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

One in Five Rooms Is ‘Highly Contaminated’ With Hidden Mold

Concerns about mould growing in houses are on the increase, claim mycologists in France. Sandrine Roussel, from the University Hospital of Besancon (France), and colleagues studied 500 rooms in 128 houses across France. The team found that mold buildup was most reliably correlated to factors such as the floor the room was located on, lack of effective ventilation systems, types of heating systems used and past water damage. Interestingly, the researchers found that the concentrations of mold in bathroom air were no higher than in bedrooms, kitchens, or living rooms. They also found that 18 percent of rooms with no visible molds or smell were highly contaminated. Dr. Rousell observed that: “Nowadays, no one would agree to live in housing which presents any risks towards lead or carbon monoxide. Tomorrow molds and other chemical substances will probably follow.”

Dr. Klatz remarks: There are a large variety of mold species which have different effects on health. Mold has been linked to a number of respiratory illnesses, such as asthma and indoor allergies. It may also play an insidious role in chronic diseases. Because mold can be hidden behind walls or under carpets, it is important for homeowners to be vigilant as to maintaining a dry and well-ventilated premises for dwelling.

Vitamin D, the Depression Fighter

Analyzing data from a study involving 1,282 men and women ages 65 to 95 (participants in the Longitudinal Aging Study Amsterdam), Witte Hoogendijk, from the Vrije Universiteit Medical Center (The Netherlands), and colleagues found that low levels of vitamin D along with higher levels of parathyroid hormone were associated with higher rates of depression. Among those with major and minor depression, blood vitamin D levels were 14 percent lower, while parathyroid levels were 5 percent and 33 percent higher, respectively, compared to study participants who were not depressive. The researchers comment that by boosting vitamin D intake (either by vitamin supplementation or increased exposure to sunlight), those prone to depression may be able to positively impact their mood.

Dr. Goldman observes: A number of studies by other researchers suggest that increased Vitamin D intake confers a wide range of health benefits, from strengthening bone to modulating cardiovascular risk factors. This large population-based study shows, for the first time, an association between depression and Vitamin D levels. If it can be replicated in a further study, there will be strong evidence to consider adding brain health to the list of benefits of Vitamin D.

Shorter Arms, Legs Correlate to Increased Risk of Alzheimer’s Disease

In observing that the portion of the brain that is most impacted by Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) develops at the precise time when the limbs are growing most rapidly, Tina Huang, from Tufts University (Boston, Massachusetts USA), and colleagues investigated the relationship between the length of arms and legs with dementia risk. The researchers studied 2,798 men and women for an average of 5.4 years, during which time 480 participants developed dementia. Among women, the team found that dementia and AD risk decreased as knee height and arm span increased. Specifically, women with the shortest arm spans were 50 percent more likely to have developed dementia (as compared to those with the longest arm span); in addition, in women, the risk of dementia and AD fell by 16 percent for every additional inch of leg length. For men, knee height was not found to be related to dementia or AD risk; but dementia risk fell by 6 percent for every additional inch in arm span.

Dr. Klatz comments: Arm span and knee height are indicators for how well nourished a person was in early childhood. This study exemplifies the importance of a proper and balanced diet during the growth years. Those with poor nutrition in early life may be more prone to dementia and AD in later life.

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