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Recent Longevity News for the week ending 9/16/15

Blood Pressure Meds May Cut Alzheimer’s Risk - WebMD, 9/14/15 - "People with early thinking and memory issues who took an ACE inhibitor or an ARB medication for their high blood pressure were less likely to get Alzheimer’s disease than those on other BP drugs ... A 2009 study also found that people taking ACE inhibitors that were crossing the brain barrier had a 65% lower risk of getting the disease compared to people taking other kinds of BP drugs"

Mediterranean diet plus olive oil associated with reduced breast cancer risk - Science Daily, 9/14/15 = "participants in the two intervention groups were given EVOO (one liter per week for the participants and their families) or mixed nuts (30 grams per day: 15 grams of walnuts, 7.5 grams of hazelnuts and 7.5 grams of almonds) ... women eating a Mediterranean diet supplemented with EVOO showed a 68 percent (multivariable-adjusted hazard ratio of 0.32) relatively lower risk of malignant breast cancer than those allocated to the control diet. Women eating a Mediterranean diet supplemented with nuts showed a nonsignificant risk reduction compared with women in the control group"

Long sleep and high blood copper levels go hand in hand - Science Daily, 9/14/15 - "Based on this study, however, it is impossible to say whether sleeping long results in high serum copper concentrations or vice versa" - See Jarrow Zinc Balance at Amazon.com.

Low Vitamin D Linked to Cognitive Decline - Medscape, 9/14/15 - "The magnitude of the effect of Vitamin D insufficiency on cognition was substantial ... Vitamin D supplementation remains an intriguing possibility to delay or even prevent dementia" - [Science Daily] - See vitamin D at Amazon.com.

Scientists: To keep mites away, leave your bed unmade every day - USA Today, 9/11/15 - "We know that mites can only survive by taking in water from the atmosphere using small glands on the outside of their body. Something as simple as leaving a bed unmade during the day can remove moisture from the sheets and mattress so the mites will dehydrate and eventually die"

Fish-rich diet may help curb depression, new research finds - Washington Post, 9/11/15 - "a new study published in the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health on Friday involving 150,000 people provides the strongest evidence yet that fish may belong in the list of "good mood" foods that may stave off depression ... people eating the most fish had a 17 percent reduction in depression risk compared with those eating the least amount of fish"

For Alzheimer's patients, resveratrol brings new hope - CNN, 9/11/15 - "Even for the relatively small number of participants in the study, the researchers did see indication that resveratrol could improve cognition. Patients in this group had slight improvements in their ability to carry out daily tasks, such as remembering to brush their teeth. And anecdotally, patients who took resveratrol told the researchers that they felt like they were maintaining their mental ability. (Neither the participants nor the researchers knew who was taking resveratrol and who was taking placebo.) ... If resveratrol does pan out in further research, it may add to the medications that are currently available, such as Aricept and Exelon, which slow, but do not halt, progression of the disease ... resveratrol on its own might not end up working as well as a combination of resveratrol and other polyphenol compounds found in red wine, grape juice and grape seed extract, which could help people at risk of Alzheimer's and those who already have mild symptoms" - See ReserveAge Resveratrol Vegetarian Capsules, 500 Mg, 60-Count at Amazon.com and OPCs+95 at Amazon.com.

Blood Pressure: How Low to Go? - WebMD, 9/11/15 - "getting high blood pressure back down to normal levels -- at least 120/80 -- dramatically cuts the risk of heart attacks, strokes, and deaths compared to currently recommended BP targets ... Most patients over age 60, for example, were advised to shoot for a goal of 150/90 ... On average, the participants needed three different medications to get to a goal of 120, compared to two medications in the group that aimed for a goal of 140 ... Patients in the lower blood pressure group had roughly a third fewer heart attacks, strokes, and diagnoses of heart failure compared to patients that had the slightly higher blood pressure target goal. The lower group also had about 25% fewer deaths" - Note:  Studies on that are all over the place.  It would take too long to list them all.  Here's some for the last four years but there were a lot more before that some of which are on my hypertension page.  I remember at least two studies that said there was a U or J curve and the lowest mortality was at around 140/85.

  • 'Mild' control of systolic blood pressure in older adults is adequate: 150 is good enough - Science Daily, 11/3/14 - "Keeping systolic blood pressure in older adults below 150 is important, it's what we consider a mild level of control ... But for older people that level is also good enough. After an extensive review, there was no significant evidence that more intensive management is necessary"
  • BP Control: Not Too Low, Not Too High Is Best for Outcomes - Medscape, 8/6/14 - "end-stage renal disease (ESRD) ... We observed a U-shaped curve for the composite outcome of mortality/ESRD at systolic BP above 139 and below 130 mm Hg [and] diastolic BP below 60 and above 79 mm Hg ... A BP of 137/71 mm Hg was associated with the lowest risk of death or ESRD"
  • New Hypertension After 80 Linked to Lower Dementia Risk - Medscape, 7/14/14 - "Risk for Dementia by Measured Blood Pressure at 90+ Study Baseline

    Blood Pressure Category (mmHg) Relative Risk
    <120 systolic or < 80 diastolic Reference
    129-139 systolic or 80-89 diastolic 0.76
    140-169 systolic or 90-99 diastolic 0.72
    160+ systolic or 100+ diastolic 0.58

    This analysis was adjusted for use of antihypertensive treatment, she noted, "so the association was not due to the medications that they may have been taking."
  • Relaxed blood pressure guidelines cut millions from needing medication - Science Daily, 3/29/14 - "the committee relaxed the blood pressure goal in adults 60 years and older to 150/90, instead of the previous goal of 140/90 ... The new guidelines do not address whether these adults should still be considered as having hypertension ... But they would no longer need medication to lower their blood pressure"
  • Higher blood pressure treshold OK in older adults - NBC  News, 12/18/13 - "For adults aged 60 and older, they are recommending a higher treatment threshold, prescribing medicine only when blood pressure levels reach 150 over 90 or higher" - [Abstract]
  • REGARDS: Pushing for Lower BPs in the Elderly - Medscape, 9/4/13 - "For all-cause mortality, death rates were significantly increased among those aged 55 to 74 years with systolic blood pressures greater than 140 mm Hg. Regarding the very elderly, those older than 75 years of age, all-cause mortality was not significantly affected by blood-pressure levels"
  • Rethinking the Association of High Blood Pressure With Mortality in Elderly Adults: The Impact of Frailty - Arch Intern Med. 2012 Jul 16:1-7 - "The association between BP and mortality varied by walking speed. Among faster walkers, those with elevated systolic BP (≥140 mm Hg) had a greater adjusted risk of mortality compared with those without (hazard ratio [HR], 1.35; 95% CI, 1.03-1.77). Among slower walkers, neither elevated systolic nor diastolic BP (≥90 mm Hg) was associated with mortality. In participants who did not complete the walk test, elevated BP was strongly and independently associated with a lower risk of death: HR, 0.38; 95% CI, 0.23-0.62 (systolic); and HR, 0.10; 95% CI, 0.01-0.81 (diastolic)"
  • Relation Between Blood Pressure and Vascular Events and Mortality in Patients With Manifest Vascular Disease: J-Curve Revisited - Hypertension. 2011 Nov 7 - "Recent studies have challenged the notion that "lower is better" for blood pressure in relation to vascular events and mortality in patients with vascular disease, whereas practice guidelines currently recommend to lower blood pressure to <130/80 mm Hg ... For this purpose, 5788 patients with symptomatic vascular disease enrolled in the Secondary Manifestations of Arterial Disease Study were followed-up for the occurrence of new vascular events (ie, myocardial infarction, stroke, or vascular death) and all-cause mortality. During a median of 5.0 years (interquartile range: 2.6-8.1 years), 788 patients experienced a new vascular event, and 779 died. Overall, the covariate-adjusted relationship between mean baseline systolic, diastolic, or pulse pressure and the occurrence of vascular events followed a J-curve with increased event rates above and below the nadir blood pressure of 143/82 mm Hg. A similar nonlinear relationship was found for diastolic pressure and all-cause mortality. Elevated blood pressure was not associated with increased morbidity and mortality in patients with recently diagnosed coronary artery disease, ≥65 years, and having >60 mm Hg pulse pressure. Importantly, especially in these subgroups, low blood pressure could also be a symptom rather than a cause of disease. Blood pressure level below and above 143/82 mm Hg is, thus, an independent risk factor for recurrent events in patients with manifest vascular disease"

Gut Bugs May Affect Body Fat, 'Good' Cholesterol - WebMD, 9/10/15 - "The size of your waistline may depend to some degree on the specific bacteria dwelling within your gut ... As recent research has revealed, those bugs do much more than support good digestion: They aid in everything from immune function, to metabolizing drugs to producing vitamins, anti-inflammatory compounds and even chemicals that relay messages among brain cells ... C-sections deprive newborns of beneficial bacteria from the birth canal, while breast milk feeds gut bacteria ... Diets filled with processed foods are also thought to be at fault ... the gut microbiome can be changed through diet" - See probiotic products at Amazon.com.

Abstracts from this week:

Dietary l-Lysine Suppresses Autophagic Proteolysis and Stimulates Akt/mTOR Signaling in the Skeletal Muscle of Rats Fed a Low-Protein Diet - J Agric Food Chem. 2015 Sep 14 - "continuous feeding of a Lys-rich 10% casein diet for 15 days increased the masses of the soleus and gastrocnemius muscles. Taken together, supplementation of Lys to a low-protein diet suppresses autophagic proteolysis through the Akt/mTOR signaling pathway, and continuous feeding of a Lys-rich diet may increase skeletal muscle mass" - See L-lysine at Amazon.com.

Carnosine reverses the aging-induced down regulation of brain regional serotonergic system - Mech Ageing Dev. 2015 Sep 10 - "These results suggest that carnosine attenuates and restores the aging-induced brain regional down regulation of serotonergic system towards that observed in young rats' brain regions" - See carnosine products at Amazon.com.

High serum carotenoids associated with lower risk for the metabolic syndrome and its components among Japanese subjects: Mikkabi cohort study - Br J Nutr. 2015 Sep 14 - "After adjustments for confounders, the hazard ratio (HR) for the MetS in the highest tertile of serum β-carotene against the lowest tertile was 0.47 (95 % CI 0.23, 0.95). On the other hand, significantly lower risks for dyslipidaemia were observed in the highest tertiles of serum α- and β-carotene and β-cryptoxanthin (HR 0.66; 95 % CI 0.46, 0.96; HR, 0.54; 95 % CI 0.37, 0.79; and HR 0.66; 95 % CI 0.44, 0.99, respectively)"

Plausible ergogenic effects of vitamin D on athletic performance and recovery - J Int Soc Sports Nutr. 2015 Aug 19 - "The hormonally-active form of vitamin D, 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D, has been shown to play critical roles in the human body and regulates over 900 gene variants. Based on the literature presented, it is plausible that vitamin D levels above the normal reference range (up to 100 nmol/L) might increase skeletal muscle function, decrease recovery time from training, increase both force and power production, and increase testosterone production, each of which could potentiate athletic performance. Therefore, maintaining higher levels of vitamin D could prove beneficial for athletic performance ... it is possible that dosages exceeding the recommendations for vitamin D (i.e. dosages up to 4000-5000 IU/day), in combination with 50 to 1000 mcg/day of vitamin K1 and K2 could aid athletic performance" - [Nutra USA] - Note:  100 nmol/L equals 40 ng/ml.  I think they usually use ng/ml in the U.S.  At least that's what my blood tests show.  See vitamin D at Amazon.com and vitamin K at Amazon.com.

Association between dietary vitamin C intake and risk of esophageal cancer: A dose-response meta-analysis - Int J Cancer. 2015 Sep 10 - "By comparing the highest versus the lowest categories of vitamin C intake, we found that vitamin C was inversely associated with the risk of esophageal cancer [overall OR=0.58 95%CI=0.49-0.68, I2 =56%]. A linear dose-response relationship was found. With an increase in dietary vitamin C intake of 50 mg/day, the risk of esophageal cancer statistically decreased by 13% (RR=0.87" - See American Health Products - Ester C W/Citrus Bioflavonoids, 1000 mg, 180 veg tablets at Amazon.com.

Egg and cholesterol intake and incident type 2 diabetes among French women - Br J Nutr. 2015 Sep 10 - "No association was observed between egg consumption and risk of type 2 diabetes. When comparing women who consumed at least five eggs per week with non-consumers, the multivariable hazard ratio (HR) was found to be 1.00 (95 % CI 0.78, 1.29; across categories, P trend=0.11). Women in the highest quintile of dietary cholesterol had a 40 % higher rate of diabetes compared with those in the lowest quintile (HR 1.40; 95 % CI 1.19, 1.63; across quintiles, P trend<0.0001). A 100 mg increase of dietary cholesterol per 4184 kJ (or 1000 kcal) was associated with a 14 % increase in the risk of diabetes (HR 1.14; 95 % CI 1.02, 1.26). In this large prospective cohort, we observed an association between dietary cholesterol and type 2 diabetes, but no association with egg consumption. In the absence of a clear underlying mechanism and potential residual confounding, these results should be interpreted with caution"

Associations between B Vitamins and Parkinson's Disease - Nutrients. 2015 Aug 27 - "Available data suggested that higher dietary intake of vitamin B6 was associated with a decreased risk of PD (odds ratio (OR) = 0.65" - Note:  It's hard to find a B6 supplement that isn't overkill yet most multi-vitamins don't contain enough in my opinion.  See Solgar - Vitamin B6, 25 mg, 100 tablets.

Neat Tech Stuff / "How To's":

Euro Cuisine GY50 Greek Yogurt Maker - I ran out of powdered whole milk which I could only find at Amazon (http://amzn.to/1KgGibk) to make my yogurt (it saves the hassle of boiling and cooling the milk, I use half whole and half skim powdered milk) so I bought some Greek yoghurt (the one with the fat) at the store to hold me over and I got hooked on it so I bought one of these.  I was surprised how well it worked.  It’s like sour cream but with much more protein and a lot less fat.  See my yogurt recipe at top of my yogurt page.  You have to do that first.  It also eliminates the problem of having to culture the yogurt in the yogurt maker too long to make it thick which also makes it too tart.

The Pyrex is the perfect size to store the Greek yogurt.

Health Focus (Homocysteine):