To Your Health

Take two and call you in the morning. Got it.
While it is true that there is a new form of health care in the United States and it promises to make Americans healthier and allow them to live longer and, hopefully, more fulfilling lives, the fact of the matter is that the new system alone won’t suffice. No, people are going to have to put some effort into it. You’re not going to lose those ten pounds sitting on a couch eating chips and salsa. You are not going to get into tip top shape curling shot glasses. Not even when they’re full. You are not going to increase your stamina walking to and from the fridge. I hate to be the bearer of bad news but you will be expected to put a little effort into things if you have any hope at all of getting healthy.

Fortunately for you I have done some research and heave some simple ways for you to begin a healthy regimen without stressing your budget or your body. That’s just the kind of guy I am.

Let’s start with a simple weight loss technique. You can burn lots of calories by peeing on yourself. No, wait, I mean by getting really scared.

Well, it is in the spirit of the week. But according to new research, watching a horror flick may do more than give you a case of the creepy-crawlies: it could also make you burn extra calories.

Researchers from the University of Westminster performed a (small! Only 10 people) study commissioned by Lovefilm that discovered watching a horror movie can burn up to 200 calories. The researchers measured the heart rate, oxygen intake and carbon dioxide output of participants who were watching scary movies, and found that they were burning a third more calories than usual.

Says Dr. Richard Mackenzie, one of the study’s authors: “As the pulse quickens and blood pumps around the body faster, the body experiences a surge in adrenaline. It is this release of fast acting adrenaline, produced during short bursts of intense stress (or in this case, brought on by fear), which is known to lower the appetite, increase the Basal Metabolic Rate and ultimately burn a higher level of calories.”

And what’s even crazier is that the average number of calories burned changed from movie to movie. Take a look:

1. The Shining: 184 calories
2. Jaws: 161 calories
3. The Exorcist: 158 calories
4. Alien: 152 calories
5. Saw: 133 calories
6. A Nightmare on Elm Street: 118 calories
7. Paranormal Activity: 111 calories
8. The Blair Witch Project: 105 calories
9. The Texas Chain Saw Massacre: 107 calories
10. [Rec]: 101 calories

Being the huge wimp that I am, I will not be watching any of these, calorie-burning or not (I might make an exception of Jaws, because that’s the only one that doesn’t send me into a tailspin of terror). But, hey–if you were going to watch a scary movie anyway, it’s good to know your heart rate is watching right along with you, right?

If you were scared by the Blair Witch Project you might just want to stay indoors. I’m thinking that things like butterflies may startle you.

Speaking of getting startled, scientists have announced that they have come up with a really fun invention; electric underwear that causes shocks.

You want a pair, don’t you?

Imagine getting a zap from your underpants. Ouch, right? Well, they could be a healthy move for some people. Details…

The panties that give you electric shocks? For immobilize patients in hospitals, this could be a great invention, say experts. Scientists recently developed a product called Smart e-Pants designed to give gentle electric zaps to people when they’re in the same position for too long. The low-voltage shock is believed to encourage a patient to shift positions to prevent bedsores, which can turn into life-threatening issues for patients with chronic illness.

(Which is healthier: Sleeping with or without panties …)

In a test of the undies conducted by University of Calgary doctors, patients who wore the smart underwear developed zero bedsores during the month-long trial.

OK, so yes, nothing to snicker about here–a wonderful invention that sounds like it has great applications for bedridden people.

Yeah, yeah, yeah. You and I both know that three weeks after these become commercially available someone will be touting them to increase virility or bedroom stamina or something. And little things like a complete lack of facts and research won’t stop them from being huge sellers.

Well, if you’re going to spend an evening with horror movies and electric undies you may as well have a beer. But not just any beer. Nope, you need to have a beer made with yeast grown on a human face.

I’m at an emotional crossroads with this right now. I’m not sure whether to laugh (“beard beer” sounds funny!), shudder (OMG, “beard beer” sounds… OMG!), or just be totally fascinated by the science going on here.

Brewmaster John Maier–of Rogue Ales in Newport, Oregon–has a beard that he hasn’t shaved for 34 of his 57 years. When Rogue Ales–which produces its own barley, hops, and honey–was on the hunt to find a way of creating its own homegrown yeast, the other brewmasters plucked nine hairs from Maier’s beard for fun, and sent it off to the lab with other possible yeast sources.

Long story short: there was yeast growing on the beard–better yeast than any of the other possible sources. So the brewery decided to see what would happen if it was an ingredient in beer.

The results?

The brew had a mild, fruity aroma and lacked any harsh, medicinal flavors that sometimes result from using wild yeast, [Neva Parker, manager of White labs and fermentation specialist] adds. In fact, the beer tasted so good, the scientist double-checked that they hadn’t mistakenly used the [brewery’s usual strain of yeast] instead of Maier’s beard yeast.

Maier’s beard probably picked up the yeast during his 20 years of brewing (breweries and wineries grow dense yeast cultures and “become coated from floor to ceiling with the fungus”).

See what I mean? Fascinating. But also very… eeks! What do you think of this beard beer? Would you ever try it?

Drink it? Hell I want to pick up a couple of cases. Why? Because it fits perfectly with the new way scientists have found to cure the flu.

I should note that, as of this writing, not a single viral infection has ever been cured.

But …… if you are going to cure a disease, what better way than to make the patient a meth addict?

And they said meth never did a body good.

A study conducted by researchers in Taiwan found that methamphetamine may possess flu-fighting properties, Medical Daily reported.

The study, published Tuesday in PLoS One, exposed human lung cells to varying quantities meth, then infected them with H1N1 viruses, a common subtype of human influenza.

After only 24 hours after infection, the control group of cells, which had not been treated with meth, contained the same concentrations of the virus as did the meth-treated cells.

However, 30 hours after infection, the meth-treated cells possessed significantly lower concentrations of the virus than the control group did. After 48 hours, the difference was even more pronounced.

Researchers also determined that meth’s apparent anti-viral effect most likely occurs during the viral replication that takes place after infection, according to the study,

Don’t go becoming a real-life Walter White just yet, however. Meth’s negative effects — including brain damage, psychosis, heart disease and severe weight loss – far outweigh whatever anti-flu properties it may have.

However, scientists hope to now search for safer, structurally similar compounds that could be used to fight the flu.

Thanks to Wikipedia, you can figure out the basics of meth creation in just a few minutes. I mean how hard can it be? High school drop outs have set up meth labs in Walmart.

Just in case you wondered why those greeters were so creepy and perky all at the same time.

So there you have it. Park your fat posterior in front of a horror movie, wrap it in electric undies, pop open a cold beer made from human hair and drop some meth and you’ll be healthy as you can possibly be.

Who said this blog wasn’t helpful?

HEALTH “We are Water” from Eric Wareheim

Listen to Bill McCormick on WBIG (FOX! Sports) every Friday around 9:10 AM.

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