Dr. Howard Luks: Preserving Muscle Mass For Longevity, And Why You Don't Need An MRI


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Dr. Howard Luks makes an appearance to talk about the importance of preserving muscle mass for health, disease prevention and longevity, and why not to get an MRI.

An orthopedic surgeon and sports medicine specialist, Dr. Luks is also an expert in shoulder, knee, and other sports injuries, and is widely known as one of the country’s best orthopedic surgeons. But this guy is off the beaten path! He wants to embrace a broader, more holistic perspective about health, fitness, and healing, so you actually stay OUT of his office, instead of continuing to come back in.

Dr. Luks is also an endurance and strength enthusiast in the 55+ division esteemed and wrote a beautiful article that you can read here about the benefits of preserving muscle mass and the dangers of sarcopenia.

In this episode, you’ll learn: that the loss of muscle mass is actually predictive of a shorter lifespan, how and why the calves are most vulnerable, that 50% of the body is muscle, and that only one minute a week is enough to preserve muscle mass. You’ll hear the reason why visceral fat is the enemy and learn about the ways that it screws up mitochondrial function and why it represents the root cause of all disease. We also discuss the importance of treating the patient, not the image, and you’ll learn about the dangers that come from not optimizing your muscle strength and muscle mass when you’re younger, and how the risks of muscle loss will multiply and be harder to overcome as we age. Finally, Dr. Luks reveals the reason why you maybe should not even get an MRI!


Dr. Luks is an orthopedic surgeon whose goal is to have us embrace a more holistic approach to preventing injury. [01:25]

Many experts now describe visceral fat as an organ. [05:27]

Sarcopenia is age-related muscle loss. [07:05]

We tend to normalize things like losing abilities to do things as we age. That shouldn’t be. [09:49]

How can we stave off the decline in muscle mass? [11:44]

How do you strike a balance between running in endurance races while keeping in your muscle mass competency? [16:49]

Many people advocate to work toward muscle failure on a single set. [22:54]

People that get themselves to the gym are doing themselves a huge favor. Just don’t overdo it! [25:02]

Many recovery problems are age related. [30:06]

Most overuse injuries are training errors. The calf muscles are particularly vulnerable. [31:26]

Minimalist shoes should be gradually introduced. [35:32]

You don’t need to know the specifics of your joint pain. [40:52]

Often the pain we experience can be solved with exercise rather than surgery. [44:35]

Maintaining muscle mass is not happening if you have your visceral fat in the midsection. [56:54]

When you think about your endurance goals, you need to exercise in your healthy aerobic zone. The zone two workout varies from person to person. [59:51]


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372 episodes