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 22,000 physician and scientist members from 105 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, M.D., D.O., A4M President, and Dr. Robert Goldman, M.D., Ph.D., D.O., FAASP, A4M Chairman, physician co-founders of the anti-aging medical movement, distill these headlines and provide their commentary.
Multivitamins Restore Cells to Youthful State
Telomeres are the endcaps on chromosomes, and telomeric shortening is thought to govern the number of times a cell can divide. Studies have shown that when telomeres are totally consumed by the shortening process, the cell is destroyed; telomeres are also thought to be highly susceptible to damage by free radicals. Honglei Chen, from the US National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, and colleagues studied multivitamin use and nutrient intakes, as well as telomere length, in 586 women, ages 35 to 74, enrolled in the Sister Study. Compared to non-multivitamin users, the team found that telomeres were 5.1 percent longer in those who took a daily multivitamin. Further, the researchers observed a positive relationship between telomere length and intakes of vitamins C and E from foods. Noting that telomere length serves as a marker of biological aging, and that multivitamins may beneficially impact telomere length by modulating oxidative stress, the team concludes that: “This study provides the first epidemiologic evidence that multivitamin use is associated with longer telomere length among women.”
Dr Klatz remarks: This study provides data suggesting not only that Vitamins C and E protect telomeres, but that other components in multivitamins may be beneficial for restoring cells to a more youthful state. These findings warrant further studies to elucidate the etiology of oxidative stress and the potential interventive role of multivitamins.
In Men, Excess Pounds in Midlife Predict Frailty Later in Life
Obesity is a recognized risk factor for cardiovascular disease. Timo Strandberg, from University of Oulu and University Hospital (Finland), and colleagues studied 1,114 men, ages 25 though 70s, for a period of 26 years. The researchers found that those men who were overweight in midlife but lost weight in later life had the highest risk of cardiovascular diseases in middle age, as well as the greatest risks of death and morbidity in their 70s. Dubbing this the “frailty syndrome,” the team suggests that a pattern of weight gain in midlife may cause weight loss, muscle weakness, and exhaustion with minimal physical activity in later life. Explain the researchers: “In old age, both normal weight and overweight men are a mixture of individuals with different weight trajectories during their life course. Overweight and high-cardiovascular disease risk in midlife with subsequent weight decrease predict the worst prognosis in late life.”
Dr. Goldman observes: Frailty syndrome is becoming more recognized, as the condition is becoming associated with more cases of death and disability. This study is an important call to action to physicians and researchers to heed more attention to unhealthy weight gains in midlife that can trigger high blood pressure and insulin resistance, predominant contributing factors to cardiovascular disease later in life.
Low Levels of Vitamin D Increase Risks of Dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease
In that a growing number of studies link vitamin D deficiency to increased risks of cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, osteoporosis, depression and periodontal disease, it is noteworthy that these aforementioned conditions all have been linked to some degree to increased risks for dementia. William Grant, from the Sunlight, Nutrition, and Health Research Center (SUNARC; The Netherlands), and colleagues suggest that low blood levels of vitamin D may indicate dementia and/or Alzheimer’s disease. Because vitamin D has so many health benefits, the researchers urge those over the age of 60 years top have their blood levels of vitamin D tested, and aim for a level of at least 30 ng/mL but preferably over 40 ng/mL. They also recommend supplementation at 1,000-2,000 IU/day with vitamin D3 for those who are deficient. Writing in the article, Dr. Grant states, “Evidence includes observational studies [to] support a beneficial role of vitamin D in reducing the risk of diseases linked to dementia such as vascular and metabolic diseases, as well as an understanding of the role of vitamin D in reducing the risk of several mechanisms that lead to dementia.”
Comments Dr. Klatz: Alzheimer’s Disease is the most common form of dementia and currently affects over 13 million people worldwide. The direct and indirect cost of Alzheimer care is over $100 billion in the US alone. This study is significant in that it offers a potential preventive solution that is natural, safe, widely accessible and cost-effective.
Anti-aging medicine is the fastest-growing medical specialty throughout the world and is founded on the application of advanced scientific and medical technologies for the early detection, prevention, treatment and reversal of age-related dysfunction, disorders, and diseases. It is a healthcare model promoting innovative science and research to prolong the healthy lifespan in humans. As such, anti-aging medicine is based on solid scientific principles of responsible medical care that are consistent with those applied in other preventive health specialties. The goal of anti-aging medicine is not to merely prolong the total years of an individual’s life, but to ensure that those years are enjoyed in a productive and vital fashion.
Visit the A4M’s World Health Network website, at www.worldhealth.net, to learn more about the A4M and its educational endeavors and to sign-up for your FREE subscription to The Anti-Aging News Journal.