Are Pain Pills Slowing Your Recovery?

Over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medications are a popular way to help muscle soreness but they might do the opposite of what you want.

Welcome to the positive corner of the internet. No one likes to feel tricked, especially about their health. That’s why every weekday, we make sense of the confusing world of wellness with quick tips designed to make you healthier in less than 5 minutes. If you were forwarded this message, you can get the free daily email here.

Today’s Health Upgrade

  • Mea culpa

  • Stat of the week

  • The dementia prevention diet

  • Walk it off

Arnold’s Podcast

Want more stories from Arnold? Every day, Arnold’s Pump Club Podcast opens with a story, perspective, and wisdom from Arnold that you won’t find in the newsletter. And, you’ll hear a recap of the day’s items. You can subscribe on Apple, Spotify, Google, or wherever you listen to podcasts.

Mea Culpa

Hey everybody. It’s Daniel. We messed up. The people who are part of the app already know that one of our core values is being completely transparent; we regularly share our internal app roadmap to get their thoughts, and we immediately tell them when we detect bugs.

Yesterday, we invited all of you to join The Pump app with a sweet deal where the first 5,000 people who purchased an annual membership would receive a $100 gift from Momentous

To add to the excitement, Arnold talked about the app and the fantastic community on The Tonight Show. 

It should have been a day for celebration, but…we sent an update to the app, and it broke the whole app. 

We saw that 6,000 of you clicked on the link for the special offer, and many of you couldn’t get past the onboarding. I’m trying to respond to all of your emails individually. But transparent is transparent, so we want everyone to know what happened.

The good news is our team moved quickly to fix the app. One of our other core values is always to move fast and be nimble (this backfired on us with the app update but worked for us with fixing the bug we created). But we know it’s annoying. So, I want to apologize to all of you.  I’m sorry we broke the app. We hope you’ll join us and claim your $100 gift by signing up for a yearly membership. 

Technology is hard — sometimes, things break. We always fix them as fast as possible, but we don’t want you to feel any friction. 

I also saw a few notes from some of you that you don’t want to pay for an app. That’s totally fine with us! We share a workout for you every Monday here, and you can download a guide with more than 30 workouts for free. 

The app costs a lot of money to maintain, and it’s much more than just workouts. It’s a habit tracker, weekly Q&As with Arnold and other experts, premium articles, diet advice, and many more upgrades coming!

We think we set a really affordable price (as we always say, cheaper than going premium on the famous social media app that makes you angry). But we just want you to find fitness however you find it, so the newsletter will ALWAYS be free.

Everything is working now with the app. And remember, everyone gets a free 7-day trial. So if it’s not for you, you don’t owe anything. We hope you’ll give it another try and take advantage of the special $100 gift. I tell everyone (and you can see Arnold talk about it with Jimmy Fallon) that the app is kind of a magical place. It feels strange to see comments on the internet that are all positive and supportive. The workout programs are fantastic, but the community is magic.

Arnold’s doing a Q&A in The Pump later today, so we’ll see all the new members there.

Stat of the Week: Four Calories

That’s the number of calories you burn during sex — per minute — according to research published in PLoS ONE. If you’re looking for a comparison, this is similar to a moderate pace on the treadmill.

How Fiber Protects Your Brain

We’ve seen a lot of ridiculous diets in our day. And most of them are nonsense. But here’s some diet advice you probably don’t want to ignore. 

Research suggests that a diet high in fiber may help reduce your risk of dementia. 

Scientists invested nearly 35 years to assess the potential relationship between fiber and dementia. First, they kept food logs of more than 3,700 people for 14 years, and then they tracked their health over the next 21 years.

Those who ate the highest amount of fiber had the lowest rates of dementia, and those who ate more soluble fiber seemed to be more protected. 

This wasn’t a study that measured cause and effect, so we can’t state why the researchers saw this impact. But the results might be connected to an interesting relationship between your gut and brain. Fiber helps improve your gut bacteria, and other studies suggest that healthier microbes in your gut can help reduce brain inflammation and prevent the onset of dementia. 

Or, it might simply be that people who eat more fiber are more likely to maintain a healthy weight and have lower blood pressure, lipids, and blood sugar levels — all of which are associated with a lower likelihood of dementia. 

To add more soluble fiber to your diet, eat more lima and black beans, lentils, edamame, chia seeds, Brussels sprouts, avocados, sweet potatoes, flaxseed, and oatmeal. If you want an easy boost, add psyllium husk to your protein shake.

Maybe You Should Walk It Off

If you’re feeling some serious lower body soreness, think twice before popping pain relievers.

Research suggests that NSAIDs (think medications like Advil or Motrin) can slow your recovery.

Even though most people consider it bad, inflammation can be good and supports your natural healing process by removing dead cells and killing pathogens that could prevent your body from repairing. A little inflammation also helps you recover from exercise.

The pills can help reduce pain but don’t confuse comfort for healing. The pain might feel less when inflammation is reduced, but your recovery could be longer.

Of course, if you’re in a lot of pain, it’s ok to pop the pills. But a little low-intensity movement — such as a walk — could help you feel better, reduce soreness, and improve your recovery.

That’s it for this week! Thanks again for being a part of the positive corner of the internet. We hope it was a great week, and we wish all of you a fantastic weekend!

-Arnold, Adam, and Daniel

Publisher: Arnold Schwarzenegger

Editors-in-chief: Adam Bornstein and Daniel Ketchell