Take this drug and live to 120!


Read all about it! Take this drug and live to 120!

Metformin is being touted  as a candidate for keeping people alive until they are 120! (sourceDaily Telegraph)

Should we clap our hands with excitement? NO!

The very notion of using a drug to stay alive should set off alarm bells with every person.  Metformin is a generic drug, which means that no one in particular owns the rights to produce it. At the present time, it is cheap. If a drugs giant wanted to, they could corner the market and increase the price. This is every drug company’s boss dream come true!

What is metformin (sometimes misnamed Metmorphine) currently prescribed for? It regulates blood glucose levels in diabetes patients. This is without the side effect of straight insulin, which is an increase in body weight.

In the context of longevity, what is Metformin supposed to do? According to the article:

“Metformin increases the number of oxygen molecules released into a cell, which appears to boost robustness and longevity.”

Do we need a drug to do that? Have they not heard that a practice known as Buteyko Breathing does exactly that? I am doing Buteyko breathing as a part of the Sakharoff Path of Strong Health course. So, according to this research, I am also going to live until I am 120 – without drugs!

Why are we so keen to take drugs for every condition? Drugs are typically synthetic biochemical substances. They are prescribed to suppress the symptoms of physiological conditions. Not necessarily to cure the condition. The efficacy is based on evidence. The evidence does not show  if it affects other body systems. Especially if drug companies fund the research.

57  years more of taking a drug without side effects; are you kidding me?

According to Drugs.com, the main side effects of metformin are:

” Commonly reported side effects of metformin include: lactic acidosis, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, nausea and vomiting, and flatulence. Other side effects include: diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, decreased vitamin b12 serum concentrate, and weakness.”

Now the rest:

  • Abdominal or stomach discomfort
  • cough or hoarseness
  • decreased appetite
  • diarrhea
  • fast or shallow breathing
  • fever or chills
  • general feeling of discomfort
  • lower back or side pain
  • muscle pain or cramping
  • painful or difficult urination
  • sleepiness

Less common:

  • Anxiety
  • blurred vision
  • chest discomfort
  • cold sweats
  • coma
  • confusion
  • cool, pale skin
  • depression
  • difficult or labored breathing
  • dizziness
  • fast, irregular, pounding, or racing heartbeat or pulse
  • feeling of warmth
  • headache
  • increased hunger
  • increased sweating
  • nausea
  • nervousness
  • nightmares
  • redness of the face, neck, arms, and occasionally, upper chest
  • seizures
  • shakiness
  • shortness of breath
  • slurred speech
  • tightness in the chest
  • unusual tiredness or weakness
  • wheezing


  • Behavior change similar to being drunk
  • difficulty with concentrating
  • drowsiness
  • lack or loss of strength
  • restless sleep
  • unusual sleepiness

Minor Side Effects

Some of the side effects that can occur with metformin may not need medical attention. As your body adjusts to the medicine during treatment these side effects may go away. Your health care professional may also be able to tell you about ways to reduce or prevent some of these side effects. If any of the following side effects continue, are bothersome or if you have any questions about them, check with your health care professional:

More common:

  • Acid or sour stomach
  • belching
  • bloated
  • excess air or gas in the stomach or intestines
  • full feeling
  • heartburn
  • indigestion
  • loss of appetite
  • metallic taste in the mouth
  • passing of gas
  • stomachache
  • stomach upset or pain
  • vomiting
  • weight loss

Less common:

  • Abnormal stools
  • bad, unusual, or unpleasant (after) taste
  • change in taste
  • difficulty with moving
  • discoloration of the fingernails or toenails
  • flu-like symptoms
  • joint pain
  • rash
  • runny nose
  • sneezing
  • stuffy nose
  • swollen joints

To the best of my knowledge, Buteyko breathing has NONE of the side effects. But it does the same thing as “scientists” claim Metformin does.

In short, Buteyko Breathing encourages retention of carbon dioxide in the lungs and blood. This facilitates the release of oxygen from haemeglobin to the cells. This, oxygenating cells. The Bohr Effect. Look it up.

I, for one, prefer a physical method of attaining longevity over taking drugs. Any drugs. What about you?

It’s the Insulin, stupid!


Steve before
Steve 87 kg
Steve After
Steve 71 kg








If you did not know yet, I am a subscriber to the notion that insulin is the root cause of lifestyle disease. Or rather, insulin resistance. Insulin – isn’t that something they give to diabetics? The man in the street might well know nothing more than this. The fact is that we all have (and need) insulin in our bodies to survive.

The problems start when you don’t have any or you have too much. Having none is a condition known as diabetes myelitis, or T1D. In this case, your pancreas stops producing insulin and you die. You waste away. Unless you get insulin from other sources as medicine injecting into your body. It stops your muscles withering. It requires the monitoring of blood glucose levels to be able to regulate the insulin dose.

The cause of Type 2 diabetes (T2D) is by one of two conditions. The pancreas cannot produce enough insulin to maintain control of blood glucose. The second is where the pancreas produces enough insulin to control glucose in the blood. The resulting high concentration causes diseases – lifestyle diseases.

The diseases caused by T2D include retinopathy, nephropathy, neuropathy, cardiovascular disease, hypertension, stroke. Also, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, sleep apnea and cancer.

Insulin Resistance (IR) is the term for elevated levels of insulin in the blood. This is whether of not T2D is present.

This makes me more worried about IR than high cholesterol. This is why I have cut sugars, refined foods, bread, potatoes, rice and pasta from my diet. I have replaced them with saturated fats. Animal fats and vegetable fats. Dairy fats. Butter, cheese, cream, meat with fat, oily fish, avocados, coconuts. Cold-pressed virgin oils (flax, olive, coconut). Nuts – walnuts, coconuts, pecans, Brazil nuts, hazelnuts, almond nuts. Seeds -Chia, sesame, hemp, flax.

I still eat some carbohydrates: leafy greens, berries. Other fruits and vegetables that have a lot of fiber. 100 grams max. per day. I enjoy my food.

I was born in 1953. That made me 62 at the time of writing. I do not want to be ill. I do not want to have to visit the doctor. I do not want to take medications. I want to live a full life with no restrictions. That is why I eat a low-carb diet. To keep my insulin levels at an optimal level that will stabilize my blood glucose levels.

It is that simple. Anyone can do it.

I want to enhance this, so I do other things. I follow a protocol. This protocol integrates nutrition, breathing, building immune resilience, structured movement and mindfulness.

I swim. I bike. I do yoga. I exercise 90 minutes every day. I expose my body to sunshine when I can, to get vitamin D. I am aware that I need to balance the oils (omega-3 vs. omega 6).

I take magnesium and zinc tablets and vitamin c tablets as required. I take magnesium to control the amount of calcium in my blood. Calcium in the arteries is a reliable biomarker of impending heart attacks. More so than cholesterol or LDL.

I weigh 71 kg. That is the same as I was when I was 22. I was 87 kg a year or so ago. People ask me if I am ill. I say “Why?” They say “Because you are so thin”, so I say “Are you ill?” and they say “Why?” and I say “Because you are not thin”.

I hope this is an inspiration for you. I wish I had read this 30 years ago. Never mind. I live one day at a time – to the full.

(Follow me also on Sakharoff.com)


How dietary misinformation kills

Have a look at this video. Dr. Malhotra explains in scientific detail while saturated fats aren’t bad. Then along comes a rather large dietist, who tells the audience that they should look at the evidence, not anecdotes.

Perhaps she should look at the evidence!

The Governments of the world are in deep pooh on this one. Why? Because faulty and misused research was used to dictate nutrition policies in the 1970’s, with absolutely catastrophic results – results that can be seen on every street – obesity and the resulting life-style diseases, such as diabetes 2, Alzheimer’s (or Diabetes 3 as it is becoming known as), coronary heart disease and auto-immune diseases.

This is costing our health services a fortune and could trigger their collapse. But a deeper problem lies in the fact that Governments are now reversing the advice they gave 45 years ago until recently; namely, that the population does not need to eat low-fat, high-carb diets. The Swedish are in the forefront, by turning the food pyramid upside down. The corporate lobby in the UK and US, has seen to it that the latest research results are watered down (and in some cases deliberately mis-intepreted).

However, another reason that they are slow to admit the mistake is that it undermines our whole system of government, because when the population wake up from the low-fat induced stupor, they will be angry, and into the bargain will find it hard to believe what Governments say on the subject now.

Let me recap, if you don’t know the story: As a result of the “7-nation study”, saturated fats were demonized and to counter the consumption of foods containing cholesterol, companies starting making “low-fat” foods, which conveniently have a longer shelf life and use the surplus corn production, in the guise of high-fructose corn syrup.

The result was that people started consuming huge amounts of sugar and carbohydrates (as well as polyunsaturated vegetable oils). The effect? insulin resistance, high serum insulin levels, and the inability for the fat (converted from the carbs) to be burnt off. The result? Well, just look around you!

I hope you are aware that there is a problem, but contrary to global warming and terrorism, you can do something about it yourself. Take responsibility. Don’t be a victim of the pharma holocaust.

Diet is not the only aspect of the way back to “normalization”. You need to work on several areas which are integrated. Misha Sakharoff’s Lifesaver course will bring you back to optimal health and perhaps save your life – hence the name- “Lifesaver”.  Believe me, see the 50-week course through and you will realize just how bad things were before you started!

You can read more and sign up for the course here






Keto Yogurt

Draining off the whey
Draining off the whey

Yogurt – or is it Yoghurt, or Joghurt? Never mind – we will call it yogurt.

Defined as a milk product that has been fermented by  lactobacilli and bifidobacteria to produce a sharp-tasting food that in its un-adulterated (i.e. without fructose added) form, has some amazing properties for the health of the gut, therefore the health of the brain and therefore for your health.

I prefer the high-fat organic Turkish yoghurt, with 10% fat, only it costs 35 DKK per litre – about £3.50 or $5. Now, I think that is fairly expensive, so I investigated how to make it myself. I found out that it is surprisingly easy – and cheap!

At our local supermarket, you can buy non-homogenised full-fat milk (required for yogurt making) and double (48% fat) cream. They are specially produced at a certain farm and are therefore more expensive than the run-of-the-mill A**a crap. Hence, they cannot always sell it BUT if you buy it on the last sales day, it is CHEAP, so I can make my own yogurt for around 7 DKK per litre – 20% of the price of the commercial product. I buy the “gaardmælk” (farm milk) which has a fat content that varies between 3.5% and 4.5%, and the double cream, as components for the “brew”.

The process is quite easy: Heat the milk and cream (140 ml for 10% fat yogurt) to 85 degrees C. This stops the milk curdling when the bacteria does its work. Let it cool down to 45 degrees C and add 100 ml of the organic yogurt, or, even better,  from some you made previously. Place in a bowl and cover in a tea cosy and let it stand somewhere where it will maintain warmth. I put mine on the bathroom floor, where the underfloor heating keeps things nice and warm.

Leave for 5-12 hours – more and the yogurt will taste more acidic. When it has fermented, it has a thicker-than-milk consistency. I like it really thick, so I strain it in a cool place through a tea cloth, to remove the “whey”, a kind of watery protein. When it is nice and thick, I put it in a kilner jar (the ones with a rubber seal) and in the fridge. Luvly Jubbly!

But, hey, why stop at 10% when we are going for the ketone bodies? I have successfully made 20% yogurt. Strange that there are no references to yogurt over 10% on the Internet. It tastes BRILLIANT! It seems everyone is still in the eat-low-fat-and-get-obese- era when it comes to yogurt.

Additionally, I have added the contents of a probiotic supplement capsule to my yogurt. I had these from when I had an infection in a finger due to a cut getting infected with bird poo, which caused it to go septic. Therefore I was on antibiotics, which positively wreck gut flora. I think it works – doesn’t seem to affect the taste or consistency adversly.

I am very pleased with this yogurt and the double-whammy of being an ideal way of complementing nuts and seeds at breakfast and being good for my gut flora. I have discovered lots of things you can make with yogurt – especially, from a keto standpoint, of adding olive oil, for example. keto+fermented foods – yey! Another enhancer is to add a few drops of organic vanilla essence to make a super dessert.

But why the silence on supercharged fat yogurt? IMHO, it tastes absolutely great. And now it is cheap. So I am eating lots of it.

Try it!









Is Obesity a Disease? Or is it a Choice?


This is a graph of my weight loss. I have calculated precisely my daily calorific requirement. I know my shortfall. So I can calculate very precisely how to control the loss or gain almost daily. IMHO, anyone can do this, if they have a computer with a spreadsheet. IT AIN’T ROCKET SCIENCE.

Link to Periscope video on katch

The above video is a Periscope video I did on the subject of obesity, where I show how I went from 87.5 kg on 1st June, to 76.4 kg on 11th November just by changing my diet.

I do not think that obesity should be treated as a disease, unless it is a mental disease. If you eat the wrong “food” (if you can call it that), you will gain weight, if you do not use the energy.

The wrong stuff is any wheat product (bread, pasta, noodles), rice, potatoes, sugar, especially high fructose corn syrup, alcoholic beverages. Go easy on fruits (contain fructose) and protein (in meat, mainly).

Eat FAT, FAT, FAT!!!! Nuts,(Coconuts, walnuts) Olive oil, flax oil, eggs, meat (grass fed), fish, chia seeds, hemp seeds, butter, yoghurt (esp. probiotic yoghurt), avocados, green leafy vegetables, berries.

Make sure that 60% of your energy intake comes from fat and that you do not eat more protein in grams than your body weight in kg.

Get off your backside and exercise – walk 10,000 steps a day – it is not difficult. Ride a bike. Go swimming.

Get rid of stress in your life. Meditate. Do yoga. Make love.






Swim for your life!

I have got a crazy goal – to swim 2,500 metres freestyle on my 100th birthday!

Crazy, isn’t it? WHY???? I hear you scream.

Because 1) You need to have goals in life and 2) When I am swimming, get to around 1500 metres and think of stopping, I say to myself, “Steve, if you cannot do it now, how on Earth do you expect to do it when you are 100!”

So why bother? Because swimming is damned good exercise.

Since I was 8 years old I could swim; in our town, we had a very good swimming instructor, Vic Levitt, who thought that every child should be able to swim. Great man, Vic! I never really got into swimming, though, preferring soccer, rugby and squash.

However, squash at a high level becomes risky after 35 and rugby suicidal. So I started to seriously swim some 25 years ago (running was not a realistic option – flat feet!). I started off doing a length (25m) and having a breather. I swam once a week and built up through 1,000 m breast stroke to where I am today – 2,500 m or more. I “cheat”, according to my family, because I wear flippers, but I do it in about 50 minutes.

Swimming is good for the following reasons:

  1. You exercise many more muscle groups than with running or cycling
  2. You are buoyed by water, so there is no gravitational pressure on joints
  3. Water “gives” to pressure, so you cannot over-strain joints and muscles
  4. Combined with Buteyko breathing, it helps respiration.
  5. It is ideal if you are obese, have arthritis or are pregnant.
  6. It increases flexibility, endurance, muscle tone, strength and cardio-respiratory conditioning without straining your heart.
  7. Acts as an ideal lymphatic pump, helping clear your lymph system of toxins.
  8. After an hours swimming, you release oxytocin , the cuddle-drug, into your bloodstream which makes me feel like I am floating for several hours.
  9. You also meet like-minded people at the beach or in the pool or in the sauna afterwards.

It is important that you swim correctly. I swim TI (total immersion) freestyle with a little bit of latitude due to the flippers. If you want to learn this, visit Terry Laughlin’s Youtube pages. Many women try to keep their heads above the water, which causes neck problems. Get some goggles or a face mask to avoid this.

Personally, I don’t like swimming in the sea. Therefore I am very glad to swim in a local pool that has Denmark’s best water quality. It is not overheated either.

One thing the Buteyko breathing is taught me is how to swim a full length underwater. I generally do this every 10th length. You feel like a dolphin, but alas, I have not mastered moon walking with my flippers or leaping 6 metres in the air.

I also do a “high intensity burst” every 10 lengths between underwater swimming. This is supposed to be very good conditioning for the body. I give it everything and swim 25 metres in 15 seconds on one breath. It is absolutely exhilarating!

I have also been inspired over the years by the octogenarians who swim on a daily basis at the pool. I am working towards swimming at this age and beyond.

So, get your swimming togs out and go down to your local pool. If I can do 2,500 lengths at 61, so can you and who knows? We could start a  100 (25m lengths) at 100 club!





Flushed With Success

Over 500,000 gall stone operations are performed in the US each year – the great majority apparently unnecessarily.

That is a startling figure. I’ll come back to it later.

It seems that many people suffer from gall stones and having lost 10 kilos in 3 months, I read that the residue from the fat-burning could be cholesterol that is released and ends up in the liver,  waiting to be recycled.  I have a family history of gall stones; my Father had his removed when he was 54, and as it was before keyhole operations, his wound became septic which kept him off work for ages. My sister had her gall bladder removed in her late forties; “Forty, Fat and Fair” she was told.

I decided, therefore, to do something about it in the form of a liver flush. Now, this might not suit everyone and it is not for the squeamish. I found various instructions on the Internet and decided to follow those of Dr. Hulda Clark.

A bit of research showed that a lifetime of eating C.R.A.P (C.R.A.P.: C – Carbonated drinks. R – Refined sugars. A – Artificial sweeteners & colours. P – Processed.) causes a so-called fatty-liver. The liver is the processing works for the body and performs many functions. Amazingly, it is the only organ that can regenerate, so it is never too late to do something for your liver.

After I did the flush, I mentioned it to a friend “Oh, so you have read Andreas Moritz’s book The Amazing Liver and Gallbladder Cleanse ?” I had not until after I did the flush, but in it, he claims that gall stones are the root of most that is evil in our bodies and are the result of stones that form in the bile ducts of the liver. The stones, usually made of cholesterol or hardened bile, block these ducts or get passed to the gall bladder, where they also eventually block the bile duct. This means that there is accumulated bile sludge and furthermore, only a small amount of bile enters the small intestine. Bile is vital for good health as it aids the absorption of nutrients and the expulsion of waste.

The flush – what I did

In retrospect, I would have fasted longer. I started the process at lunchtime and after 2 PM, I did not eat anything. At 6 PM, I dranks a solution of Epsom salts (magnesium sulphate), which was to relax and dilate the bile duct. It tastes terrible, so you have to cool it in the fridge. At 8 PM, I repeated the process.

At 10 PM, I drank a mixture of 125 ml of olive oil, 125 ml of fresh lemon juice, 2 crushed cloves of garlic and half a teaspoon of powdered ginger. It tastes absolutely DREADFUL!

The instructions said go to bed immediately and lay on your right side for a while. I did go to sleep, but at about 3 AM, I awoke and felt that I had an internal pinball machine fitted. I also felt like I had a hangover, with some nausea. Eventaully I fell asleep again. At 6 AM, I got up, not feeling too bad.

I had another Epsom salt drink, but -argh! I forgot to put it in the fridge! It is the worst taste ever. I could not eat, but the drink fills you somewhat. At 8 AM, I had the last of the epsom salts, and actually walked the dog. This might have been ill-advised, because when I came back, I exploded in the loo!

If you have seen the bit in “Dumb and Dumber” where Lloyd gives Harry laxatives and Harry  is at the Swanson’s residence and is on the loo, you will know what I mean by explode!

Without going into the gory details, the results were obvious. It looked as though I had eaten green peas and black lentils- hundreds of them! The temporary diarrhoea continued for an hour. (Don’t make any plans to go out that morning). At the end of it, I was exhausted.

At 10 AM, I ventured an apple and a cup of tea.  No problems.

I found it prudent to eat some Acido yoghurt, to replace the flora in my gut that I had probably lost. I could have taken probiotics, but at $50 equivalent for 30 capsules, I thought the yoghurt, at $3 was a cheaper solution.

I had twinges in my right side for a couple of days, but that is passed. Would I do it again? Yes, after reading The Amazing Liver and Gallbladder Cleanse at regular intervals.

I was asked if it was possible to do this after you have had the gall bladder removed and the answer is “yes”, because you don’t stop producing gall stones after gall bladder removal.

I wish that my Father and sister had known about this body maintenance before they had their gall bladders removed. It seems that the gall bladder plays a far more important role than is recognised by doctors, but as long as it is a “nice little earner”, I suppose people will be offered the operation before the flush.

Over 800,000 hospitalisations and $2 bn are spent on gall bladder disease a year. I hope that my blog here will better inform people on the options availbale.

Incidentally, it makes me wonder why drug companies have not developed a liver flush? Perhaps they have a pact with the medical profession; don’t you dare create something that threatens our livelihood! I find it significant that the Healthline website does not mention liver flush as a treatment for bile duct blockage (but specifies gall bladder removal).

PS: If your doctor says that you should not drink olive oil and lemon juice, ask him or her why it is OK to drink carbonated sugary drinks!





Please Close Your Mouth When You Run Past My House!


What is wrong with this picture? Yes, yes, they all have blurred faces. I have done that to protect the guilty!

The problem is that they all have their mouths open while they are running. Is that a problem? It is not that they have bad breath as they run past my house on the bi-annual “Griseløb” . No, they are possibly causing immense damage to their bodies.

Why? Each and everyone of them is hyperventilating. They are expelling all of their carbon dioxide. I hear you say “That is a good thing, isn’t it? – Isn’t respiration  about getting oxygen in and CO2 out?”. Wrong – that is a bad thing. And yes, getting oxygen in is correct. How would we otherwise stay alive? But where do you need the oxygen when you are running? In the muscles, the cells and the organs.

If you are not retaining some of the carbon dioxide in your bloodstream (the “Bohr Effect“), you are not releasing the oxygen from the haemoglobin. Moreover, it is lowering the PH value of your cells (“acidosis”) and their are some enlightened doctors and researchers who say that this creates conditions for cancer.

How do you counter this? Learn to breathe in and out through your nose only. It is called Buteyko breathing and has long been used to cure asthma. Another good reason to breathe through your nose is that the nose extracts the majority of the microbes we don’t want in our bodies, before they get to the lungs. It also warms and moistens the air that you inhale.

Misha Sakharoff has written an excellent piece on this “Asthma is common among Olympic athletes – but why?”

They knew about this in India a long time ago with Pranyamic breathing. As they say “The more you control your breathing, the longer you will you live”, and this is especially true when we are exercising heavily.

So at the next Griseløb, I may well stand outside with a big sign “Luk munden”, which means “close your mouth”!

Obsessed with my health? Moi?

My brother has a mantra: “Your health is your wealth”. It is probably the most profound thing a human can say, It does not matter how materially wealthy you are, unless you are in good health, it is difficult to enjoy life.

So why do we take it for granted? Why do we strive to get materially rich at the expense of our health? We rush here and there, never any time to reflect, get stressed, eat crap food, are too tired to exercise and then when the apparently incurable illness inevitably comes along, we cry “Why me?”

So today, I am going to tell you why my apparent obsession with my well-being is simply a case of taking responsibility for my life.

Why should I put my health in the hands of others? Because they have a long education? Because they only come into the picture when I am ill, and then only to treat the symptoms of the illness?

No. I am reasonably intelligent and I feel that I am in touch with my body. I am aware. I know what works for me and what does not. I use the Internet to research stuff.

Tools help, though. If only they are adapted away from the shibboleths of modern western health care – or should that be health-don’t-care?

I recently bought a new phone, the Android-based Samsung Galaxy S5. I did not need the S6, and this phone suits my needs. On the phone is an app, S Health, and I have started using it. You have to enter some data, in the absence of having further devices strapped to your chest, It has an in-built pedometer, which counts your steps. The goal is 10,000 steps per day, the recommended target for adults. I have a dog, so it is relatively easy to achieve.


There is an in-built device at the back of the phone to measure one’s pulse.


Mine seems to off the scale to the left, but that is not a bad thing. When you gather data over a number of days, you start to see a trend.

The next panel shows your stress level, which tracks the variation in your pulse rate. Is it accurate? I have no idea. I seem to be on the low end, again. By design, that is!


Weight is an important factor with one’s health, and I was looking for the scales app on the phone, but alas, it does not have one! So you have to weigh yourself manually and add the data. No problem! I have also a BFI (Body Fat Index) calculator app and you can enter this data, too.


I have just broken down through the 80kg barrier – haven’t been there for 25 years! My BFI is about 20%, in the middle of the range. The BMI (Body Mass Index) is calculated for me, based on my height which I entered in the set up.

If you want to track your blood pressure, then you will have to do it manually. Again, you can track the trend. I have a digital medical sphygmomanometer (wow! – that’s a mouthful). I don’t measure it every day – once a week should do.


There is a good food tracking section, which allows one to record the food from a very comprehensive list. If the food that you consume is not on the list, you can add (but not edit) the item. The problem is that here it is only possible to record “portions”, but on the other hand you can have a fraction of a portion. Very importantly, the breakdown of carbohydrates, fat and protein are shown – for each item and each meal and the total for the day.


This is a great feature, but for me personally it does not allow me to use the data in a sensible way. Why is that? Because I favour a low carbohydrate diet, and the raw numbers in weight do not reflect how much energy I am extracting from each group. To find this, multiply the carbs and protein weight by 4 and the fat times 9. I do this in an excel spreadsheet like this:


You can see that the weights have been converted back into kcals per food type and then shown in their respective ratios. Extreme ketogenic diets are almost exclusively fat (for treating cancer), but my aim is around 70%, which is mildly ketogenic. That means that I (my liver, that is) will produce ketones (and glucose) as opposed to exclusively glucose. This seems to hold my carbohydrate intolerance at bay at the same time, I can still swim long distances without “bonking”, or running out of energy.

There are also various measurements of performance based mainly on running and cycling, but also a host of other sports, showing the calorie burn.

I am no expert on these apps, but it seems pretty sensible. To create awareness of your situation so that you can take some action, it is probably worthwhile tracking your performance and diet. Take responsibility, but do not become obsessed with it!

A longer life – at what price?

My Father died at the age of 76. Not bad for a man born in England in 1913. Better than average, one might say. He died of shortage of breath – literally, He was mowing the lawn and felt bad. He passed out on his bed, and died. His heart was not getting enough oxygen to function because his alveoli in his lungs no longer functioned.

If you thought that my Father suddenly “kicked the bucket”, you would be wrong. He suffered from what is now called Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) for the last 8 years of his life. It was not pleasant to see him, as he was coughing up phlegm constantly and was on an atomiser machine most of the time. He blamed it on the fact that he delivered coal for 25 years, but ib fact, it was the roll-up unfiltered cigarettes that did it. But he would never accept that-

What is my point? That the last 10% of his life were miserable. He was also on steroids, which gave him uncontrollable diaorrhea occasionally, so he was never far away from a toilet.

Countries seem to tout life expectancy numbers as an indicator of how “healthy” the nation is. Also how “wealthy” a nation is – that is, how it can keep citizens alive for the longest time.


Imagine that a country wanted to REALLY boast of its longevity. It could spend a fair proportion of its GDP on life support machines, and keep everyone going until they were 100. But what would be the point for the individuals?

Here is a fantastic animated graph which shows the development of life expectancy against GDP from 1800 to the present day. Between 1890 and 1955, there was a great increase in life expectancy from 47 to 72 years of age. This was for a 300% increase in GDP. But what else was happening? Pathological diseases were eradicated for one thing, by improving sanitation. Families got smaller which meant less infants dying. I am no anthropologist, but that is my speculation.

Between 1956 and now, we have seen an increase of just 8 years – in fact, for many years it was flat. This was for a 357% increase in GDP (at adjusted PPP).

Let’s try and put the numbers in perspective: Over a period of 65 years, life expectancy increased by 25 years with a wealth increase of 300%. A 53% increase over 65 years – 0.82% longer each year, which adjusted for the GDP increase is 0.27% per annum. Over a period of 58 years to the present date, life expectancy increased by 8 years with a wealth increase of 357%, which adjusted for GDP increase is 0,05%.

It would appear that we are living marginally longer as the GDP rises. But I would argue that part of the GDP is going to healthcare, indicating that we pay a heavy price to increase the life expectancy and that doing this increases GDP growth, thus providing the magic economic growth that is the mantra of politicians around the world.

According to the latest OECD numbers Denmark spends 11.1% of its GDP on healthcare (if you think that is a lot, then look at the US – 16%!). This is up from 8,7% in 2000, and it was probably a lot lower in 1955!. Denmark’s saving grace is that the amount spent on medicine has gone down, to 6.5%.

Incidentally, if you play with the control on the graph, you will see that in 1916, Denmark had the highest life expectancy at birth in the world. In 2013 Denmark was placed a paltry 29th. What happened?

There well be a natural upper limit to how long we can expect to live, but I believe that lifestyle is not only holding the number down in Denmark, it is causing many people to live a morbid lifestyle on medication for many years. Is this desirable? Is it feasible? In Greece, many older people on medication suddenly found that the medications were not being paid for by the state. I think we should all be careful – because in dire draconian states of austerity, expensive medication for the chronically sick is going to be the first thing to go.

The Diabetes Society in Denmark sponsored a study where they found out that treating diabetes 1 & 2 had massive costs. I reprint the abstract from the study here

Objective: The study aims to provide real world evidence on societal costs attributable to diabetes (SCAD) in Denmark evidenced by age, gender, education and complication progression. Method: All persons (PwD) (N=318,729, 2011) in the Danish National Diabetes Register were linked to national data from 5 health/social registers. Complication groups were defined through data from the Danish National Hospital Register. SCAD were measured as difference between resource consumption of PwD compared to the diabetes-free population. Results: SCAD were estimated to at least 31.8 billion DKK in 2011, corresponding to 107,000 DKK per patient-year distributed on 5.5 billion DKK for primary and secondary care, 1.1 billion DKK for pharmaceuticals, 6.4 billion DKK for nursing, 13.2 billion DKK in lost productivity and 5.6 for additional costs. Steep increasing costs with increasing complications are evidenced across all cost components: 12 times in the health care and 33 times for nursing services for persons’ with severe complications compared to persons’ with no complications. 25% of PwD consume nearly 60% of all resources. PwD received lower annual income than controls when controlling for highest educational level. Conclusion: Majority of costs are incurred among persons’ with severe complications pointing to importance of secondary preventive efforts among PwD.

31.8 billion kroner! and that is just diabetes. Note the conclusion. And what about the costs of all the other lifestyle diseases?

We need to rethink this.