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Sigma Nutrition Radio

Fitness and Nutrition

Discussions about the science of nutrition, dietetics and health. The podcast that educates through nuanced conversations, exploring evidence and cultivating critical thinking. Hosted by Danny Lennon.

Discussions about the science of nutrition, dietetics and health. The podcast that educates through nuanced conversations, exploring evidence and cultivating critical thinking. Hosted by Danny Lennon.




Discussions about the science of nutrition, dietetics and health. The podcast that educates through nuanced conversations, exploring evidence and cultivating critical thinking. Hosted by Danny Lennon.






#456: Prof. Glenn McConell – Glucose Uptake During Exercise & Muscle Insulin Sensitivity

Exercise improves metabolic control both via increasing muscle glucose uptake during muscle contractions by insulin-independent mechanisms and by increasing skeletal muscle insulin sensitivity after physical activity. A reduction in skeletal muscle insulin sensitivity is an early event in the development of not only prediabetes, metabolic syndrome, and type 2 diabetes but is also associated with other conditions such as cardiovascular disease and some cancers. One of the researchers that...


#455: Jill Joyce, PhD – Improving the Diets of Tactical Populations

The term ‘tactical populations’ has been applied to those working in law enforcement, fire, first responders, and military. In addition to the importance of their work, the work they do itself presents some challenges for health and nutrition. Despite the fact that such individuals make up a significant number of the population and their work plays a crucial role in society, there is currently very little research on fire and law enforcement nutrition. Most research is on the prevalence of...


PRE #9: AMA – Blood Pressure, LDL Lowering, PCOS & More!

In this Premium-exclusive ‘Ask Me Anything’ episode, Alan & Danny answer a range of listener questions. Topics include obesity rates, lowering blood pressure, cholesterol drugs, PCOS, and what issues they have changed their minds on. See the full list of questions below. [02.37] Do you feel that there is hope (or an effective way forward) for obesity rates to come down? Based on your response, why/why not? [11.28] In this field, it seems like so many of us have had positions we’ve held...


#454: Eric Helms, PhD – Plant or Animal Protein: Rethinking Protein & Muscle

When it comes to eating to promote muscle hypertrophy, muscle repair/recovery and maintenance of mass and function, protein has been an obvious focus. Indeed muscle mass and quality are dependent on the continuous remodeling of skeletal muscle proteins. This is related to the amount of muscle protein balance, i.e. the net difference between muscle protein synthesis (MPS) and muscle protein breakdown (MPB). Because of this, MPS has long been used as a proxy measure for muscle repair and/or...


#453: Nick Gant, PhD – Cognitive Performance: Impact of Caffeine, Nicotine & Creatine (Rebroadcast)

The brain plays a central role in both physical and psychological function and performance. The brain also has a very high energy demand. In addition, fatiguing conditions can cause impairment of cognitive performance. One area of research in neurometabolism related to the potential use of nutrients on improving cognitive function, as well as “rescuing” the fatigue-related declines in performance. Nick Gant is Director of the Exercise Neurometabolism Laboratory at the University of...


#452: Stuart Phillips, PhD - Bacterially Synthesized Whey, Plant vs. Animal Proteins, Muscle & Extended Fasts, & Much More

This episode was oringally published as one of our “Expert – ask me anything” (AMA) episodes, which we published for Premium prescribers. In such bonus episodes, we collect questions from Premium subscribers and ask them direct to a world-class expert and past podcast guest. If you’re interested in subscribing to Sigma Nutrition Premium, then check all the details here. In this episode Prof. Stu Phillips takes questions about synethized whey protein, plant proteins, post-exercise MPS, and...


#451: Potassium & Blood Pressure: Influence of Sex & Sodium

It has been consistently shown in research that elevated dietary sodium consumption is associated with high blood pressure and an increased risk of cardiovascular disease. In addition, low levels of dietary potassium intake are associated with these same risks. However, there is some debate on how to characterize these relationships. In a study published in European Heart Journal in July 2022, using data from the EPIC-Norfolk study, researchers attempted to answer whether the associations...


#450: Megan Rossi, PhD, RD – Diet For a Healthy Gut: Diversity, Fiber Types & Gut Health Pseudoscience

With the advances in understanding the importance of the gut (including its bacterial contents) for human health, much interest and attention has been placed on how to eat to promote positive ‘gut health’. This has led to many exciting research questions and labs doing fascinating work. However, on the opposite side, it has led to a spike in opportunistic quacks to jump on the wave of enthusiasm and promote diets, supplements, testing kits and products that don’t reflect the current...


#449: Do Artificial Sweeteners Increase Cancer Risk? (Study Analysis)

A study published in March 2022 suggested that consumption of artificial (non-nutritive) sweeteners is associated with a 13% increase in risk of cancer. And so in this episode, Dr. Alan Flanagan, Dr. Niamh Aspell, and Danny Lennon discuss this specific study and give their thoughts on what are fair conclusions to come to. Access show notes here Subscribe to Premium here


#448: Prof. Norman Temple – Can Science Answer Diet-Health Questions?

While we’ve never known more about diet and health, there remain many unanswered questions in nutrition science. However, there is often disagreements on how best to answer these questions, particularly in relation to informing practical diet advise that meaningfully improves health. Prof. Norman Temple is one academic who has written on a number of these issues. One issue he highlights is the large discrepency in the practical value we have attained from cohort studies and RCTs, relative...


#447: Does Eating Fish Increase Skin Cancer Risk? Study Analysis

A recent study reported a higher risk of developing melanoma in people who ate a relatively high intake of fish. This study caused headlines and it was picked up by many outlets (including the New York Times, Sky News, etc.). In this episode, Alan and Danny dig into the nuances of this study to see if the headlines are justified. Click here for show notes Click here for Premium


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PRE #7: Stephan Guyenet, PhD - Ask Me Anything!

This is an “ask me anything” (AMA) episode, which means a world-class expert and past podcast guest comes on the podcast to answer questions submitted by you, our podcast listeners. Stephan Guyenet spent 12 years in academia studying neurodegenerative disease and obesity neuroscience. He was a postdoctoral fellow at the Univeristy of Washington, studying the neuroscience of obesity and eating behavior. Previous to that he completed a PhD in neuroscience. Stephan is the author of the...


#446: How Climate Change Impacts Nutrient Status

Climate change refers to long-term shifts in temperatures and weather patterns. These shifts may be natural, such as through variations in the solar cycle. But since the 1800’s, human activities have been the main driver of climate change, primarily due to burning fossil fuels like coal, oil and gas. Climate change has the potential to negatively impact the nutrient value of plants, soil organisms, food stuffs, via a variety of ways. Climate change puts food supplies at risk. Floods,...


#445: Dr. Hazel Wallace - Nutrition for Women’s Health

When it comes to specific questions related to diet and health for women, there is often a shortage of consensus answers from research, for a variety of reasons. In addition, there are clearly aspects of biological sex that have implications for health and also the interaction with diet. For example, the impact of the menstural cycle, of menopause, and differences in nutrient requirements. In this episode, Dr. Hazel Wallace discusses some of these key considerations. Some things covered...


PRE #6: GRADE System: What is it? And How Does it Apply to Nutrition? [Preview]

This is a preview of the second episode in a new series called “Nutrition Science Explained”, in which members of the Sigma team will take a concept commonly mentioned in discussions about nutrition science, and explain what it is, give more background context, and highlight important aspects to know. The goal is to aid listeners to have a deeper understanding of other episodes when such concepts are mentioned. In this episode Alan Flanagan discusses the concept of the GRADE system, and...


#444: Folate – Intake, Genetics & Health Outcomes

Folate (also known as viatmin B9) actually relates to a collection of folates; both natural dietary folates and synthetic forms, primarily folic acid. This folate/folic acid that is consumed via the diet or supplementation is a precursor for the formation of tetrahydrofolate (THF), which is a carbon donor and acts a cofactor for a number of enzymes that play important roles in several processes. In this episode, Alan and Danny discuss the role of folate in the methlyation cycle, the...


#443: Kevin Klatt, PhD, RD - Can Choline Help Improve DHA Status?

A recently published study by Klatt and colleagues examined the impact of choline supplementation alongside DHA supplementation, versus DHA supplementation alone, on DHA status in pregnancy. It is known that DHA is a critical nutrient at this time for healthy development of the child. And through a number of mechanisms discussed later, it has been hypothesized that choline could lead to greater DHA status. We discuss: Access the show notes here Subscribe to Premium here


#442: Are Vegetables Detrimental to Health?

In this episode Alan and Danny aim to address the idea that you shouldn’t eat vegetables, or that they aren’t beneficial. We will specifically look at a number of claims that relate to: This episode was orignally published to Sigma Nutrition Premium. If you wish to get more of these Quack Asylum episodes (and lots of other features, including detailed study notes) then subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium. Click here to access show notes


PRE #5: Prof. Stuart Phillips - Ask Me Anything! [Preview]

This is an "ask me anything" (AMA) episode, with Prof. Stuart Phillips of McMaster University. Prof. Phillips takes questions on protein intake, sources, muscle function, and healthy ageing. To listen to the full AMA, click here to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium. Questions answered: Subscribe to Premium