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Muscle Talk

Jaime Filer

Jaime Filer graduated with a kinesiology degree from York University, where she was a varsity athlete. She’s also a former competitive bodybuilder who competed in drug-tested events throughout North America. If something new is trending in fitness, chances are Jaime’s already tried it!

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Health Zone - Parks - The Flu - Friendships

Health Zone Tidbits

Losing weight is a walk in the park

If you live in an urban, downtown area of a large metropolis such as Toronto or Manhattan, you may be at a disadvantage physically and emotionally compared to your rural counterparts. Researchers in Tokyo had a large group of men walk once through an urban area of Tokyo where there was very little greenery, and once through a park with tons of green. On both walks, the men walked for two hours and burned a similar number of calories. After walking through the park, researchers noticed that the men’s blood pressure was significantly lower and that the “green walk” also helped reduce the concentration of stress hormones in the men’s blood: “Reducing stress reinforces the positive effects of exercise.” So to get peace of mind and enhance your exercise efforts, find green space whenever you can get outside.

New correlation between fatness and sickness

Researchers spent 22 weeks fattening up one group of mice and let another group eat normal food and remain slim. They then infected all the mice with the influenza virus. “Ten days after being infected with the flu virus 42 percent of the fattened mice were no longer alive. Of the slim lab mice only 5.5 percent had died.” The scientists concluded that obesity can downregulate immune responses, and that immune function in general can be affected negatively by obesity.

Having more friends adds more years to your life

The saying “time flies when you’re having fun” may be true, but researchers at the University of Texas have shown that although time may fly, your life will be longer. They found a connection between “social integration through social engagement” and mortality risk. They studied five groups on a sliding scale: Class 1, which were people who started with lots of friends but saw a slight decline over time, through Class 5, which were people who started with some friends but had an increasing decline over time. Guess which group saw higher mortality? Not the people with the biggest social lives. Those in the best position were people who started with a lot of contacts and maintained as many as possible over the years. So when you’re done reading, put down this magazine and give your training partner a call!

To check out more articles from Jaime, and learn how science can get you ripped, strong, and healthy, click here!