By Dr. Ronald Klatz and 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.
Green Spaces Promote the Anti-Aging Lifestyle
Thomas Astell-Burt, from the University of Western Sydney (Australia), and colleagues analyzed data collected in the Australian 45 & Up Study, involving 260.061 Australian men and women, ages 45 and older. The researchers revealed that those men and women living in the greenest neighborhoods were at far less lower a risk of psychological distress, as compared to residents of the least green areas. Further, those in greener neighborhoods were less sedentary. More green space was found to correlate to greater physical activity. The study authors conclude that: “For adults in middle-to-older age, green spaces are not only important for promoting physical activity, but the mental health benefits of greener environs appear contingent upon those active lifestyles.”
Dr. Klatz observes: “In that a number of previous studies report that neighborhood parks and gardens promote mental health, an Australian team explores the interplay between neighborhood parks and gardens, with mental health and physical activity.”
The Mind Benefits from a Mediterranean Diet
Iliana Lourida, from the University of Exeter Medical School (United Kingdom), and colleagues analyzed 12 eligible pieces of research, 11 observational studies and one randomized control trial. In nine of the 12 studies, a higher adherence to a Mediterranean diet was associated with better cognitive function, lower rates of cognitive decline and a reduced risk of Alzheimer’s disease. Results for mild cognitive impairment were inconsistent. Observing that: “Published studies suggest that greater adherence to Mediterranean diet is associated with slower cognitive decline and lower risk of developing Alzheimer disease,” the study authors encourage research to ascertain if the “Mediterranean diet … helps to prevent or delay the onset of Alzheimer disease and dementia.”
Remarks Dr. Goldman: “The Mediterranean diet – rich in olive oil, nuts, as w ell as fruits, vegetables, and legumes, and limited amounts of dairy products, red meat, soda drinks, processed meats, and sweets – has been shown by a number of studies to confer cardiovascular benefits. A newly published systematic review of related research confirms a positive impact on cognitive function.”
More Fruit Lessens Diabetes Risk
Qi Sun, from Harvard School of Public Health (Massachusetts, USA), and colleagues analyzed data collected on 66,105 women enrolled in the Nurses’ Health Study, 85,104 from the Nurses’ Health Study II, and 36,173 men from the Health Professionals Follow-up Study. Every 4 years, subjects were surveyed as to how often they ate various foods and on their diabetes status, among other measures. While all participants were free of major chronic diseases at baseline, 6.5% developed diabetes during follow-up. Adjusted hazard ratios pooled across the three studies for diabetes risk per three whole fruit servings per week were: 0.74 for blueberries; 0.88 for grapes and raisins; 0.93 for apples and pears. Cantaloupe elevated the diabetes risk by 10%; whereas the risk was neutral for peaches, plums, apricots, prunes, oranges, and strawberries. Interestingly, the researchers found that the same amount of fruit juice correlated with a significant 8% elevated risk of developing diabetes. The study authors conclude that: “Greater consumption of specific whole fruits, particularly blueberries, grapes, and apples, is significantly associated with a lower risk of type 2 diabetes, whereas greater consumption of fruit juice is associated with a higher risk.”
Comments Dr. Klatz: “Whole fruits are an abundant source of fiber, antioxidants, and other phytochemicals that may help to promote overall health. This team observes that greater consumption of whole fruits – notably blueberries, grapes, and apples, may help to lower a person’s type-2 diabetes risk.”
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.
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