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Recent Longevity News for the week ending 2/19/20

The Benefits of Intermittent Fasting - NYT, 2/17/20 - "Most people trying to lose weight should strive for 16 calorie-free hours, he said, adding that “the easiest way to do this is to stop eating by 8 p.m., skip breakfast the next morning and then eat again at noon the next day.” (Caffeine-dependent people can have sugar- free black coffee or tea before lunch.) But don’t expect to see results immediately; it can take up to four weeks to notice an effect, he said ... Other animal studies have shown a “robust disease-modifying” benefit of intermittent fasting on “a wide range of chronic disorders, including obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancers and neurodegenerative brain diseases,” the researchers reported ... For example, human studies of intermittent fasting found that it improved such disease indicators as insulin resistance, blood fat abnormalities, high blood pressure and inflammation, even independently of weight loss ... during a fast, the body produces few new proteins, prompting cells to take protein from nonessential sources, break them down and use the amino acids to make new proteins that are essential for survival. Then, after eating, a lot of new proteins are produced in the brain and elsewhere."

Is Coffee Good for You? - NYT, 2/13/20 - "most of the time, coffee was associated with a benefit, rather than a harm. In examining more than 200 reviews of previous studies, the authors observed that moderate coffee drinkers had less cardiovascular disease, and premature death from all causes, including heart attacks and stroke, than those skipping the beverage ... In addition, experts say some of the strongest protective effects may be with Type 2 diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, and liver conditions such as cirrhosis, liver cancer and chronic liver disease. For example, having about five cups of coffee a day, instead of none, is correlated with a 30 percent decreased risk of Type 2 diabetes, according to a meta-analysis of 30 studies ... The potential benefit from coffee might be from the polyphenols, which are plant compounds that have antioxidant properties"

Green tea extract combined with exercise reduces fatty liver disease in mice - Science Daily, 2/14/20 - "In the study, mice fed a high-fat diet for 16 weeks that consumed green tea extract and exercised regularly by running on a wheel were found to have just a quarter of the lipid deposits in their livers compared to those seen in the livers of a control group of mice. Mice that were treated with green tea extract alone or exercise alone had roughly half as much fat in their livers as the control group" - See green tea extract at Amazon.com.

Cocoa could bring sweet relief to walking pain for people with peripheral artery disease - Science Daily, 2/14/20 - "In a small study of 44 peripheral artery disease patients over age 60, those who drank a beverage containing flavanol-rich cocoa three times a day for six months were able to walk up to 42.6 meters further in a 6-minute walking test, compared to those who drank the same number and type of beverages without cocoa. Those who drank the flavanol-rich cocoa also had improved blood flow to their calves and some improved muscle function compared to the placebo group ... Researchers hypothesized that epicatechin, a major flavanol component of cocoa, may increase mitochondrial activity and muscle health in the calves of patients with lower extremity peripheral artery disease, potentially improving patient walking ability. Epicatechins and flavanols also have the potential to improve blood flow ... The cocoa used in the study is commonly available natural unsweetened cocoa powder., which is rich in the flavanol epicatechin, found in larger quantities in dark chocolate (>85% cacao) than in milk chocolate. Regular chocolate would not be expected to have the same effect ... While we expected the improvements in walking, we were particularly pleased to see that cocoa treatment was also associated with increased capillary density, limb perfusion, mitochondrial activity, and an additional measure of overall skeletal muscle health" - See Ghirardelli Chocolate Intense Dark Squares, Midnight Reverie, 4.12 oz., 86% Cacao (Pack of 6) at Amazon.com.

Cholesterol Drugs Might Help Curb Prostate Cancers - WebMD, 2/14/20 - "statins, taken alone or with metformin, did seem associated with an increase in survival ... Men who took both statins and metformin had higher median survival (3.9 years) than those who took statins alone (3.6 years), metformin alone (3.1 years), or those who did not take either drug (3.1 years)"

Shingles vaccine may also reduce stroke risk - Science Daily, 2/12/20 - "Receiving the shingles vaccine lowered the risk of stroke by about 16%, lowered the risk of ischemic (clot-caused) stroke by about 18% and lowered the risk of hemorrhagic (bleeding) stroke by about 12% ... The vaccine's protection was strongest among people ages 66 to 79 years ... Among those under the age of 80 years, the shingles vaccine reduced the risk of stroke by nearly 20% and in those older than 80, reduced the risk by about 10% ... The reason for increased risk of stroke after a shingles infection may be due to inflammation caused by the virus"

Marijuana Use May Increase Risk of False Memories - WebMD. 2/11/20 - "It found that taking just one hit of the drug doubled people's number of false memories of a virtual reality scenario, CNN reported ... A false memory is one that didn't actually occur or one that differs from the way an event actually happened, often influenced by suggestions from other people"

Vitamin D deficiency during pregnancy connected to elevated risk of ADHD - Science Daily, 2/10/20 - "despite the recommendations, vitamin D deficiency is still a global problem ... This research offers strong evidence that a low level of vitamin D during pregnancy is related to attention deficiency in offspring. As ADHD is one of the most common chronic diseases in children, the research results have a great significance for public health" - See vitamin D at Amazon.com.

Effect of Estradiol on Penile Erection - Medscape, 2/10/20 - "Our data indicate that estradiol inhibits penile erection, particularly at the penile base. Also, when the effective erection time of the penile base lasts longer than 10 min, estradiol has a more obvious inhibitory effect on penile base erection"

  • Letrozole normalizes serum testosterone in severely obese men with hypogonadotropic hypogonadism - Diabetes Obes Metab. 2005 May;7(3):211-5 - "Six weeks of treatment decreased serum estradiol from 120 +/- 20 to 70 +/- 9 pmol/l (p = 0.006). None of the subjects developed an estradiol level of less than 40 pmol/l. LH increased from 4.5 +/- 0.8 to 14.8 +/- 2.3 U/l (p < 0.001). Total testosterone rose from 7.5 +/- 1.0 to 23.8 +/- 3.0 nmol/l (p < 0.001) without a concomitant change in sex hormone-binding globulin level. Those treated with Letrozole 17.5 mg per week had an excessive LH response" - See letrozole at inhousepharmacy.vu.
  • 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"
  • Comparative assessment in young and elderly men of the gonadotropin response to aromatase inhibition - J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2005 Oct;90(10):5717-22 - "As assessed after 28 d of treatment, letrozole lowered E2 by 46% in the young men (P = 0.002) and 62% in the elderly men (P < 0.001). In both age groups, letrozole, but not placebo, significantly increased LH levels (339 and 323% in the young and the elderly, respectively) and T (146 and 99%, respectively) (P value of young vs. elderly was not significant). Under letrozole, peak LH response to GnRH was 152 and 52% increase from baseline in young and older men, respectively"

Walnuts Shell Out Little Protection Against - Medscape, 2/7/20 - "Although there were no statistically significant differences between those who ate walnuts for 2 years vs controls who did not eat walnuts, we did find that there were protective trends in subjects at higher risk — meaning, those with lower baseline consumption of omega-3 fatty acids in their diet, smokers, or those with lower baseline cognitive scores"

Surgical Face Masks Don’t Protect Against Coronavirus - NBC, 2/7/20 - "Regular surgical face masks are not effective in protecting against the coronavirus. A more specialized face mask known as N95 respirators are thicker than surgical masks and are fitted to a person’s face to keep out any viral particles" - See N95 masks at Amazon.com.

Natural compound in vegetables helps fight fatty liver disease - Science Daily, 2/7/20 - "The National Cancer Institute also notes the benefits of indole-3-carbinol found in cruciferous vegetables, including their anti-inflammatory and cancer-fighting properties ... treatment of NAFLD-mimicking animal models with indole significantly decreased fat accumulation and inflammation in the liver ... in addition to reducing the amount of fat in liver cells, indole also acts on cells in the intestine, which send out molecular signals that dampen inflammation ... "Foods with a high capacity of indole production or medicines that mimic its effects may be new therapies for treatment of NAFLD" - See Indole-3-carbinol at Amazon.com.

Antioxidant reverses BPD-induced fertility damage in worms - Science Daily, 2/6/20 - "A naturally occurring antioxidant known as Coenzyme Q10, or CoQ10, reversed most of the reproductive harms caused by exposure to the plasticizer BPA (bisphenol A) in Caenorhabditis elegans worms" - See ubiquinol products at Amazon.com.

Molecular 'switch' reverses chronic inflammation and aging - Science Daily, 2/6/20 - "By studying mice and immune cells called macrophages, the team found that a protein called SIRT2 is responsible for deacetylating the NLRP3 inflammasome. Mice that were bred with a genetic mutation that prevented them from producing SIRT2 showed more signs of inflammation at the ripe old age of two than their normal counterparts. These mice also exhibited higher insulin resistance, a condition associated with type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome"

New study adds to evidence of diabetes drug link to heart problems - Science Daily, 2/5/20 - "When the researchers analysed the IPD from trials made available by GSK, they found rosiglitazone was associated with a 33% increased risk of a composite cardiovascular event (heart attack, heart failure, cardiovascular and non-cardiovascular related death) compared with controls"

Aerobic exercise training linked to enhanced brain function - Science Daily, 2/3/20 - "Compared to the participants maintaining their usual level of physical activity, individuals assigned to the active training program improved their cardiorespiratory fitness, spent less time sedentary after the training program ended, and performed better on cognitive tests of executive functioning (but not episodic memory). Executive function, an aspect of cognition that is known to decline with the progression of AD, comprises the mental processes enabling individuals to plan, focus attention, remember instructions, and juggle multiple tasks successfully. The participants' improved cardiorespiratory fitness was associated with increased brain glucose metabolism in the posterior cingulate cortex, an area of the brain linked to AD ... "This research shows that a lifestyle behavior -- regular aerobic exercise -- can potentially enhance brain and cognitive functions that are particularly sensitive to the disease. The findings are especially relevant to individuals who are at a higher risk due to family history or genetic predisposition," noted Dr. Okonkwo"


Abstracts from this week:

Effects of third-generation β-blockers, atenolol or amlodipine on blood pressure variability and target organ damage in spontaneously hypertensive rats - J Hypertens. 2020 Mar;38(3):536-545 - "β-blockers are no longer considered as first-line antihypertensive drugs due to their lower cardioprotection ... Considering the differences in the pharmacological properties of β-blockers, the present work compared the effects of third-generation β-blockers - carvedilol and nebivolol - with a first-line agent - amlodipine - on hemodynamic parameters, including short-term blood pressure variability (BPV), and their ability to prevent target organ damage in spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR). SHR rats were orally treated with carvedilol, nebivolol, atenolol, amlodipine or vehicle for 8 weeks ... Carvedilol, nebivolol or amlodipine induced a greater reduction of carotid BP, short-term BPV and echocardiography parameters than atenolol in SHR rats. Carvedilol, nebivolol and amlodipine were more effective than atenolol in the prevention of cardiac hypertrophy, and cardiac and aortic collagen deposit. Carvedilol and nebivolol, but not atenolol, reduced the expressions of fibrotic and inflammatory biomarkers - TGF-β, TNF-α and IL-6 - in SHR rats to a similar extent to that of amlodipine ... Chronic treatment with carvedilol or nebivolol attenuates carotid BP and short-term BPV, and reduces target organ damage in SHR to a greater extent than atenolol. Our findings suggest that the lower cardiovascular protection of nonvasodilating β-blockers, as atenolol, in hypertension must not be translated to third-generation β-blockers" - Note: inhousepharmacy.vu sells nebivolol.

Vitamin C supplementation had no side effect in non-cancer, but had anticancer properties in ovarian cancer cells - Int J Vitam Nutr Res. 2020 Feb 3:1-11 - "The tumour microenvironment caused inefficiency of the lower doses of Vit C in ovarian cancer cells. At a pharmacological dose of 1 mM, Vit C decreased PARP expression (1.5-fold; p < 0.05). We suggest that it's nontoxic effects on non-cancer cells may be an indicator of its prophylactic use, while in a pharmacological dose Vit C should be considered a possible adjunctive drug in ovarian cancer" - See vitamin C products at Amazon.com.

Anabolic response to essential amino acid plus whey protein composition is greater than whey protein alone in young healthy adults - J Int Soc Sports Nutr. 2020 Feb 10;17(1):9 - "essential amino acids ... We conclude that a composition of a balanced EAA formulation combined with whey protein is highly anabolic as compared to a whey protein-based recovery product, and that the response is dose-dependent"

Effect of fenugreek extract supplement on testosterone levels in male: A meta-analysis of clinical trials - Phytother Res. 2020 Feb 11 - "A total of four trials were included. Fenugreek extract has a significant effect on total serum testosterone. Results from clinical trials suggest that fenugreek extract supplement has an effect on serum total testosterone levels in male" - See fenugreek at Amazon.com.

The effect of saffron supplement on clinical outcomes and metabolic profiles in patients with active rheumatoid arthritis: A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial - Phytother Res. 2020 Feb 11 - "66 women older than 18 years old received 100 mg/day either saffron supplement in the intervention group (n = 33) or matched placebo in the placebo group (n = 33) for a period of 12 weeks ... Saffron supplementation significantly decreased the number of tender (-1.38 ± 1.66 vs. 0.10 ± 0.40, p < .001) and swollen (-2.12 ± 2.34 vs. 0.63 ± 2.79, p < .001) joints, pain intensity based on visual analogue scale (-18.36 ± 15.07 vs. -2.33 ± 5.04), p < .001), and disease activity score (DAS28) (-0.75 ± 0.67 vs. 0.26 ± 0.77, p < .001) at the end of intervention between the two groups and in saffron group compared with baseline values. Physician Global Assessment (p = .002) and erythrocyte sedimentation rate were significantly improved after intervention (24.06 ± 12.66 vs. 32.00 ± 14.75, p = 0.028). High-sensitivity C-reactive protein reduced at the end of the intervention in the saffron group compared with baseline values (12.00 ± 7.40 vs. 8.82 ± 7.930, p = .004). Tumor necrosis factor alpha, interferon gamma, and malondialdehyde were decreased, and total antioxidant capacity were increased, but their differences between the two groups were not significant (p > .05). According to the results, saffron supplements could positively and significantly improve clinical outcomes in RA patients" - See saffron supplements at Amazon.com.

Association between Dietary Protein Intake and Cognitive Function in Adults Aged 60 Years and Older - J Nutr Health Aging. 2020;24(2):223-229 - "Protein intake was positively associated with cognitive function. In full-adjusted model, the significant association between dietary protein intake and Recall Test score was observed (quartile (Q) 2 versus Q1, β=0.24, 95%CI: 0.01 to 0.47); the association between protein intake and Animal Fluency test was significant (Q2 versus Q1, β=1.40, 95%CI: 0.51 to 2.29; Q4 versus Q1, β=1.42, 95%CI: 0.37 to 2.48); the positive associations with DSST score and Composite z-score were observed both in Q2 versus Q1 and Q3 versus Q1 of protein intake. Protein intake from total animal, total meat, eggs and legumes were associated with a better performance on certain cognitive tests. However, an adverse association between higher protein intake from milk and milk products and cognitive function was observed"

Nut Consumption and Risk of Cancer: A Meta-analysis of Prospective Studies - Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2020 Feb 10 - "Thirty-three studies that included more than 50,000 cancer cases were eligible for the analysis. When comparing the highest with the lowest category of nut intake, high consumption of nuts was significantly associated with decreased risk of overall cancer (RR = 0.90; 95% CI, 0.85-0.95). The protective effect of nut consumption was especially apparent against cancers from the digestive system (RR = 0.83; 95% CI, 0.77-0.89). Among different nut classes, significant association was only obtained for intake of tree nuts. We also observed a linear dose-response relationship between nut consumption and cancer: Per 20 g/day increase in nut consumption was related to a 10% (RR = 0.90; 95% CI, 0.82-0.99) decrease in cancer risk." - Note:  But the question you have to keep asking is whether or not the type of people who consume a lot of nuts are overall more health conscious to begin with.

Natural polyphenols improve erectile function and lipid profile in patients suffering from erectile dysfunction - Bratisl Lek Listy. 2019;120(12):941-944 - "natural polyphenolic extract, Pycnogenol improved erectile function in DM group by 45 % compared to the NDM group, where the improvement was also significant, but only by 22 %. Total cholesterol, LDL-cholesterol and glucose level was lowered by PYC in patients with DM ... Administration of Pycnogenol leads in improvement of erectile function in patients with ED and diabetes (DM group) by 45 %, in NDM group by 22 %, in lowering of total-, LDL-cholesterol by 20 % and 21 % and glycaemia by 22 % in DM" - [Nutra USA] - See Pycnogenol at Amazon.com.

Tocotrienol-rich vitamin E improves diabetic nephropathy and persists 6-9 months after washout: a phase IIa randomized controlled trial - Ther Adv Endocrinol Metab. 2019 Dec 25 - "receive Tocovid 200 mg or placebo for 12 weeks ... Patients were reassessed 6-9 months post-washout. After 12 weeks of supplementation, Tocovid significantly decreased serum creatinine levels (mean difference: -3.3 ± 12.6 versus 5.4 ± 14.2, p = 0.027) and significantly increase eGFR (mean difference: 1.5 ± 7.6 versus -2.9 ± 8.0, p = 0.045) compared with placebo ... Subgroup analysis revealed that in patients with low serum vitamin E concentrations at baseline, Tocovid reduced serum creatinine, eGFR, and VCAM-1 significantly. After 6-9 months of washout, persistent difference in serum creatinine remained between groups (mean difference: 0.82 ± 8.33 versus 11.26 ± 15.47, p = 0.031), but not eGFR. Tocovid at 400 mg/day significantly improved renal function in 12 weeks of supplementation, as assessed by serum creatinine and eGFR, which remained significant 6-9 months post-washout" - [Nutra USA] - See Tocovid at Amazon.com.

Association of dietary selenium intake with telomere length in middle-aged and older adults - j.clnu.2020.01.014 - "After adjusting potential confounders, every 20 μg increase in dietary selenium intake was associated with 0.42% (95% CI: 0.02%, 0.82%) longer telomere length in all participants. In the subgroup analyses, dietary selenium intake was related to longer telomere length in females (Percentage change: 0.87%; 95% CI: 0.26%, 1.49%) and non-obese participants (Percentage change: 0.53%; 95% CI: 0.04%, 1.02%), but not in males (Percentage change: 0.04%; 95% CI: −0.49%, 0.57%) and obese participants (Percentage change: 0.21%; 95% CI: −0.47%, 0.91%). The restricted cubic spline analysis showed a linear association between dietary selenium intake and telomere length" - [Nutra USA] - See se-methyl l-selenocysteine at Amazon.com.

Effect of Ten Weeks of Creatine Monohydrate Plus HMB Supplementation on Athletic Performance Tests in Elite Male Endurance Athletes Nutrients. 2020 Jan 10;12(1) - "CrM plus HMB supplementation over 10 weeks showed a synergistic effect on aerobic power (measured as WAT, W4, and W8) during an incremental test but had no influence muscle mass" - [Nutra USA] - See creatine at Amazon.com and  HMB at Amazon.com.

Long-Term Effect of Combination of Creatine Monohydrate Plus β-Hydroxy β-Methylbutyrate (HMB) on Exercise-Induced Muscle Damage and Anabolic/Catabolic Hormones in Elite Male Endurance Athletes - Biomolecules. 2020 Jan 15;10(1) - "randomized into four different groups: placebo group (PLG; n = 7), CrM group (CrMG; 0.04 g/kg/day of CrM; n = 7), HMB group (HMBG; 3 g/day of HMB; n = 7), and CrM-HMB group (CrM-HMBG; 0.04 g/kg/day of CrM plus 3 g/day of HMB; n = 7) ... we observed significant differences in CrM-HMBG with respect to PLG, CrMG, and HMBG on testosterone (p = 0.006; η2p = 0.454) and the testosterone/cortisol ratio (T/C; p = 0.032; η2p = 0.349). Moreover, we found a synergistic effect of combined supplementation on testosterone (CrM-HMBG = -63.85% vs. CrMG + HMBG = -37.89%) and T/C (CrM-HMBG = 680% vs. CrMG + HMBG = 57.68%) and an antagonistic effect on cortisol (CrM-HMBG = 131.55% vs. CrMG + HMBG = 389.99%). In summary, the combination of CrM plus HMB showed an increase in testosterone and T/C compared with the other groups after 10 weeks of supplementation. Moreover, this combination presented a synergistic effect on testosterone and T/C and an antagonistic effect on cortisol compared with the sum of individual or isolated supplementation" - [Nutra USA] - See creatine at Amazon.com and  HMB at Amazon.com.

Polyphenols From Grape and Blueberry Improve Episodic Memory in Healthy Elderly with Lower Level of Memory Performance: A Bicentric Double-Blind, Randomized, Placebo-Controlled Clinical Study - J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2019 Jun 18 - "This study evaluated the effect of a polyphenol-rich extract from grape and blueberry (PEGB) on memory of healthy elderly subjects (60-70 years-old). A bicentric, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial was conducted with 215 volunteers receiving 600 mg/day of PEGB (containing 258 mg flavonoids) or a placebo for 6 months. The primary outcome was the CANTAB Paired Associate Learning (PAL), a visuospatial learning and episodic memory test. Secondary outcomes included verbal episodic and recognition memory (VRM) and working memory (SSP). There was no significant effect of PEGB on the PAL on the whole cohort. Yet, PEGB supplementation improved VRM-free recall. Stratifying the cohort in quartiles based on PAL at baseline revealed a subgroup with advanced cognitive decline (decliners) who responded positively to the PEGB. In this group, PEGB consumption was also associated with a better VRM-delayed recognition ... Our study demonstrates that PEGB improves age-related episodic memory decline in individuals with the highest cognitive impairments" - [Nutra USA] - See blueberry extract at Amazon.com and grape seed extract at Amazon.com.

Acute Intake of a Grape and Blueberry Polyphenol-Rich Extract Ameliorates Cognitive Performance in Healthy Young Adults During a Sustained Cognitive Effort - Antioxidants (Basel). 2019 Dec 17 - "This study investigated the acute and sustained action of a polyphenols-rich extract from grape and blueberry (PEGB), on working memory and attention in healthy students during a prolonged and intensive cognitive effort. In this randomised, cross-over, double blind study, 30 healthy students consumed 600 mg of PEGB or a placebo. Ninety minutes after product intake, cognitive functions were assessed for one hour using a cognitive demand battery including serial subtraction tasks, a rapid visual information processing (RVIP) task and a visual analogical scale ... A 2.5-fold increase in serial three subtraction variation net scores was observed following PEGB consumption versus placebo (p < 0.001). A trend towards significance was also observed with RVIP percentage of correct answers ... Our findings suggest that consumption of PEGB coupled with a healthy lifestyle may be a safe alternative to acutely improve working memory and attention during a sustained cognitive effort" - [Nutra USA] - See blueberry extract at Amazon.com and grape seed extract at Amazon.com.

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