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Recent Longevity News for the seven days ending 9/24/08.  You should consult your doctor if you are taking any medications.

Palms Can Foretell Cancer - WebMD, 9/23/08 - "The symptoms: curling or thickening of the palm with swelling of the fingers, making the hand look wooden. It's called PFPAS -- palmar fasciitis and polyarthritis syndrome"

Indian Spice In Turmeric Reduces Size Of Hemorrhagic Stroke - Science Daily, 9/22/08 - "This active ingredient of the Indian curry spice, turmeric, not only lowers your chances of getting cancer and Alzheimer's disease, but may reduce the size of a hemorrhagic stroke ... significantly decreases the size of a blood clot" - See curcumin products at Amazon.com.

More fish during pregnancy boosts child development: Study - Nutra USA, 9/22/08 - "The children of mothers who had higher intakes of fish during pregnancy were found to have higher development scores than children of women with low fish intake" - [Abstract] - See Mega Twin EPA at Amazon.com.

New Salvo in Splenda Skirmish - New York Times, 9/22/08 - "Splenda — the grainy white crystals in the little yellow packets — contributes to obesity, destroys “good” intestinal bacteria and prevents prescription drugs from being absorbed"

Calorie-free Natural Sweetener Moves One Step Closer To Use In U. S. - Science Daily, 9/22/08 - "Researchers in Georgia are reporting an advance toward the possible use of a new natural non-caloric sweetener in soft drinks and other food products in the United States. Stevia, which is 300 times more potent than sugar but calorie-free ... In research that eases concerns about stevia's stability, the scientists studied clear glass containers of cola and lemon-lime sodas containing the two major naturally sweet components in stevia. After exposing the beverages to sunlight for one week, they found no significant degradation in either component of the natural sweetener" - See stevia products at iHerb.

'Friendly' Bacteria Protect Against Type 1 Diabetes, Researchers Find - Science Daily, 9/21/08 - "mice exposed to common stomach bacteria were protected against the development of Type I diabetes ... if they were raised in a germ-free environment, lacking "friendly'' gut bacteria, the mice developed severe diabetes. NOD mice exposed to harmless bacteria normally found in the human intestine were significantly less likely to develop diabetes"

Can Taurine Be A Potent Antioxidant Drug In The Future? - Science Daily, 9/19/08 - "Taurine is a potent antioxidant with hepatoprotective effects. Organelle based changes in hepatocytes after taurine treatment in experimental liver fibrosis were searched systematically and organelle injury scores decreased were found to decrease significantly" - See taurine at Amazon.com.

Vitamin C linked to Reduced Bone Loss in Older Men - WebMD, 9/19/08 - "If you don't have enough vitamin C, you don't make bones right. Collagen is the principal protein of bones, accounting for nearly half the volume. What the collagen does is prevent bones from coming apart" - See vitamin C products at Amazon.com.

Cell Phone Use Linked to Male Infertility - WebMD, 9/19/08 - "researchers collected semen samples from 32 men and divided each man's sample into two parts. They placed half of the semen samples 2.5 centimeters away from a 850 MHz frequency cell phone in talk mode for one hour. Most cell phones used in the U.S. are 850-900 MHz. They chose this distance because it is the typical distance between the testes and the trouser pockets ... Semen exposed to radiofrequency electromagnetic waves emitted from cell phones had higher levels of damaging free radicals, lower sperm motility (the ability of the sperm to move and swim) and sperm viability (the percentage of live sperm), and possibly greater oxidative stress"

Does Probiotic Intervention Induce The Serum Global Lipid Profile Change? - Science Daily, 9/18/08 - "investigated the effect of a three weeks intervention of a probiotic LGG intervention on serum global lipidomics profiles in healthy adults. The result showed that there were decreases in the levels of lysophosphatidylcholines (LysoGPCho), sphingomyelins (SM) and several glycerophosphatidylcholines (GPCho), and increases in triacylglycerols (TAG) in the probiotic LGG group. These changes may contribute, for example, to the metabolic events behind the beneficial effects of LGG on gut barrier function seen in previous studies"

Top-selling Cholesterol Drug Does Little For Women, Study Suggests - Science Daily, 9/17/08 - "Not one of the studies that included women with a mixture of risk factors for heart attacks provided statistically significant support for prescribing Lipitor or other statins to protect against cardiovascular problems. Pfizer’s claims of clinical proof that Lipitor reduces risk of heart attack in patients with multiple risk factors for heart disease does not appear to be scientifically supported for large segments of the female population ... Lipitor’s advertising repeatedly fails to report that clinical trials were statistically significant for men but not for women. Unqualified advertising claims of protection against heart attacks may therefore be misleading"

Healthy People With Elevated Levels Of Uric Acid Are At Risk Of Developing Kidney Disease - Science Daily, 9/17/08 - "Elevated uric acid levels in the blood indicate an increased risk of new-onset kidney disease ... it may be appropriate to prescribe uric acid–lowering drugs, such as allopurinol and probenecid, to these otherwise healthy individuals ... individuals in the slightly elevated uric acid group were 1.26 times as likely to develop kidney disease as those in the low uric acid group. The odds of developing kidney disease among volunteers in the elevated uric acid group were 1.63 times greater than that of individuals in the low uric acid group"

Cutting Calories Could Limit Muscle Wasting In Later Years - Science Daily, 9/16/08 - "The researchers found increasing amounts of iron in the muscle cells of aging rats fed a typical unrestricted diet. The older the rats got, the more iron accumulated in the mitochondria and the more damage was done to its RNA and DNA. Rats of the same ages that were kept on a calorie-restricted diet — about 60 percent of the food typically ingested — seemed to maintain more normal iron levels in mitochondria"

A Healthy Lifestyle Halves The Risk Of Premature Death In Women - Science Daily, 9/16/08 - "Over half of deaths in women from chronic diseases such as cancer and heart disease could be avoided if they never smoke, keep their weight in check, take exercise and eat a healthy diet low in red meat and trans-fats"

Abstracts from this week's Doctor's Guide Nutrition/Dietetics plus abstracts from my RSS feeds (Click here for the journals, the PubMed ones at the top):

Effects of telmisartan on adiponectin levels and body weight in hypertensive patients with glucose intolerance - Metabolism. 2008 Oct;57(10):1473-8 - "Telmisartan decreased body weight while increasing serum adiponectin levels in hypertensive patients with glucose intolerance. Candesartan did not achieve similar improvements in these patients. Among ARBs, telmisartan may have a larger impact on obesity-related diseases that can lead to cardiovascular disorders" - See telmisartan at OffshoreRX.comClick here for why I feel telmisartan should be the first line treatment for hypertension.

Associations of maternal fish intake during pregnancy and breastfeeding duration with attainment of developmental milestones in early childhood: a study from the Danish National Birth Cohort - Am J Clin Nutr. 2008 Sep;88(3):789-96 - "Higher maternal fish intake and greater duration of breastfeeding were associated with higher child developmental scores at 18 mo [odds ratio: 1.29 (95% CI: 1.20, 1.38) for the highest versus the lowest quintile of fish intake, and 1.28 (1.18, 1.38) for breastfeeding for > or =10 mo compared with breastfeeding for < or =1 mo]. Associations were similar for development at 6 mo. ... Maternal fish intake during pregnancy and the duration of breastfeeding are independently associated with better early child development. Future research and consumption guidelines, incorporating nutritional benefits as well as contaminant risks, should consider the overall effect of prenatal fish consumption on child development" - See Mega Twin EPA at Amazon.com.

Epigallocatechin-3-gallate inhibits IL-6 synthesis and suppresses transsignaling by enhancing soluble gp130 production - Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2008 Sep 16 - "Results from in vivo studies using a rat adjuvant-induced arthritis model showed specific inhibition of IL-6 levels in the serum and joints of EGCG-treated rats by 28% and 40%, respectively, with concomitant amelioration of rat adjuvant-induced arthritis. We also observed a marked decrease in membrane-bound gp130 protein expression in the joint homogenates of the EGCG-treated group. In contrast, quantitative RT-PCR showed that the gp130/IL-6Ralpha mRNA ratio increased by approximately 2-fold, suggesting a possible mechanism of sgp130 activation by EGCG. Gelatin zymography results showed EGCG inhibits IL-6/soluble IL-6R-induced matrix metalloproteinase-2 activity in RA synovial fibroblasts and in joint homogenates, possibly via up-regulation of sgp130 synthesis. The results of these studies provide previously undescribed evidence of IL-6 synthesis and transsignaling inhibition by EGCG with a unique mechanism of sgp130 up-regulation, and thus hold promise as a potential therapeutic agent for RA" - [Nutra USA]  - See green tea extract at Amazon.com.

Ferritin concentrations, metabolic syndrome, and type 2 diabetes in middle-aged and elderly Chinese - J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2008 Sep 16 - "Elevated circulating ferritin concentrations were associated with higher risk of type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome in middle-aged and elderly Chinese independent of obesity, inflammation, adipokines and other risk factors. Our data supports the crucial role of iron overload for metabolic diseases even in a country with relatively high prevalence of iron deficiency"

Health Tip:

One of my favorite snacks was homemade yoghurt flavored with Smucker's Simply Fruit (strawberry), which is sweetened with fruit juice instead of sugar.  I used to make the yoghurt with 2 one quart envelopes of Milkman brand powdered milk for one quart of water.  The Milkman brand was 1% fat so doubling it like that to make one quart made the yoghurt 2% fat.  Everyone stopped selling that Milkman brand so I called Familiar Foods Inc and they said they stopped producing it.  So I tried to make the yoghurt the same way with two envelopes of the Carnation Non-Fat but it tasted so bad I stopped making it.  I managed to find dry whole milk on Amazon.com so I started just mixing the non-fat dry milk and the dry whole milk to get the fat content I wanted.  A one quart envelope of the Carnation non-fat is one cup so I've just been mixing one envelope of the non-fat with one cup of the full fat for one quart.  So that makes 4% fat yoghurt.  When I run out of the Carnation envelopes I'll just buy it without the envelopes and cut down on the fat.  Maybe a half cup of full fat with 1 1/2 cups of non-fat.  Also see Yoghurt Makers at Amazon.com.  I have the Cuisipro brand with two extra set of cups.  The shipping is high for the milk but if you buy in bulk it should bring the cost down.  See Nestle Nido Instant Milk Powder (England) 2500g and Nestle Nido Instant Milk Powder England 1800g (Case of 6).

The advantage of powdered milk is that you don't have to boil it like with fresh milk.  That's too much of a hassle.  I've read that some recommend boiling the powdered milk mixture also but I haven't been doing that and I haven't had a bad batch yet.

Health Focus (Kidney Disease):

Alternative Kidney Disease News:

Other Kidney Disease News:

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