century, a cornerstone for middle distance and endurance competitors has been long slow distance (LSD) training. In addition to performing LSD, these individuals also perform interval training (IT) on a regular basis. IT is best described as alternating high intensity work periods (intervals) with low intensity work periods (recovery) within the same workout. The pace that the intervals are done at is usually slightly faster than or at goal race pace. There are an infinite number of variations for interval training workouts. The distance covered as well as the time for each interval, the number of intervals

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Written by June 11, 2015

Steve Farrell, PhD, FACSM

Science Officer
The Cooper Institute

Data from the Cooper Center Longitudinal Study1, as well as from other large databases worldwide have shown conclusively that a low level of cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF) significantly increases the risk of all-cause, cardiovascular disease, and cancer mortality. As you may know, CRF is defined as the maximal ability to utilize oxygen at the cell level, and is sometimes referred to as ‘cardiovascular fitness’ or ‘aerobic power’. CRF can be measured in a clinical setting via a maximal treadmill exercise test, or in a field setting via the 1.5 mile run or 1 mile walk tests. You may have taken one

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Written by June 4, 2015

Steve Farrell, PhD, FACSM

Science Officer
The Cooper Institute

Over the past few years, a number of claims have been made regarding the benefits of dietary coconut oil (DCO). Weight loss and improved heart health are among the most commonly purported health benefits of DCO. Because I’m a big proponent of the old adage ‘if it seems too good to be true, it probably is’, let’s take an objective look at what the science says. First off, while dietary saturated fats tend to increase blood levels of LDL-cholesterol (the bad cholesterol), not all saturated fatty acids are exactly alike. Dietary saturated fatty acids fall in two categories based on

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Written by May 28, 2015

Gina Cortese-Shipley, MS

Associate Director of Education
The Cooper Institute

Have you tried to quit smoking but been unsuccessful? Well, you’re not alone. In this country, 70% of adult smokers report that they want to quit, yet research shows that it takes the average smoker up to ten attempts to permanently stop this unhealthy behavior.1 Even with medical assistance such as nicotine replacement therapy or the aid of counseling, success rates are still relatively low. Sounds pretty dim but there is hope and it’s not surprising (or at least not surprising to me!) that it comes in the form of EXERCISE. Researchers have looked into the effect of combining exercise

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Written by May 21, 2015

Steve Farrell, PhD, FACSM

Science Officer
The Cooper Institute

Most of us who are very active know how important it is to consume fluids, carbohydrate, and electrolytes (salts) during endurance exercise. Doing so helps to prevent dehydration and hypoglycemia (low blood sugar), which in turn helps to delay fatigue. The scientific literature is chock full of studies regarding the beneficial effect of sports drinks during long-term exercise. However, less is known about post-exercise nutrition. For endurance athletes who are training on a daily basis, what and when they consume foods and beverages post-exercise has become a hot topic in the exercise science research world over the past few years.

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Written by May 14, 2015

Gina Cortese-Shipley, MS

Associate Director of Education
The Cooper Institute

Does Exercise Make Us Hungry? There has been much debate about the effect of exercise on appetite and energy intake throughout the years. Although some scientists have proposed that exercise stimulates appetite; most studies do not support this finding. A study published in Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise4 examined the effect of walking on appetite and food intake. In the study, subjects participated in two different trials – an exercise and a non-exercise (control) trial. On one day subjects walked for 60 minutes on a treadmill at an intensity where they had some mild shortness of breath, but were still able to

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Written by May 7, 2015

Lauren Ruzicka B.S., MPH Candidate


You may know someone who currently or at one time worked a night shift. Our society is indebted to those who work from sun-down to sun-up in order to keep communities safe, secure, and well-functioning while the majority of us are snoozing. Law enforcement members, firefighters, emergency medical staff, reporters, IT technicians, military personnel, truck drivers, security workers, postal service employees, and countless others sacrifice more than sleep and risk more than exhaustion due to the alternate work schedule that they face. Many factors contribute to the unique health risks that come with working a night shift. Nutrition quality has

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Written by April 30, 2015

Rachel Huber, MPH, RD

Associate Director of Education
The Cooper Institute

As the summer nears, you may notice more people getting in shape for swimsuit season. Shedding a few pounds and toning muscles in order to look their best at the pool, lake, or beach. Let’s bounce back to an earlier post that reminds us how logging your food and physical activity can help modify your behaviors in support of healthier choices. Study after study has found that people who keep a daily record of foods and beverages consumed as well as minutes of physical activity have greater success balancing calories and achieving and maintaining a healthy weight. In fact, a large

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