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Recent Longevity News for the seven days ending 12/8/10.  You should consult your doctor if you are taking any medications.

Even kids who play sports don't exercise enough - MSNBC, 12/7/10 - "Practices sometimes lasted more than three hours, but much of that time is likely spent improving skills and strategy, during which kids are often standing in line. In baseball, hitting, catching and other skills require little activity, he added. "So, time spent on skills can compete for active time.""

Aspirin Cuts Death Rate From Several Common Cancers - Medscape, 12/7/10 - "The researchers showed a 21% reduction in the number of deaths caused by cancer among those who had taken aspirin, compared with those who had not ... The investigation also showed that the benefits of taking aspirin increased over time. After 5 years, death rates were shown to fall by 34% for all cancers and by 54% for gastrointestinal cancers ... This 20-year follow-up established that the risk for cancer death remained 20% lower among those who had been allocated aspirin than among those who had not for all solid cancers, including lung, prostate, brain, bladder, and kidney cancers, and by 35% for gastrointestinal cancers ... The fall in the risk for death broke down according to individual types of cancer: 60% for esophageal cancer, 40% for colorectal cancer, 30% for lung cancer, and 10% for prostate cancer" - Note:  There are also downsides to aspirin.  Some examples:

  • Regular analgesic use increases hearing loss in men, study finds - Science Daily, 3/1/10 - "For aspirin, regular users under 50 and those aged 50-59 years were 33% more likely to have hearing loss than were nonregular users, but there was no association among men aged 60 years and older. For NSAIDs, regular users aged under 50 were 61% more likely, those aged 50-59 were 32% more likely, and those aged 60 and older were 16% more likely to develop hearing loss than nonregular users of NSAIDs. For acetaminophen, regular users aged under 50 were 99% more likely, regular users aged 50-59 were 38% more likely, and those aged 60 and older were 16% more likely to have hearing loss than nonregular users of acetaminophen"
  • Regular use of aspirin increases risk of Crohn's disease by 5 times, study finds - Science Daily, 5/4/10 - "the researchers discovered that those taking aspirin regularly for a year or more were around five times more likely to develop Crohn's disease"

'Love Hormone' could help treat severe mental illness - MSNBC, 12.3.10 - "A small study published Oct. 1 in the journal Biological Psychiatry found that patients with schizophrenia who took oxytocin for three weeks along with their regular antipsychotic medication improved in their symptoms and hallucinated less than those who took a placebo with their antipsychotic ... Oxytocin is also being tested in clinical trials as a treatment for depression, borderline personality disorder and alcohol withdrawal ... One hypothesis is that oxytocin dampens the activity of the brain's fear center, the amygdala, thereby easing stress and anxiety ... Because of oxytocin's proposed blunting effects on the amygdala's activity, scientists have also hypothesized it would help those with PTSD ... oxytocin's trust effect could help those with schizophrenia, making them less paranoid ... researchers are investigating oxytocin's potential benefit for a number of other ailments, including headaches, constipation and skin damage" - See oxytocin 6x5iu tablets at International Antiaging Systems.

Widely used arthritis pill protects against skin cancer, study suggests - Science Daily, 12/2/10 - "Celecoxib, a prescription-strength nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID), reduced basal cell carcinomas by 68 percent and squamous cell carcinomas by 58 percent in patients at high risk for skin cancer. The decrease in the incidence of these cancers is much greater than that achieved through the use of sunscreen, which provides only moderate protection against squamous cell and basal cell carcinomas"

Low vitamin D status associated with cognitive decline: Study - Nutra USA, 12/2/10 - "A total of 5,596 women, not taking vitamin D supplements were divided into 2 groups according to their baseline weekly staus: either inadequate (less than 35 micrograms per week) or recommended (more than 35 micrograms per week) ... Compared to women with recommended weekly vitamin D dietary intakes, women with inadequate intakes were reported to have lower scores on the SPMSQ mental state questionnaire" - [Abstract] - See vitamin D at Amazon.com.

Perinatal bisphenol-A exposure may affect fertility - Science Daily, 12/2/10 - "At the highest of three doses tested, only 60% of the BPA-exposed mice had four or more deliveries over a 32-week period, compared with 95% in the unexposed control group. Decline of the reproductive capacity of the female mice in this study was not obvious at first pregnancy, when the animals were very young, but manifested later in life with a decline in number of pups born per delivery ... BPA has been found in the urine of over 92% of Americans tested, with higher levels in children and adolescents relative to adults. It has also been detected in human maternal and fetal plasma ... The three doses of BPA tested are within the range of human exposure and below the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reference dose (i.e., the maximal acceptable daily dose)"

Finger length points to prostate cancer risk - Science Daily, 12/1/10 - "men whose index finger is longer than their ring finger were one third less likely to develop the disease than men with the opposite finger length pattern"

Early PSA Predicts Prostate Cancer Risk -- But Then What? - Medscape, 12/1/10 - "The investigators went back and tested the blood samples of these men to see what their PSA [prostate-specific antigen] levels were up to 30 years before the diagnosis of prostate cancer was made. They found that if the PSA was > 0.63 ng/mL, they had a significant chance of developing cancer or advanced cancer many years in the future"

Age-related hearing loss and folate in the elderly - Science Daily, 12/1/10 - "The main finding of the study was that low serum levels of folic acid were significantly associated with high-frequency hearing loss in the elderly" - See folic acid at Amazon.com.

New evidence for eye-protective effects of omega-3-rich fish, shellfish - Science Daily, 12/1/10 - "Our study corroborates earlier findings that eating omega-3-rich fish and shellfish may protect against advanced AMD" - See Mega Twin EPA at Amazon.com and Jarrow Max DHA at Amazon.com.

Report sets new dietary intake levels for calcium and vitamin D to maintain health and avoid risks associated with excess - Science Daily, 12/1/10 - "The science on calcium's role in bone health shows that 700 milligrams per day meets the needs of almost all children ages 1 through 3, and 1,000 milligrams daily is appropriate for almost all children ages 4 through 8. Adolescents ages 9 through 18 require no more than 1,300 milligrams per day. For practically all adults ages 19 through 50 and for men until age 71, 1,000 milligrams covers daily calcium needs. Women starting at age 51 and both men and women age 71 and older need no more than 1,200 milligrams per day ... As for vitamin D, 600 IUs daily meets the needs of almost everyone in the United States and Canada, although people 71 and older may require as much as 800 IUs per day because of potential physical and behavioral changes related to aging"

Sugar and Your Skin - ABC News, 11/30/10 - It's a video.  He talks about glycation, fish oil, sugar, green tea, etc.  Things I've had in my newsletters for years.  See those pages.  Nearly all those articles have been in my newsletters.

Dehydroepiandrosterone Combined with Exercise Improves Muscle Strength and Physical Function in Frail Older Women - Medscape, 11/10/10 - "The current study found an improvement in strength and function with DHEA supplementation, but exercise, even at low intensity, may have been a requisite for this effect, as others have found in nonfrail subjects ... DHEA supplementation increased the concentration of all sex hormones studied, indicating a good therapeutic response. DHEAS levels increased five times, equal to those seen in a typical young adult[44] and similar to increases seen in other studies of older adults using 50-mg/d supplementation with DHEA.[10,12,17,18,20,32,45] Other studies have reported increases in estrogen and testosterone levels similar to those reported here.[10,17,18,45] The increases in estradiol and estrone levels reached those seen in premenopausal women, and the levels of testosterone were greater than in premenopausal women" - See DHEA at Amazon.com.

New Review Reassures on ARB/Cancer Risk, But Questions Linger - Medscape, 11/30/10 - "A new meta-analysis of almost 325 000 individuals from 70 clinical trials has found no excess risk of cancer or cancer death with any single antihypertensive drug ... However, a statistically significant increase in cancers among patients taking an ARB in combination with an ACE inhibitor of roughly 10% means the authors "cannot rule out" an increased risk of cancer with the combination of these two medications"

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):

Circulating 25-Hydroxyvitamin D Levels and Frailty Status in Older Women - J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2010 Dec;95(12):5266-5273 - "At baseline, there was a U-shaped association between 25(OH)D level and odds of frailty with the lowest risk among women with levels 20.0-29.9 ng/ml (referent group). Compared with this group, the odds of frailty were higher among those with levels <15.0 ng/ml [multivariable odds ratio (MOR) 1.47, 95% confidence interval (CI), 1.19-1.82], those with levels 15.0-19.9 ng/ml (MOR 1.24, 95% CI 0.99-1.54), and those with levels ≥30 ng/ml (MOR 1.32, 95% CI 1.06-1.63). Among 4551 nonfrail women at baseline, the odds of frailty/death (vs. robust/intermediate) at follow-up appeared higher among those with levels 15.0-19.9 ng/ml (MOR 1.21, 95% CI 0.99-1.49), but the CI overlapped 1.0. The odds of death (vs. robust/intermediate/frail at follow-up) was higher among those with levels <15.0 ng/ml (MOR 1.40, 95% CI 1.04-1.88) and those with levels 15.0-19.9 ng/ml (MOR 1.30, 95% CI 0.97-1.75), although the latter association did not quite reach significance. Conclusion: Lower (<20 ng/ml) and higher (≥30 ng/ml) levels of 25(OH)D among older women were moderately associated with a higher odds of frailty at baseline. Among nonfrail women at baseline, lower levels (<20 ng/ml) were modestly associated with an increased risk of incident frailty or death at follow-up" - See vitamin D at Amazon.com.

Insulin metabolism and the risk of Alzheimer disease: The Rotterdam Study - Neurology. 2010 Nov 30;75(22):1982-7 - "Diabetes mellitus has been associated with an increased risk of Alzheimer disease (AD), but how it exerts its effect remains controversial ... Levels of insulin and insulin resistance were associated with a higher risk of AD within 3 years of baseline. After 3 years, the risk was no longer increased. Glucose was not associated with a higher risk of AD"

Preventive Effects of Taurine on Development of Hepatic Steatosis Induced by a High-Fat/Cholesterol Dietary Habit - J Agric Food Chem. 2010 Dec 2 - "Nonalcoholic fatty liver (NAFL) is also called hepatic steatosis and has become an emergent liver disease in developed and developing nations ... taurine (Tau) ... Tau shows preventive effects on the development of hepatic steatosis induced by a high-fat/cholesterol dietary habit" - See taurine at Amazon.com.

Dietary Supplementation of Lutein Reduces Colon Carcinogenesis in DMH-Treated Rats by Modulating K-ras, PKB, and β-catenin Proteins - Nutr Cancer. 2010 Dec 2:1 - "The results showed a significant increase in protein expression for K-ras and β-catenin in tumors of DMH-treated rats. Simultaneously, we detected changes in the phosphorylation state of ERK1/2 and PKB in DMH-treated animals. Lutein given in the diet (0.002%), before (prevention) and after (treatment) DMH administration, diminished the number of tumors by 55% and 32%, respectively. Moreover, lutein significantly decreased in tumors the expression of K-ras (25%) and β-catenin (28%) and the amount of pPKB (32%), during the prevention, and 39%, 26%, and 26% during the treatment stage, respectively. This study demonstrates the chemoprotective effect of lutein against colon cancer by modulating the proliferative activity of K-ras, PKB, and β-catenin proteins" - See lutein at Amazon.com.

Metformin and incident breast cancer among diabetic women: a population-based case-control study in Denmark - Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2010 Nov 30 - "Metformin users were less likely to be diagnosed with breast cancer (OR=0.77; 95% CI=0.61, 0.99) than non-metformin users. Adjusting for diabetes complications, clinically diagnosed obesity, and important predictors of breast cancer did not substantially alter the association (OR=0.81; 95%CI=0.63, 0.96). CONCLUSION: Our results suggest that metformin may protect against breast cancer in type 2 diabetic peri- or postmenopausal women. Impact: This study supports the growing evidence of a role for metformin in breast cancer chemoprevention"

Effects of pioglitazone and metformin fixed-dose combination therapy on cardiovascular risk markers of inflammation and lipid profile compared with pioglitazone and metformin monotherapy in patients with type 2 diabetes - J Clin Hypertens (Greenwich). 2010 Dec;12(12):973-82 - "fixed-dose combination (FDC) of pioglitazone/metformin compared with the respective monotherapies ... FDC and pioglitazone increased high-density lipoprotein cholesterol by 14.20% and 9.88%, respectively, vs an increase of 6.09% with metformin (P<.05, metformin vs FDC). Triglycerides decreased with all three treatments -5.95%, -5.54% and -1.78%, respectively; P=not significant). FDC and pioglitazone significantly decreased small low-density lipoprotein and increased large low-density lipoprotein particle concentrations. Reductions in high-sensitivity C-reactive protein were greater in the FDC and pioglitazone groups. Increases in adiponectin were significant in the FDC and pioglitazone groups (P<.0001 vs metformin). Overall, adverse events were not higher with the FDC. Thus, treatment with the FDC resulted in improved levels of CV biomarkers, which were better than or equal to monotherapy"

Carotenoid deficiency in chronic pancreatitis: the effect of an increase in tomato consumption - Eur J Clin Nutr. 2010 Dec 1 - "chronic pancreatitis (CP) ... Of these patients, 84.7% had at least one carotenoid deficiency and 27.5% had more than four carotenoid deficiencies ... Lycopene concentration was decreased in patients with vascular disease (171+/-197 vs 99+/-72 μg/l; P=0.02). After an intervention period of 8+/-2 months ... Carotenoid concentrations are dramatically decreased in CP, especially lycopene in CP patients with vascular disease" - Note:  There are over 600 carotenoids and some feel that taking high doses of just one may cause a deficiency of the others.  See Jarrow Formulas, CarotenALL, Mixed Carotenoid Complex at Amazon.com.

The effect of phosphatidylserine-containing omega-3 fatty acids on memory abilities in subjects with subjective memory complaints: a pilot study - Clin Interv Aging. 2010 Nov 2;5:313-6 - "PS-omega-3 supplementation resulted in 42% increase in the ability to recall words in the delayed condition" - See phosphatidylserine at Amazon.com and Mega Twin EPA at Amazon.com and Jarrow Max DHA at Amazon.com.

Age-related hearing loss, vitamin B12, and folate in the elderly - Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2010 Dec;143(6):826-30 - "Spearman's correlation revealed that low folate (correlation coefficient = -0.27, P = 0.01) and cyanocobalamin (correlation coefficient = -0.35, P = 0.02) were significantly associated with increasing hearing threshold in the high frequencies. After adjusting for age, serum folate (correlation coefficient = -0.01, P = 0.01) was significant, while vitamin B12 (correlation coefficient = -0.01, P = 0.74) was not" - See folic acid at Amazon.com.

Inhibition of the receptor for advanced glycation endproducts (RAGE) protects pancreatic β-cells - Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2010 Nov 24 - "Advanced glycation endproducts (AGEs) and the receptor for AGEs (RAGE) have been linked to the pathogenesis of diabetic complications, such as retinopathy, neuropathy, and nephropathy. AGEs may induce β-cell dysfunction and apoptosis, another complication of diabetes ... Inhibition of RAGE prevented AGE-induced pancreatic β-cell apoptosis, but could not restore the function of glucose stimulated insulin secretion (GSIS) in rat islets. In summary, the results of the present study demonstrate that AGEs are integrally involved in RAGE-mediated apoptosis and impaired GSIS dysfunction in pancreatic β-cells. Inhibition of RAGE can effectively protect β-cells against AGE-induced apoptosis, but can not reverse islet dysfunction in GSIS"

Neat Tech Stuff / "How To's":

Health Focus (Uric Acid):

Alternative News:

  • Vitamin C May Prevent Hyperuricemia, Gout - Medscape, 9/26/08 - "Hyperuricemia is considered a precursor of gout, which is the most common inflammatory arthritis in adult men ... An association was observed between greater vitamin C intake and lower prevalence of hyperuricemia defined as > 6 mg/dL. The multivariable odds ratio for hyperuricemia for the highest intake of vitamin C (>1000 mg/d) compared to the lowest (<90 mg/d) was 0.34 ... These findings support a potential role of vitamin C in the prevention of hyperuricemia and gout" - See vitamin C products at Amazon.com.

Other News:

  • Uric acid level and allopurinol use as risk markers of mortality and morbidity in systolic heart failure - Am Heart J. 2010 Nov;160(5):928-33 - "The allopurinol group and highest uric acid quartile had the highest total mortality (41.7 and 42.4 per 100 person-years, respectively) and combined morbidity/mortality (45.6 and 51.0 per 100 person-years, respectively). Allopurinol use and highest uric acid quartile were independently associated with mortality (hazard ratio [HR] 1.65, 95% CI 1.22-2.23, P = .001 and HR 1.35, 95% CI 1.07-1.72, P = .01, respectively) and combined morbidity/mortality (uric acid quartile 4 vs 1: HR 1.32, 95% CI 1.06-1.66, P = .02; allopurinol use: HR 1.48, 95% CI 1.11-1.99, P = .008) ... Elevated uric acid level was independently associated with mortality in patients with severe systolic HF, even when accounting for allopurinol use"
  • Serum Uric Acid Linked With Development of Type 2 Diabetes - Science Daily, 10/2/09 - "The pooled crude relative risk (RR) of a 1 mg/dL increase in serum uric acid was 1.17"
  • Gout Drug May Lower Blood Pressure - WebMD, 9/23/09 - "A new study suggests a direct link between a high-sugar diet and high blood pressure ... allopurinol could lower high blood pressure by lowering uric acid" - Note:  Kind of a confusing article.  Yeah, high blood sugar probably is a cause of high blood pressure and high uric acid but the article implies that allopurinol lowers blood pressure by lowering the uric acid not the blood sugar so why is it discussing blood sugar?  I've  written WebMD before about articles like that and they've agreed and changed it.  This one is minor I guess.
  • 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"
  • High Levels Of Uric Acid May Be Associated With High Blood Pressure - Science Daily, 8/26/08 - "In the study, half of the 30 teen-agers with newly diagnosed high blood pressure and higher than normal levels of uric acid in their blood underwent treatment with allopurinol twice a day for four weeks. The other half received a placebo (an inactive drug) on the same schedule. They then went without either drug for two weeks before receiving the opposite treatment for another four weeks ... blood pressures decreased to normal in 20 of the 30 teens when they were on allopurinol. By contrast, only 1 of the 30 teens had normal blood pressure when receiving placebo"

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