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Recent Longevity News for the week ending 1/20/21

One small alcoholic drink a day is linked to an increased risk of atrial fibrillation - Science Daily, 1/17/21 - "The study, published today (Wednesday) in the European Heart Journal [1], found that, compared to drinking no alcohol at all, just one alcoholic drink a day was linked to a 16% increased risk of atrial fibrillation over an average (median) follow-up time of nearly 14 years. This means that while four teetotallers in 100 might develop atrial fibrillation over the period of the study, five per 100 might develop the condition if they consumed alcohol starting with slightly more than an alcoholic drink a week and more than 75% of them consumed up to one drink a day [2]. The researchers categorised one alcoholic drink as containing 12 g of ethanol, which is the equivalent of a small (120 ml) glass of wine, a small beer (330 ml) or 40 ml of spirits ... These findings are important as the regular consumption of alcohol, the 'one glass of wine a day' to protect the heart, as is often recommended for instance in the lay press, should probably no longer be suggested without balancing risks and possible benefits for all heart and blood vessel diseases, including atrial fibrillation"

Exercise at Midlife Linked to Better Brain Health in Late Life - Medscape, 1/15/21 - "Persistently high levels of physical activity at midlife were associated with more intact white matter integrity and fewer lacunar strokes later in life, the authors report, although there was no such association with gray matter volumes. The results suggest that physical activity may affect cognition through effects on small-vessel disease, they add ... moderate to vigorous physical activity (MVPA) ... Participants with high MVPA in midlife had a 32% lower risk for lacunar infarcts and a nominally lower risk for cortical infarcts or subcortical microhemorrhages in late life, compared with participants with no MVPA in midlife. In addition, among the former participants, white matter microstructural integrity was greater in late life (mean FA difference, 0.13 SD; mean MD difference, −0.11 SD). Among participants with middle MVPA, white matter microstructural integrity was also greater (mean FA difference, 0.23 SD; mean MD difference, −0.20 SD)"

Toothbrush Disinfection May Protect Against COVID-19 - Medscape, 1/14/21 - "individuals infected with SARS-CoV-2 have "high viral loads in saliva, nasopharynx and oropharynx ... Considering that toothbrushes can act as reservoirs for microorganisms and favor the transmission of diseases such as COVID-19, the authors estimate that disinfecting the brushes would be important to control the transmission of the virus in shared spaces ... commercially available mouthwashes can inactivate SARS-CoV-2 in vitro. The results showed that antiseptic solutions containing ethanol and essential oils — exemplified by the brand Listerine Cool Mint, to name one — had satisfactory effects in reducing viral load ... Wash your hands with soap and water or sanitize them with 70% alcohol ... Disinfect the toothbrush handle surface with 70% alcohol for 1 minute ... Brush your teeth ... Wash the brush and perform a new disinfection of its handle surface with 70% alcohol for 1 minute ... Leave the brushhead immersed in a solution with ethanol and essential oils for 20 minutes ... Store the brush individually after letting it dry"

Metformin use reduces risk of death for patients with COVID-19 and diabetes, study finds - Science Daily, 1/14/21 - "Use of the diabetes drug metformin -- before a diagnosis of COVID-19 -- is associated with a threefold decrease in mortality in COVID-19 patients with Type 2 diabetes" - See metformin at ReliableRX.

High-protein Diet More Effectively Reduces Hepatic Fat Than Low-protein Diet Despite Lower Autophagy and FGF21 Levels - Medscape, 1/14/21 - "19 participants with morbid obesity undergoing bariatric surgery were randomized into two hypocaloric (1500–1600 kcal/day) diet groups, a low protein (10E% protein) and a high protein (30E% protein), for three weeks prior to surgery ... HP diet more effectively reduces hepatic fat than LP diet despite of lower autophagy and FGF21. Our data suggest that liver fat reduction upon HP diets result primarily from suppression of fat uptake and lipid biosynthesis" - See whey protein at Amazon.com.

Poor gut health connected to severe COVID-19, new review shows - Science Daily, 1/12/21 - "The "western diet" that's common in these countries is low in fiber, and "a fiber-deficient diet is one of the main causes of altered gut microbiomes," he said, "and such gut microbiome dysbiosis leads to chronic diseases." ... The pathogenesis of COVID-19 is still not fully understood. If future studies do show that gut health affects COVID-19 prognosis, Kim argued, then clinicians and researchers should exploit that connection for better strategies aimed at preventing and managing the disease. Eating more fiber, he said, may lower a person's risk of serious disease. And fecal microbiota transplantation might be a treatment worth considering for patients with the worst cases of COVID-19" - See probiotic supplements at Amazon.com.

Vitamins C and E Linked to Reduced Risk for Parkinson's Disease - Medscape, 1/12/21 - "total antioxidant capacity (also known as NEAC) ... After adjusting the data for potential confounders, the researchers found that the risk for PD was 32% lower among people in the highest tertile of vitamin E intake, compared with those in the lowest tertile. Participants in the highest tertile of vitamin C intake, compared with those in the lowest tertile, also had a 32% lower risk for PD ... Furthermore, participants in the highest tertile of vitamin E and C intake had a 38% lower risk for PD compared with those in the lowest tertile. The researchers found no association, however, between dietary beta-carotene or NEAC and risk for PD" - See American Health Ester-c With Citrus Bioflavonoids 500 Mg, 240 Count and Jarrow FamilE (contains all eight members of the vitamin E family, includes Tocomin) at Amazon.com.

Scientists reveal how gut microbes can influence bone strength in mice - Science Daily, 1/12/21 - "The findings suggest that treatments which alter the gut microbiome could help improve bone structure or treat conditions that weaken bones, such as osteoporosis" - See probiotic supplements at Amazon.com.

Higher coffee intake may be linked to lower prostate cancer risk - Science Daily, 1/12/21 - "Each additional daily cup of the brew was associated with a reduction in relative risk of nearly 1%"

Link between gut microbes, diet and illnesses revealed - Science Daily, 1/11/21 - "The researchers defined a "healthy" diet as one that contained a mix of foods associated with a lower risk of chronic disease. They found that trial subjects who ate such a diet, or one rich in plants, were more likely to have high levels of specific 'good' gut microbes which are associated with a low risk of common illnesses. The researchers also found microbiome-based biomarkers of obesity as well as markers for cardiovascular disease and impaired glucose tolerance, which are key risk factors for COVID. These findings can be used to help create personalized eating plans designed specifically to improve one's health" - See probiotic supplements at Amazon.com.

Study links severe COVID-19 disease to short telomeres - Science Daily, 1/11/21 - "It is known that telomere length is an indicator of ageing: each time a cell divides, its telomeres shorten until they can no longer perform their protective function and the cell, which now becomes damaged, stops dividing. Throughout life, cells are constantly dividing to regenerate tissues, and when they stop doing so because the telomeres are too short, the body ages ... In recent years, researchers have shown in mice that it is possible to reverse this process by activating the production of telomerase, which is the enzyme in charge of making the telomeres longer. In animals, telomerase activation is effective in treating diseases associated with ageing and telomere damage, such as pulmonary fibrosis ... What could not be foreseen, and this is the most important finding, is that the telomeres of the most seriously ill patients were also shorter, irrespective of age"

COVID-19 and Antimalarial Drugs - Medscape, 1/7/21 - "Although the verdict is out on the safety and efficacy of various treatments for COVID-19, science strongly suggests the antimalarial agents' chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine cause more harm than benefit in the context of COVID-19"

San Diego supercomputer uncovers several potential COVID-19 treatments - 10News, 1/6/21 - "One of the most promising potential treatments uncovered by the computer modeling is Vitamin D3 ... Although many of the potential drugs identified by the computer simulations require a prescription, several are available over-the-counter. In addition to Vitamin D3, the simulations found Vitamin E acetate and Vitamin E succinate might also inhibit the virus’ papain-like protease ... A mineral supplement called calcium glubionate, a compound found in citrus fruits called hesperidin, and a plant pigment found in apples called rutin may help block the virus’ main protease, the first study found ... An upcoming study that has yet to be published looked for compounds that attack the virus a different way, blocking its spike protein from unlocking the molecular gateway into our cells called ACE2. That unpublished study found potential in curcumin, lutein, linoleic acid, and Vitamin B2" - See

Gut microbe may promote breast cancers - Science Daily, 1/6/21 - "Our study suggests another risk factor, which is the microbiome. If your microbiome is perturbed, or if you harbor toxigenic microbes with oncogenic function, that could be considered an additional risk factor for breast cancer ... First, they performed a meta-analysis of clinical data looking at published studies comparing microbial composition among benign and malignant breast tumors and nipple aspirate fluids of breast cancer survivors and healthy volunteers. B. fragilis was consistently detected in all breast tissue samples as well as the nipple fluids of cancer survivors ... In the lab, the team gave the ETBF bacteria by mouth to a group of mice. First, it colonized the gut. Then, within three weeks, the mouse mammary tissue had observable changes usually present in ductal hyperplasia, a precancerous condition. In additional tests, investigators found that hyperplasia-like symptoms also appeared within two to three weeks of injecting ETBF bacteria directly to the teats of mice, and that cells exposed to the toxin always exhibited more rapid tumor progression and developed more aggressive tumors than cells not exposed to the toxin" - See probiotic supplements at Amazon.com.

Patient-reported loss of smell in 86 percent of mild COVID-19 cases, study finds - Science Daily, 1/6/21 - "Olfactory dysfunction is more prevalent in mild COVID-19 forms than in moderate-to-critical forms, and 95% of patients recover their sense of smell at 6-months post-infection"

Link between dietary fiber and depression partially explained by gut-brain interactions - Science Daily, 1/6/21 - "The study confirmed an inverse association between dietary-fiber intake and depression in premenopausal women after adjusting for other variables, but no significant difference was documented in postmenopausal women. Research has suggested that estrogen depletion may play a role in explaining why postmenopausal women don't benefit as much from increased dietary fiber, because estrogen affects the balance of gut microorganisms found in premenopausal and postmenopausal women. The link between dietary fiber and depression may be partially explained by gut-brain interactions, because it is theorized that changes in gut-microbiota composition may affect neurotransmission. Fiber improves the richness and diversity of gut microbiota." - See probiotic supplements at Amazon.com.

Statins may protect the heart from chemotherapy treatment of early breast cancer - Science Daily, 1/6/21 - "In the 666 pairs of women (median age 69) treated with anthracyclines, those taking statins were 55% less likely to be treated at the hospital for heart failure (1.2% vs. 2.9%). In the 390 pairs of women (median age 71) treated with trastuzumab, those taking statins were 54% less likely to be treated at the hospital for heart failure (2.7% vs. 3.7%), a trend that did not reach statistical significance. "Our findings support the idea that statins may be a potential intervention for preventing heart failure in patients receiving chemotherapy with anthracyclines and potentially trastuzumab,"" - See red yeast rice at Amazon.com.

Study of 50,000 people finds brown fat may protect against numerous chronic diseases - Science Daily, 1/4/21 - "the researchers reviewed 130,000 PET scans from more than 52,000 patients, and found the presence of brown fat in nearly 10 percent of individuals. (Cohen notes that this figure is likely an underestimate because the patients had been instructed to avoid cold exposure, exercise, and caffeine, all of which are thought to increase brown fat activity) ... Several common and chronic diseases were less prevalent among people with detectable brown fat. For example, only 4.6 percent had type 2 diabetes, compared with 9.5 percent of people who did not have detectable brown fat. Similarly, 18.9 percent had abnormal cholesterol, compared to 22.2 percent in those without brown fat ... Moreover, the study revealed three more conditions for which people with brown fat have lower risk: hypertension, congestive heart failure, and coronary artery disease -- links that had not been observed in previous studies."

Abstracts from this week:

The effects of oral administration of curcumin–galactomannan complex on brain waves are consistent with brain penetration: a randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled pilot study - Nutr Neurosci 2020 Dec 9 - "curcumin-galactomannan (CGM) ... A total of 18 healthy volunteers aged 35–65 were randomly assigned to consume 500 mg CGM, Unformulated curcumin (UC) or Placebo capsules twice daily for 30 days ... Supplementation of CGM resulted in a significant increase in α- and β-waves (p < 0.05) as well as a significant reduction in α/β ratio in comparison with unformulated curcumin and placebo groups. Furthermore, the CGM showed significant reduction in the audio-reaction time (29.8 %; p < 0.05) in comparison with placebo and 24.6% (p < 0.05) with unformulated curcumin. The choice-based visual-reaction time was also significantly decreased (36%) in CGM as compared to unformulated curcumin and placebo which produced 15.36% and 5.2% respectively" - [Nutra USA] - See curcumin at Amazon.com and fenugreek at Amazon.com.

Grape polyphenols supplementation for exercise-induced oxidative stress - J Int Soc Sports Nutr 2021 Jan 7 - "Exercise induces free radicals' overproduction and therefore, an enhancement of oxidative stress, defined as an imbalance between the production of reactive species and the intrinsic antioxidant defense. Redox activity of reactive species plays an important and a positive role on exercise adaptation, but these species at very high concentrations have detrimental effects. As a result, the use of antioxidant supplements for reducing oxidative stress can be an effective health strategy to maintain an optimal antioxidant status. In this sense, grapes are an important source of natural antioxidants due to their high content in polyphenols. They have shown antioxidant potential benefits for the reduction of intense exercise effect in athletes of different sport disciplines. Consequently, it is plausible to hypothesize that a strategic supplementation with grape based products may be a good approach to mitigate the exercise induced oxidative stress" - [Nutra USA] - See grape seed extract at Amazon.com.

Effect of the Natural Sweetener Xylitol on Gut Hormone Secretion and Gastric Emptying in Humans: A Pilot Dose-Ranging Study - Nutrients 2021 Jan 8 - "Sugar consumption is associated with a whole range of negative health effects and should be reduced and the natural sweetener xylitol might be helpful in achieving this goal ... Twelve healthy, lean volunteers received intragastric solutions with 7, 17 or 35 g xylitol or tap water on four separate days ... low doses of xylitol stimulate the secretion of gut hormones and induce a deceleration in gastric emptying rates. There is no effect on blood lipids and only little effect on plasma glucose and insulin. This combination of properties (low-glycemic sweetener which stimulates satiation hormone release) makes xylitol an attractive candidate for sugar replacement" - See xylitol at Amazon.com.

Age-related cognitive decline is associated with microbiota-gut-brain axis disorders and neuroinflammation in mice - Behav Brain Res 2021 Jan 7 - "We observed that aged mice exhibited significant deficits in learning and memory, neuronal loss, and synaptic damage compared with young mice. Aged mice also exhibited significant dysbiosis of the gut microbiota. Disruptions of the intestinal barrier and blood-brain barrier were also observed, including increases in intestinal, low-grade systemic and cerebral inflammation. Furthermore, plasma and brain levels of lipopolysaccharide (LPS) were significantly higher in aged mice compared with young mice, with increases in the expression of Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) and myeloid differential protein-88 (MyD88) and the nuclear translocation of nuclear factor κB (NF-κB) in intestinal and brain tissues. These findings showed that microbiota-gut-brain axis dysfunction that occurs through LPS-induced activation of the TLR4/NF-κB signaling pathway is implicated in age-related neuroinflammation and cognitive decline" - See probiotic supplements at Amazon.com.

Vitamin D Deficiency and Low Serum Calcium as Predictors of Poor Prognosis in Patients with Severe COVID-19 - J Am Coll Nutr 2021 Jan 12 - "Hypovitaminosis D and hypocalcemia were very common, occurring in 75% and 35.8% of patients. When analyzing survival, both were significantly associated with in-hospital mortality in a dose-effect manner (pLog-Rank = 0.009 and 0.001 respectively). A cutoff value of 39 nmol/l for vitamin D and 2.05 mmol/l for corrected calcemia could predict poor prognosis with a sensitivity of 76% and 84%, and a specificity of 69% and 60% respectively. Hazard ratios were (HR = 6.9, 95% CI [2.0-24.1], p = 0.002 and HR = 6.2, 95% CI [2.1-18.3], p = 0.001) respectively ... This study demonstrates the high frequency of hypocalcemia and hypovitaminosis D in severe COVID-19 patients and provides further evidence of their potential link to poor short-term prognosis. It is, therefore, possible that the correction of hypocalcemia, as well as supplementation with vitamin D, may improve the vital prognosis" - See vitamin D at Amazon.com and calcium products at Amazon.com.

Association of Oily and Nonoily Fish Consumption and Fish Oil Supplements With Incident Type 2 Diabetes: A Large Population-Based Prospective Study - Diabetes Care 2021 Jan 11 - "Compared with participants who reported never consumption of oily fish, the multivariable-adjusted hazard ratios of T2D were 0.84 (95% CI 0.78-0.91), 0.78 (0.72-0.85), and 0.78 (0.71-0.86) for those who reported <1 serving/week, weekly, and ≥2 servings/week of oily fish consumption, respectively (P-trend < 0.001). Consumption of nonoily fish was not associated with risk of T2D (P-trend = 0.45). Participants who reported regular fish oil use at baseline had a 9% (95% CI 4-14%) lower risk of T2D compared with nonusers. Baseline regular users of fish oil who also reported fish oil use during at least one of the 24-h dietary recalls had an 18% (8-27%) lower risk of T2D compared with constant nonusers." - See omega-3 supplements at Amazon.com.

The effect of citrus flavonoid extract supplementation on anaerobic capacity in moderately trained athletes: a randomized controlled trial - J Int Soc Sports Nutr 2021 Jan 6 - "citrus flavonoid extract (CFE) supplementation ... A randomized, double-blind, placebo controlled, parallel clinical study was conducted in 92 moderately trained healthy men and women. Subjects were randomized to receive 400 mg of CFE (n = 30), 500 mg of CFE (n = 31) or placebo (n = 31) daily, for 8 consecutive weeks ... After 4 weeks supplementation, average power output significantly increased in the 400 mg group (Estimated difference [ED] = 38.2 W [18.0, 58.3]; p < 0.001; effect size [ES] = 0.27) and in the 500 mg group (ED = 21.2 W [0.91, 41.4]; p = 0.041; ES = 0.15) compared to placebo. The 5 s peak power output was also increased in the 400 mg group (ED = 53.6 [9.96, 97.2]; p = 0.017; ES = 0.25) after 4 weeks compared to placebo. After 8 weeks of supplementation, average power output was significantly improved in the group receiving 400 mg of CFE (ED = 31.6 [8.33, 54.8]; p = 0.008; ES = 0.22) compared to placebo" - [Nutra USA] - Note: The Nutra article claims it's the WATTS'UP brand containing "90% hespereting-7-O-rutinoside of which > 75% is composed of the 2S enantiomer" and that "The two doses were equivalent to ingesting 0.7 to 0.9 liters of the juice of sweet oranges (Citrus sinensis) - See flavonoids at Amazon.com.

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