May 2-8, 2014

By Dr. Ronald Klatz & Dr. Robert Goldman

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 24,000 physician and scientist members from 110 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 insightful commentary.

Chronic Stress Raises Mental Health Risks
Daniela Kaufer, from the University of California/Berkeley (California, USA), and colleagues completed a set of experiments that reveals that chronic stress generates more myelin-producing cells and fewer neurons than normal. This results in an excess of myelin – and thus, white matter – in some areas of the brain, which the researchers suspect disrupts the delicate balance and timing of communication within the brain. The study authors submit that their data presents a “novel model in which stress may alter hippocampal function by promoting oligodendrogenesis, thereby altering the cellular composition and white matter structure.”

Dr. Klatz observes: “Myelin is responsible for conducting electrical signals  through nerve cells in the brain. Myelin is produced by cells known as oligodendrocytes – which increase in number as a result of chronic stress.  This data suggests that chronic stress may cause physiological changes to the brain that may make people prone to anxiety and mood disorders, later in life.”

Risky Sitting
Dorothy Dunlop, from Northwestern University (Illinois, USA), and colleagues analyzed data collected from 2,286 adults, ages 60 years and older, enrolled in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. It compared people in similar health with the same amount of moderate vigorous activity, with the participants wearing accelerometers from 2002 to 2005 to measure their sedentary time and moderate vigorous physical activity.  The data revealed that being sedentary was almost as strong a risk factor for disability as lack of moderate vigorous activity – that is, that sedentary behavior is correlated to increased disability regardless of the amount of moderate exercise.”  Submitting that: “data show a strong relationship between greater time spent in sedentary behavior and the presence of [activities of daily living] disability, independent of time spent in moderate or vigorous activity,” the study authors urge for “programs encouraging older adults to decrease sedentary behavior regardless of their engagement in moderate or vigorous activity.”

Remarks Dr. Goldman: “Disability is defined as limitations in being able to complete the basic activities of everyday life, such as eating, dressing or bathing oneself, getting in and out of bed and walking across a room. Disability increases the risk of hospitalization and institutionalization and is a leading source of health care costs in developed countries.  These researchers find that, regardless of exercise, too much sedentary time is linked to major disability after age 60.”

Green Tea Supports Heart Health
I. Onakpoya, from the University of Oxford (United Kingdom), and colleagues who   completed a meta-analysis of published randomized controlled trials involving a total of subjects, of 1.536 green tea and its polyphenol constituents. The researchers found that green tea consumption associated with a lower average systolic blood pressure (1.94 mmHg).  In addition, green tea consumption correlated to lower total and LDL cholesterol levels.  The team speculates that mechanisms of action may include a relaxation of blood vessels, as well as lowering of prostaglandin E2. They also observe that green tea is abundant and antioxidants that have been shown to improve endothelial function.  The study authors conclude: “ Green tea intake results in significant reductions in systolic blood pressure, total cholesterol, and LDL cholesterol. The effect size on systolic blood pressure is small, but the effects on total and LDL cholesterol appear moderate.”

Comments Dr. Klatz: “Green tea (Camellia sinensis) contains 30 to 40% polyphenols – the primary of which are epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), epiggallocatechin (ECG), epicatechin gallate (ECG), and epicatechin (EC).  Previous studies suggest that these antioxidant compounds exert beneficial effects on parameters of cardiovascular health.  UK team reports that consumption of green tea helps to manage blood pressure and cholesterol levels.”

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 o Longevity Magazine™ e-Journal.

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