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Recent Longevity News for the seven days ending 3/4/09.  You should consult your doctor if you are taking any medications.

Moderate Alcohol Intake Associated With Bone Protection - Science Daily, 3/3/09 - "In an epidemiological study of men and post-menopausal women primarily over 60 years of age, regular moderate alcohol intake was associated with greater bone mineral density (BMD). Researchers at the Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging (USDA HNRCA) at Tufts University found associations were strongest for beer and wine and, importantly, BMD was significantly lower in men drinking more than two servings of liquor per day"

Why Diets High In High-fructose Corn Syrup (found In Soda And Processed Foods) Can Lead To Insulin Resistance - Science Daily, 3/3/09 - "mice on a high-fructose diet were protected from insulin resistance when a gene known as transcriptional coactivator PPARg coactivator-1b (PGC-1b) was "knocked down" in the animals' liver and fat tissue ... Fructose is much more readily metabolized to fat in the liver than glucose is and in the process can lead to nonalcoholic fatty liver disease ... NAFLD in turn leads to hepatic insulin resistance and type II diabetes"

Folate Deficiency May Triple Dementia Risk in the Elderly - Medscape, 3/3/09 - "individuals who were folate deficient at study outset were 3.5 times more likely to develop dementia" - See folic acid products at Amazon.com.

Two Or More Drinks A Day May Increase Pancreatic Cancer Risk - Science Daily, 3/3/09 - "If individuals consumed 30 or more grams of alcohol per day (approximately two drinks), compared with no alcohol per day, their risk of pancreatic cancer was slightly increased, researchers said. A drink is defined as 12 ounces of beer, four ounces of wine, or 1.5 ounces of 80-proof distilled liquor"

Are Vitamin Supplements Effective In Celiac Disease Patients? - Science Daily, 3/3/09 - "Coeliac disease is a typical example of a malabsorption syndrome conferring increased risk for various deficiency states, including folate and vitamin B12 ... patients with celiac disease and using vitamin supplements had higher serum vitamin B6 (P = 0.003), folate (P < 0.001), and vitamin B12 (P = 0.012) levels than patients who did not or healthy controls (P = 0.035, P < 0.001, P = 0.007, for vitamin B6, folate, and vitamin B12, respectively). Lower plasma homocysteine levels were found in patients using vitamin supplements than in patients who did not (P = 0.001) or healthy controls (P = 0.003). However, vitamin B6 and folate, not vitamin B12, were significantly and independently associated with homocysteine levels"

Obesity Linked To Hormone Imbalance That Impacts Sexual Quality Of Life - Science Daily, 3/3/09 - "In our study population, we found that lower testosterone levels and diminished ratings for sexual quality of life were correlated with increased BMI ... Subjects who lost weight through bariatric surgery experienced a reduction in estradiol levels, an increase in testosterone levels and an increase in ratings of sexual quality of life" - See my aromatization page.  Another way to increase testosterone and decrease estradiol is with letrozole.  I take a quarter tablet every other day.

  • Letrozole once a week normalizes serum testosterone in obesity-related male hypogonadism - Eur J Endocrinol. 2008 May;158(5):741-7 - "Isolated hypogonadotropic hypogonadism (IHH) is frequently observed in severely obese men, probably as a result of increased estradiol (E(2)) production and E(2)-mediated negative feedback on pituitary LH secretion. Aromatase inhibitors can reverse this process ... treated with 2.5 mg letrozole once a week for 6 months ... Six weeks of treatment reduced total E(2) from 123+/-11 to 58+/-7 pmol/l (P<0.001, mean+/-s.e.m.), and increased serum LH from 4.4+/-0.6 to 11.1+/-1.5 U/l (P<0.001). Total testosterone rose from 5.9+/-0.5 to 19.6+/-1.4 nmol/l (P<0.001), and free testosterone from 163+/-13 to 604+/-50 pmol/l (P<0.001). Total testosterone rose to within the normal range in all subjects, whereas free testosterone rose to supraphysiological levels in 7 out of 12 men ... Letrozole 2.5 mg once a week produced a sustained normalization of serum total testosterone in obese men with IHH. However, free testosterone frequently rose to supraphysiological levels. Therefore, a starting dose <2.5 mg once a week is recommended" - See Femara (letrozole) at OffshoreRX.

Aching Back? Cholesterol Medication Might Help - Science Daily, 3/3/09 - "A new study finds that using statins may be useful in treatment for degenerative discA new study finds that using statins may be useful in treatment for degenerative disc ... Lovastatin increased the synthesis of collagen II, a protein that makes up moveable joints, and decreased the synthesis of collagen I, a protein that is related to fibrosis (the formation or development of excess fibrous connective tissue)" - Note:  Lovastatin is the one that red yeast rice is high in.

Broccoli May Help Protect Against Respiratory Conditions Like Asthma - Science Daily, 3/2/09 - "a naturally occurring compound found in broccoli and other cruciferous vegetables may help protect against respiratory inflammation that causes conditions like asthma, allergic rhinitis and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease ... sulforaphane, a chemical in broccoli, triggers an increase of antioxidant enzymes in the human airway that offers protection against the onslaught of free radicals that we breathe in every day in polluted air, pollen, diesel exhaust and tobacco smoke" - See sulforaphane at Amazon.com.

Wine May Cut Risk of Esophageal Cancer - WebMD, 3/2/09 - "Esophageal cancer rates have increased over the last three decades, due to a more than 500% increase of a subtype of the cancer linked to acid reflux disease, known as esophageal adenocarcinoma ... drinking as little as one glass of wine a day was associated with a 56% decrease in the risk for developing Barrett's esophagus ... About 5% of the U.S. population is estimated to have Barrett's, but most are never diagnosed. People with the condition have about a 30- to 40-fold higher risk of developing esophageal adenocarcinoma than the general population ... Wine is high in antioxidants and other studies have shown that people who eat plenty of antioxidant-rich fruits and vegetables are less likely to have Barrett's esophagus and esophageal cancer"

Work the Night Shift? Beware Diabetes - WebMD, 3/2/09 - "The 8.6 million Americans who work the night shift are at increased risk of obesity, diabetes, and heart disease. Why? ... much of the body's biological clock -- its circadian rhythm -- keeps day-shift time even when a person goes on the night shift ... Cortisol -- the so-called stress hormone that affects blood pressure and blood sugar -- rose and dropped at the wrong time"

Thumbs Down For New Testosterone Patch To Boost Women's Sex Drive - Science Daily, 3/2/09 - "The published evidence so far is based on highly selected women and only shows small improvements in sexual parameters and large placebo responses"

Being Overweight Just As Risky To Health As Being A Smoker - Science Daily, 3/2/09 - "Obese adolescents have the same risk of premature death in adulthood as people who smoke more than 10 cigarettes a day, while those who are overweight have the same risk as less heavy smokers"

Broccoli And Cabbage-based Drug Could Inhibit Melanoma - Science Daily, 3/1/09 - "We have developed drugs from naturally occurring compounds that can inhibit the growth of tumors in mice by 50 to 60 percent with a very low dose ... Robertson and his colleagues previously showed the therapeutic potential of targeting the Akt3 protein in inhibiting the development of melanoma. The search for a drug to block the protein led them to a class of compounds called isothiocyanates ... These naturally occurring chemicals found in cruciferous vegetables are known to have certain cancer-fighting properties ... Selenium deficiency is common in cancer patients ... the selenium-enhanced compounds significantly reduced the production of Akt3 protein and shut down its signaling network"

Only Exercise Effective In Preventing Low-back Problems, Review Suggests - Science Daily, 3/1/09 - "Strong and consistent evidence finds many popular prevention methods to fail while exercise has a significant impact, both in terms of preventing symptoms and reducing back pain-related work loss"

How Inflammatory Disease Causes Fatigue - Science Daily, 2/28/09 - "Chronic inflammatory diseases like rheumatoid arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease, psoriasis, and liver disease cause "sickness behaviors," including fatigue, malaise, and loss of social interest ... These findings suggest that people with chronic inflammatory diseases may benefit from treatments that limit monocyte access to the brain"

Long-Term Use Of Nutrient Supplements May Increase Cancer Risk - Science Daily, 2/27/09 - "We believe beta-carotene is an antioxidant, but it seems that if you take too much, at some point it can have pro-oxidant effects, which can result in elevated cancer risk" - Note:  The problem with that study is that beta-carotene is just one of over 600 carotenoids and previous studies have shown that taking large quantities just one carotenoid can cause a deficiency of the others.  Those carotenoid deficiencies that it causes may be just as important if not more important in preventing cancer.  Plus it seems like an oxymoron to smoke and take vitamins.

Building Strong Bones: Running May Provide More Benefits Than Resistance Training, Study Finds - Science Daily, 2/27/09 - "both resistance training and high-impact endurance activities increase bone mineral density. However, high-impact sports, like running, appear to have a greater beneficial effect"

Statins Cut Deaths From Prostate Cancer - WebMD, 2/26/09 - "men taking statins were 63% less likely to die from the disease than men not taking statins ... The high-potency statins were about 2.5 times more effective at preventing prostate cancer death than the weak statins"

Statins Lower Stroke Severity, Improve Recovery - Science Daily, 2/27/09 - "patients who were taking statins before a stroke experienced better outcomes and recovery than patients who weren't on the drug — even when their cholesterol levels were ideal"

Calculator for Future Risk for Prostate Cancer - Medscape, 2/26/09 - "The risk over 4 years was 5.1% at an average PSA of 1.5 ng/mL. Men with a PSA of that amount or more were at an above-average risk of developing prostate cancer in the next 4 years ... those men were 7 times more likely to develop the cancer during that period"

1 in 3 Common Cancers May Be Preventable - WebMD, 2/26/09 - "eating a nutritious diet, being physically active, and keeping body fat under control may prevent: ... 38% of breast cancers ... 45% of colorectal cancers ... 36% of lung cancers ... 39% of pancreatic cancers ... 47% of stomach cancers ... 69% of esophageal cancers ... 63% of cancers of the mouth, pharynx, or larynx ... 70% of endometrial cancers ... 24% of kidney cancers ... 21% of gallbladder cancers ... 15% of liver cancers ... 11% of prostate cancers"

Excessive Dietary Fat Caused 300 Percent Increase in Metastasizing Tumor Cells In Animal Models - Science Daily, 2/25/09 - "Researchers at Purdue University have precisely measured the impact of a high-fat diet on the spread of cancer, finding that excessive dietary fat caused a 300 percent increase in metastasizing tumor cells in laboratory animals"

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):

Telmisartan Increases the Permeability of Endothelial Cells through Zonula Occludens-1 - Biol Pharm Bull. 2009 Mar;32(3):416-20 - "telmisartan but not valsartan downregulated ZO-1 mRNA and protein levels, disrupted the distribution of ZO-1 in cultured endothelial cells, and increased the permeability of endothelial cells in a dose-dependent manner ... telmisartan disrupts the continuous pericellular distribution of ZO-1, downregulates the expression of ZO-1 in endothelial cells, and increases the permeability of endothelial cells at least partly through PI3K and the peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma-dependent pathway" - Click here for more reasons to consider telmisartan as a first line treatment for hypertension.  See telmisartan at OffshoreRX.com.

N-acetylcysteine versus AScorbic acid for Preventing contrast-Induced nephropathy in patients with renal insufficiency undergoing coronary angiography NASPI study-a prospective randomized controlled trial - Am Heart J. 2009 Mar;157(3):576-583 - "High-dose NAC seems more beneficial than ascorbic acid in preventing contrast-induced renal function deterioration in patients, especially diabetic patients, with renal insufficiency undergoing coronary angiography" - See n-acetyl cysteine at Amazon.com.

Coffee consumption and mortality after acute myocardial infarction: The Stockholm Heart Epidemiology Program - Am Heart J. 2009 Mar;157(3):495-501 - "Self-reported coffee consumption at the time of hospitalization for myocardial infarction was inversely associated with subsequent postinfarction mortality in this population with broad coffee intake"

High Levels of Serum C-Reactive Protein Are Associated with Greater Risk of All-Cause Mortality, but Not Dementia, in the Oldest-Old: Results from The 90+ Study - J Am Geriatr Soc. 2009 Feb 23 - "Subjects with detectable CRP levels had significantly greater risk of mortality (HR=1.7, 95% CI=1.0-2.9), but not dementia (HR=1.2, 95% CI=0.6-2.1), 0.4 to 4.5 years later than subjects with undetectable CRP"

Effect of drinking on adiponectin in healthy men and women: A randomised intervention study of water, ethanol, red wine and beer with or without alcohol - Diabetes Care. 2009 Feb 24 - "Among females adiponectin significantly increased after with red wine (29,8% p<0.05), among men after ethanol solution (17.4%, p<0.05) and beer (16.1%, p<0.05)"

Role of Huperzine A in the Treatment of Alzheimer's Disease - Ann Pharmacother. 2009 Feb 24 - "AD is a progressive neurodegenerative brain disorder for which there is no cure; available therapies only decrease cognitive decline. Huperzine A, an alkaloid derived from Chinese club moss (H. serrata), acts as a selective inhibitor of acetylcholinesterase and may also display neuroprotective properties. Preliminary data suggest that huperzine A may improve cognition; studies ranging from 8 to 12 weeks have found improvements in the Mini-Mental State Examination score of 1-5 points ... Although use of huperzine A has shown promising results in patients with AD, data supporting its use are limited by weak study design" - See Huperzine products at iHerb.

Antihypertensive efficacy of telmisartan vs ramipril over the 24-h dosing period, including the critical early morning hours: a pooled analysis of the PRISMA I and II randomized trials - J Hum Hypertens. 2009 Feb 19 - "The adjusted mean treatment differences in the last 6-h mean ambulatory SBP/DBP were -5.8/-4.2 mm Hg after 8 weeks and -4.1/-3.0 mm Hg after 14 weeks, in favour of telmisartan (P<0.0001 for all four comparisons). Secondary end point results, including the mean 24-h ambulatory BP monitoring, day- and night-time BP and 24-h BP load, also significantly favoured telmisartan (P<0.0001). Both treatments were well tolerated; adverse events, including cough, were less common with telmisartan. These findings suggest that telmisartan is more effective than ramipril throughout the 24-h period and during the EMBPS; this may be attributable to telmisartan's long duration of effect, which is sustained throughout the 24-h dosing period" - Click here for why I feel telmisartan should be a first line treatment for hypertension. See telmisartan at OffshoreRX.com.

Neat Tech Stuff:

  • I found a solution to those Candelabra lights, which if you go with compact fluorescent bulbs, are expensive plus they are only available in 2700K and I hate that yellow light of 2700K.  1000bulbs.com has an adapter to convert the Candelabra socket to a normal socket.  See their "Candelabra to Medium Enlarger Socket - Premium Quality Brand # S51" (do a search of "S51 on their website).  I went with that an their "10 Watt CFL - 40 Watt Incandescent Equivalent - Compact Fluorescent - Neolite Spring Lamp - Full Spectrum 5000K - Litetronics # NL-10450" (do a search of "NL-10450" on their website).
  • NoteBurner - Great program for decrypting iTune songs.
  • Canon PowerShot SX200IS 12 MP Digital Camera with 12x Wide Angle Optical Image Stabilized Zoom and 3.0-inch LCD - Latest and greatest from Canon (pre-order)

Supplement Focus (Huperzine A):

Huperzine A News and Research:

Huperzine A Abstracts:

  • Role of Huperzine A in the Treatment of Alzheimer's Disease - Ann Pharmacother. 2009 Feb 24 - "AD is a progressive neurodegenerative brain disorder for which there is no cure; available therapies only decrease cognitive decline. Huperzine A, an alkaloid derived from Chinese club moss (H. serrata), acts as a selective inhibitor of acetylcholinesterase and may also display neuroprotective properties. Preliminary data suggest that huperzine A may improve cognition; studies ranging from 8 to 12 weeks have found improvements in the Mini-Mental State Examination score of 1-5 points ... Although use of huperzine A has shown promising results in patients with AD, data supporting its use are limited by weak study design"
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