Friday, August 22, 2014

Live Long and Prosper Newsletter August 2014

This newsletter was compiled from the latest research on health and longevity, by David Donohue, MD, FACP. 

1.   Is there a reverse J-shaped association between 25-hydroxyvitamin D and all-cause mortality? Results from the U.S. nationally representative NHANES.
   what is the optimal level of vitamin D in your blood? It turns out that people with a vitamin D level of about 81 live the longest. Mortality rate increases as your vitamin D level gets above 100 or less than 40. About 85% of people with body mass index over 30 have a low vitamin D level (less than 30). Does taking vitamin D supplements make you live longer? Not as clear.
October 2, 2013

2.   Obesity and early mortality in the United States.
   "CONCLUSIONS: For healthy nonsmokers young- and middle-aged adults who constitute about one-third of American adults, being obese is likely to hasten mortality by 9.44 years"
October 2, 2013

3.   Lifestyle factors and mortality risk in individuals with diabetes mellitus: are the associations different from those in individuals without diabetes?
   People who have diabetes have a 62% higher mortality rate. If you are getting diabetes, it is best to aggressively change your lifestyle and not get it. "Intake of fruit, legumes, nuts, seeds, pasta, poultry and vegetable oil was related to a lower mortality risk, and intake of butter and margarine was related to an increased mortality risk"
October 18, 2013

1.   Association between various sedentary behaviours and all-cause, cardiovascular disease and cancer mortality: the Multiethnic Cohort Study.
   Sitting at work for more than 10 hours per day had a harmful effect on women, increasing their mortality rate by 19% relative to those who sat less than 5 hours. Sitting watching over 5 hours per day of TV was associated with 19% higher rate of cardiac death in men and 32% higher in women, relative to abstainers.
September 27, 2013

2.   Examining the Behavioral Processes through which Lifestyle Interventions Promote Weight Loss: Results from the PREMIER Trial.
   Not many things reliably help people lose weight. This study (like many others) found that adherence to a weight loss program and self-monitoring of weight both make a big difference. If you want to lose weight, probably best to eagerly participate in a program, and weigh yourself every day.
October 15, 2013

3.   Association of walking speed in late midlife with mortality: results from the Whitehall II cohort study.
   Researchers have been studying how walking speed is a measure of longevity, among people above say 50. This study confirmed this (89% higher mortality for those in the slower 1/3 of people).
October 18, 2013

1.   The metabolic syndrome.
   Many people have not heard of "The Metabolic Syndrome". It has been all the rage in recent years in primary care. It goes by a number of different names: insulin resistance, glucose intolerance, pre-diabetes. It is thought to be both a risk factor for heart disease and a warning sign that you are about to get diabetes. How can you tell if you have it? Supposedly you have it if you have 3 or more of the following: * waist circumference greater than 40 inches in men or 35 in women, * serum triglycerides > 150, * HDL ("good") cholesterol l< 40 in men or < 50 in women, * blood pressure > 130/85, * fasting blood sugar > 100
August 25, 2013

2.   Better Diet Quality and Decreased Mortality Among Myocardial Infarction Survivors.
   After having a heart attack, those who ate a Mediterranean-style diet lived a little longer.
September 5, 2013

3.   The contribution of diet and lifestyle to socioeconomic inequalities in cardiovascular morbidity and mortality.
   It has long been known that people of more privileged socioeconomic background live longer on average. For example, the more years of school you have had and the more stable your employment, the longer you live. This study investigated why. They found that most (70%) of the benefit of education on preventing heart disease is because people with more education tend to have better diets and exercise habits. So education causes better eating and exercise which causes less heart disease which causes less death. That's most of the story anyway.
September 5, 2013

1.   The “New Deadly Quartet” for Cardiovascular Disease in the 21st Century: Obesity, Metabolic Syndrome, Inflammation and Climate Change: How Does Statin Therapy Fit into this Equation?
   The authors cite evidence that particulates in the atmosphere are driving a significant amount of cardiovascular disease.
December 16, 2013

2.   Recent progress on nutraceutical research in prostate cancer
   Those who drank soymilk daily had 70% lower rate of prostate cancer than abstainers. men with prostate cancer who ate more fruits and veggies reduced their risk of progression by 59% relative to those who are the least. Green tea reduced the rate of widespread prostate cancer. In short, eating a plant-based diet and avoiding the usual suspects (meat, dairy, and eggs) is our best medicine against prostate cancer. Far tastier than PSA tests and digital rectal exams (yuck).
December 27, 2013

1.   Choice of motorcycle helmet makes a difference: a prospective observational study.
   In emergency room circles, they call them donorcycles, because that's where organ donations come from. For every mile ridden on a motorcycle, the rider has 35 times the risk of dying relative to riding in a car. But if you in that demographic of safety-conscious motorcycle riders, hear this: Riders who wear Full Face Helmets enjoy about 1/5 the risk of having a facial fracture.
September 5, 2013

2.   A prospective study of carpal tunnel syndrome: workplace and individual risk factors.
   Carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) occurs most commonly with forceful hand exertion. Obesity triples your risk of CTS.
September 11, 2013

3.   Randomised clinical trial: sodium alginate oral suspension is non-inferior to omeprazole in the treatment of patients with non-erosive gastroesophageal disease.
   Sodium alginate oral suspension was as affective as omeprazole (Prilosec), for regular-old espohageal reflux (GERD), without ulcers or other erosions. Omeprazole and other proton-pump inhibitors (PPIs) are know to increase risk of some infections and of bone thinning. 
September 14, 2013

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