Infrequently Asked Questions

We get asked a lot of one-off questions.

We add the most interesting (and relevant) ones below, building up a knowledge base. 

Have a question that we haven’t answered yet?  Do check below, and also check our Frequently Asked Questions.  But if you don’t find what you’re after, drop us a line and we’ll see what we can do.  🙂

Infrequently Asked Questions

Intermittent Fasting (IF) does seem to work differently for men versus women.

Unfortunately, there isn’t a ton of research to date that compares the differences, although there is one rat study and a few human trials exploring IF’s effect on women compared to men.

A couple of reputable health writers have combed the archives and written summaries about what is available:

The studies suggest that pre- and possibly perimenopausal women may respond to fasting with a stress response, negatively affecting their endocrine system.  What this means is that women might not get the benefits of IF (weight loss), and might even experience some negative health consequences, like amenorrhea and thyroid dysfunction.

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Gene Hackman’s character (Joe Moore) in a little-known movie called Heist says it.

Here’s the quote:

I tried to imagine a fella smarter than myself.  Then I tried to think, “what would he do?”

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Studies have shown that long term use of MDMA can have a permanent, negative effect on neurotransmitters.  Long term MDMA use is associated with changes in dopamine and serotonin neurotransmission, as well as increasing extracellular levels of norepinephrine.

Source:  The effects of methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA, “Ecstasy”) on monoaminergic neurotransmission in the central nervous system.

The problem with pretty much all of the brain training games out there (things like Lumosity, etc.) is that people get good ​at the game​ but it’s difficult to know if the skills are transferring to your real-world cognition.

It’s not bad for your brain, but it doesn’t continually build your brain.  Most people who do it (like anything else) eventually reach a comfortable plateau and don’t push themselves beyond it.

Most non-competitive intellectual pursuits are like this.  Activities where you are either competing against someone or being judged by someone tend to be better for continually challenging your brain, because there’s more of a motivation to keep upping your game.  Something with no competition and no audience like a crossword puzzle tends to stagnate pretty quickly.

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