2 5 8
1 3 4
POWER FOODS FOR MEN THE SECRETS OF AWESOME ABS INSTANT PHYSICAL FIXES THE SECRETS OF SIZZLING SEX THE BEST SHAPE OF YOUR LIFE THE LAWS OF LEANNESS 99 HEALTH SECRETS YOU CAN'T LIVE WITHOUT CUT YOUR CHOLESTEROL LEVEL BY 100 POINTS IN JUST 21 DAYS BULLET-PROOF YOUR PROSTATE 4 9 16 22 28 35 43 50 55
DEFLATE YOUR BLOOD PRESSURE 59
BY THE EDITORS OF m
Revised © 2004 by Rodale Inc.
The information given here is designed to help you make informed decisions about your health. It is not intended as a substitute for any treatment that may have been prescribed by your doctor. If you suspect that you have a medical problem, we urge you to seek competent medical help.
Creative director: Lori Magilton Project editor: Kerry K. Callahan Copy editor: Jean L. Skillman Interior layout designer: Maureen Logan
Special POWER REPORT
Drink This to Make Muscle
BUILD MUSCLE AFTER YOUR WORKOUT
uscle isn’t actually built in the convenient muscle-building mix than a gym—it’s made later, when you’re shake made with a pasteurized egg substicollapsed on the sofa, watching tute, flavored soy milk, and fruit. Throw reruns of Seinfeld. As you’re resting, your this stuff into a blender and you’ll produce body is busy repairing and rebuilding the a 370-calorie shake with 25 grams of highmuscle tissue you flexed all afternoon. You quality egg and soy protein, only 5 grams can maximize the process by taking in the of fat, and plenty of healthy stuff like fiber, right mix of protein and carbohydrates vitamin C, and other antioxidants. Plus, it within 3 hours of your workout. Your body tastes good, and it’s festively pink. builds muscle faster during this time, and that optimum nutrient combination stimulates the TAKE THIS: hormones needed 1 c ice cubes 1 c frozen strawberries to make it happen. 3 1 ⁄4 c egg substitute, ⁄2 banana There’s no such as EggBeaters 1⁄2 c cranberry juice 3 simpler or more ⁄4 c vanilla soy milk
And then: Put it all in a blender with a tight
lid. Blend on high for 30 seconds. Drink.
The Top of the Food Chain
OUNCE FOR OUNCE, THE MOST POWER-PACKED FOODS ON EARTH
PROTEIN Daily requirement: 75 g
You know you need protein to build muscle tissue, but all protein isn’t the same. “The more amino acids a protein contains, the higher its quality, and the better your body can utilize it to build muscle,” says Cyndi Thomson, Ph.D., R.D., clinical nutritionist at the University of Arizona. The following foods deliver high amounts of all nine essential amino acids.
Food (3-ounce servings)
Chicken breast Turkey breast Beef (eye round) Salmon Canned tuna
27 (9/oz) 25 (8/oz) 25 (8/oz) 23 (8/oz) 20 (7/oz)
3.0 0.8 4.9 6.4 2.5
142 113 149 156 220
POWER FOODS FOR MEN
POTASSIUM Daily requirement: 3,500 mg
Potassium fights high blood pressure and keeps you from collapsing in the gym, as it’s critical for muscle contraction and fluid balance. The banana might be the potassium poster child, but for potency, molasses and dried figs humiliate the phallic fruit. An 8-ounce glass of orange juice also provides 420 mg of potassium.
2 Tbsp molasses (1 oz) 4 dried figs (3 oz) 1 sliced avocado (3 oz) 1 baked potato (6 oz) 1 medium banana (5 oz)
6 to 8 Brazil nuts (1 oz) Handful of sunflower seeds (1 oz) Canned tuna (6 oz) 1 hard-boiled egg (1.75 oz) Boneless chicken breast (3 oz)
839 (839/oz) 23 (23/oz) 113 (19/oz) 15 (9/oz) 24 (8/oz)
18.8 14.1 5.1 5.3 3.0
186 165 220 78 142
410 (410/oz) 540 (180/oz) 503 (168/oz) 702 (117/oz) 539 (108/oz)
0 0.9 12.6 0 0.7
106 196 135 183 125
CALCIUM Daily requirement: 1,000 mg
While keeping your bones from crumbling, calcium also helps you stay lean. Researchers at the University of Tennessee found that the more dietary calcium a group of 11 men ate, the less body fat they produced. Your body produces a hormone called calcitriol when you’re short on calcium, which may encourage you to store more fat, says Michael Zemel, Ph.D., coauthor of the study. Nonfat milk has 38 mg of calcium per ounce, so drinking a few glasses is still one of the best ways to get your daily shot of calcium.
1 slice Swiss cheese (1 oz) 1 slice part-skim mozzarella (1 oz) Canned sardines with bones (1 oz) Handful of almonds (1 oz) 1 cup low-fat vanilla yogurt (8 oz)
FIBER Daily requirement: 38 g
A high-fiber diet will lower your cholesterol level and help keep you thin. If you’re like most men, though, you probably eat less than half of the daily fiber you need. Work up to 35 grams (g) gradually; that’ll give you the same fiber intake as eating 18 slices of whole wheat toast every day. Start with a bowl of bran cereal and a couple of big handfuls of popcorn.
272 (272/oz) 207 (207/oz) 91 (91/oz) 75 (75/oz) 389 (49/oz)
7.8 4.9 4.6 15 2.9
107 79 68 169 194
10 (10/oz) 8 (4/oz) 6 (3/oz) 8 (3/oz) 4 (2/oz)
0.9 1.4 1.8 0.9 2.0
79 186 186 196 130
⁄2 cup Kellogg’s All-Bran (1 oz)
1 cup raisin bran (2 oz) 6 cups air-popped popcorn (2 oz) 4 dried figs (3 oz) 2 slices whole grain bread (2 oz)
VITAMIN C Daily requirement: 60 mg
Orange juice is tasty, but with 16 mg of vitamin C per ounce, it doesn’t pack nearly the payload of red bell peppers. Chop a few red-pepper chunks into your pasta and you’ll have your daily allotment of C—and a lowered risk of developing heart disease and cataracts. If you are a smoker, up your RDA to 120 mg.
1 large red bell pepper (5 oz) 1 large kiwifruit (3 oz) 1 cup raw broccoli (3 oz) 1 cup papaya (5 oz) 1 large orange (7 oz)
VITAMIN E Daily requirement: 15 mg (30 IU)
Toss a handful of sunflower seeds on your salad, and your daily vitamin E quota is fulfilled. Want to ward off heart attacks, strokes, prostate cancer, and even Alzheimer’s disease? Take 100–400 IU of vitamin E supplement (labeled “d-alpha tocopherol”), but talk to your doctor first if you take blood-thinning medication, aspirin, or a statin drug.
Food (1-ounce servings)
Sunflower seeds 2 Tbsp safflower oil 22 almonds 2 Tbsp canola oil 2 Tbsp wheat germ
Vitamin C (mg)
283 (57/oz) 89 (30/oz) 82 (27/oz) 87 (17/oz) 98 (14/oz)
0 0 0 0 0
40 55 25 55 86
Vitamin E (mg/oz) Fat (g)
14 9 7 6 6 14.1 27.2 15.0 28.0 2.1
165 240 169 248 104
ZINC Daily requirement: 15 mg
Your body needs zinc to produce sperm, utilize testosterone, and keep your immune system functioning. That’s why you’d better double the 7 mg the average man eats every day. Rely on lean beef and sunflower seeds for your daily 15 mg.
5 steamed oysters (3 oz) 1 cup Total cereal (1.5 oz) Lean ground beef (3 oz) Sirloin steak (3 oz) Handful of sunflower seeds (1 oz)
154 (51/oz) 20 (13/oz) 6 (2/oz) 5 (2/oz) 2 (2/oz)
4.2 0.9 13.4 11.2 14.1
117 140 225 204 165
SELENIUM Daily requirement: 70 mcg
Want to cut your risk of prostate cancer? Eat two Brazil nuts every day. A study at the University of Arizona found that men who took in 200 micrograms (mcg) of selenium daily cut their risk of developing prostate cancer by nearly two-thirds. 6
10 POWER REPORTS
Strong Meals for Strong Guys
ondering how you’ll stuff down all these superfoods? Easy—throw them all in the same pan. Chef Vince Steinman designed three power meals that contain ample portions of all the nutrients listed on the previous pages. Together, they’re a perfect day’s menu to prevent heart disease, lower your risk of prostate cancer, and help you grow muscle after a workout.
Special POWER REPORT
BREAKFAST: ATOMIC SMOOTHIE
1 ⁄2 1 ⁄2 1
c fat-free milk c orange juice c vanilla nonfat yogurt Tbsp peanut butter
1 1 1 2
banana, cut into small pieces small kiwi, cut into small pieces Tbsp toasted wheat germ Tbsp sunflower seeds
And then: Mix it all in a blender. Drink. 2 servings PER SERVING:
303 calories, 13 g protein, 9.6 g fat (29% of calories), 3 mg cholesterol, 4 g fiber, 140 mg sodium
LUNCH: OPEN-FACED SALMON OMELETTE
4 ⁄2 2 2 1 ⁄3
egg whites c 1% milk Tbsp tomato paste oz salmon, diced c small broccoli florets
⁄3 c shredded part-skim mozzarella 4 slices whole wheat toast 2 Tbsp horseradish
And then: In a small bowl, whisk the eggs, milk, and tomato paste until foamy, then add salmon and broccoli. Coat a 10-inch skillet with nonstick spray and heat it over medium heat for 30 seconds. Pour the egg mixture into the skillet. Cover; let cook 8 to 10 minutes, until the eggs are firm. Remove the lid and sprinkle the omelette with cheese. Cut the omelette into four pieces and place each on a slice of toast. Top each with 1 ⁄2 teaspoon horseradish. 4 servings PER SERVING: 139 calories, 12 g protein, 3.6 g fat (23% of calories), 10 mg cholesterol, 3 g fiber, 473 mg sodium DINNER: CIDER CHICKEN WITH FIGS AND RED PEPPERS
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 1 lb) 1 ⁄2 c chopped dried figs 1 ⁄3 c diced red peppers ⁄2 1 1 ⁄2 2
THE SECRETS OF
c apple cider c cinnamon apple butter tsp allspice Tbsp slivered almonds
And then: Preheat oven to 350°F. Place chicken breasts in a baking dish coated with cooking spray. In a bowl, mix together the figs, peppers, cider, apple butter, and allspice. Pour mixture over the chicken, sprinkle with almonds, and bake for 40 minutes. Serve over rice or egg noodles. 4 servings PER SERVING: 372 calories, 28 g protein, 4.4 g fat (11% of calories), 66 mg cholesterol, 3 g fiber, 77 mg sodium
10 POWER REPORTS
T H E S E C R E T S O F AW E S O M E A B S
4 Weeks to a Flat Front
THE NO-BRAINER PLAN TO LOSE YOUR GUT—FAST
ot all weight-training systems burn fat, but the one you’ll use in this program burns fat by the pound. Here’s why: Since the classic 1990 study in The Journal of Applied Physiology, exercise scientists have known that doing hard, 10-repetition sets and following them with short rest periods produces dramatic increases in growth hormone. Growth hormone plays a huge role in muscle building. In fact, another study found that growthhormone increases accounted for 50 percent of the muscle growth in trained weight lifters during a 20-week program. But growth hormone doesn’t just build up muscles. It also obliterates flab by making your fat cells smaller, according to exercise physiologist William J. Kraemer, Ph.D., who worked on the studies mentioned above. This is what happens: During exercise, growth hormone takes fat out of your fat cells and makes your body use it for energy. Thus, the fat cells in your belly shrink because you’re treating them like propane to fuel your workout. Our diet plan, designed by Susan M. Kleiner, Ph.D., author of Power Eating, helps you eat the right foods at the right times to capitalize on the exercise program. Put the plans together, and you could lose up to 1 percentage point of body fat each week and see results just 9 days into the program. After 4 weeks you should be much trimmer. After that, take a week off. Then do it all over again for another 4 weeks. 10
10 POWER REPORTS
Ab Tips from a Top Model
Robert Goold, Men’s Health cover model
surfer, beach-volleyball player, and triathlete, Goold works hard in the gym three times a week. But he prefers the fresh air. “My favorite part is that euphoric feeling”—the endorphin release that follows a long run, swim, or bike ride, he says. In the gym, Goold looks for exercises and routines that help him maintain his athleticism. He usually supersets upper-body exercises for opposing muscle groups—a chest exercise followed immediately by a back exercise, for example. He tries to maintain tension on the muscle throughout each exercise. If he has a weight in his hands, he wants his muscles to feel as if they’re flexing. “I think you get results a lot quicker if you maintain that resistance,” he says.
THE WEIGHT-LIFTING PROGRAM
The two total-body weight workouts you’ll do are adapted from the program used in a Penn State study on growth hormone. Here are a few particulars. ■ SETS AND REPETITIONS: Do three sets of 10 repetitions of each exercise. ■ EXERCISE GROUPS: The exercises are grouped in pairs. You’ll alternate between those exercises, doing one set of one exercise, then one set of the other, until you’ve done three sets of each. Then you’ll move on to the next group. ■ REST: Your goal is to rest 60 seconds after every set of every exercise. (In an exercise pair, you rest between exercises, rather than going straight from one to the other as you would in a superset.) You may need up to 90 seconds of rest at first, but try to whittle that down each time you work out. ■ WEIGHTS: For the first set of each exercise, choose the heaviest weight you think you can use for 10 repetitions with perfect form. Decrease the weight on subsequent sets if you need to. ■ PROGRESS: Try to work with more weight on your first set of each exercise each week. Aim for a 5 percent increase each week.
ROBERT’S HANGING KNEE RAISES
THE CARDIOVASCULAR/ SPRINT PROGRAM
You’ll do two types of aerobic exercise— steady-state and interval workouts—and
oold’s favorite abdominal workout is with Ab-OrigiOnals elbow-supporting straps, which hang from a pullup bar . He starts with hanging oblique crunches [2, 3], and after 10 repetitions to each side, switches to hanging knee raises . (Check out www.aborigionals.com for hanging knee exercise gear.)
T H E S E C R E T S O F AW E S O M E A B S
you’ll also do sprints, an anaerobic exercise. The intensity of the aerobic workouts is dictated by your maximum heart rate (MHR), which is approximately 220 minus your age. You can do any type of
aerobic exercise—running, swimming, cycling, rowing, stairclimbing, inline skating. For the sprints, stick to running. ■ For steady-state exercise, work at 75 percent of your MHR.
■ In the first 2 weeks of interval workouts, warm up for 5 minutes at an easy pace, then do 1 minute of exercise at 85 to 90 percent of your MHR, followed by 2 minutes of recovery at 60 percent. Dur-
ing the second 2 weeks, you’ll warm up, then do intervals of 11⁄2 minutes at 85 to 90 percent, followed by 3 minutes of recovery at 60 percent of your MHR. The workout calendar will tell you how many
Your Workout Calendar
WORKOUTS WEEK 1 MONDAY Weight workout A: Bench press, squat. Cable row, leg extension. Military press, bent-knee incline situp. Biceps curl, standing calf raise. Weight workout B, followed by 15–20 minutes of steady-state cardiovascular exercise Weight workout A, followed by 20–25 minutes of steady-state cardiovascular exercise Weight workout B, followed by 20–25 minutes of steady-state cardiovascular exercise TUESDAY Interval training: 7 or 8 1-minute intervals, each followed by 2 minutes of recovery WEDNESDAY Weight workout B: Lat pulldown, lying leg curl. Dip, leg press. Lateral raise, back extension. Dumbbell shrug, reverse crunch. Weight workout A THURSDAY No exercise FRIDAY Weight workout A, followed by 15–20 minutes of steady-state cardiovascular exercise SATURDAY Sprints: 8 at 10 seconds each SUNDAY No exercise
Interval training: 9 or 10 1-minute intervals, each followed by 2 minutes of recovery Interval training: 6 or 7 1 1⁄2-minute intervals, each followed by 3 minutes of recovery Interval training: 8 or 9 11⁄2-minute intervals, followed by 3 minutes of recovery
Weight workout B, followed by 15–20 minutes of steady-state cardiovascular exercise Weight workout A, followed by 20–25 minutes of steady-state cardiovascular exercise Weight workout B, followed by 20–25 minutes of steady-state cardiovascular exercise
Sprints: 10 at 10 seconds each
Weight workout B
Sprints: 12 at 10 seconds each
Weight workout A, followed by 20–25 minutes of steady-state cardiovascular exercise
Sprints: 14 at 10 seconds each
Your Meal Plan
MEALS BREAKFAST MONDAY Bagel with butter Glass of fat-free milk Banana Fruit juice Pretzels Grapes Spaghetti and meatballs Italian bread Preworkout snack: Fat-free milk and low-fat cookies Postworkout shake DINNER Grilled or broiled chicken breast Mixed-green salad with fat-free dressing Low-fat ice cream TUESDAY Eggs Toast with butter Banana Fruit juice Graham crackers Dried apricots Roast-beef sandwich Carrot sticks Preworkout snack: Low-fat flavored yogurt Postworkout shake Cheese quesadillas Mixed-green salad with fat-free dressing WEDNESDAY Cottage cheese English muffin with butter Grapes Fruit juice Low-fat pudding or gelatin Apple Turkey sandwich with lettuce and tomato Cucumber salad Preworkout snack: Fat-free milk, crackers, peanut butter Postworkout shake Fish sticks Potato salad Low-fat ice cream Steak and baked potato with fat-free sour cream Tossed salad with fat-free dressing Low-fat ice cream THURSDAY Bran cereal with fat-free milk Banana Fruit juice Low-fat brownie Pear Tuna sandwich Tomato-cucumber salad Cashews FRIDAY Bagel with cream cheese Orange Fruit juice Fat-free chips with salsa Apple Cheese-and-vegetable pizza Preworkout snack: Fat-free milk, cashews Postworkout shake Shrimp over pasta with tomato sauce Mixed-green salad with fat-free dressing Sherbet SATURDAY Pancakes with butter and syrup Orange Fruit juice Hard-boiled egg Pear Grilled cheese sandwich with tomatoes Preworkout snack: Low-fat flavored yogurt Postworkout shake Grilled sirloin burger Grilled zucchini and corn Fruit salad Grilled swordfish on skewers with grapes and bell peppers Rice Italian ice
SUNDAY Low-fat frozen waffles with butter Banana Fruit juice Low-fat chips with salsa Cantaloupe Homemade cheese-andmushroom pizza on Boboli bread Blueberries (fresh or frozen) with low-fat ice cream
SNACK 1 SNACK 2 LUNCH
SNACKS AND SHAKES
10 POWER REPORTS
T H E S E C R E T S O F AW E S O M E A B S
intervals to do. Always finish with a 5-minute cooldown at an easy pace. ■ Your sprints will last 10 seconds each, followed by 50 seconds of rest. Always start and finish your sprint workouts with 5 minutes of easy jogging.
The meal plan on pages 12 and 13 gives you a week’s worth of simple meals. Each week-
day is equivalent to any other weekday, so if Monday’s meals turn your crank better than Wednesday’s, you can eat Monday’s twice a week for the 4 weeks. But note that the weekend meals have more calories, so don’t give yourself a week of Sundays. ■ SERVING SIZES: The bigger you are, the more food you’re going to need. So eat enough at each meal to feel full, and let the exercise plan do the rest.
■ SNACKS: Eat snacks 1 and 2 whenever you like during the day. Eat the preworkout snack 2 hours before exercise, and have Kleiner’s postworkout muscle-building shake as soon as possible afterward. To make the postworkout shake, throw the following items into a blender and whip until smooth: 8 oz fat-free milk, 1 packet Carnation Instant Breakfast, 1 banana, and 1 Tbsp peanut butter.
■ WATER: Water will help you work out longer and harder, wash away the bad stuff that accumulates in your muscles after exercise, and even help your liver take your stored fat and put it to use for energy. Drink it all day, every day. Include at least one glass with every meal and snack.
The Secret of 6-Pack Abs
o make your abs look like speed bumps, it takes more than crunches. You need to do exercises that incorporate added resistance or that extend your abdominals’ range of motion, says Michael Mejia, C.S.C.S., a strength and conditioning specialist in New York City. Here are two exercises that do both at the same time.
f you really want to etch an impressive midsection, think of your abs as having two distinct sections. Crunches are fine for the top half, but to define what’s below the waistband, you need exercises that focus on the hip flexors and the lower half of the rectus abdominis. Add these moves to your workout routine to develop an even tighter, stronger middle.
ANGLED REVERSE CRUNCH
Lie on a slant board with your head near the top of the board. Place a medicine ball between your knees [A]. Lift your legs and bring your knees toward your chest [B]. Return to the starting position. Do three sets of 10 to 12 repetitions. At home, you can do the same exercise on the floor; try using a phone book.
INCLINE LEG RAISE WITH A PULSE-UP
Lie on a slant board with your hands gripping the handles behind your head [A]. Slowly raise your legs until they form a 90-degree angle with your torso [B]. Next, lift your legs toward the ceiling in a controlled pulsing motion; your tailbone should rise an inch or two off the board [C]. Finish by lowering your legs slowly. Do three sets of 10 to 12 repetitions.
WEIGHTED EXERCISE-BALL CRUNCH
Lie with your back on an exercise ball and your feet planted in front of you. Rest a dumbbell (start with 10 pounds) on your upper chest, right under your chin [A]. Crunch your abdominals as you lift your shoulder blades as high off the ball as you can [B]. Hold for a second, then return to the starting position. Do three sets of 10 to 12 crunches. If you can’t do that many with a dumbbell, start without weights, holding your hands behind your ears. No ball? Put a rolled-up towel under the small of your back.
Sit on the edge of a sturdy chair or bench, holding the seat behind you for support. Extend your legs in front of you, knees slightly bent [A]. Now simultaneously raise your legs toward your chest and bring your chest toward your knees [B]. Do three sets of as many repetitions as you can manage. A couple of caveats: Do this exercise at the end of your workout, when your muscles are thoroughly warm, and be sure to stretch your hamstrings between sets. The more limber these muscles are, the harder you’ll be able to work your abs.
10 POWER REPORTS
Special POWER REPORT
Your Body Problems Solved
FLABBY BUTT? CHICKEN LEGS? WE HAVE THE ANSWERS YOU’VE BEEN WAITING FOR
or the most part, you’re a perfect guy. Just the right amount of blood, all the fingers and toes arranged in multiples of five. You’ve got that bilateral-symmetry thing nailed: one eye on each side of your nose, an arm in each sleeve, thighbones and hipbones perfectly paired. Yet, when you look in the mirror, imperfection glares back. Wouldn’t life be wonderful if you had wider shoulders, a powerful chest, and buttocks that made women want to bear your children, or at least babysit them on Saturday nights? Here’s how to fix the body problems you can fix, hide the ones that can be hidden, work around the unsightly ones, and stand proudly behind what just can’t be ignored. ■ ARMS (skinny) Ben Velazquez, a trainer in New York City, recommends these moves for your biceps and triceps: For biceps, place an incline bench so the back is at a 60-degree angle to the floor. Grab a pair of light dumbbells, and sit with your back against the bench. Let your arms hang down, palms facing forward, your elbows in line with your hips. Now slowly curl the weights as high as you can without moving your elbows forward. Return to the starting position and repeat. Do three sets of six to eight repetitions, with each repetition lasting 6 seconds (3 seconds up, 3 seconds down). For the second set, raise the bench to a 75-degree angle; do the last set with the bench at 90 degrees. Rest 2 minutes between sets. For triceps, set the bench at a 45degree angle. Grab a pair of light dumbbells, and lie with your back on the bench.
Hold your arms straight up toward the ceiling. Bend at the elbows, and slowly lower the weights behind your head. Slowly straighten your arms and repeat. Do the same number of sets and repetitions as in the biceps exercises, and take the same amount of rest. For the second set, use a flat bench. For the third, lie on a decline bench at a 30-degree angle. Changing the angle of each exercise allows you to go from the angle at which your muscles are weakest (the first angle) to the position at which they’re strongest (the last). Thus, you’ll be able to do productive sets even when your muscles are exhausted. ■ BELLY (made possible by beer) Wearing your pants at your natural waist, and not tucked under the gut? Good. But a proper fit will only help so much. To further de-emphasize your gut, draw attention away from it. Wear a V-neck sweater or a shirt with a contrasting (preferably lighter) collar. ■ BUTT (flabby) If you’ve been carrying around a little extra heft in your Hilfigers, it should come as no surprise—and certainly no comfort—to know that lower-body flab is much harder to lose than abdominal fat, according to Steve Farrell, Ph.D., director of curriculum of the Cooper Institute for Aerobics Research. Your body stores fat around your waist for easy access; the butt flab is for long-term emergencies. The best way to burn away lower-body fat is to raise your resting metabolic rate, or the speed at which your body burns calories. Regular bouts of intense exercise—whether you lift hard, run hard, ride hard, or do almost any fitness activity that
I N S TA N T P H Y S I C A L F I X E S
leaves you gasping for breath—can help increase your metabolism for several hours afterward. Timothy J. Moore, Ph.D., a fitness consultant, suggests this 4-week program: Two days a week, do circuit weight workouts in your gym. Do each exercise for 30 seconds, rest for 30 seconds, do the next exercise for 30 seconds, and so on. Try for two or three circuits of 10 to 12 exercises. On two other days, run or cycle using the same 30-30 intervals. Or do a somewhat easier routine: After a thorough warmup, run hard for 1 minute, jog for 3 minutes, and so on. Try for 20 to 25 minutes of this, excluding your warmup and cooldown. “You can’t stay at this level of intensity forever,” Moore says, which is why he recommends just 4 weeks on this program. “But it’s a quick fix. It really stokes the metabolic fires.” If you’re really aggressive and have a lot of exercise experience, you can do work/rest intervals of up to 3 minutes each. On the other hand, if you have a history of heart disease, this isn’t a good way to exercise. Stick to longer workouts at a lower intensity. ■ CHEST (scrawny) If your chest muscles stubbornly refuse to grow, you need to try something more drastic than your normal sets of presses and flies. Jerry Telle, C.S.C.S., a strength coach in Denver, suggests dumbbell bench-press flyaways, a sequence of exercises designed to keep your chest muscles under greater tension for a longer time. “The average set takes 20 to 40 seconds and uses the same resistance for the entire set,” says Telle. That’s about the longest a guy can lift if he’s working with heavy weights. But by performing three slightly different exercises in a row, all with the same heavy weight and very little rest in between, you’ll achieve two things you nor18
10 POWER REPORTS
mally can’t. First, you’ll fatigue more of the individual muscle fibers normally used in chest exercises. Second, you’ll recruit and exhaust more of the muscle fibers not normally stimulated in typical exercise routines (those you’d use to lift the Buick off your mom, for instance). Both sets of muscle fibers will adapt to the exercises by growing bigger and stronger. See the chart at right to perform the dumbbell bench-press flyaway sequence. You’ll use the same weight on each exercise. ■ CHIN (multiple) If you have multiple chins, let’s face it, you have multiple everything. You’re fat. So check out the info stored under “Handles (love)” and “Butt (flabby).” Here’s one more tip to speed up your weight loss: About 10 percent of your metabolism is devoted to digesting the food you eat. That is, your body uses up calories processing the calories you’ve just eaten. The more frequently you eat, the higher you can crank up this part of your metabolism. That’s why it’s important, if you’re trying to lose weight, to eat many small meals each day. “Eat something every 3 hours or so, even if you’re not totally hungry,” says Jacqueline R. Berning, Ph.D., R.D., of the University of Colorado. Skipping meals has the opposite effect—it shuts off this calorie-burning mechanism. And you’re more likely to splurge at Wendy’s if you skip a waistline-friendly turkey sandwich and an apple. ■ FACE (baby) If no one is taking you seriously, whether it’s when you propose an idea at work or when you hand the bouncer your ID, you need a more grown-up look. Wear tonal or monochromatic colors, says Lenny Marcus, the costume supervisor for General Hospital. A blue suit and white shirt, if you have a baby face, screams, “I’m just out of school, and this is what
Wide-angle fly: Grasp a pair of dumbbells, and lie on your back on a flat bench. (Use a weight you could normally lift six to eight times in this exercise.) Hold the weights together over your chest, with your arms straight and your palms facing each other. As you slowly lower the weights straight out to your sides, bend each elbow until it forms an angle of 135 degrees (halfway between 90 degrees and straight). Pause for a second, then lift the weights back to the starting position. Perform as many repetitions as you can, carefully bending to the same elbow angle each time. Sit up and rest the weights on your thighs for 10 seconds, then lie down again and begin the next exercise.
90-degree fly: Hold the dumbbells over your chest, keeping your arms straight. Do the exercise the same way as before, but this time bend each elbow to a 90-degree angle as you lower the weight. Perform as many repetitions as you can. Sit up again, rest the weights on your thighs for 10 seconds, then lie down and begin the last exercise.
Bench press: Hold the dumbbells at the sides of your chest, your palms turned toward your feet. Press the weights up over your chest, lower them, and repeat as many times as you can. Put down the weights, rest for 3 to 4 minutes, and repeat the entire sequence twice more.
I’m supposed to wear.” When you’re dressing for a night out, wear dark colors and make sure your clothes fit properly—no baggy hip-hop styles. ■ FACE (pale) You’ve probably noticed that some colors look fine on you, while others make you look as if you’re on your deathbed. It all depends on which kind of pale you are. If you have fair skin and dark hair, contrasting colors—like black and red—will look best on you. If both your skin and your hair are light, use muted color combinations. A blue suit and medium-blue shirt, for instance, will complement your complexion without overpowering it, says Alan Flusser, designer and author of Style and the Man. ■ FACE (thin) Judith Rasband, founder and director of the Conselle Institute for Image
Management in Provo, UT, recommends a fuller hairstyle (if you have hair), along with thicker shirts—flannel, if you can get away with it at the office—and houndstooth or tweed jackets. These draw attention away from your face, creating the illusion that your face is wider. And don’t slick your hair back, says Rasband. You’ll look like a conehead. ■ HAIR (gray) To flatter the salt-andpepper look, wear dark blue, charcoal gray, black, or white. Avoid pastels—they’ll make you look washed out. If you wear eyeglasses, choose black or silver frames. ■ HANDLES (love) When you exercise strenuously, most of the calories you burn come from glycogen, a carbohydrate-based fuel stored in your muscles. Here are two
I N S TA N T P H Y S I C A L F I X E S
ways to trick your body into using more energy from fat. Start early. If you do aerobic exercise before breakfast, says Moore, your body is more likely to be low in glycogen and burn fat instead. Go long—really, really long. According to an article in the journal Frontiers of Bioscience, the longer you exercise at moderate intensity—55 to 75 percent of your maximum effort—the more your body uses fat. ■ NECK (skinny) Most muscle-heads in the gym will tell you that doing specific exercises for your neck is futile, that only lifting consistently heavy weights for a long time will make your neck bigger. But a study published in the European Journal of Applied Physiology compared a group of men who did neck-targeting exercises with a group who didn’t. All else was equal—both groups did heavy weight routines over the same period of time, and both groups grew considerably bigger and stronger. But only the men who performed neck exercises increased their necks’ muscle mass; the other men’s neck girth stayed the same. Here’s a neck-building move recommended by Jeff Watters, a Detroit-area trainer who uses this exercise with boxers, for whom thicker necks are an occupational necessity. You’ll need a training partner, preferably a woman with cleanly shaven legs. Get down on all fours, with your head flexed toward your left shoulder and your right ear and temple against your partner’s leg. Push your head to the right for 5 seconds, relax, then push again. Your partner shouldn’t move when you do this, since it’s an isometric exercise. Do 10 repetitions, then repeat on the other side. If you can’t find a woman willing to let you push against her thigh, you can do the 20
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same exercise against a heavy punching bag. Have your partner steady the bag; if you’re alone, the bag will move, so the exercise won’t be strictly isometric anymore. Still, try to make each repetition last 5 seconds, and do 10 on each side. ■ NOSE (big) A rhinoplasty, or nose job, can cost up to $5,000. The immediate repercussions will probably include black eyes and other swelling, and your recovery could prevent you from exercising for up to a month. What’s more, it can take as long as 6 months for all the swelling to go down so you can see the results, according to Randall B. Weil, M.D., chief of plastic surgery at St. Mary’s Hospital and Medical Center in San Francisco. Far easier and cheaper is minimizing the effect that an oversized olfactory organ has on your appearance. “In order to make the nose appear somewhat smaller, you need to make everything around the face appear somewhat larger,” says Rasband. That means fuller hair around the sides of your face, wider shoulders in your suits and sport coats, layered clothing (T-shirt, open-collared shirt, jacket, or sport coat). “You want to draw someone’s visual attention downward and outward,” Rasband says. ■ PENIS (smallish) Don’t even consider penis-enlargement surgery unless you’re less than half the average length. (Average, according to researchers at the University of California, is 5.03 inches from base to tip, erect.) The risk of complications is just too great. If you’re caught short, add these sexual techniques to your bedroom repertoire. They favor the less-endowed man. The female-on-top position gives your partner the chance for more clitoral stimulation and leaves you free to use your hands on her breasts, clitoris, or any other place that might distract her from your
modest manhood. The legs-over-shoulders position (hers over yours, Gumby) allows you to get closest to the back of her vaginal wall. It also allows for some serious pelvis mashing, producing more clitoral stimulation. The closer her thighs come to her chest, the more she’ll like it. ■ SHOULDERS (narrow) The only way to make your shoulders appear wider is to build the muscles that surround your shoulder bones, particularly the meaty outside portion of the deltoid muscle. “But it’s very difficult to isolate that muscle,” says Juan Carlos Santana, C.S.C.S., director and CEO of the Institute of Human Perfor-
mance in Boca Raton, FL. “You need to take a shotgun approach, hitting the entire shoulder area: front (anterior), middle, and rear (posterior) delts.” Santana recommends that you perform the following three shoulder exercises as one long set—one right after the other, using the same weights and taking no rest in between the exercises. This will stress your shoulder muscles to the maximum and produce the biggest gains. Take 7 seconds to perform each repetition: 4 seconds down, a 1-second pause, 2 seconds up. Do three sets once or twice a week. Rest for 2 minutes between sets.
Standing lateral raise (works the middle deltoids): Stand holding a pair of dumbbells at your sides, with your palms facing in. Slowly extend your arms out to the sides, raising the dumbbells until your upper arms are parallel to the floor. Pause for a second, then return to the starting position. Do four to six repetitions.
Alternating dumbbell upright row (works the rear deltoids and trapezius): Stand holding the dumbbells in front of your thighs, palms toward your body. Lean forward slightly. Slowly raise one dumbbell along the front of your body until it reaches the side of your chest. Keep your wrist relaxed. Hold for a second, then slowly lower the dumbbell. Raise the other dumbbell the same way. Do four to six repetitions. 90-90 dumbbell press (works the front deltoids and triceps): Hold the dumbbells so your upper arms are parallel to the floor and your lower arms point straight up toward the ceiling. In other words, your shoulders and elbows should both be bent 90 degrees. Face your palms forward. Slowly press the weights up until your arms are straight. Pause for a second, then lower them to the 90-90 position. Do four to six repetitions.
■ THIGHS (chicken) Squats are the greatest thigh builder known to man. But the way many guys do them, the emphasis goes to their gluteus and lower-back muscles, and the thighs don’t get as much work as they need. The next time you do squats, watch where your elbows go. If they point behind you
during the exercise, you’re leaning over too far and your back and butt are lifting the weight. Try to keep your elbows roughly in line with the bar and pointed down at the floor. This forces you to keep your torso upright throughout the exercise, making your thigh muscles do more of the work.
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Graduate from Sex School
THE BEST CLASSES YOU’LL EVER HAVE
THE SECRETS OF
wise man never stops learning. He’s always curious about the latest trend, the newest technology, the Next Big Thing...even in bed. After all, a thousand tips and tactics have been developed since you and your girlfriend first did the mystery dance in the back of your Subaru. Problem is, unlike in high school, you and your buddies probably aren’t comparing notes and sharing insider secrets anymore. That’s too bad, because there’s much more to learn. So take a look at our enticing curriculum. Study hard and we guarantee that, in her eyes, the Next Big Thing that comes along will be...you.
bundle of nerves that serves as a catalyst for orgasms.
SCHOOL OF PHYSICAL EDUCATION
FOR THOSE WHO WANT TO WORK UP A GOOD SWEAT
101: Exercise your right to more sex. We didnêt like gym class any more than you did. The good news: Your çspontaneousé erections in the shower will get a better response now than they did then. But before you lather up, work out. A University of California study shows that men who exercise 3 days a week have three times more sexÑand bet ter sexÑthan those who donêt. 201: To extend your manhood, drop the Chalupa. You know extra weight is bad for your heart, but it also shortens your penisÑy ou lose a half inch for every 15 pounds you gain. Hereê why: The fat pad s that protects your pubic area creeps over the shaftê base as you get fatter, obscuring s perfectly good penis. A better diet and more exercise means more where it counts, too.
SCHOOL OF GEOGRAPHICAL STUDIES
CONQUERING MOUNTAINS, EXPLORING VALLEYS, PRESERVING WETLANDS
101: Find the secret of her twin peaks. Austrian researchers have found that an oft-neglected region of the breast, the northern part from roughly 10 o’clock to 2 o’clock, provides even more arousal than her nipples. Investigate with light kissing and a gentle massage using the heel of your hand, not the fingers. The palm gives even sensation without causing pain. 201: Point your compass toward her true north. Even if you find yourself upside down and disoriented during sex (happens to us all the time), you can always stay on course by trying to point the tip of your penis toward the inside of her belly button. The way her vagina is positioned, if you do that you’ll be close to her G-spot—the
SCHOOL OF PSYCHOLOGY
EXPLORE HER DEEPLY HIDDEN DESIRES. COUCH OPTIONAL
101: Master her mind games. In one survey, women admitted fantasizing about sex up to twice as often as men do. So how come sheê not constantly jumping your s bones? Because unlike your fantasies, hers are lengthy, interactive scenarios, says
THE SECRETS OF SIZZLING SEX
Karen Donahey, Ph.D., associate professor in the psychology and behavioral sciences department at Northwestern University. You can get more action simply by giving her a scenario to spin. Toss her a line like this at lunch: “If anybody would look amazing in a French maid’s outfit, it’s you,” and you up your chances of her breaking out the feather duster after dinner. 201: Hypnotize her with your eyes. Want to drive her wild with desire? Look her straight in the eye during sex. Add in a little playby-play of the action and solicit her opinion, too. The combination of eye contact and dialogue—that direct connection during sex—is an incredible turn-on for women.
to Bob Schwartz, Ph.D., author of The One-Hour Orgasm. 301: Make her adore a vacuum. Next time you’re, you know, yodeling in the gully, don’t just lick, the way most guys do. “Sucking on her clitoris and labia creates a unique feeling, and when contrasted with the usual friction can lead to more and better orgasms,” says Schwartz. This technique is better for you, too—you’ll get fewer tongue cramps.
BUILD STRONGER ERECTIONS!
SCHOOL OF MATHEMATICS
CALCULATING MOVES FOR IMPRESSIVE FIGURES
en might think they only need one thing in order to have an erection: a penis. In fact, one Italian study shows that the strength of the muscles surrounding your penis may also play a part. When researchers studied the strength of two pelvic-area muscles in 390 men, they found that potent guys were 17 percent stronger than the guys who had trouble with erections. “These muscles squeeze the two blood-filled erection tubes in the penis. The stronger these muscles are, the more pressure they’ll create in the erection,” says Gregory A. Broderick, M.D., a Mayo Clinic urologist. By simply squeezing and releasing the muscles you use to stop urination, you can train these muscles to get stronger. So do it often, and for best results, ask her to give you a hand.
101: Count on yourself to last longer. To increase your control—and keep your climax at bay—use a technique called “peaking.” As you’re thrusting, rate your BETTER LIVING THROUGH SEXUAL CHEMISTRY AND arousal on a scale of 1 to 10. When it builds QUANTUM PHYSICALS to 3 or 4, slow down and take deep breaths 101: Tantalize her with chemistry. You love until it diminishes. Then let your arousal it when she gives you oral sex with a breath build to 5 or 6, and back off again. Do this until you can reach 8 or 9 before climaxing. mint in her mouth. Here’s why: The 201: Multiply your satisfaction. The usual mucous membranes that line your penis let Saturday-night equation is You + Her = 1 mint pass through, giving you a cool thrill. But did you know that popping a curiously (orgasm). For better sex, try multiplying strong mint while you’re giving her oral sex your orgasms. You can train yourself to be can lead to a curiously strong orgasm? Note multiorgasmic, but it involves practicing through masturbation. (Hey, math can be to the wise: Peppermint oil can sting her. fun!) Build yourself up to the brink of Stick to the original wintergreen flavor. orgasm, then throttle back. Do this three 201: Defy gravity with your genitals. Just before ejaculation, your testicles ascend like times before climaxing. A little practice and you’ll be able to feel the orgasm—racing an aircraft’s landing gear to provide more pulse, waves of euphoria, and relaxation— power to your takeoff. To give your equipment an even bigger boost, have your part- without ejaculating. Not only does it reduce the messy cleanup, but you’ll remain erect ner gently press upward on your testicles and ready for more action. Good luck. with the palm of her hand just before you Please resist the urge to write us and tell us ejaculate. This will heighten your arousal and add intensity to your orgasm, according how it’s going.
SCHOOL OF NATURAL SCIENCES
Rock Star Sex Positions
he’ll forget you’re just a banker when you rock her world with these moves—guaranteed to stimulate her in all the right places. Some may seem familiar at first glance, but pay close attention to the details. These are variations we bet you’ve never seen before. before it turns to pleasure.) This is also a tight position, which creates extra pressure on the clitoris, and it’s one of the few rearentry positions that puts your heads together, allowing snuggling and kissing. What’s in it for you: If she keeps her legs together, she’ll have a tight grip on your penis, which should more than make up for the lack of depth.
FLAT REAR ENTRY
How to do it: She lies facedown on the bed with her pelvis slightly raised. She can use a pillow for support. You enter her vagina from behind. Difficulty (on a scale of 1 to 10): 4 Payoff: 8 You’ve heard about the G-spot? This is one of the best ways to go after it, says Mark L. Elliott, Ph.D., of the Institute for Psychological and Sexual Health. The downward angle of entry will target the elusive but highly sensitive dime-size spot inside the front wall of her vagina. And because the padding on her butt is blocking at least part of your access, you’ll have shallow penetration, so you won’t pass the G-spot by. (Tell your partner not to be discouraged if this doesn’t feel great at first. Elliott says the friction on the G-spot may cause discomfort
THE “X” POSITION
How to do it: You sit on the bed with your legs in front of you; she straddles your torso. Difficulty: 3 Payoff: 7 This position allows more gentle rocking than in-and-out thrusting—a change she’ll love. “Guys don’t like to hear this, but a lot of women find powerful thrusting
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THE SECRETS OF SIZZLING SEX
distracting and simply prefer to be ‘filled up’ while they concentrate on stimulating the clitoris,” says Louanne Cole Weston, Ph.D., a sex therapist in Fair Oaks, CA. To make this position really rock, hold hands with each other and lean back so you’re connected only at the hands and genitals. Concentrate on wriggling the base of your penis against the upper part of her vaginal opening, grinding against her clitoris. What’s in it for you: Since there’s little steady motion to wear you out and only moderate stimulation to the head of your penis, you should be able to last longer than usual. Once she’s had her fun, switch to a position that hits you in the right spots.
additional clitoral stimulation, should she want it. Try using the palm of your hand to rub in circular motions along her mons pubis, the soft, hair-covered mound just above her vagina. That’ll create indirect stimulation along her clitoris. What’s in it for you: She’ll be doing all the real work, so you can lie back and enjoy.
SEX TRICKS FROM SKIN FLICKS
e’re not huge fans of adult movies, unless of course you can learn something from them. Then we’re all for them! That’s why we sent a sex writer home with 40 X-rated videos. When he emerged 3 days later broken and empty, he was still conscious enough to bring us these lessons for the bedroom.
How to do it: You lean back with your shoulders against the foot of the bed and your feet on the floor, supporting the bulk of your weight. She straddles your midsection and uses her legs to thrust. Difficulty: 6 Payoff: 10 Even if she’s never been the jockey type, she’ll have a hard time resisting this invitation to ride. Not only does she control the angle, speed, depth, and rhythm of the thrusts, but because she supports her own weight, she also has complete freedom of movement. “This is as close as you can get to having sex in a swing set without having to install hardware in your bedroom,” says Weston. Your mate doesn’t have to rely on your figuring out where she likes to be touched—she can stimulate whatever needs it on her own. One caution: Some women tend to get weak in the knees during orgasm, so brace yourself for a little extra weight once she peaks. What’s in it for you: You can’t beat the view.
■ Don’t finish where you started. Three minutes is about as long as you’ll see any two (or more) actors in the same sexual position; they’ll reconfigure several times during a scene to keep things interesting. You should, too. It can keep you from ejaculating too soon. ■ Thrust one at a time. Penetrate slowly, then withdraw completely; wait a second and start over, 10 times. “Insertion is everyone’s favorite part of intercourse,” says Mark Elliott, Ph.D., a sex therapist. (Maybe second favorite.) Repeating the initial insertion will help you savor the feeling. Be careful; you could like it so much that you finish before you’re ready. ■ Bounce. If she’s on top, have her sit still so you can do the bouncing—and control the speed of the friction. Bend your knees and use your thigh muscles. When you move up and down, you’ll slide in and out. Stay in control so she doesn’t slide all the way off. ■ Touch and tease. For a different sensation, use two fingers to stroke up and down to stimulate both sides of her clitoris without actually touching it. ■ Use her legs. Have her lie on her back with one leg straight; the other leg should be pulled in toward her chest. Straddle her straight leg and support yourself with an arm hooked into the crook of her bent knee. “This allows good access, but because her legs are still together, she’ll get lots of clitoral stimulation,” says Elliott. That’s a good thing.
THE HOT SEAT
How to do it: You sit on the bed with your back against the headboard. She slides on top of your erection, with her feet by your ears and her hands on either your legs or the bed behind her. Difficulty: 5 Payoff: 6 Since you’re supporting her entire weight on your lap, it’ll be up to her to provide the motion by using her arms to push up off of you. That can be a little tricky, but once she’s used to it, the result is deep penetration that not only feels great but looks great. “Both of us had a terrific view of the action,” one tester reported. It also leaves your hands free to help out with
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“Grampa! Show Us Your Abs!”
YOU HAVE AN INVESTMENT PLAN FOR YOUR MONEY—HERE’S ONE FOR YOUR BODY
e all have to get older. It’s nature’s way of ensuring that babies have babysitters. But getting older doesn’t necessarily mean getting old, at least not in the traditional sense. You just have to start training for your later years now. Here’s how to pull off the ultimate retirement plan.
The Best Shape
OF YOUR LIFE
THE 30S GUY
You’re beginning to wonder why you were in such a hurry to grow up. The promotion at work, the new baby, the house in the ’burbs—you have good excuses to miss every workout, but every workout you miss seems like another concession to your inner fat guy. A Lift weights intensely for 20 minutes 164 calories couple of years Play tennis for 30 minutes 287 calories ago, you could Chop wood for 15 minutes 123 calories scarf bacon Move furniture for 20 minutes 164 calories cheeseburgers Ride a bike at 13 mph for 25 minutes 273 calories with impunity. TOTAL: 1,011 calories Now the most innocent-looking chicken burrito takes your belt out a notch. You haven’t some muscle mass in your upper body. done any irreversible damage yet, but you Instructions below are for right-handers; sure don’t want to see the end of this lefties, please consult the first Rocky disaster movie. movie. On all punches, rotate your fist so Work outside the gym. If you can’t work your palm faces down at impact. out, find some other way to burn off extra Stance: Set your feet shoulder-width calories—and stress. According to the apart and diagonal to the bag, left foot forNational Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, ward, elbows in, right fist alongside your young men who are only low or moderately chin, left fist beside your left eye. Float like fit have twice the risk of high blood pressure a butterfly, sting like Ali.
and diabetes—major risk factors for heart disease—than those who are very fit. Sound hard? It’s not. Do the five things in the box below, and, if you’re a typical 180-pound guy, you’ll burn 1,000 calories. Hit something. Here’s the best stressbusting exercise we know: boxing. “Hitting a heavy bag has a cathartic effect,” says Tom Seabourne, Ph.D., C.S.C.S., a sports psychologist in Mount Pleasant, TX. Try this: Pull on the gloves and hit a heavy bag for 3 minutes, rest a minute, and continue like that for 20 minutes. “It’s so vigorous, you don’t have time to think about your problems,” says Seabourne. Plus, it builds power, endurance, and even
T H E B E S T S H A P E O F YO U R L I F E
Punches: Hint: Aim as though you’re trying to punch through the bag, not at it. Jab: Shoot your left arm straight out and back. Cross: Pivot on your right foot as you strike with your right hand and pull it back. Hook: Pivot on your left foot as you bring your left arm around to strike the side of the lousy, stinking bastar...uh, the bag. Feed your muscles. If you’re lifting weights—and trying to watch your weight—you might be shorting yourself on protein. The average 180-pound iron worker needs a lot of protein—between 110 and 140 g a day to build and repair muscle. To get 100 g, you could have two large eggs, two glasses of milk, 4 ounces of chicken breast (about the size of your palm), and an 8-ounce steak. Eat another 8-ounce steak, and you’re up to 150. Since you’d be insane to eat like that, we recommend adding a daily protein shake. A study found that people who consumed a protein-shake diet lost more weight and body fat than those who ate the same amount of calories in food with 60 percent less protein. See page 5 for a quick, delicious recipe. Take the anti-soreness vitamin. Antioxidants like vitamin E reduce muscle soreness caused by lifting weights, according to research from Ball State University. In the study, 11 college-age men took either a placebo or 1,200 international units of vitamin E and went on a weight-lifting regimen for 3 weeks. “The vitamin E users showed statistically lower levels of free radicals after working out, which translated to less soreness after lifting,” says Bruce Craig, Ph.D., the physiologist who conducted the research.
THE 40S GUY
They throw you that great surprise party on 30
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your 40th birthday, and all your friends make “over the hill” jokes that you pretend to find hilarious. And if you have enough to drink, maybe you really do find them hilarious. But when you wake up in the morning, you can’t help but acknowledge that the sell-by date on your youth has officially expired. The few remaining pro athletes your age are shadows of their former selves, and your kids’ friends call you “Mister.” But look on the bright side: If your life were a football game, it would be halftime now. Here’s how to kick some butt in the next two quarters. Get plenty of calcium. Your wife’s doctor will tell her to get enough calcium to head off osteoporosis, but no one will extend that courtesy to you. Here’s why they should: Researchers at the University of Tennessee have found that calcium appears to decrease fat storage and increase the use of fat for energy. Your goal is to get at least 1,000 milligrams of calcium a day. That’s two 8-ounce glasses of milk, a bowl of cereal, and a cup of yogurt. Bend over backward. Four out of five Americans experience back pain at some point in their lives, according to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons. “Back pain can be caused by weight problems, old athletic injuries, poor flexibility, and poor musculature,” says Bruce McMillan, a physical therapist in Ronan, MT. But research has shown that if you bend backward, you’ll reduce compressive stress on your spinal disks by up to 40 percent. Try this: Get into a modified pushup position, with hands, knees, and feet resting on the floor. Push your hips toward the floor, arch your back, and hold for 15 to 20 seconds. If your back pain extends down through your legs, however, don’t stretch—see a doctor.
Tea it up. Coffee is our friend— particularly on mornings when beer was our friend the night before. Besides the nice buzz, caffeine also helps mobilize fat cells to be used for energy. But green tea does the same thing, only better, according to a Swiss study. On top of its flab- and cobwebfighters, green tea contains flavonoids —as much in 2 cups as in one serving of vegetables, says Jeffrey Blumberg, Ph.D., who researches antioxidants at Tufts University. Don’t buy the prebottled green tea—it doesn’t provide the same benefits. Instead buy tea bags and brew 2 cups a day with hot water, says Blumberg. Take some time off. As you age, your ability to recuperate after a weightlifting session decreases. So to give your body more time to repair itself, do three workouts a week instead of four. “But the intensity of your workouts can be the same,” says Dave Pearson, Ph.D., C.S.C.S., director of Ball State University's Strength Research Laboratory. Hit each body part only once a week, and make sure to take a day of rest between workouts. Try one of these workouts (exercise descriptions can be found at www.menshealth.com)—do three or four sets of 8 to 12 repetitions of each exercise. Rest a minute between sets. Take it slow. Lifting weights s-l-o-w-l-y puts your muscles under stress, which can boost the strength and size of the muscles. Try incorporating these five strategies during your next workout. Take your time. Do slow repetitions; research suggests that 8-second repetitions—4 up, 4 down—are slow enough to spur an increase in strength. Smooth your moves. If you jerk like a
Bench press Incline dumbbell press Pullup or lat pulldown Bent-over row Swiss-ball crunch
Squat Stiff-legged deadlift Calf raise Twisting crunch
Dumbbell shoulder press Upright row Triceps extension Incline dumbbell curl Incline reverse crunch
spawning salmon on every lift, you’re not getting the most out of your workouts. Try moving the weight smoothly, with only a slight hesitation at the end of the contraction. This will put more stress on the muscles you’re working and decrease your chances of injury. Stop chatting. Move quickly from one exercise to the next, with no time for banter. This fires up your metabolism and better conditions your cardiovascular system. Use weight machines instead of free weights. Weight-training machines force you to focus more on form and less on how much weight you’re using—a good thing— while protecting you from injury. “For example, with free weights your forearms and gripping muscles will give out before the biceps you’re working do,” says Wayne
T H E B E S T S H A P E O F YO U R L I F E
A Better Body in Minutes
BIG BICEPS IN NO TIME FLAT
ig biceps are built by doing multiple sets of curls with one arm at a time. The reason? Your biceps will fatigue faster, so they’ll grow more, says Ian King, C.S.C.S., an Australian strength coach who works with Olympic and professional athletes. Try doing these three exercises with the same arm, with only 10 seconds of rest between sets. Do 10 to 12 repetitions of each, then switch arms.
A BIGGER CHEST IN HALF THE TIME
eometry students and pool hustlers aren’t the only ones who benefit from understanding sharp angles. You can, too, by working your chest at different angles—with virtually no rest between sets, says Michael Mejia, C.S.C.S., a trainer in New York City. The benefit of doing these “angled drop sets” is that by working from the hardest to the easiest press positions, you’ll stimulate more muscle fibers in your chest in about half the time. To start, do a set of incline presses with a weight that will fatigue you after 8 to 10 repetitions [A]. Rest for 10 seconds, drop the angle of the bench, and do a flat press with the same weight. Do as many repetitions as possible— usually three to five more than on the incline [B]. Rest for 10 seconds, then do as many decline presses as you can [C]. Rest for 2 minutes, and repeat.
ANGLED DROP SETS
CONCENTRATION DUMBBELL CURL
Sit on a bench, and push your elbow into your inner thigh. Curl up and down, keeping your elbow still and shoulders back.
LOW-PULLEY BICEPS CURL
Hold the low pulley so it’s in line with your arm and shoulder. Keep your wrist straight and your upper arm by your side.
SINGLE-ARM ZOTTMAN CURL ON PREACHER BENCH
Curl the dumbbell with your palm facing up [A]. At the top of the move, rotate your palm so it’s almost facing down, then lower the dumbbell [B]. Rotate your palm up before you raise the dumbbell again. To avoid injury, make sure your entire upper arm is on the bench, so the bench is tucked into your armpit.
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Westcott, Ph.D., senior fitness and research director of the South Shore YMCA near Boston. Take time to recover. Make sure your muscles have 48 hours between strenuous workouts. And if you reach a plateau, try doing less work, not more.
brands at any health-food store.) It works while you sleep, so if you take the recommended dosage—30 milligrams of zinc, 450 milligrams of magnesium, and 11 milligrams of B6—before bed, you might wake up with a whole new attitude. Set a record. Another way to raise testosterone is to feel like a winner. Unless you were an elite-level athlete in your THE 50S GUY youth, you can set a personal record in It’s been a good five decades. You have a almost any physical endeavor you choose, solid career, and no one in your family has says Seabourne. ever appeared on Jerry Springer. Best of all, Here’s something you can set a record in you actually have time to exercise again. If today: the strict curl. This is a barbell biceps you start now, you can turn back the clock curl performed while you lean your back and by increasing your metabolism, testosterone, growth hormone, muscle mass, flex- arms against a wall. The beauty of it is that almost nobody knows how much weight ibility, and bone mass. they can curl once, so whatever you lift Grease your hinges. The average guy begins to have trouble with his knees in his today will be a personal record. Try this: Pick a weight you think is 50s. Exercise—particularly resistance trainthe most you can curl—100 pounds, say. ing—is good medicine for osteoarthritis, Warm up by doing eight repetitions with says Miriam Nelson, Ph.D., an exercise 50 pounds, four with 75, two with 90, scientist at Tufts University. and then one with 100. A week later, add The split squat helps strengthen all 5 pounds to each of your sets and do it your lower-body muscles and improve again. Keep going for 4 to 6 weeks, or until flexibility. Stand with your left foot about you stop breaking your own record each 3 feet in front of your right. Lower your body until your left knee is bent 90 degrees week. Take a break for 5 months, then start in again. You can shatter your own records and your left thigh is parallel to the floor. twice a year. And feel like the baddest m.f. in Your right knee should almost touch the your immediate vicinity. floor behind you. Now push back up to the Eat breakfast. Researchers at the Oklaoriginal position, keeping your back homa State University found that 40 perstraight and upright throughout the exercent of older men failed to take in the cise. Do 10 to 15 repetitions, then repeat recommended daily amount of folic acid, a with your right foot forward. When that’s vitamin that helps prevent heart disease. easy, add weights—you can either hold The reason? They weren’t eating breakfast. dumbbells at your hips or hold a barbell Try spending the morning with a cereal across your shoulders. Work up to three that’s rich in B12, a vitamin that helps the sets once or twice a week. body absorb folic acid and is high in fiber Become an alpha male. Researchers in and low in sugar, too. Here are five that California found that a zinc-magnesium measure up: Wheat Chex, Cheerios, Whole supplement called ZMA increases testosGrain Total, Wheaties, and All-Bran. terone levels. (You can find it in several
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THE LAWS OF
T H E L AW S O F L E A N N E S S
The 10 Laws of Leanness
THESE ARE THE COMMANDMENTS THAT REALLY MATTER
f you want to control your waistline and eat your way to better health, here are 10 things you need to do—starting today. PRETEND YOU’RE A TAILOR. Measure everything—your neck, chest, waist, arms, thighs, calves. Write it all down, and put it someplace where you’ll have to look at it every day. Record your weight, too, although that’s less important. Your goal: Maintain or reduce the size of your waist while increasing the size of everything else. Repeat your measurements every 4 weeks. TO CHANGE YOUR WEIGHT, FOLLOW THE 15/500 RULE. Making radical changes to your diet—starving yourself to lose weight or stuffing yourself to gain—is futile. If you’re trying to lose weight, you’ll slow your metabolism to a crawl. If you’re trying to gain, the excess calories will include a lot of fat. Here’s a more sensible strategy. To lose weight: Cut your daily food intake by a maximum of 15 percent or 500 calories, whichever is less. To gain weight: Increase your daily intake—and we mean every day—by 15 percent or 500 calories, whichever is less. YOU MUST EAT FAT. Fat still occupies that tiny prison cell at the tip of the Food Guide Pyramid, but its health benefits are hugely underrated. A diet with 21 percent of its calories from monounsaturated fat reduces your risk of cardiovascular disease by 25 percent, according to a Penn State University study. And research has shown that men eating a diet with high fat have higher testosterone than those eating less fat. So chomp on
those macadamia nuts and drench your salad with olive oil. Not only will you enjoy your food more, you’ll live longer and have more sex. REMEMBER: MEAT IS MUSCLE. The best muscle-building diet includes beef, pork, poultry, and fish, according to a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. The reason is simple: Animal protein builds muscle better than soy or vegetable protein does. How much protein you need is always debated, but the most reliable research shows that you need 0.6 to 0.82 grams of protein per pound of body weight per day to build muscle during a strength-training program. If you weigh 200 pounds, that means taking in 120 to 164 grams of protein each day. Say you choose 150 grams as your daily goal. Split it up so you eat 25 grams in each of six small meals. Breakfast might be two eggs, milk, and oatmeal. Lunch could be tuna on whole wheat. Grilled-chicken salad would be a good dinner. YOU NEED CARBOHYDRATES (BUT NOT THE FUN KIND). Consumption of highfructose corn syrup and other sugary sweeteners has possibly done more to expand America’s waistlines than anything else. In fact, Americans consume twice as much sugar a day as they should. But the carbohydrates in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains are crucial to your health, give you energy, and help you build and repair muscle after workouts. How much is enough: If your main goal is to be lean, try for about 30 to 50 percent carbohydrate in your diet.
EAT BEFORE YOU LIFT. You increase muscle mass in two ways: by building up muscles and by preventing them from breaking down. If you eat some protein an hour or two before your workout, you’ll have more amino acids available to your muscles during exercise. This prevents the muscle tissue from breaking down as much as it otherwise would. You also need pre-exercise carbohydrates to ensure you’ll have enough energy during your workout. Without this type of fuel, your muscles could break down the amino acids in your muscles for energy. The perfect preworkout meal: Make a small shake with juice or fruit, milk, yogurt, and/or a scoop of protein powder. Fat and fiber slow digestion, so limit them before a workout. AND EAT AFTER YOU LIFT. After a workout, you want to wolf down some muscle chow containing both carbohydrates and protein. This is the one time of day when you benefit from eating fast-acting, easily digestible carbohydrates, such as white bread, instant rice, and baked potatoes. Here’s why: After exercise, your muscles are more sensitive to insulin. Insulin is the rapid-transit system for the protein and carbohydrates your muscles need for growth, repair, and fuel. And the faster you digest the carbohydrates you eat, the faster your body can put them to use. The best postexercise meal: Try a shake made with a meal-replacement powder containing protein and a fast-moving carbohydrate like maltodextrin. Or try the shake described in tip 6; it works after exercise, too. BE A NUTRITIONAL BOY SCOUT. You’re going to get hungry every 2 to 3 hours, guaranteed. So be prepared. If you know you’re going to be away from decent food,
take some healthy snacks with you. Nuts and dried fruit are clean and compact, and require no special preparation or refrigeration. If you need to pack something more meal-like, try a peanut-butter-and-jelly sandwich on whole grain bread. Drop apples in hand’s reach everywhere you go; if you make it through one a day, the pectin will keep you too full to crave anything really awful. EAT BEFORE BED. If you’re trying to build muscle while losing weight, you may need some food right before sleep to keep your body from breaking down muscle tissue as you snooze. Planning this snack will help you resist the temptation to inhale chocolate fudge cake at midnight. If you’re trying to gain weight, your bedtime snack will help you maximize muscle growth. In either case, limit this snack to about 500 calories. A half cup of ice cream with some nuts and fruit is a nice way to end the day. Don’t make this snack too high in protein, though; that can kick your brain into overdrive, creating intense dreams and waking you up. TAKE NOTES. We’ve hit you with a lot of math here—500 calories of this, 0.82 grams of that. All of which is meaningless unless you know how much you actually consume. For 1 day, try this: Measure everything you eat. That’s right, pull out a measuring cup and see how much cereal you actually eat, count the slices or weigh the turkey breast you put on your sandwich, add up the bananas and dried apricots and Kit Kat bars. Now write it all down, and calculate the total. We all know what we eat, but most of us have no idea how much.
10 POWER REPORTS
T H E L AW S O F L E A N N E S S
Drop Pounds Fast...and Keep Them Off
THE TRICK TO WEIGHT LOSS IS KEEPING IT OFF. HERE’S HOW TO MASTER THAT TRICK
he following program will help make you a big loser in the only place where you want to be one: your waistline. And when you’ve dropped so much weight that you’re finally satisfied, you’ll be able to keep it off, because there’s nothing here you can’t keep doing for the rest of your life.
GIVE YOUR FOOD THE “WET TEST”
here's a secret ingredient in food. In the right amounts, it possesses the power to help you lose weight as you eat—water! According to Barbara Rolls, Ph.D., author of Volumetrics, no matter what you eat, you take in roughly the same amount day in and day out. So while equal amounts of any food will fill you up, “wet food”—food with a high water content—will do it with fewer calories. The more water in a food, the less room there is for calories, and the lower the energy density (ED) This doesn't mean you should go on a diet of watermelon, watercress, and water chestnuts. It means eating the right real food, the same food that Adam Drewnowski, Ph.D., director of the nutrition sciences program at the University of Washington, picked for the substitutions below. Eat enough to save 500 calories a day, and you'll lose a pound a week. You can also use the method of dividing calories by weight in grams to determine ED. An ED of 0 to 2.5 is good (eat as much as you want); an ED of 2.6 to 6.0 means the food is “dry” (eat sparingly.)
THE BEST WAY TO MEASURE YOUR FAT-BURNING SUCCESS
Muscle vs. fat. As you’ve noticed by now, a scale is a lousy way to measure your progress if it’s the only tool you use. This is because it can’t distinguish between fat and muscle. To fix that problem, science
has invented almost as many ways to measure body composition—the amount of fat on your body in relation to muscle, bone, and vital organs—as humans have invented to become fat. Here’s the simplest method to determine weight loss progress: 1. Measure your waist. 2. Measure your neck. 3. Subtract your neck size from your waist size. Repeat this calculation every 4 weeks. If the number is going down—if your waist is getting smaller relative to your neck— you’re losing fat. If it’s going in the opposite direction, you need to beef up your workouts and slow down your fork.
INSTEAD OF EATING DRY...
Ham Low-fat yogurt w/strawberries 1 oz 6 oz
Bacon Bagel w/strawberry jam
5 slices 1 bagel
1.8 1.0 131 189
Beef bologna w/light mayo on whole wheat bread Double cheeseburger
3 oz bologna
3.1 Tuna fish (packed in water) w/light mayo on whole wheat bread Steak wrap w/vegetables
3 oz tuna
HOW MUCH FOOD YOU NEED
1. Your weight in pounds: _______ 2. Basic calorie needs. Multiply line 1 by 11: ________ x 11 = ______ 3. Physical activity. Multiply line 2 by 20% if you currently get no exercise, 30% for light exercise (2 hours a day on your feet), 40% for moderate exercise every day, or 50% for intense exercise 3 or 4 days a week: _________ x ________% = _______ 4. Your daily calorie needs. Add line 2 and line 3: ________ + ________ = ____ 5. Subtract 500 (so you can lose 1 pound a week). The result is your ideal daily calorie intake: _______ - 500 = ________
Cheese ravioli Hamburger Hot dogs
2 1⁄2 c 1 medium-size 2 dogs
3.2 2.7 3.2 Lasagna w/meat Meat loaf Pork chop
1 serving (3 1⁄2"x 4") 3 oz 3 oz
1.6 1.9 2.0 334 78 111
Cheesecake Chocolate cake Chocolate-fudge cookies
1 slice 4 oz 3
3.2 3.7 3.5 Vanilla ice cream Chocolate pudding Frozen fudge bar
6 oz (3⁄4 c) 4 oz 1 bar
2.0 1.1 1.4 58 265 128
Potato chips Raisins Salami, beef
5.4 3.0 2.6 Potato salad Grapes Shrimp
1.3 0.7 1.0 340 81 115
10 POWER REPORTS
T H E L AW S O F L E A N N E S S
THE EASIEST WAY TO LOSE A POUND A WEEK
Let’s say you’re a 200-pound guy who walks for a half-hour a day at a moderate pace. You do the preceding calculations and realize you can eat 3,080 calories a day and not get any fatter. If you cut 500 calories daily, you can still eat 2,580 calories a day— a decent amount of food for a regular guy—and lose a pound a week. Calculating every calorie you take in isn’t easy, but it is useful. Make a list of all the foods you eat in a day, then figure out
the number of calories they contain using these resources: ■ Food labels. If you eat at home most of the time, you can find most of your information here. ■ Restaurant Web sites. Many chains have nutrition information on the Internet (www.mcdonalds.com, for example). ■ The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Web site. Almost any food you can think of will be listed here. Go to: www.nal.usda.gov/fnic/foodcomp
YOUR FAT BUDGET
1. Your ideal daily calorie intake (from line 5 in the box “How Much Food You Need,” on pg. 38): _______ 2. Multiply line 1 by your desired percentage of fat calories (.2 for 20 percent, .3 for 30 percent): _______ x ______ = _______ 3. Divide by 9 (the number of calories in a fat gram). This is your daily fat budget, in grams: _______ ÷ 9 = _________
Eat when you want. If you’re trying to lose weight, you’re usually told to eat five or six small meals a day instead of three big ones. But hell, you aren’t a blue jay. A study in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association reported that people had the most trouble sticking with a diet plan when they were told to increase or decrease meal frequency. Just see what works best for you. Try three squares one day, six little bites 40
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the next. Whatever makes you feel fuller is the one to follow. It’s possible to lose weight no matter how often you eat or when you eat. What matters is how much you eat. Practice safe snacking. Everybody slips up. Pick the leanest guy you know, and one thing is 99.99 percent certain: He eats something that’s “bad” for him. The truth is that nobody is on full calorie alert every day of his life, and nobody should be. There are
really no forbidden foods. Still, you don’t want a dietary indiscretion to end in a love handle. The secret: Plan your indulgences. You’ve already calculated how many calories and how much fat you should eat in a day, so if you know you’re going to crave a candy bar at 4 p.m. each workday, calculate it into your daily fat budget. Can’t go a week without pizza? Plan on it, and simply eat fewer calories in your other meals that day. Fiber is your friend. Fiber plays an important role in weight management. Here are three reasons to eat fiber-rich foods: ■ They generally take longer to chew, meaning you’ll eat more slowly and probably eat less. ■ They take longer to digest, which means more time will pass before you feel hungry. ■ They soak up surrounding water like a sponge, making you feel fuller. Try taking in 25 to 35 grams of fiber a day, which you can easily do with a few simple tweaks to your meal choices. Let’s say your normal lunch fare is a turkey sandwich on a roll and a few pretzels on the side. Change that to a turkey sandwich on whole grain or rye bread, and trade the pretzels for an apple, and you’ve increased your fiber intake from 3 grams to 7. Another easy fix is to keep frozen or canned vegetables around the house and add them as side dishes to whatever you’re having for dinner. For example, frozen broccoli has 2.3 grams of fiber in a half-cup serving; 1⁄2 cup of red kidney beans has 8 grams. Many of us believe only fresh vegetables are good for us, but that’s a myth. The bottom line is that fresh, canned and frozen foods are fairly comparable, and the latter two are certainly much more convenient
and are easier to store than fresh vegetables. Sauté frozen or canned varieties in a teaspoon of olive oil (don’t forget to count the 4.5 grams of fat in your daily budget), and they’ll even taste good. A few other ways to eat more fiber: ■ Have soup for lunch. A bowl of lentil or split-pea soup contains 5 to 6 grams of fiber. ■ Snack on peanuts or sunflower seeds. A quarter-cup of either contains between 2 and 3 grams of fiber. ■ Eat Raisin Bran (8 grams per cup), Bran Flakes (about 6 grams), or All-Bran (an intestine-scrubbing 9.7 grams per half-cup) for breakfast. ■ Finish lunch or dinner with a pear (4 grams of fiber), an orange (3 grams), or a kiwi (21⁄2 grams).
Integrate circuits. To most men, circuit training—moving quickly from one exercise to the next with very little rest in between—is the misbegotten offspring of weight lifting and aerobic exercise. It’s not as good as either of those forms of exercise for building muscle or strengthening your heart, so why bother? Because for weight loss, circuits are hot. You’ll incinerate calories, add some muscle, gain strength, and do all this faster than with traditional weight lifting or cardiovascular exercise alone. One more benefit: “Because of the intensity and then the volume of repetitions, you’ll improve muscular definition. In essence, you’re going to get cut,” says Vern Gambetta, a conditioning coach in Sarasota, FL, who often trains Olympic and pro athletes using circuits 3 days a week and interval runs 3 days a week. Train in stages. Most of us find a
workout that works for a month and stick with it for the next 17 years. But a muscle that’s asked to do the same thing over and over again will eventually use fewer fibers to do the job, according to a study in the Journal of Applied Physiology. So let’s say you bench-press every time you train, and you always use 135 pounds, and you always do three sets of 10 repetitions. At first, your muscles will respond the way you want them to—by getting bigger and stronger. But eventually they’ll get used to the routine and start using less and less muscle mass to do the same thing. That’s why serious athletes constantly change their workouts over the course of a
year. To become faster and stronger, they change the exercises they do, the amount of weight they lift, how many sets and repetitions they perform, and how much rest they take between sets. They change everything they can to make sure that their muscles never grow so accustomed to exercise that they stop responding to it. If you look at weight loss as an athletic event—you are, after all, trying to change the way your body looks and performs—it follows that you should frequently change the way you exercise, focusing on one goal for a while (building muscle, say), then another (burning fat), until your body does what you want it to.
Special POWER REPORT
EAT MORE, LOSE MORE
ere’s the typical weight-loss formula: Eat less. It works for a while—2.4 days, to be exact. The key to weight loss isn’t depriving yourself all the time; it’s eating the foods that’ll keep you full. Start here:
■ ADD FAT. Just make sure it’s the monounsaturated type; it may help keep you from overdoing it at the taco bar later. Penn State University researchers have found that men who ate mashed potatoes prepared with oil high in monounsaturated fat (like olive oil) felt fuller longer than when they ate potatoes made with oils rich in polyunsaturates (like vegetable oil). Use olive oil as salad dressing, or have a peanut-butter sandwich at lunch. ■ ADD SNACKS. But they should be foods with a low glycemic index, meaning they won’t cause your insulin levels to spike and your hunger to follow. Try low-fat chocolate milk, peanuts, or low-fat yogurt. ■ ADD CARBOHYDRATES. If you eat a lunch that’s rich in carbohydrates, your body will release serotonin, a feel-good chemical. But in a couple of hours, those levels will drop—and you’ll be more likely to binge. Try light popcorn to keep your serotonin levels even.
YOU CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT
10 POWER REPORTS
9 9 H E A LT H S E C R E T S YO U C A N ’ T L I V E W I T H O U T
Make It All Last
ALL GOOD STUFF MUST COME TO AN END? NOT IF WE HAVE A SAY
f you want to make something last, you’ve got to act now. We talked to dozens of experts and found the simplest ways to prolong the life of some irreplaceable items, like your lungs, your surging libido, and most important, your memory— so you can remember these tips. Here are the best ways to get the most out of... Your hair. From rap groups to aging businessmen, more guys are dyeing and highlighting their hair. But this can lead to a shiny bald head, says Zoe Draelos, M.D., a clinical associate professor of dermatology at Wake Forest University School of Medicine. The key to dyeing your hair safely? “Stay away from products that lighten more than three shades.” This weakens hair shafts. Most important, never dye and perm your hair on the same day, and always leave at least 10 days between these procedures, Dr. Draelos says. Your muscle. Men naturally lose muscle as they age. But, surprisingly, the key to hanging on to what you have is doing less, not more. Taking adequate time for recovery is more important as you reach 40 and beyond, experts say. Instead of taking 1 day off between gym sessions, you may need 2. That will help your muscles repair themselves and stay strong. Too much work, and you’ll just continue to tear down muscle fibers. Your sex life. If you tend to shoot first and ask questions later—like “Why does this always happen to me?”—a 2003 study at the University of Barcelona may have the answer. Researchers looked at 80 men with a history of premature ejaculation and found that when the participants took 90 mg of 44
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Prozac weekly, their problems were either cured or improved. Ask your doctor about it. Your arteries. Load up on grapefruit, carrots, apples, oranges, and other foods containing the fiber pectin. It’s even better at lowering cholesterol and keeping your arteries free of fatty plaque than the roughage you get from breakfast cereal. Your back. Make sure your shoes and orthotics have enough stability. Stand in them with your toes pointing forward. Now bend your knees 30 degrees, and imagine a line from the center of each kneecap straight down to the floor. (If you have trouble eyeing it, make a plumb line by tying a bolt to a piece of string and dangling it.) If your shoes offer the proper motion control, the line should land between your big toe and second toe on each foot. That means you’ll be properly centered when your feet hit the ground, and your feet will be less likely to roll to the inside or outside, causing injury. If you don’t pass the test, you’ll need new shoes or orthotics, says Lewis Maharam, M.D., a sports-medicine specialist in New York. Your waistline. Shorten your rests between sets in the weight room to 60 seconds. Lifting faster stimulates the production of growth hormone, which, in addition to building muscle, siphons lard from your fat cells, says William J. Kraemer, Ph.D., director of the human performance laboratory at Ball State University. So you get a big chest and a slim waist from the same workout. (That’s what your boss calls “synergy.”) Your memory. Eat blueberries, strawberries, and spinach. An animal study at Tufts
University in Boston found that a diet rich in these foods improved short-term memory. Your hearing. Your chronically sore back may be responsible for your poor hearing. There’s evidence that taking too many antiinflammatory drugs can cause hearing loss, especially for those with existing problems. “Some of the drugs that can cause hearing loss or tinnitus are the most common headache medications, such as ibuprofen and aspirin,” says Thomas J. Balkany, M.D., chairman of the department of otolaryngology at the University of Miami Ear Institute. Take acetaminophen instead, but eat something with it so it won’t bother your stomach. Your lungs. Take up the harmonica. Therapists use it for people with lung disease and breathing problems. The gentle inhaling and exhaling required to make music works the chest muscles and may help keep air passageways clear of debris. Your shoulder. There’s a reason you don’t see many fastball pitchers or star quarterbacks over the age of 40. The rotator cuff, the small band of muscles in your shoulder that allows you to rotate your shoulder to
throw, is easily injured. While a young, healthy cuff is highly resistant to tears and degeneration, age and disuse turn it brittle. Worse, if you tear just one muscle fiber there, it can act like a pulled thread in a sweater, leading to damage in the rest of the cuff. Our advice: Strengthen your rotator cuff so you can play catch with your grandkids. Here’s a good exercise to do just that: Lie facedown on a bed. Put your left arm out at shoulder level with your elbow bent to 90 degrees and your lower arm dangling over the side of the bed. Keep your elbow bent, and slowly raise your left hand to shoulder level. Lower the hand slowly. Repeat until your arm is tired. Then switch arms. A morning erection. Because its purpose is to nourish your penis with oxygen-rich blood, a morning erection isn’t there to help you have sex. So it tends to wilt once you get going. To give your pal a fighting chance, engage in foreplay for at least 10 minutes before pressing it into action, says Laurence Levine, M.D., director of male sexual function and fertility services at Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke’s Medical Center in Chicago.
8 Signs You’re a Healthy Guy
ONLY 1 MAN IN 100 CAN PASS THIS TEST. ARE YOU ONE OF THEM?
sk a man if he’s healthy, and he’ll say, “Sure.” And he’ll say it even if there’s blood coming out of both ears. But ask a dozen physicians to define exactly what it means to be in “excellent health” (like we did), and they’ll give you this important checklist. If you can check off all eight of these qualities, then you’re more than a good guy—you’re a physical
specimen possessing rare genetic gifts. We may have you stuffed for posterity. You have extremely high cholesterol. About 432,000 men die of heart disease every year—nearly one and a half times the tally killed by cancer. “But if you have an HDL (high-density lipoprotein—the good stuff) count of 90 mg/dl or more, you have very little worry of developing heart
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disease or arteriosclerosis,” says E. Randy Eckert, M.D., a pathologist and medical director at North Austin Medical Center in Texas. “You have an ample supply of HDL to keep your arteries clean, so you should never develop significant blockages.” Research bears this out: A study that followed 8,586 Israeli men for 21 years found that those with the highest HDL cholesterol levels were least likely to die of strokes. To increase your HDL cholesterol levels, you need to exercise at a moderate intensity for about 20 minutes at least four times a week, and drop at least 5 pounds from your gut. A normal HDL score is about 40 mg/dl; your goal is to at least double that. You have an athlete’s heart. Your heart will beat a fixed number of times before it shuts down. So you don’t blow your quota by age 50, you need to keep your resting heart rate below 60 beats per minute, says Thomas Graboys, M.D., a cardiologist at the Harvard medical school. Find your resting rate by taking your pulse in the morning while you’re still in bed; multiply the beats in 15 seconds by four. “Exercising at moderate intensities for long periods will lower your resting heart rate over time,” explains the appropriately named Dale Huff, R.D., C.S.C.S., of the American College of Exercise. The weekly prescription: at least four 40-minute aerobic workouts. To maintain an effective workout pace, use a heart-rate monitor or keep varying your intensity. For example, run, bike, or row slowly for 3 minutes, then go all out for 1 minute. You can answer “yes” to two career questions: 1. Do you look forward to going to work? 2. Do you look forward to going home in the afternoon? “After being in practice for 30 years, I’ve learned that if you 46
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can answer ‘yes’ to both of these questions, you have a very low risk of dying of a heart attack or any other heart-related problem,” says Dr. Graboys. You have a PSA score less than 2.5 nanograms per milliliter. That number indicates not only a very low risk of prostate cancer, but also a low risk of the PSA progressing above 4 ng/ml (the danger level) within the next 4 years, says William Catalona, M.D., a prostate-cancer specialist and professor of urology at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. Eating key nutrients can help lower your PSA count, says Dr. Catalona. He spikes his daily diet with the following four nutrients: 10 milligrams of lycopene, 500 milligrams of vitamin C, 200 micrograms of selenium, and 200 international units of vitamin E. You have two close male friends. Those two people can’t be current coworkers, neighbors, hitchhikers, or anyone who you know only as “the guy who’s always at the end of the bar.” If you pass this test and you’re over 35, it means you have far healthier social ties—and a better chance at living longer—than two-thirds of all men, says Dru Sherrod, Ph.D., a Los Angeles psychologist who studies the impact of male friendship. Passing this test means you don’t base all your friendships on the foam pillars of convenience, geography, or a job— the mistakes that lead most men to be friendless by their 40s. Instead, you work to maintain friendships based on common interests and compatibility. You can ejaculate a teaspoon of semen (5 milliliters) or up to a tablespoon on a particularly good day. That’s the quota you nailed at age 20. If your prostate is healthy, you should still be able to hit it at age 50, according to Dr. Catalona.
You can walk 2 miles in 28 minutes. Anybody can run a mile in 10 or 12 minutes; the more out of shape you are, the more hours you’ll spend wheezing afterward. Maintaining a vigorous walking pace for a longer period of time is actually a better measure of your fitness. According to Swedish researchers, a fit 40-year-old man should be able to walk 2 miles in under 30 minutes, says Dr. Graboys. If you can cover that ground in under 28 minutes, you’re in excellent shape. You have balanced strength. Most men overdo pushing exercises like bench presses
and squats, so it’s rare to find a man with balanced muscular strength. To have good muscle harmony, you should have a 1:1 strength ratio for your biceps and triceps. That means if you can curl a 50-pound barbell 10 times, you should be able to do triceps pushdowns with 50 pounds for 10 reps—no fewer or more. As for your legs, your quadriceps and hamstrings should have a 3:2 strength ratio. If you can do 10 leg curls with 65 pounds, you should be able to do exactly 10 leg presses with 100 pounds. If this quick test shows that you have uneven strength, change your workout.
Add Years to Your Life
NO MATTER WHAT YOUR AGE, YOU CAN CHEAT DEATH BY DAYS, MONTHS...EVEN YEARS
iologists estimate that the human body has the potential to last 120 years, and how you live determines 75 percent of how far you go. To help you bank an extra decade or two, we’ve rounded up research on dozens of ways to live longer, along with how many years each fix might carry. The more of these steps you take, the greater the chance that you’ll be alive and well at the turn of the twenty-second century. TAKE IN 300 MILLIGRAMS OF VITAMIN C EVERY DAY Add: 5.5 years Research from the UCLA school of public health indicates that men with high vitamin C intakes live longer than men with low intakes. A 35-year-old man who takes in 300 milligrams (mg) or more of C a day has a life expectancy 5.5 years longer than a man whose daily intake is less than 50 mg. Vitamin C may not get all the credit—high intake is often a sign of
healthy habits—but getting enough C from fruits, vegetables, and supplements is definitely a smart move. KEEP YOUR CHOLESTEROL BELOW 200 Add: 4 years Whatever it takes—diet, exercise, drugs—drop your total cholesterol below two bills. Bringing down moderately high cholesterol (up to 239) will buy you an extra 6 months, according to research. And if your level is in the 300-plus range, dropping down to 200 can extend your life by more than 4 years. BURN 300 EXTRA CALORIES A DAY Add: 2 or 3 years An impressive number of animal studies show that decreasing calorie intake by one-third can lower cholesterol levels and increase life spans by a third or more. Though researchers aren’t sure whether two-thirds the food translates into 20 or 30 more years in humans, there’s an easy way to buy yourself at least a few more healthy,
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id you know that eating a single fatty meal may temporarily boost your risk of having a heart attack or stroke? In a Danish study, researchers found that 18 healthy men produced about 60 percent more blood-clotting agents after they ate meals with about 55 grams of fat. However, a study from the University of Maryland School of Medicine suggests that taking 1,000 milligrams (mg) of vitamin C and 800 mg of vitamin E before you eat a high-fat meal—like a cheese omelette, burger, or steak—may reduce your chances of having a heart attack. Men who took these powerful antioxidants before they splurged on McDonald’s chow (they ate an Egg McMuffin, a Sausage McMuffin, and two hash browns—for a total of 800 calories and 43 g fat) maintained normal blood-vessel function compared with the men who skipped the supplements. If you’d rather not carry pills, eat foods rich in vitamins C (strawberries, melon) and E (nuts, oils) beforehand. “The lower dosages of the vitamins found in food may still have a protective effect,” says study author Gary D. Plotnick, M.D.
active years, says Elizabeth Somer, R.D., author of Age-Proof Your Body. “If a man usually consumes 3,000 calories a day, he can either cut back to 2,700 or increase his exercise by 300 calories a day. He’ll get the same calorie deficit, but actually see more health benefits with the exercise,” Somer says. HAVE YOUR COLON CHECKED Add: 2 to 3 years The male tendency to avoid doctors may be one reason women live longer. Keeping that doctor’s appointment can be the key to preventing death from a variety of causes, including colon cancer. A study tabulated that getting screened for the disease can help you live 2 to 3 years longer. Your screening should include an annual fecal occult blood test starting at age 50 (earlier if you have a family history of colon cancer), a flexible sigmoidoscopy 48
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every 5 years, and a colonoscopy every 10. TREAT YOUR ULCER Add: 2.3 years If you have stomach pain, having it checked could be a life-extending strategy. According to a study published in the American Journal of Gastoenterology, curing your ulcer adds 2.3 years to your life. Antibiotics (which kill the H. pylori bacteria that cause many ulcers) and acid-blockers can handle the problem. KEEP THE BOTTOM NUMBER OF YOUR BLOOD-PRESSURE READING BELOW 80 Add: 2.4 years Taking steps to lower your blood pressure can add years to your life. If your diastolic (bottom number) reading is 90 to 95, reducing it to 80 can gain you up to 2.4 years. GO TO CHURCH TWICE A WEEK Add: 7 to 14 years A study reported in Demography found
that whites who attended religious services more than once a week lived an average of 7 years longer than whites who didn’t attend services at all; among blacks, the figure was 14 years. The churchgoers’ lower rates of smoking and drinking certainly account for some of this gain, but their strong social ties and other behavioral factors may also play a role, says Robert A. Hummer, Ph.D., a sociologist at the University of Texas at Austin. EAT MEAT NO MORE THAN THREE TIMES A WEEK Add: up to 9 years Replacing some of the meat in your diet with soy, other legumes, and beans can increase your life expectancy by up to 13 percent. “You don’t necessarily have to give up meat entirely to see a benefit,” says Somer. “Just increase your intake of beans and legumes, then limit your meat intake to 3 or 4 ounces, two or three times a week.” HAVE SEX AS OFTEN AS POSSIBLE Add: Uh, does it really matter? There seems to be a “dose-response” relationship between orgasms and heart problems—the more sex you have, the less heart disease you’ll suffer. Researchers who studied sexual activity and mortality in a group of 918 men found that those who had the most sex had half the risk of death from heart disease of their less stimulated counterparts. STOP BEING SO HARD ON YOURSELF Add: 2 years Hey, Mr. Negative! Lighten up! Men who think the worst of themselves may be headed for early graves, according to a University of Michigan study. Researchers found that men who saw every personal setback as a catastrophe had a 25 percent greater risk of death and died an average of 2 years earlier than men who addressed their failures more positively. GET YOUR OLD BODY BACK Add: up to
1.7 years According to a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine, a 35-year-old who’s up to 30 percent heavier than his healthy weight can live 8 months longer simply by slimming down to normal proportions. If you’re more than 30 percent heavier than you should be, you could gain an additional 20 months. Extra weight increases your risk of heart attack, cancer, and diabetes, just to name a few. NEVER WEAR PANTS Add: 5 to 10 years A Scottish neuropsychologist who has studied more than 1,000 eccentrics (subjects include a man who rappels from buildings while dressed as a pink elephant, and a fellow who built a lectern on his rooftop so he could sermonize to his sheep) found they live 5 to 10 years longer than more-normal people. One reason: They’re unencumbered by the usual stupid worries that so-called normal people obsess over. STOP WHINING ABOUT YOUR DESK JOB Add: 2.6 years That springwater delivery dude may be turning female heads in the office, but don’t envy him if you’re a whitecollar guy. According to one analysis, professional men live up to 2.6 years longer than average, while unskilled laborers live 4.6 years less than average. Of course, there are some exceptions... GIVE UP YOUR DREAMS OF ATTENDING DENTAL SCHOOL IN JAPAN Add: 1.3 years An analysis of 560 death certificates of Tokyo dentists found that, on average, their lives were 1.3 years shorter than the general population’s. CUT BACK TO A SIX-PACK A WEEK Add: 2 to 3 years Government researchers have estimated that a moderate level of drinking (one to two drinks per day) could increase an individual’s life expectancy by 3 percent. (For most guys, that’s 2 to 3 years.)
Special POWER REPORT
Cut Your Cholesterol
LOWER YOUR LEVELS AND IMPROVE YOUR LIFE
LEVEL BY 100 PTS. IN JUST 21 DA YS
The average vegetarian gets 50 to 100% more fiber and up to 50% less dietary cholesterol than meat eaters. A vegetarian diet is also brimming with vitamins C and E and beta-carotene, and phytochemicals such as flavonoids, all of which help keep cholesterol from stopping up your arteries, says Dean Ornish, M.D., president and director of the Preventive Medicine Research Institute in Sausalito, CA. YOUR GAME PLAN The Plan: Aim for six or more servings “There’s compelling evidence that diet and of whole grains; three or more servings of exercise have the potential to significantly lower cholesterol levels—and, consequently, dark, leafy greens; two to four servings of lower heart disease rates,” confirms John C. dark yellow and citrus fruits; two to four servings of beans, peas, or egg whites; and LaRosa, M.D., president of SUNY Downone or two servings of nonfat milk, cheese, state Medical Center in Brooklyn. Here’s how to start on the road to lower or yogurt each day, advises Dr. Ornish. He also advocates reducing dietary fat to cholesterol: Begin by studying the choles10% of total calories—a recommendation terol-busting eating plans listed below. that’s a bit harsh for a lot of guys. Shoot These low-fat, plant-based diets can lower for 25%, then see how you respond. If your your cholesterol 10 to 40 percent in just cholesterol comes down sufficiently, that 3 weeks—studies prove it. Based on an may be all you need to do. Keep in mind, average total cholesterol of 250, that can though, that to get your cholesterol down work out to between 25 and 100 points! 100 points, you’ll probably need to hit that 1. THE VEGETARIAN DIET 10% mark, not just come close. Dr. Ornish’s program is so effective that even by coming LOWER YOUR CHOLESTEROL BY AS close, you’ll still lower your cholesterol— MUCH AS 40 PERCENT just not as much. IN 21 DAYS Most people are surprised to learn that vegetarians consume as much or more iron The Science: Vegetarians have lower than meat eaters. The catch is that the iron cholesterol levels and lower rates of heart in plants is less well absorbed than that in disease than meat eaters. What’s more, meat eaters who go low-fat vegetarian often meat. To make sure that you get enough, eat high-iron foods such as legumes along see their blood cholesterol levels plummet with vitamin C, which helps the body dramatically. absorb iron. Vegan diets—no meat, eggs, or Part of the vegetarian diet’s cholesdairy—are low in vitamin B12 however, so terol-shrinking power comes from fiber. oday your doctor handed you a brochure titled “So You Have High Cholesterol.” While it’s not the best news that you’ve ever gotten, there’s no need to panic. In fact, you possess three powerful weapons that can turn that news around: your knife, your fork, and your feet. Get ready to take action!
C H O L E S T E R O L : C U T YO U R L E V E L
talk to your doctor about whether you need to take a daily supplement or eat a bowl of Total cereal (which contains 100% of your Daily Value [DV] for B12). The Food: Think of the produce section as home plate. Along with everyday favorites such as tomatoes, broccoli, carrots, and potatoes, treat yourself to jicama,
mango, mustard and other greens, and portobello and shiitake mushrooms. Stock up on canned and dried beans, from adzukis to white; condiments such as flavored vinegars, mustards, curry pastes, and chutneys; and hearty whole grains such as quinoa, bulgur, cracked wheat, and buckwheat (kasha).
DOUBLE YOUR DROP
t’s long been known that exercise helps boost levels of the good HDL cholesterol, while chasing the bad LDL out of your bloodstream. But here’s a new reason to work out regularly: Teaming exercise with a low-fat diet can double LDL reduction. Researchers at Stanford University randomly assigned 370 people to four groups. The first group exercised, the second consumed a low-fat diet, the third consumed a low-fat diet and exercised, and the fourth did nothing at all. After 1 year, the diet/exercise group had lowered their LDL cholesterol about twice as much as the group who only cut fat—15 points compared to 7 for women, and 20 points compared to 11 for men. Aim for 30 minutes of moderate exercise at least three times a week, which is the same amount as the people in the study, says John C. LaRosa, M.D., president of SUNY Downstate Medical Center in Brooklyn. Or walk 2 miles a day.
professor of nutritional biochemistry at Cornell University and an expert on the links between diet and cancer who has done extensive studies on the Asian diet. The Plan: Load your plate with rice, whole grains, noodles, and flatbreads. Top them with vegetables—bok choy, bean sprouts, black beans, bamboo shoots—and fish. Milk and milk products aren’t part of the traditional Asian diet; use low-fat varieties sparingly. You can also have 4 ounces of lean meat once a week. Since you’ll have little milk in this diet, take a supplement with calcium and vitamin D. The Food: Fill your kitchen with brown rice, whole grains, noodles, vegetables, and fish. Stock up on standard Asian condiments such as low-sodium soy sauce, ginger, and chiles. More exotic Asian flavorings include lemongrass, tamarind, and turmeric, available in upscale grocery stores or Asian food stores. They’ll add flavor without fat or calories.
3. THE LOWGLYCEMIC DIET
RAISE YOUR GOOD CHOLESTEROL BY AS MUCH AS 20 PERCENT IN 21 DAYS
The Science: Although we need more research to confirm this, a study has found that people who eat the most foods with a low glycemic index—that is, foods that promote a slow, steady rise in blood sugar after a meal, rather than a rapid spike—
2. THE ASIAN DIET
LOWER YOUR CHOLESTEROL BY AS MUCH AS 40 PERCENT IN 21 DAYS
The Science: The Asian diet—shorthand for the traditional diets of China, Japan, and neighboring South Korea, India, Thailand, and other Pacific Rim countries—has been called the healthiest in the world. And no wonder: Research on 6,500 people in rural mainland China shows that they consume half as much fat and three times 52
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as much fiber, and that their meat consumption is 1⁄10 that of the U.S. Not surprisingly, their mean cholesterol level is 127 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dl), compared to our 203 mg/dl. The kicker: Compared to the U.S., their rates of death from heart disease are almost 17 times less for men and 6 times less for women. “If all Americans ate like this, we could prevent 80 to 90 percent of all chronic degenerative diseases, including heart disease,” says T. Colin Campbell, Ph.D.,
have much higher levels of HDL, the good cholesterol. In another study, women who ate the most low-glycemic foods had high enough HDL levels to lower their risk of heart disease by 29 percent. Another bonus: These demonstrate that such diets also lower total cholesterol and blood fats called triglycerides, another risk factor for heart disease. The Plan: Highly refined foods have a high glycemic index, while fiber-rich foods such as fruits, vegetables, beans, and whole grains tend to have lower values. So ditch the refined foods, and load your plate with natural grains and produce. The Food: Start with the basics: coarse whole grain wheat, sprouted wheat, or whole grain rye bread; high-bran cereals such as All-Bran or Fiber One; whole grains such as bulgur and barley (not usually available as a whole grain but still chockfull of fiber); and fruits and vegetables. Avoid products made with refined grains, such as white bread or bagels, sugary desserts (even low-fat selections), rice cakes, and puffed or flaked cereals—all of which are rapidly converted to glucose. A few fruits and vegetables—pineapple, raisins and other dried fruits, watermelon, carrots, baked potatoes, and winter squash—are high-glycemic foods. We don’t recommend cutting them completely out of your diet, however. With this eating plan, no fruit or vegetable is off-limits unless you eat too much of it.
Natural Cholesterol Busters That Work
Special POWER REPORT
e live in the age of statins, cholesterol-lowering drugs such as lovastatin (Mevacor) and simvastatin (Zocor) that are proven to reduce cholesterol by 25 to 40 percent. But before you ask for a prescription, talk to your doctor about whether the following products could do just as well for you: ■ MARGARINE. Lowering your cholesterol may now be as easy as eating your morning toast, when you use margarine spreads that can drop your bad blood fats. One, Benecol, lowered total cholesterol by 10 percent and bad LDL cholesterol by 14 percent in clinical studies. Participants ate just 1 1⁄2 teaspoons three times a day. Another cholesterol-busting spread, Take Control, was found to help lower LDL levels by an average of 7 to 10 percent. ■ PHYTOSTEROL SUPPLEMENTS. Phytosterols, the magic ingredient in Benecol and Take Control, are now available in supplements. According to David Kritchevsky, Ph.D., an expert on phytosterols at the Wistar Institute in Philadelphia, there’s every reason to believe that these products should be just as effective as the spreads. Phytosterol studies show that 1.5 to 3.3 g a day is the most effective dosage. Divide the total dose among all your meals. It’s generally recommended that you take supplements 30 minutes before a meal to allow time for tablets to dissolve. Because phytosterols may lower levels of fat-soluble nutrients such as beta-carotene, eat lots of fruit and veggies to compensate. Two phytosterol
products are Natrol Beta Sitosterol and Kholesterol Blocker. ■ LIPOGUARD. In a month-long study of LipoGuard, 40 men and women with cholesterol or triglycerides higher than 200 saw their cholesterol levels drop an average of 11 percent, their LDL levels drop 10 percent, and their triglycerides drop a sharp 34 percent. If you have a bleeding disorder such as hemophilia or are taking other medications such as aspirin or even lots of vitamin E (800 IU or greater daily), consult your doctor before using this product. ■ NIACIN. Also known as nicotinic acid or vitamin B3, niacin has been shown to reduce LDL cholesterol by 10 to 20 percent, reduce triglycerides by 20 to 50 percent, and raise beneficial HDL cholesterol by 15 to 35 percent. Take niacin only under a doctor’s supervision. The recommended dose of 2 to 3 g can have serious, though rare, side effects. ■ SOLUBLE FIBER. About 15 g of soluble fiber a day lowers LDL cholesterol 5 to 10 percent by binding cholesterolcontaining bile acids in the intestine and excreting them. Can’t stomach that much fiber? Take soluble fiber supplements with meals—along with plenty of liquid. Three rounded tablespoons of Metamucil provides 7 g of soluble fiber a day. Three 10-oz drinks of Fiber Plan (by Shaklee) taken daily provide 15 g of soluble fiber. In a study, those 15 grams a day lowered LDL levels by 10.5 percent in 6 months.
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B U L L E T- P R O O F YO U R P R O S TAT E
Guard against Every Guy’s Secret Fear
CLOBBER YOUR RISK OF PROSTATE CANCER WITH THESE THREE LIFESAVING STRATEGIES
f you’re like most guys, you think of prostate cancer as that proverbial snake in the grass. You know it’s lying in wait for you. And if you live long enough, it’ll get you. So you shrug and say, “Well, whaddya gonna do?” There’s plenty you can do. Prostate cancer isn’t an inevitable consequence of aging. And a fatalistic attitude could just turn out to be fatal. Here’s what you need to know—and do—to keep prostate cancer out of your future.
KNOW YOUR ENEMY
One in six men will hear the words “you have prostate cancer” in his lifetime. It’s the most common cancer diagnosed in men and the second most common cause of cancer death in men (after lung cancer). The prostate gland is the walnut-size male sex gland that surrounds the urethra (the tube that carries urine to the bladder) and produces the liquid portion of semen. What makes it so vulnerable to cancer is that it’s a very active organ. Your prostate cells divide frequently, and every time a cell divides, there’s a chance something will go wrong—that a mutation will occur, starting a process that turns normal cells cancerous. Experts believe that cells must be exposed to at least five mutations—a process that deregulates normal cell growth—to trigger full-blown cancer. Unfortunately, the older you get, the greater the odds are that you’ve taken your five “hits.” The average age at diagnosis is 70, and 56
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the disease is very unusual in anyone under 50. You’re at increased risk if you have a father or brother who’s had the disease— perhaps because you’ve inherited one or two mutations already. You’re also at an increased risk if you are an African-American. Though you can’t stop aging, and you can’t change your race or your relatives, research suggests that you can take steps to interrupt the deadly sequence of events that leads to prostate cancer. And you have time on your side: Prostate cancer doesn’t suddenly appear when you’re 50—it’s the result of a multistep, decades-long process. What if you’re too late to stop prostate cancer from developing? Chances are, you’re not too late to stop it from killing you. “Preventive measures have been found to improve survival and decrease your chance of dying from prostate cancer,” says Mitchell Gaynor, M.D., director of medical oncology at Strang Cancer Prevention Center in New York City and a coauthor of Dr. Gaynor’s Cancer Prevention Program. You have three basic lines of defense: nutrition, exercise, and testing.
1. EAT THE RIGHT STUFF
“Nutrition is the most overlooked aspect of preventing prostate cancer,” says Dr. Gaynor. And it may also be the most versatile. Any man who’s willing to improve his eating habits has a whole array of anticancer weapons at his disposal. Here’s what to do. Get some good fat. You probably already know that a diet low in saturated fat and
rich in vegetables and fruits has been linked to lower cancer risk in many studies. But did you know that eating the right kinds of fats may be just as important as avoiding the wrong kinds? “People whose diets are rich in omega-3 fatty acids have a lower risk of prostate cancer,” says Dr. Gaynor. Omega-3s belong in a category called polyunsaturated fats, which seem to protect the prostate. You can find omega-3s in cold-water fish such as salmon, mackerel, halibut, and tuna. Load up on lycopene. Soy and green tea may not be found in the typical American kitchen, but the cancer-fighter lycopene comes in one of the most familiar vegetables of all: tomatoes. “Lycopene is the pigment that gives tomatoes their color,” says Dr. Gaynor, “and we think it’s the main factor in studies that show reduced cancer risk.” One such study found that men who ate 10 or more servings of tomato products a week had a 45 percent lower chance of developing prostate cancer. Take your vitamins. The impact of vitamin E on prostate cancer risk was illustrated by a study published in 1998. Researchers from the National Cancer Institute studied 29,000 men in Finland and found that those who took vitamin E (about 50 international units [IU] per day) reduced their prostate cancer risk by one-third. The mineral selenium gained attention as a prostate-cancer fighter when researchers found that the rate of prostate cancer was reduced by more than half in men who took 200 micrograms (mcg) per day. Both nutrients can be difficult to get in a healthy diet, but supplements are easy to find. (Note: It’s best not to exceed 200 mcg per day of selenium.)
help prevent cancer. At least part of the reason may be because it prevents obesity, which is a risk factor for prostate cancer (possibly because it’s associated with hormone changes thought to play a role in cancer development). A number of studies—though not all—have found that more active men have a lower rate of prostate cancer than sedentary ones. One reason, suggests Dr. Gaynor, is that “aerobic exercise has been linked to changes in the immune system that we know suppress cancer.” How much should you exercise? “We know that men who exercise regularly, at least three or four times a week, do have lower rates of prostate cancer,” says Dr. Gaynor. Try to accumulate 30 minutes of moderate-intensity activity a day at least 5 days a week.
3. CONSIDER GETTING TESTED
There are two tests for prostate cancer. One is the well-known digital rectal exam (DRE), in which the doctor inserts his finger into the rectum to feel the prostate for abnormalities. Sounds terrible, but other than being a little embarrassing and uncomfortable, it isn’t. The other is the prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test, a blood test that detects abnormal levels of an enzyme produced by the prostate gland. The PSA test detects most cancer cases about 5 to 10 years before DRE. However, a 2002 study at the University of Texas found that the DRE can sometimes detect prostate cancer earlier than PSA, because PSA readings can "miss" physical detectable cancers; so the current wisdom is that men must have both. The rationale behind screening for prostate cancer is the same as it is for other
2. GET YOUR EXERCISE
Experts aren’t sure why exercising seems to
cancers: to catch it early so it can be treated before it does too much damage. While that makes intuitive sense, with prostate cancer, it may not work that way. Ongoing studies have not yet been completed to determine if detecting prostate cancer early actually translates to saved lives. Because of the average age at diagnosis and the slow-growing nature of prostate cancer, it’s often called the cancer you “die with, not of.” “Older men with
low-grade prostate cancer, particularly, may die of natural causes before the cancer gets them,” explains William Catalona, M.D., a prostate-cancer specialist at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. Most major medical organizations currently don’t recommend routine screening largely because of the worry that it could lead to treatment of prostate cancers that, left alone, wouldn’t be dangerous.
Special POWER REPORT
4 SYMPTOMS YOU SHOULDN’T IGNORE
rostate cancer’s symptoms are mostly caused by the gland’s proximity to urinary plumbing. See your doctor if you experience one or more of the following problems: ■ Difficult or frequent urination ■ Getting up frequently at night to urinate ■ Urgent urination during the day ■ Dribbling for several minutes after you finish urinating Note that these warning signals can also be caused by a less serious condition called benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). Like prostate cancer, BPH can also raise blood levels of PSA and becomes more common with age. But unlike cancer, BPH is not life threatening. “We don’t really know why BPH occurs. It’s probably some imbalance of growth factors, but we’re not sure,” says William Catalona, M.D., a prostate-cancer specialist at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. Whatever its cause, BPH doesn’t seem to be a precursor of, or risk factor for, prostate cancer. “It’s an independent condition,” he explains. But since the symptoms are so similar, your doctor may want to rule out cancer before he diagnoses BPH.
DEFL ATE YOUR
10 POWER REPORTS
D E F L AT E YO U R B LO O D P R E S S U R E
How Low Can You Go?
UNDERSTAND AND CONTROL YOUR NUMBERS
et’s say you’ve just been told your blood pressure is “a little high.” Maybe the word your doctor used to describe your condition was “hypertension.” It sounds scary. It worries you. You’ve got a couple of questions, not the least of which is: What the hell does that actually mean? “Having hypertension doesn’t mean you’re hypertense,” says Charles Tifft,
M.D., Ph.D., associate professor of medicine at the Boston University School of Medicine. The “tension” actually refers to the state of your arteries, which naturally constrict and relax to accommodate the flow of blood from your heart. Having high blood pressure means your arteries can’t fully relax, so your heart is pumping the same amount of blood through a smaller space. The resulting wear on your arteries
FIGURING OUT THE NUMBERS
our blood-pressure reading consist of two numbers: The top one is the systolic pressure; it measures how forcefully your heart pumps blood. When it’s too high, your heart is working harder than it should. The bottom number is the diastolic pressure; it gauges the force of blood flowing through your fully relaxed arteries between heartbeats. Doctors regard both numbers in the reading with equal importance. A reading below 120 over 80 (depending on how old and how fit you are) is good. If you’re consistently coming in at or above 140 over 90, that qualifies you as being hypertensive.
puts you at greater risk for heart disease and stroke. Monitor your mood. The medical community calls hypertension “the silent killer” because it’s frequently considered a symptomless disease. But findings from a 4-year study at the University of Minnesota suggest that mildly elevated blood pressure may send some signals. Researchers with the Treatment of Mild Hypertension Study put 900 people on one of five antihypertensive drugs or a placebo and also prescribed lifestyle changes. Those on drug 60
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therapy showed steeper drops in pressure, but even more interesting, those given the placebo reported more of some symptoms and side effects, including headaches, nausea, muscle pain, trouble falling asleep, and even mood changes. “So, although we used to say that hypertension was asymptomatic in most people,” states Dr. Tifft, “there may be subtle quality-of-life side effects that the mild hypertensive has that physicians in the past have pooh-poohed.” In other words, if you notice a change in your
mood, for better or worse, or have other nondescript symptoms, it may be a clue as to how well you’re controlling your blood pressure. Tape-record yourself sleeping. If you’ve ever been accused of snoring, you may have more than just an annoying sleep habit. You may have a dangerous one. Many people, especially men, have a disorder called sleep apnea. It happens when the muscles in the nose and throat relax to the point where your air supply is cut off. Your night becomes a long series of brief awakenings during which you gasp for breath. When you do, your blood pressure spikes, perhaps because of the effect of frequent sleep interruptions on the nervous system. Studies suggest that this condition can drive your blood pressure up 5 to 10 points, says James Skatrud, M.D., professor and section head of pulmonary and critical care at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine. To tell if you have it, listen to a tape of yourself snoring or have your partner monitor your sleep. If the sound is a steady snore-snore-snore, you’re probably fine. But if it’s more like a series of gasps (as you struggle for breath) followed by periods of silence (as you fall back to sleep), you need to address the problem. Sleeping on your back may be one reason for the apnea—this position allows the relaxed tissues of the nose and throat to close your upper airway. Alcohol (which over-relaxes the muscles) and too much extra weight are two other potential reasons. Try meditation. Recent studies have shown that practicing transcendental meditation for 15 minutes at a time can lower blood pressure three or four points in African-American teens whose readings were high-normal (slightly above normal).
Transcendental meditation (TM) is a technique for calming the body and mind. Unlike some other forms of meditation, it does not require concentration on something in particular; instead, practitioners sit quietly, eyes closed, for about 15 minutes, allowing the mind and body to naturally settle. Beware of hidden salt. Salt contains sodium, a mineral that naturally draws fluid out of your cells and into the bloodstream. If you’re consistently eating too much salt, you’re chronically flooding your bloodstream with fluids. In some men, this can push up the pressure. Start reading the labels of your favorite foods. Each teaspoon of salt you can eliminate daily can yield a five-point drop in your systolic reading. And just so you know, a level teaspoon contains 2,400 milligrams of sodium—the maximum intake suggested by the National Academy of Sciences. Buy a heart-rate monitor. Drop some weight, and you’ll drop the points. It’s that simple. And one of the best ways to do it is through aerobic exercise: running, cycling, stairclimbing, and the like. You can expect to see your pressure drop as much as five points for every 10 pounds you lose, doctors estimate. And aerobics help to do more than just cut your weight. They also buff your heart muscle. Like any muscle, the heart grows bigger and stronger through exercise. This allows it to pump more blood with each beat, which means it needs to beat less often and with less effort. And this means less stress on your circulatory system. To get the most benefit from an aerobic workout, get yourself a heart-rate monitor. The more time you spend with your heart rate between 60 and 75 percent of your
P U T YO U R H E A RT I N TO A L L YO U D O
maximum (roughly 220 minus your age), the more fat you’ll burn and the more powerful your heart will grow. Spend 30 minutes in your target zone three times a week and you’ll escape the pressure in no time. Almost instantly, in fact: After a bout of intense exercise, your pressure may drop and stay lower for a few hours. (Check with your doctor before beginning any exercise program if you have high blood pressure.) Skip the pub crawls. Alcohol may make you feel relaxed, but it gets your arteries pretty uppity. Exactly how this happens isn’t known, but drinking may stimulate the kidneys to keep more salt and water in the blood, or it may constrict your blood vessels. “If you drink more than two drinks a day, you raise your blood pressure,” says Norman Kaplan, M.D., professor of internal medicine in the hypertension division at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School in Dallas. “And the more you drink, the worse it gets.” Donate your canned goods. And try sticking to fresh foods, recommends Dr. Kaplan. Canned and processed foods are often lacking in important minerals such as potassium (prevalent in fruits and vegetables such as bananas, dried apricots, potatoes, and beans), magnesium (available in bran),
and calcium (yogurt and other dairy products), all of which play a role in regulating blood pressure. And while there’s no evidence that taking mineral supplements will lower high blood pressure, a deficiency in any of these can cause a spike in some men. Beware of saboteurs. Certain things can sabotage the accuracy of your blood pressure readings: ■ The drugstore machine you stick your arm into may be off as much as 60 points, according to one study. ■ Exercise can make your pressure dip temporarily, and that can give you a false picture of your normal level. To get a more accurate pressure reading, take it before, not after, your morning run. ■ A single cup of coffee can lift your blood pressure as much as five points, says Thomas Pickering, M.D., a cardiologist at the New York Weill Cornell Medical Center. Make sure you lay off the stuff for at least 2 hours before having your pressure checked. ■ Eating too much natural licorice can raise your numbers by 10 to 20 points. ■ “If you’re talking while you’re taking your readings, your blood pressure could go up a good 5 or 10 points,” says Dr. Pickering.
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