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Life Extension Magazine

LE Magazine March 2011
In The News

Vitamin C Could Improve Sepsis Outcome

Vitamin C Could Improve Sepsis Outcome

Research conducted by the University of Western Ontario has uncovered a beneficial role for vitamin C in sepsis, an immune system reaction to bacterial infection that results in the formation of blood clots, impaired blood flow, and organ failure. The findings were reported in the November 2010 issue of the journal Intensive Care Medicine.*

Capillaries that have been blocked by blood clots, caused by oxidative stress and activation of the blood clotting pathway, are the cause of multiple organ failure and death in septic patients.

In experiments with mice, Karyl Tyml and colleagues demonstrated that vitamin C administered intravenously early in the development of sepsis prevents capillary blockage, as well as reverses the condition by restoring blood flow if administered later. Reversal of blood flow blockage by vitamin C appeared to be dependent upon the production of nitric oxide, which dislodges platelets from the capillary wall.

Editor’s note: Dr. Tyml noted that, “Vitamin C is cheap and safe. Previous studies have shown that it can be injected intravenously into patients with no side effects.”

—D. Dye

Reference

*Intensive Care Med. 2010 Nov;36(11):1928-34.
Urgent alert: The FDA has just notified small pharmacies that they will no longer be allowed to manufacture or distribute injectable vitamin C—despite its remarkable power to heal conditions that conventional medicine can’t touch. Life Extension will aggressively investigate the FDA’s outrageous decision and enlighten health freedom activists how they can help to reverse it.

Longer Life Associated with Higher Alpha Carotene Levels

Longer Life Associated with Higher Alpha Carotene Levels

An article appearing in the Archives of Internal Medicine reports the discovery of researchers at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention of an association between higher serum levels of the carotenoid alpha-carotene and a lower risk of dying over a 13.9 year average period.*

Chaoyang Li, MD, PhD, and colleagues evaluated data from 15,318 adults who enrolled in the Third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey Follow-up Study between 1988 and 1994. The participants were followed through 2006, during which the causes of deaths that occurred were recorded.

Among participants whose alpha-carotene levels were highest at 9 or more micrograms per deciliter, there was a 39% lower adjusted risk of dying from any cause compared with those whose levels were lowest.

“These findings support increasing fruit and vegetable consumption as a means of preventing premature death,” the authors conclude.

Editor’s note: To obtain high levels of alpha carotene you should include the following in your diet: pumpkin, carrots, sweet potatoes, cantaloupe, spinach, broccoli, green beans, barley, oats, and plant-based foods.

—D. Dye

Reference

* Arch Int Med. 2010 Nov 22.

Calcium, Vitamin C Supplements May Help Protect Against Diabetes

In an article published in Diabetes Care, Honglei Chen, MD, PhD, and colleagues report that individuals who regularly consume calcium or vitamin C supplements have a lower risk of developing diabetes than people who don’t consume such supplements.*

Dr. Chen and associates evaluated data from 232,007 participants in the NIH-AARP Study. Questionnaires administered upon enrollment between 1995 and 1996 provided information concerning multivitamin supplement use as well as individual vitamin and mineral supplements. Multivitamins were categorized as stress-tab, Theragran-M® or One-a-Day® types. Follow-up questionnaire responses revealed 14,130 cases of diabetes diagnosed after the year 2000.

A protective effect for multivitamin use against diabetes was observed; however, its significance disappeared after adjusting for the use of individual supplements. When individual supplements were examined, participants who used vitamin C daily had a 9% lower risk of developing diabetes, and for those who used calcium, the risk was 15% lower.

Editor’s note: The authors write that, “It is likely that multivitamins at their current composition cannot reduce the risk of diabetes. Most multivitamins contain lower amounts of single antioxidants than individual vitamin supplements and thus might not be sufficient to be biologically effective.”

—D. Dye

Reference

* Diabetes Care. 2010 Oct 26.

Garlic Could Help Reduce Osteoarthritis of the Hip

An article published in BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders reports the discovery of Frances M. K. Williams, PhD, and her associates of a protective effect of allium vegetables, which include garlic, leeks, and onions, against osteoarthritis of the hip.*

The study included 1,000 healthy female twins between the ages of 46 to 77, many of whom had no symptoms of arthritis. Dietary questionnaire responses provided information on the participants’ intake of 131 foods. Radiographic evaluation assessed the presence of early osteoarthritis in the hip, knee, and spine.

Among women whose fruit and vegetable intake was high, there was a lower adjusted risk of hip osteoarthritis compared to those whose intake was low, with the greatest protective benefit observed for non-citrus fruit and allium vegetables. Further research in cultured human cartilage cells determined that diallyl disulphide, a compound that occurs in garlic, limited the expression of cartilage-damaging enzymes.

Editor’s note: Dr. Williams remarked that, “While we don’t yet know if eating garlic will lead to high levels of this component in the joint, these findings may point the way towards future treatments and prevention of hip osteoarthritis.”

—D. Dye

Reference

* BMC Musculoskelet Disord. 2010 Dec 8;11(1):280.

Greater Omega-3 Fatty Acid Intake Associated with Protection Against Advanced Age-Related Macular Degeneration

Greater Omega-3 Fatty Acid Intake Associated with Protection Against Advanced Age-Related Macular Degeneration

Researchers from Johns Hopkins University report in the journal Ophthalmology their finding of a protective effect for fish that contain abundant amounts of the omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA against the development of advanced age-related macular degeneration.*

Sheila K. West, PhD, and her associates evaluated data from 2,391 participants in the Salisbury Eye Evaluation (SEE) Study. Dietary questionnaire responses were analyzed for the type and amount of fish and shellfish consumed weekly.

Early macular degeneration was diagnosed in 227 subjects, 153 had intermediate-stage disease, and advanced macular degeneration was observed in 68 participants. Although there did not appear to be a significant protective effect for fish and shellfish in general, those whose intake of high omega-3 fatty acid fish was greatest at one or more servings per week had a 60% lower risk of advanced disease compared to those who consumed less than one serving.

Editor’s note: The finding adds evidence to that of other research, including the Age-Related Eye Disease Study (AREDS), concerning the benefit of nutritional components against macular degeneration. High amounts of omega-3s have been measured in the retina of the eye and may be essential to eye health.

—D. Dye

Reference

* Ophthalmol. 2010 Dec;177(12):2395-401.

Pomegranate May Help Prevent Prostate Cancer Metastasis

Pomegranate May Help Prevent Prostate Cancer Metastasis

The American Society for Cell Biology’s 50th Annual Meeting was the site of a presentation concerning the identification of compounds in pomegranate that protect against prostate cancer metastasis.*

In 2006, researchers observed a reduction in the increase of PSA levels in men with prostate cancer who consumed 8 ounces of pomegranate juice daily. Researchers involved in the current study, led by Manuela Martins-Green, PhD, had previously determined that pomegranate juice concentrate increased cell death in prostate tumor cell lines that were resistant to testosterone (which is associated with metastasis), as well as increased cell adhesion and decreased migration in cells that survived.

The team identified phenylpropanoids, hydrobenzoic acids, flavones, and conjugated fatty acids as compounds responsible for the effects in the cancer cells that were not destroyed. In addition to inhibiting the growth of the tumor cell lines, the compounds inhibited their migration and attraction to a signal that promotes metastasis to the bone.

Editor’s note: Dr. Martins-Green and her associates noted, “Expect that further testing for dose-dependent effects, side effects, etc., should allow usage of these components as a more effective treatment for metastatic prostate cancer than simply drinking the juice.”

—D. Dye

Reference

* American Society for Cell Biology’s 50th
Annual Meeting. December 12, 2010.

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