Longevity News & Review

By Dr. Robert Goldman

For The Bali Times

Longevity News and Review provides readers with the latest information in breakthroughs pertaining to the extension of the healthy human lifespan. These news summaries are compiled by the American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine (A4M; www.worldhealth.net), a non-profit medical society composed of 20,000 physician and scientist members from 90 nations, united in a mission to advance biomedical technologies to detect, prevent, and treat aging related disease and to promote research into methods to retard and optimize the human aging process. Dr. Ronald Klatz, A4M president, and Dr. Robert Goldman, A4M chairman, physician co-founders of the anti-aging medical movement, distill these headlines and provide their commentary

Daily Dose of Fish Oil Reduces Pain from Rheumatoid Arthritis

The evidence for the beneficial role of essential fatty acids, of which fish oil is a specific type, to counter inflammation, continues with the results of a study conducted by B. Galarraga, from the Ninewells Hospital and Medical School, (United Kingdom), and colleagues. In a five-year long study involving 97 patients (ages 37 to 78) with rheumatoid arthritis, participants were either given a daily fish oil supplement (as 10 grams of cod liver oil) which contained 2.2 grams of EPA and DHA fatty acids, or a placebo. Fifty-nine percent of the subjects given fish oil reduced their daily requirement of painkillers (NSAIDs) by 30 percent at nine months.

Dr. Klatz remarks: The potential anti-inflammatory benefits of essential fatty acids were first suggested in the early 1980s by epidemiological studies in the population of Eskimos living in Greenland, where fatty acid intake from seafood is high and there is a lower prevalence of inflammatory conditions. This study strongly supports the option to supplement rheumatoid arthritis patients with fish oil, with the clear benefit of reducing their dependence on painkillers, which are often associated with gastrointestinal and cardiovascular side effects.

Belly Flab in 40s Raises Alzheimer’s Risk in 70s

Rachel Whitmer, from the Kaiser Permanente Division of Research, Etiology and Prevention (California, USA) and colleagues tracked 6,583 men and women residing in northern California, for an average of 36 years, starting when they were ages 40 to 45. A total of 1,049 of them – nearly 16 percent — developed Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) or dementia when they reached their 70s. Those subjects in the upper 20 percent in terms of belly size in middle-age were almost three times more likely to develop dementia/AD than the study participants who were in the lowest 20 percent of belly size. The team found that having a large belly raised one’s risk of dementia regardless of whether the person was of normal weight overall, overweight, or obese, and regardless of health conditions such as diabetes, stroke and heart disease.

Dr. Goldman observes: Previous research has shown that belly fat in middle age elevates the risk of diabetes, stroke and heart disease, but this is the first study to suggest the clinical implications on cognitive health. Those who carry extra weight around their midsection need to be aware that they potentially are at increased risk of developing Alzheimer’s Disease or another form of dementia.”

Resveratrol Beneficial for Pancreatic Cancer

Resveratrol, an antioxidant compound found in the skins of grapes, has previously found to be clinically valuable for its anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties. Paul Okunieff, from the University of Rochester Medical Center (New York, USA), and colleagues, assessed the way in which resveratrol may aid patients with pancreatic cancer. The team found that resveratrol increased the sensitivity of pancreatic cancer cells to chemotherapy, by reducing the function of specific proteins in pancreatic cancer cell membranes that otherwise pump chemotherapy out of the cells. Additionally, in pancreatic cancer cells, resveratrol triggered cell death and destabilized mitochondrial membranes, thus crippling their stability.

Dr. Klatz comments: Worldwide, pancreatic cancer ranks 13th in incidence but 8th as a cause of cancer death worldwide. The incidence of pancreatic cancer worldwide appears to correlate with increasing age, and medical conditions (including diabetes and chronic pancreatitis, as well as nutrition and lifestyle factors (such as smoking) may play important role in the disease’s etiology. This study suggests a promising future for resveratrol, which appears to confer a number of other benefits for human health, in the treatment of pancreatic cancer.

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