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Recent Longevity News for the seven days ending 7/17/13.  You should consult your doctor if you are taking any medications.

How Cranberries Impact Infection-Causing Bacteria - Science Daily, 7/15/13 - "cranberry powder can inhibit the ability of Proteus mirabilis, a bacterium frequently implicated in complicated UTIs, to swarm on agar plates and swim within the agar. The experiments also show that increasing concentrations of cranberry powder reduce the bacteria's production of urease, an enzyme that contributes to the virulence of infections" - See cranberry extract at Amazon.com.

Putting Off Retirement May Help Stave Off Alzheimer's - WebMD, 7/15/13 - "Researchers analyzing health and insurance records of more than 429,000 self-employed workers found a 3 percent reduction in dementia risk for each extra year at the age of retirement. Workers evaluated had been retired for an average of more than 12 years, and 2.65 percent of the group had dementia ... There seems to be growing evidence that staying cognitively [mentally] active is really important to reducing a person's risk, and perhaps professional activity may be one of those cognitive activities ... noted several caveats to keep in mind when interpreting the study's meaning ... self-employed workers may be inherently different than company-employed workers, with differences in skill sets, work environment, stress and social mobility that might affect the study's results"

Diabetes Drug May Protect the Brain - WebMD, 7/15/13 - "Metformin makes muscle tissue more receptive to insulin, a hormone necessary for sugar (glucose) to get into the body's cells and tissues to provide fuel. It also decreases the amount of glucose made in the liver. Sulfonylureas stimulate the production of insulin. TZDs make muscle and fat tissue more receptive to insulin, and they decrease the amount of glucose made in the liver ... Compared to people taking sulfonylureas, those on metformin had a 20 percent decreased risk of developing dementia, according to the study. There was no difference in dementia risk for those on TZDs or insulin compared to those on sulfonylureas ... one theory stemming from animal research is that metformin may play a role in the development of new brain cells (neurogenesis). It has also been linked to reduced inflammation ... A drug like metformin, [which is] an insulin sensitizer in the body, may also be an insulin sensitizer in the brain" - See metformin at The Antiaging Store.

Not just industry slamming omega-3-prostate cancer links - Nutra USA, 7/15/13 - "So what you’re left with at the end of the day is an association that at best is very weak and further weakened by the fact that they didn’t account for the known predictors of prostate cancer, when they were making this calculation"

Omega-3 Prostate Cancer Study Flawed - Don't Believe All You Read - prostate.net, 7/12/13 - "This is a common phenomenon when a contradictory study hits the media. It happened in 2012 with saw palmetto ... The same thing happened with SELECT trial regarding vitamin E in 2011 ... When faced with opposing evidence, readers must use common sense and read between the lines. Don’t let one study form your opinion. Look for other sources to support a study before forming an opinion and find out specifically what form of a treatment was studied and other factor that could affect outcome. There are flaws in many studies"

Michael Savage/Anthony Victor D'Amico, M.D. Interview

How a SELECTed Bad Study Became Big News - Dr. Michael Murray, 7/12/13 - "This study is not consistent with other studies (discussed below) ... There is no evidence that anybody in this study took fish oil supplements or even ate fish ... In usual circumstances, plasma levels of EPA and DHA reflect very recent intake and are considered a poor biomarker of long-term omega-3 intake ... Patients with prostate cancer may have only recently increased their fish and/or fish oil consumption ... Fish and fish oil ingestion produces a big rise in plasma omega-3 levels in about 4.5 hours and washes out around 48 hours ... The data may reflect cancer activity rather than a causative association. Without dietary history or documentation of fish oil use there is no way of knowing"

Experts slam omega-3 link to prostate cancer as 'scaremongering' - Nutra USA, 7/12/13 - "if the findings of the new study were true, "then prostate cancer would be rampant in any country with high seafood consumption (Scandinavia, Japan etc) and conversely, low level consumption should be protective"

Vitamin B: Choline intake improves memory and attention-holding capacity, experts say - Science Daily, 7/11/13 - "In the first experiment, scientists administered choline to rats during the third term of gestation ... the scientists concluded that prenatal choline intake improves long-term memory in the resulting offspring once they reach adulthood ... In the second experiment, the researchers measured changes in attention that occurred in adult rats fed a choline supplement for 12 weeks, versus those with no choline intake. They found that the rats which had ingested choline maintained better attention that the others when presented with a familiar stimulus" - See citicholine at Amazon.com.

Acid Reflux Drug May Cause Heart Disease, Study Suggests  - Science Daily, 7/10/13 - "In human tissue and mouse models, the researchers found PPIs caused the constriction of blood vessels. If taken regularly, PPIs could lead to a variety of cardiovascular problems over time, including hypertension and a weakened heart ... PPIs suppressed the enzyme DDAH, dimethylarginine dimethylaminohydrolase. That caused an increase in the blood levels of ADMA (asymmetric dimethylarginine), an important chemical messenger. They found ADMA in turn suppressed the production of another chemical messenger, nitric oxide, or NO, proven by 1998 Nobel Prize winners Furchgott, Ignarro, and Murad to impact cardiovascular function ... PPIs interfere with the ability of blood vessels to relax ... PPIs have this adverse effect by reducing the ability of human blood vessels to generate nitric oxide. Nitric oxide generated by the lining of the vessel is known to relax, and to protect, arteries and veins"

Vitamin D Deficiency Linked to Accelerated Aging of Bones - Science Daily, 7/10/13 - "collected samples of iliac crest bone cores from 30 participants, half of whom were deficient in vitamin D and showed early signs of osteomalacia ... while vitamin D-deficient subjects had less overall mineralization due to a reduction of mineralized bone, underneath the new non-mineralized surfaces, the existing bone was actually more heavily mineralized, and displayed the structural characteristics -- mature collagen molecules and mineral crystals -- of older and more brittle bone ... vitamin D deficiency increases both the initiation and propagation of cracks by 22- to 31-percent" - See vitamin D at Amazon.com.

The Dark Side of Artificial Sweeteners: Expert Reviews Negative Impact - Science Daily, 7/10/13 - "Consumption of sugar-sweetened drinks has been linked to obesity, type 2 diabetes, and metabolic syndrome -- a group of risk factors that raises the risk for heart disease and stroke. As a result, many Americans have turned to artificial sweeteners, which are hundreds of times sweeter than sugar but contain few, if any, calories. However, studies in humans have shown that consumption of artificially sweetened beverages is also associated with obesity, type 2 diabetes, and metabolic syndrome as well as cardiovascular disease. As few as one of these drinks per day is enough to significantly increase the risk for health problems ... studies in mice and rats have shown that consumption of noncaloric sweeteners dampens physiological responses to sweet taste, causing the animals to overindulge in calorie-rich, sweet-tasting food and pack on extra pounds"

Rate of aging may be determined in the womb and linked to birthweight, study reveals - Science Daily, 7/9/13 - "a person's weight at the time of birth is an important determinant of health in middle and old age, and that people with low birth weight are more susceptible to age related diseases"

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):

Wisconsin Ginseng (Panax quinquefolius) to Improve Cancer-Related Fatigue: A Randomized, Double-Blind Trial, N07C2 - J Natl Cancer Inst. 2013 Jul 13 - "A multisite, double-blind trial randomized fatigued cancer survivors to 2000mg of American ginseng vs a placebo for 8 weeks ... Three hundred sixty-four participants were enrolled from 40 institutions ... Data support the benefit of American ginseng, 2000mg daily, on CRF over an 8-week period. There were no discernible toxicities associated with the treatment" - See ginseng at Amazon.com.

Treatment with resveratrol attenuates sublesional bone loss in spinal-cord-injured rats - Br J Pharmacol. 2013 Jul 15 - "resveratrol (RES) ... Treatment with RES attenuated sublesional bone loss in spinal-cord-injured rats, associated with abating oxidative stress, attenuating inflammation, depressing PPARγ signaling, and restoring Wnt/β-catenin and IGF-1 signaling" - See resveratrol products at Amazon.com.

The Relationship Between Lower Urinary Tract Symptoms/Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia and the Number of Components of Metabolic Syndrome - Urology. 2013 Jul 10 - "A total of 1224 male police officers aged 50-59 years who had participated in a health examination were included ... the cases of LUTS/BPH were positively associated with the number of MetS components"

The Effect of Tea Tree Oil (Melaleuca alternifolia) on Wound Healing Using a Dressing Model - J Altern Complement Med. 2013 Jul 13 - "The current study used the same dressing model with patients who had wounds infected with Staphylococcus aureus. Ten participants volunteered for the quasi-experimental study, and four of the 10 were used as matched participants to compare wound healing times between conventional treatment alone and conventional treatment plus fumes of tea tree essential oil. The results demonstrated decreased healing time in all but one of the participants treated with tea tree oil. The differences between the matched participants were striking" - See tea tree products at iHerb.

Metformin for Weight Loss and Metabolic Control in Overweight Outpatients With Schizophrenia and Schizoaffective Disorder - Am J Psychiatry. 2013 Jul 12 - "Metformin was titrated up to 1,000 mg twice daily, as tolerated ... Mean change in body weight was -3.0 kg (95% CI=-4.0 to -2.0) for the metformin group and -1.0 kg (95% CI=-2.0 to 0.0) for the placebo group, with a between-group difference of -2.0 kg (95% CI=-3.4 to -0.6). Metformin also demonstrated a significant between-group advantage for BMI (-0.7; 95% CI=-1.1 to -0.2), triglyceride level (-20.2 mg/dL; 95% CI=-39.2 to -1.3), and hemoglobin A1c level (-0.07%; 95% CI=-0.14 to -0.004). Metformin-associated side effects were mostly gastrointestinal and generally transient, and they rarely led to treatment discontinuation" - Note: 3 kg is 6.6 pounds.  See metformin at The Antiaging Store.

A Trial of Prazosin for Combat Trauma PTSD With Nightmares in Active-Duty Soldiers Returned From Iraq and Afghanistan - Am J Psychiatry. 2013 Jul 12 - "Prazosin is effective for combat-related PTSD with trauma nightmares in active-duty soldiers, and benefits are clinically meaningful. Substantial residual symptoms suggest that studies combining prazosin with effective psychotherapies might demonstrate further benefit"

Impact of Maternal Depression Across the First 6 Years of Life on the Child's Mental Health, Social Engagement, and Empathy: The Moderating Role of Oxytocin - Am J Psychiatry. 2013 Jul 12 - "Maternal depression across the postbirth period has long-term negative consequences for infant development ... The authors recruited a community cohort of women with high or low depression scores 2 days after childbirth and measured depression again at 6 and 9 months. When the child was 6, the authors evaluated the families of 46 chronically depressed mothers and 103 mothers reporting no depression since childbirth. The child was assessed for psychiatric diagnoses, social engagement, and empathy. Mother, father, and child were tested for salivary oxytocin level and variation in the rs2254298 single nucleotide polymorphism on the OXTR gene ... Of the children of the chronically depressed mothers, 61% displayed axis I disorders, mainly anxiety and oppositional defiant disorder, compared with 15% of the children of nondepressed mothers. In the depressed mothers' families, salivary oxytocin was lower in mothers, fathers, and children, and the children had lower empathy and social engagement levels. The rs2254298 GG homozygous genotype was overrepresented in depressed mothers and their families, and it correlated with lower salivary oxytocin. Presence of a single rs2254298 A allele (GA or AA genotype) in depressed mothers markedly decreased risk of child psychopathology ... This suggests a potential for oxytocin-based interventions" - See Oxy Pro (Oxytocin) Nasal Spray at International Anti-aging Systems.

Marijuana use and risk of lung cancer: a 40-year cohort study - Cancer Causes Control. 2013 Jul 12 - "Cannabis (marijuana) smoke and tobacco smoke contain many of the same potent carcinogens, but a critical-yet unresolved-medical and public-health issue is whether cannabis smoking might facilitate the development of lung cancer ... military conscription in Sweden in 1969-1970. Participants were tracked until 2009 for incident lung cancer outcomes in nationwide linked medical registries ... such "heavy" cannabis smoking was significantly associated with more than a twofold risk (hazard ratio 2.12, 95 % CI 1.08-4.14) of developing lung cancer over the 40-year follow-up period, even after statistical adjustment for baseline tobacco use, alcohol use, respiratory conditions, and socioeconomic status"

Association of blood antioxidants and vitamins with risk of age-related cataract: a meta-analysis of observational studies - Am J Clin Nutr. 2013 Jul 10 - "searched PubMed, EMBASE, and the Web of Science for relevant studies ... A pooled estimate showed vitamin E (OR: 0.75; 95% CI: 0.58, 0.96), α-carotene (OR: 0.72; 95% CI: 0.59, 0.88), lutein (OR: 0.75; 95% CI: 0.65, 0.87), and zeaxanthin (OR: 0.70; 95% CI: 0.60, 0.82) were inversely associated with age-related cataract. Vitamins A (OR: 0.69; 95% CI: 0.58, 0.83) and C (OR: 0.67; 95% CI: 0.57, 0.78) were inversely associated with age-related cataract in Asian populations but not in Western populations. β-Carotene (OR: 0.90; 95% CI: 0.78, 1.05), lycopene (OR: 0.86; 95% CI: 0.65, 1.15), and β-cryptoxanthin (OR: 0.83; 95% CI: 0.68, 1.02) had no significant association with risk of cataract" - See Jarrow Formulas, CarotenALL at Amazon.com and Jarrow FamilE (contains all eight members of the vitamin E family, includes Tocomin) at Amazon.com.

Mediterranean Diet Adherence in Individuals with Prediabetes and Unknown Diabetes: The Di@bet.es Study - Ann Nutr Metab. 2013 Jul 2;62(4):339-346 - "We investigated MedDiet adherence in individuals with prediabetes and unknown (PREDM/UKDM) or known diabetes (KDM) compared to those with normal glucose metabolism (NORMAL) ... qualitative food frequency questionnaire ... Higher age-adjusted adherence to MedDiet (5-unit increment in the MedScore) was associated with lower and nondifferent odds (OR, 95% CI) of prevalent PREDM/UKDM (0.88, 0.81-0.96, p = 0.001) and KDM (0.97, 0.87-1.07, p = 0.279), respectively, compared to individuals in the NORMAL group ... reverse causation bias cannot be ruled out in cross-sectional studies"

Neat Tech Stuff / "How To's":

  • New Automatic Infrared Ceiling Occupancy PIR Motion Sensor Switch 120V MPC-50V-W - These are great for rooms where the light switch is in a bad place to pick up room movement once you’re in that room and also walk-in closets. Keep in mind that you have to run a 14/3 wire from the light switch to this unit which might not be practical if the room above isn’t the attic. I recommend replacing the light switch also with a three position where up in always on, middle is always off and down goes through the sensor.  See Leviton 5685-2W 15 Amp, 120/277 Volt, Decora Plus Rocker, Single-Pole Double Throw, Center Off, Maintained Contact, White.  The red wire from the sensor and the wire to the light (load) both go to the top, the hot (black wire) to the middle and the black wire to the sensor goes to the bottom of the 3-position switch.  All white (neutral wires) connected together.  Don't quote me on that.  My double E degree was in 1974, shortly after electricity was invented.  On the sensor (which is via eBay because Amazon doesn’t sell that model), it requires a 4x4 inch box. I could only find one remodel box that would work with it and I had to do a real jury rig to make that work.  For the next one I’m getting a non-remodel model and going in the attic to install it.  I had to go into the attic for the wire anyway.

Health Focus (Urine pH - Seems like it could be confused with overactive bladder):

Note:  Reading the articles it can be confusing whether potassium citrate is an acid or an alkaline.  I put a couple potassium chelate capsules in a shot glass with water and measured it with my cheap pH meter (accuracy: +/- 0.1 pH) that I use for yogurt to test whether it's done.  The pH was 9.5 (alkaline).  For lemon juice, I got 3.5 (acid).  For one table of magnesium citrate in a cup of water I got a neutral 7.0.

Alternative News:

Other News:

  • How to Correct High Acid pH With High Alkali Foods - .wikihow.com - "If your body's pH is highly acidic most of the time, you can increase your risk for a variety of diseases. A pH balance of 0 to 6 is acid, a pH balance of 7 is neutral, and a pH balance of 8 to 14 is alkaline ... your urine pH should be between 6.0 and 6.5 when you test in the morning, and between 6.5 and 7.0 when you test in the evening"
  • The pH of soda pop - quittingsoda.com - "Pepsi - 2.530"
  • pH - wikipedia.org - "Battery acid ... 1.0"