Monday, February 19, 2018


Magnesium — One of the Most Important Nutrients for Heart Health

  • February 19, 2018 • 
Story at-a-glance

  • Magnesium is the fourth most abundant mineral in your body and is involved in more than 600 different biochemical reactions. Research suggests even subclinical deficiency can jeopardize your heart health
  • A lack of magnesium will impede your cellular metabolic function and deteriorate mitochondrial function, and magnesium deficiency has been identified as the greatest predictor of heart disease
  • Magnesium is also important for chromosome folding, which allows cells to divide, multiply and regenerate to make up for lost or damaged cells
  • Check your RBC magnesium level and track signs and symptoms of magnesium insufficiency to determine how much magnesium you need. Low potassium and calcium are also common laboratory signs indicating magnesium deficiency
  • To optimize your magnesium level, eat magnesium-rich foods and/or take a magnesium supplement. Taking Epsom salt baths is another effective way to boost your magnesium level
By Dr. Mercola

Magnesium deficiency is extremely common, and recent research shows even subclinical deficiency can jeopardize your heart health. Magnesium is also important for brain health, detoxification, cellular health and function, and the optimization of your mitochondria. In short, magnesium has enormous potential to influence your health and general well-being, especially the prevention of heart disease and cancer, but also for general energy and athletic performance.

Why You Need Magnesium

Magnesium is the fourth most abundant mineral in your body and is involved in more than 600 different biochemical reactions. For example, magnesium plays an important role in:
Creation of adenosine triphosphate (ATP), the energy currency of your body1,2
Metabolism of calcium, potassium, zinc, phosphorous, iron, sodium, hydrochloric acid, acetylcholine and nitric oxide, as well as 300 enzymes and the activation of thiamine.3
Magnesium is also required for DNA, RNA and protein synthesis and integrity,4 and plays a role in the creation of chromosomes5
Mitochondrial function and health. Magnesium is required both for increasing the number of mitochondria in your cells and for increasing mitochondrial efficiency
Regulation of blood sugar and insulin sensitivity, which is important for the prevention of Type 2 diabetes6,7,8,9 (In one study,10 prediabetics with the highest magnesium intake reduced their risk for blood sugar and metabolic problems by 71 percent)
Relaxation of blood vessels and normalizing blood pressure
Detoxification, including the synthesis of glutathione, considered by many to be your body's most powerful antioxidant
Muscle and nerve function, including the action of your heart muscle
Antioxidant defense via a number of different mechanisms, including anti-inflammatory activity and support of endothelial and mitochondrial function11
Maintenance of ionic gradients — keeping intracellular sodium and calcium low and potassium high — and maintaining cellular and tissue integrity12
Catalyzing mood-regulating neurotransmitters like serotonin, which helps prevent anxiety and depression. It also provides mental and physical relaxation and is considered an important stress antidote13
Lowering the damage from electromagnetic fields (EMF) by blocking voltage gated calcium channels
Supporting healthy brain function. Magnesium acts as a buffer between neuron synapses, particularly those involved with cognitive functions (learning and memory).
Magnesium "sits" on the receptor without activating it, protecting the receptor from overactivation by other neurochemicals, especially glutamate, an excitotoxin that can harm your brain if it accumulates.
Magnesium also helps prevent migraine headaches14 by relaxing blood vessels in your brain and acting as a calcium channel blocker15

Even Subclinical Magnesium Deficiency Can Wreak Havoc on Your Heart Health

Since it's required for the healthy function of most cells in your body, a lack of magnesium can lead to significant health problems. Magnesium is particularly important for your heart health, helping you maintain normal blood pressure and protect against stroke. According to a 2013 scientific review,16 which included studies dating as far back as 1937, low magnesium may in fact be the greatest predictor of heart disease — not cholesterol or saturated fat intake. At the time, lead author Andrea Rosanoff, Ph.D., told journalists:17
"These numerous studies have found low magnesium to be associated with all known cardiovascular risk factors, such as cholesterol and high blood pressure, arterial plaque buildup (atherogenesis), hardening of the arteries and the calcification of soft tissues. This means we have been chasing our tails all of these years going after cholesterol and the high saturated-fat diet, when the true culprit was and still is low magnesium."
As explained by British cardiologist Dr. Sanjay Gupta,18 magnesium supports heart health via a number of different mechanisms. For starters, it combats inflammation, thereby helping prevent hardening of your arteries and high blood pressure. It also improves blood flow by relaxing your arteries, and helps prevent your blood from thickening, allowing it to flow more smoothly. All of these basic effects are important for optimal heart function.
A recent paper in the Open Heart journal warns that even subclinical deficiency can lead to cardiovascular problems. According to the authors:19
"… 'Various studies have shown that at least 300 mg of magnesium must be supplemented to establish a significantly increased serum magnesium concentrations …' In other words, most people need an additional 300 mg of magnesium per day in order to lower their risk of developing numerous chronic diseases.
So while the recommended … recommended dietary allowance [RDA] for magnesium (between 300 and 420 mg /day for most people) may prevent frank magnesium deficiency, it is unlikely to provide optimal health and longevity, which should be the ultimate goal."

Higher Magnesium Level = Lower Disease and Mortality Risk

A 2016 meta-analysis20 of 40 studies involving more than 1 million participants in nine countries also found that, compared to those with the lowest intakes, those with the highest magnesium intakes had:
  • A 10 percent lower risk of coronary heart disease
  • 12 percent lower risk of stroke
  • 26 percent lower risk of Type 2 diabetes
Increasing magnesium intake by 100 mg per day lowered participants' risk for:
  • Heart failure by 22 percent
  • Stroke by 7 percent
  • Diabetes by 19 percent
  • All-cause mortality by 10 percent
Magnesium Is Necessary for Mitochondrial Health</a>, or enable JavaScript if it is disabled in your browser.</div></div>
Mitochondria, tiny bacteria-derived organelles residing inside your cells, are the main energy producers in your body, as they're responsible for creating adenosine triphospate (ATP). Mounting evidence suggests that most health problems can be traced back to mitochondrial dysfunction, so making sure you get the right nutrients and precursors your mitochondria need for optimal performance is extremely important for health, disease prevention and physical performance.
As explained by Rhonda Patrick, Ph.D., in the video above, magnesium plays an important role. Without it, other strategies aimed at improving mitochondrial health simply won't work properly.
As just one example, athletic performance is in part dependent on your oxidative capacity (the ability of your muscle cells to consume oxygen), and your oxidative capacity relies on your mitochondria's ability to produce ATP by consuming oxygen inside the cell. You can increase your oxidative capacity in two ways, and both require magnesium:
  • Increasing the total number of mitochondria in your cells by engaging in exercise. However, in order for new mitochondria to be created, you must have sufficient amounts of magnesium. 
  • Increasing the efficiency of your mitochondria to repair damage and produce ATP. This process also requires magnesium as a co-factor.
Magnesium Is Also Essential for Cell Division

Recent research21 also shows that magnesium is critical for chromosome folding, which allows cells to divide, multiply and regenerate to make up for lost or damaged cells. According to the authors, "The findings provide a new mechanism for chromosome organization."
Using a newly developed type of ion detector called magnesium ratiometric indicator for optical imaging (MARIO), Japanese researchers were able to demonstrate how changes in the concentration of free magnesium ions inside cells affects the folding of chromosomes. In summary, the researchers found that:
  • Chromosomes, which have a negative charge, are neutralized by free magnesium, which is what allows the chromosomes to condense during cell division.
  • Free magnesium ions dramatically increase during cell division, peaking "during the transition from metaphase to anaphase, which marks the period in cell division that the cell membrane begins showing signs of breaking into two cells."
  • There's a "clear relationship" between the ATP level in the cell and the number of free magnesium ions. The less ATP present, the greater the free magnesium level and the more chromosome condensation occurs, allowing for more efficient cell division. The authors' hypothesis is that "ATP-bound magnesium is released by the hydrolysis of ATP." (Hydrolysis refers to the chemical reaction during which energy stored in ATP is released).
Most People Are Magnesium Deficient

Magnesium resides at the center of the chlorophyll molecule, so if you rarely eat fresh leafy greens, you're probably not getting much magnesium from your diet. Furthermore, while eating organic whole foods will help optimize your magnesium intake, it's still not a surefire way to ward off magnesium deficiency, as most soils have become severely depleted of nutrients, including magnesium.
Magnesium absorption is also dependent on having sufficient amounts of selenium, parathyroid hormone and vitamins B6 and D, and is hindered by excess ethanol, salt, coffee and phosphoric acid in soda. Sweating, stress, lack of sleep, excessive menstruation, certain drugs (especially diuretics and proton-pump inhibitors) also deplete your body of magnesium.22 For these reasons, many experts recommend taking supplemental magnesium. Taking a magnesium supplement is particularly advisable if you:23
Experience symptoms of insufficiency or deficiency24
Have hypertension
Engage in strenuous exercise on a regular basis. Research shows just six to 12 weeks of strenuous physical activity can result in magnesium deficiency,25 likely due to increased magnesium demand in your skeletal muscle
Are taking diuretics or medication for hypertension, especially thiazides, which have been shown to induce undetectable magnesium deficiency26 (while patients may have normal or even high serum magnesium, their bodies are actually depleted of magnesium)
Have had or are planning heart transplant or open heart surgery
Are at risk for or have had a heart attack, or if you experience ventricular arrhythmia
Are insulin resistant or diabetic (as this increases magnesium depletion)
Have congestive heart failure

How to Boost Your Magnesium Level

The RDA for magnesium is around 310 to 420 mg per day depending on your age and sex,27 but many experts believe you may need 600 to 900 mg per day, which is more in line with the magnesium uptake during the Paleolithic period.28 Personally, I believe many may benefit from amounts as high as 1 to 2 grams (1,000 to 2,000 mg) of elemental magnesium per day, as most of us have EMF exposures that simply cannot be mitigated, and the extra magnesium should help lower the damage from that exposure.
Elemental refers to how much pure magnesium is in each mg or what percent is actual magnesium which changes the actual dose as they are all different.  You need far more of some than others as they have lower percentage of magnesium. Generally most supplements provide about 10-15% of the total dose as elemental magnesium after you factor in absorption.
One of the best forms is magnesium threonate, as it appears to be the most efficient at penetrating cell membranes, including your mitochondria and blood-brain barrier. Another effective way to boost your magnesium level is to take Epsom salt (magnesium sulfate) baths, as the magnesium will effectively absorb through your skin. I am also fond of magnesium maalate as malic acid is a Krebs cycle intermediate useful for ATP production.
I prepare a supersaturated solution of Epsom salts by dissolving 7 tablespoons of the salt into 6 ounces of water and heating it until all the salt has dissolved. I pour it into a dropper bottle and then apply it to my skin and rub fresh aloe leaves over it to dissolve it. This is an easy and inexpensive way to increase your magnesium and will allow you to get higher dosages into your body without having to deal with its laxative effects.
If you agree with the higher doses of magnesium, it is best to take it in evenly divided doses throughout the day to prevent loose stools. It can be taken with or without food. If you're also taking calcium, take them together. If you exercise regularly, consider taking your calcium and magnesium in a ratio of one part calcium to two parts magnesium with your pre-workout meal.29
While the ideal ratio of magnesium to calcium is thought to be 1-to-1, most people get far more calcium than magnesium from their diet; hence, your need for supplemental magnesium may be two to three times greater than calcium.

Signs and Symptoms of Magnesium Deficiency

To measure your magnesium level and gauge how much magnesium you might need, get an RBC magnesium test (which measures the amount of magnesium in your red blood cells) and track your signs and symptoms of magnesium deficiency (see below). Also keep an eye on your potassium and calcium levels, as low potassium and calcium are common laboratory signs of magnesium deficiency.30
Common signs and symptoms of magnesium insufficiency include the following.31,32 For a more exhaustive list of signs and symptoms, see Dr. Carolyn Dean's blog post, "Gauging Magnesium Deficiency Symptoms."33 If you regularly experience any of these, chances are you need more magnesium.
Seizures; muscle spasms, especially "charley horses" or spasms in your calf muscle that happen when you stretch your leg and/or eye twitches
The Trousseau sign.34 To check for this sign, a blood pressure cuff is inflated around your arm. The pressure should be greater than your systolic blood pressure and maintained for three minutes.
By occluding the brachial artery in your arm, spasms in your hand and forearm muscles are induced.
If you are magnesium deficient, the lack of blood flow will cause your wrist and metacarpophalangeal joint to flex and your fingers to adduct. For a picture of this hand/wrist position, see Wikipedia35
Numbness or tingling in your extremities
Low potassium and calcium levels
Insulin resistance
Increased number of headaches and/or migraines
High blood pressure, heart arrhythmias and/or coronary spasms

Low energy, fatigue and/or loss of appetite
Protect Your Health by Optimizing Your Magnesium 

While you may still need magnesium supplementation, it would certainly be wise to try to get as much magnesium from your diet as possible. Organic unprocessed foods would be your best bet, but if they're grown in magnesium-depleted soil, even organics could be low in this vital mineral. Dark-green leafy vegetables lead the pack when it comes to magnesium content, and juicing your greens is an excellent way to boost your intake.
Other foods that are particularly rich in magnesium include the following.36 Including more magnesium-rich foods in your diet along with magnesium supplementation, if needed, can go a long way toward optimizing your health and preventing chronic disease, and is an extremely cost-effective way to lower your risk of heart disease.
Raw cacao nibs and/or unsweetened cocoa powder
One ounce (28.35 grams) or raw cacao nibs contain about 65 mg of magnesium.
One cup of avocado on average (values differ depending on whether they come from California or Florida) contains about 44 mg of magnesium. Avocados are also a good source of potassium, which helps offset the hypertensive effects of sodium.
Seeds and nuts
Pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds and sunflower seeds score among the highest, with one-quarter cup providing an estimated 191 mg, 129 mg and 41 mg of magnesium respectively. Cashews, almonds and Brazil nuts are also good sources; one-fourth cup of cashews contains 89 mg of magnesium.
Herbs and spices
Herbs and spices pack lots of nutrients in small packages and this includes magnesium. Some of the most magnesium-rich varieties are coriander, chives, cumin seed, parsley, mustard seeds, fennel, basil and cloves.
Organic, raw grass fed yogurt and natto
Yogurt made from raw organic grass fed milk with no added sugars; 1 cup of natto yields 201 mg of magnesium.

Saturday, February 17, 2018


The Motivation Factor

By Dr. Mercola
Research1 has convincingly demonstrated that the more physically active children and teenagers are, the better they do academically. As noted by the authors of a 2012 scientific review:
"Physical activity and sports are generally promoted for their positive effect on children's physical health … There is also a growing body of literature suggesting that physical activity has beneficial effects on several mental health outcomes … In addition ... there is a strong belief that regular participation in physical activity is linked to enhancement of brain function and cognition, thereby positively influencing academic performance."
Several mechanisms that help explain why physical activity benefits cognition have been proposed. For starters, exercise increases blood and oxygen flow to your brain, which in and of itself increases learning speed.2 Exercise also increases levels of norepinephrine and endorphins, which lowers stress and improves mood. Importantly, exercise triggers growth factors that create new nerve cells and enable brain plasticity, thereby facilitating memory and learning. According to the authors of this 2012 review:
"The increasing pressures to improve academic scores often lead to additional instructional time for subjects such as mathematics and language at the cost of time for being physically active … [T]he literature provides inconclusive evidence on the positive longitudinal relationship between physical activity and academic performance. However, there is a strong general belief that this relationship is present, and research in this area is ongoing."

The Motivation Factor

The featured documentary, "The Motivation Factor,"3 investigates these claims, showing how exercise — and particularly physical education (PE) in school — helps motivate kids and young adults to excel in other areas of life, including academically. 
"The knowledge that the physical well-being of the citizen is an important foundation for the vigor and vitality of all the activities of the nation, is as old as the Western civilization itself. But it is a knowledge which today, in America, we are in danger of forgetting."
This quote is attributed to president-elect John F. Kennedy, given during an interview in December 1960. Unfortunately, his warning went largely unheeded, and today, children and young adults are more sedentary than ever. Not only is this having consequences for physical health, but it's also taking a psychological toll. As noted in the film, exercise has the ability to unite people, to bring them together and form interpersonal bonds. This too plays an important role in a person's ability to succeed in life. 
In the 1800s, one-third of the time spent in school was dedicated to physical exercise. The ancient Greeks spent a full half of their education working on physical fitness. Kennedy, too, was a firm believer in the idea that exercise produced academic excellence and built integrity. As noted in the film, the historical view has been that physical wellness leads to a healthy mind, body and spirit. "Our current state of physical illiteracy leaves us guessing how to become smart, productive and mentally stable," the narrator notes.

Physical Education Is Imperative for Life Success

A consequence of striking PE from the curriculum in American schools has led to the worst education and productivity rankings since the '70s. In addition, despite spending more money on health care than any other country on Earth, the U.S. has the highest rate of mental illness, and both obesity and chronic illness has dramatically risen with each passing decade. 
Throughout the film, you see 50-year-old video clips from PE classes at La Sierra High School in Riverside, California. La Sierra High followed Kennedy's lead, developing one of the most rigorous and progressive daily fitness curricula in the U.S. Long rows of young men looking like they belong in a fitness magazine stream by. It's a far cry from the high school students of today. 
Tony Asaro, part of La Sierra High's class of 1967, describes how his high school training has served him throughout his life. To this day, he runs 3 miles and does his stretches every morning. It keeps him feeling good, both physically and mentally, and keeps him motivated to pursue life with vigor and optimism. Ed Carisoza, class of '61, agrees, saying he's been exercising ever since his high school days. The fitness habits he developed back then stuck with him for life.  

The Importance of Discipline and Physical Achievement  

Research by Harvard Medical School shows that as soon as PE is reinstalled in schools, there's a greater than 80 percent drop in discipline problems within a single semester. This in turn means teachers can focus on teaching rather than policing behavior, and by improving participation and focus, the children learn more and score better on tests. 
Indeed, studies have repeatedly demonstrated that performance in math and science correlates to physical fitness. Eight years ago, ABC News4 reported on a special program being implemented at Naperville Central High School, west of Chicago, where students could take part in a dynamic gym class at the beginning of the day and had access to exercise bikes and balls throughout the day in their classrooms. 
The results were astounding. Those who participated nearly doubled their reading scores, and math scores increased twentyfold. Research has also shown that after 30 minutes on the treadmill, students solve problems up to 10 percent more effectively. The film also points out that lack of PE has had a dramatic impact on crime and incarceration rates. Despite having only 4 percent of the global population, U.S. prisons house 25 percent of the global prisoner population. 
According to experts interviewed in the film, this state of affairs has a lot to do with the fact that youngsters lack direction, discipline and motivation to excel, which they attribute to a lack of physical education and fitness. 
"It helps your ego, your pride and sense of self," Trent Saxton, a chiropractor from the La Sierra High class of '67, says. In short, physical fitness — not just looking good but actually feeling good — has a tremendous impact on your self-esteem and your capacity to view yourself as strong and capable of overcoming challenges and working toward a goal. 
A good PE program teaches not just physical endurance but mental endurance. This is the core message of this film: Physical fitness is the missing piece that can unite us as a society, and allow each person to optimize their intelligence, productivity and mental stability.

The Mind-Body Connection

In researching his book "Spark: The Revolutionary New Science of Exercise and the Brain," psychiatrist Dr. John J. Ratey reviewed 1,000 scientific papers on physical fitness and mental performance. "I was amazed at how much we already knew," he says. For example, we know that exercise:
Is the best preventive remedy for psychiatric disorders, heart diseasediabetes and cancer.5 Even your risk for age-related hearing loss is reduced through exercise.6
Helps build a brain that resists shrinkage7 and increases cognitive abilities8 and creativity. Researchers at Stanford University found that taking regular walks can increase creativity up to 60 percent.9,10
Promotes neurogenesis, meaning your brain's ability to adapt and grow new brain cells, regardless of your age. 
Promotes mental health by normalizing insulin resistance and boosting natural "feel good" hormones and neurotransmitters associated with mood control, including endorphins, serotonin, dopamine, glutamate and GABA. 
Boosts memory by improving hippocampal function11,12 and volume13,14 — a finding that may be an important prevention strategy against Alzheimer's disease, the most serious and deadly form of dementia
Increases peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma coactivator (PGC-1α), an important metabolic signal that increases mitochondrial biogenesis. The PGC-1α pathway regulates both mitochondrial activity and mitochondrial replication. This is important, as your brain is the most mitochondrially-dense organ in your body. 

How Modern Schools Are Crippling Children

Over 10,000 published studies now show that sitting is an independent risk factor for chronic disease and premature death. In fact, chronic sitting has a mortality rate similar to that of smoking. Yet U.S. schools now force children to remain seated for most of the day. Making matters worse, changes in school furniture are forcing children into extremely harmful postures.
Early school desks were slanted, and extensive research showed a 20-degree slant was ideal for reading and writing. Such desks have since been replaced with horizontal, flat desks, which forces you to hunch over and twist your body into a series of unnatural positions while reading and writing.
The end result is postural deformities, leading to pain and further inhibitions to movement. And, without PE providing restorative movements to counteract the poor posture of sitting hunched over a flat desk all day, the ill effects are likely to become chronic. The widespread use of cellphones and tablets among young children — which also put you into a forward-hunching posture — further exacerbate these problems. 

Physical Movement Forces New Brain Connections

You probably know that the way to keep your brain young and agile is to train it, but brain training programs can only take you so far. One of the most effective ways to train your brain is actually to perform complex physical movements and coordination exercises. The more complex and challenging the movement, the greater the benefits to your brain, forcing new neural connections to be formed.
Practicing with Indian clubs or maces, for example, where you have to move your body in all directions and really focus on performing complicated coordination patterns are excellent examples of this. Martial arts such as karate, muay Thai (Thai boxing) and taekwondo also tax the brain in a beneficial way.
The film also stresses the importance of restorative movement practices, noting that if a single sport is your sole form of exercise, that sport, no matter what it is, will eventually create physical imbalances. What's needed are movements that simply restore your body's natural movement patterns. If you can move well, then you can perform any sport better. You will also be less prone to aches and pains in general.
Another great brain challenger is simply spending time in nature. Walking outdoors challenges your brain to a greater degree than walking on a treadmill indoors because you have to pay greater attention to your surroundings. You have to pay attention to where you place your feet so you don't stumble over a rock or a tree root, for example. Being surrounded by nature also increases your sense of being present in the moment, which has neurological and psychological benefits. 

Fitness Is a Right and a Responsibility 

As noted in the film, physical fitness used to be both a right and a responsibility as a citizen. We have indeed veered far off course as a nation when it comes to physical education. It goes beyond just learning a sport. PE is about building a strong, fully functioning body, and with it a well-functioning mind and a stable spirit that isn't crushed by every adversity.
PE is the one thing that simultaneously addresses all three aspects of being human — body, mind and spirit. When those three aspects are all strong and fit, people are well-equipped to face the world with self-confidence and achieve their dreams. Today, kids don't know what to eat, they don't know how to move, stand or even sit. And, as noted in the film, it's not their fault. They've simply never been taught any of these things, and school is really the best, most logical place for this education to take place. 

How to Get Your Kids Moving

In 1960, JFK issued a challenge to the nation to take fitness seriously, for its individual benefits and for the benefit it can bring to the country as a whole. As JFK said, "A nation is only as strong as its citizens." We're well overdue in answering this call to action, but it's not too late. Wherever you are today, and wherever your children are, you can set a new course for yourself and your family — a course where fitness is a part of your daily life. 
Chances are, your child's school may not have a robust PE program, if it offers it at all. I'd encourage you to communicate with school administrators, and try to get the school to give PE the attention it deserves. After all, it's one of the most cost-effective ways to improve test scores. Aside from that, start taking fitness seriously as a family. Below are some suggestions to help you get started:
  • First, it's imperative to limit the amount of time your child spends watching TV or playing computer and video games, and to replace some of these sedentary activities with exercise. Children need at least 30 to 60 minutes of exercise each day. 
  • Encourage your child to take part in physically engaging activities after school and on the weekends. There are plenty to choose from, from sports and dance classes to gymnastics, bike riding and playing tag with friends. Remember, the trick to getting kids interested in exercise at a young age is to keep it fun. Also keep in mind that spontaneous bouts of exercise throughout the day is actually the ideal way of doing it. 
  • Like adults, kids also need variety in their exercise routines to reap the greatest rewards, so be sure your child is getting high-intensity interval-type training, strength building exercises, stretching and core-building activities. Also consider less conventional exercises. Battle ropes, Indian clubs, jumping exercisesagility ladder trainingBOSU ball trainingbodyweight exercises and slacklining are just a few examples. 
  • Being a role model by staying active yourself is one of the best ways to motivate and inspire your kids. If your child sees you embracing exercise as a positive and important part of your lifestyle, they will naturally follow suit. 
  • Plan physical activities that involve the whole family. Hiking, bike riding, canoeing, swimming and sports are all great options. 
Think of it this way: By taking the time to get your kids interested in exercise now, you're giving them a gift that will keep them healthy and happy for the rest of their lives.
About the Director
I believe in bringing quality to my readers, which is why I wanted to share some information about the creator, Doug Orchard, from "The Motivation Factor." We sat down with Orchard to learn a little more about what goes in to making these films. Thank you, Doug, for sharing with us.
What was your inspiration for making this film?
Before I started this film, my chiropractor told me he could no longer provide me with relief and referred me to see a spine surgeon. In addition to my back pain, I had a debilitating case of carpel tunnel that prevented me from filming and editing, and I had a frozen shoulder that kept me out of the gym. 
I learned about “restorative arts” as profiled in the film, which was part of classical PE 100 years ago. I learned how to repair myself using those classic (now forgotten) methods without a physician, surgery or drugs. I repaired (for free) my frozen shoulder and carpel tunnel, and avoided spine surgery (and eliminated all back pain), all by what you’ll see in this film. 
That saved my insurance company a fortune, but it also eliminated my depression! It transformed my life. I saw my productivity double, and my relationship and interest in others improved dramatically. I wondered, “What if everyone did this? What would our society be like?”
We are in a state of physical illiteracy as a society. The root cause to many of our problems including a lack of unity, out-of-control health care costs, mental health problems and ballooning national debt stem from the lack of classical physical education.
Physical education wasn’t about sports back then. it was lifetime fitness and it included education on restorative arts. They simply did it better 100 years ago than we do today. It’s shocking to see how far we have fallen. 
I’ve watched with horror how so many of the youth in inner city schools are destined to become another statistic. I see that this film’s message could solve that particular problem, and so many others, all without legislation. All it takes is the right education, and this documentary could set it in motion. I believe we can transform our society with the message of this movie.
What was your favorite part of making this film? 
Filming the kids at Prescott Middle School in Modesto, California. They are the only school still following this program. I interviewed a young girl there who was homeless (living in a car with her mom and two sisters). She had been bullied in elementary school but not in this middle school. I asked her why, and she said, “PE.” 
At this school, they followed a classical physical education model where they structured the entire class as a team, and in a real team, labels like “race” or “homeless” take a back seat. The kids who lived in the country club accepted her as an equal. There was no bullying in the school. 
The boys and girls all worked together. These kids represented the entire social-economic gamut of our society and yet were completely unified. They learned it in PE. I’m not sure I would have believed it if I wasn’t there filming it. 
As I drove away that night I thought, “These kids think differently than the rest of our society. Their current situation doesn’t determine what they are going to become. They don’t accept labels, and they are learning it all in PE.”
Where do the proceeds to your film go? 
We can’t change our society without a return to what used to be taught in classical physical education. One hundred percent of the film’s proceeds thus far have gone to help make that happen again. The film raised $40,000 in crowdfunding and all of those proceeds and all film sales thus far have gone toward hard costs associated with the film creation, as well as promoting the film’s message to politicians, schools and communities. 
The film had a combined production cost of time and expense of over $500,000 and it was primarily funded by the filmmaker. Proceeds go toward paying for those costs and promoting the message moving forward, as well as creating additional material on this topic. I have turned down two offers to sell the film since it won the festivals. 
I turned down $500,000 from a corporation that wanted to fund the film because they wanted to use it to sell services instead of initiate the change our society needs. This is about getting it to happen again, and I hope people use the film to initiate meaningful change in their life, their school, their company or their retirement community. I’m reaching out to Dr. Mercola’s community to help

Saturday, February 10, 2018