Longevity News Digest
I used to Admire Warren Buffet
Dear Future Centenarian,
That was until a few years ago, when I started noticing him drinking Coke on nearly every one of his media appearances.
I can't blame him for investing in profitable companies like Coca-Cola. After all, it™s his job to make money for his shareholders. But there™s a dark side to the coin.
Buffet is a powerfully influential man. So people listen to him. In fact, he™s a role model to many. And he™s smart. Amazingly smart. He knows that blatantly drinking Coke virtually every time the camera™s red light glows encourages people to drink poison.
You might think, whoa, wait a minute Dave. Poison? It™s only a soft drink. Pop. We grew up on the stuff.
Yes we did. And kids are growing up on lots more of it now. In fact, they™re growing OUT!
As a nation, and as a world, we™re becoming fatter and fatter. Obesity is an epidemic. And so is type 2 diabetes. That kills people. But first, it makes them suffer, usually for years.
I know. My best childhood friend went through the cycle¦ and then died. Why? Because he drank a couple of quarts of pop every day.
I warned him for years. Didn™t listen. Then he got diabetes¦ and died.
So here™s Warren Buffet, the famous benefactor to noble causes, contributing to agony and death.
Do you think he doesn™t know how deadly sugar is? Of course he knows. So the following interview is unconscionable.
By the way, I have an unusually pro-capitalistic mentality. So when I read articles like this, it turns my stomach.
Not only does he contribute to widespread sickness¦ but Buffet gives capitalism a black eye.
Profit over conscience. He™s lucky he has the genes that let him get away with his lifestyle. Or is he just making this idiotic story up to sell more Coke? Ugh.
Read it and weep.
Warren Buffett's secret to staying young: "I eat like a six-year-old."
The world™s most successful investor stays youthful by drinking at least five Cokes a day. Turns out, the Berkshire Hathaway CEO™s bizarre diet is highly strategic.
How does the world™s top investor, at 84 years old, wake up every day and face the world with boundless energy?
œI™m one quarter Coca-Cola, Warren Buffett says.
When he told me this in a phone call yesterday (we were talking about the death of his friend, former Coca-Cola president Keough), I assumed he was talking about his stock portfolio.
No, Buffett explained, œIf I eat 2700 calories a day, a quarter of that is Coca-Cola. I drink at least five 12-ounce servings. I do it every day.
Perhaps only a man who owns $16 billion in Coca-Cola stock”9% of Coke, through his company, Berkshire HathawayÂ would maintain such an odd daily diet. One 12-ounce can of Coke contains 140 calories. Typically, Buffett says, œI have three Cokes during the day and two at night.
When he™s at his desk at Berkshire Hathaway headquarters in Omaha, he drinks regular Coke; at home, he treats himself to Cherry Coke.
œI™ll have one at breakfast, he explains, noting that he loves to drink Coke with potato sticks. What brand of potato sticks? œI have a can right here, he says. œU-T-Z Utz is a Hanover, Pennsylvania-based snack maker. Buffett says that he™s talked to Utz management about potentially buying the company.
Investors in Berkshire Hathaway may feel relieved that the CEO isn™t addicted to Utz Potato Stix at every breakfast. œThis morning, I had a bowl of chocolate chip ice cream, Buffett says.
Asked to explain the high-sugar, high-salt diet that has somehow enabled him to remain seemingly healthy, Buffett replies: œI checked the actuarial tables, and the lowest death rate is among six-year-olds. So I decided to eat like a six-year-old. The octogenarian adds, œIt™s the safest course I can take.
Latest Headlines from Fight Aging!
The Strategic Focus of Aging Research that Must be Disrupted If We Are to See Greater Progress - Monday, March 2, 2015
Regular readers know that significant progress towards human rejuvenation, ending frailty and disease in aging, requires that SENS research, or something very like it, disrupts the present status quo to become the scientific mainstream in this field.
SENS is focused on periodic repair of the fundamental damage to cells and macromolecules that occurs as a side-effect of the ordinary operation of metabolism. A strong focus here is on the accumulation of metabolic byproducts such as amyloids, lipofuscin and cross-links, while in comparison age-related changes in telomere biochemistry and epigenetic patterns are not all that important as targets: changes there are secondary effects, and thus should be reversed if the underlying damage is repaired.
In comparison the mainstream high level research strategy for aging and longevity is the other way around for these areas; there is comparatively little concern with metabolic byproducts as a target for treatment outside of the Alzheimer's field, and a great deal of interest in targeting telomeres and epigenetic changes.
In general this is driven by a philosophy of metabolic alteration: the guiding principles are to (a) find ways to change the operation of metabolism to slow down the accumulation of damage and thus slow aging, or (b) force metabolic control processes back into a youthful configuration. This is a far worse approach than damage repair; it cannot produce rejuvenation, and in many cases ignores the root causes of aging while trying to force damaged biochemistry to behave as though it were not damaged and aged. We should expect only marginal outcomes from such efforts.
Both SENS and the present mainstream overlap in their concern for cancer and stem cell function. Both consider mitochondrial function important in aging, but with important differences in the present consensus of how and why it is important, and what should be done as a result.
In the SENS vision, stochastic nuclear DNA damage is probably not all that important outside of cancer, but the mainstream consensus is that it probably is a cause of age-related disregulation of cellular activities and tissue function. This article reflects the mainstream view.
Demonstrating Enhanced Liver Regeneration in Mice - Monday, March 2, 2015
The liver is the most regenerative of organs in mammals, capable of regrowing much of its mass.
That is arguably less important than the ability of a complete liver to regenerate the damage of aging and disease, such as growing fibrosis and dysfunction in cell populations necessary for organ function. Deployment of therapies to reliably achieve this goal still lies ahead, but researchers are making slow progress in the right direction.
More on Retrotransposons and Aging - Tuesday, March 3, 2015
This article goes into some detail on recent research into whether retrotransposons in the genome play a meaningful role in aging. This is analogous to the debate over whether stochastic nuclear DNA damage has a role in aging beyond causing cancer, and the sort of studies you'd need to introduce clear proof one way or another are much the same.
Considering Nitric Oxide Mechanisms as a Target - Tuesday, March 3, 2015
Nitric oxide is present in many areas of metabolism that change with aging or that influence the pace of aging.
Calorie restriction results in increased nitric oxide levels, for example, though as always researchers are far from putting all the pieces of the calorie restriction response together in a neat arrangement of cause and effect.
Nitric oxide levels are thought to influence mitochondrial activity and stem cell populations as well, and both of those are important in aging. There is interest in trying to manipulate nitric oxide mechanisms in efforts to slow the progression of aging.
MOTS-c as Potential Exercise Mimetic - Wednesday, March 4, 2015
Regular moderate exercise is correlated with greater life expectancy in humans and shown to cause greater life expectancy in animal studies.
It definitely improves health. Thus now that more of the mechanisms of exercise are understood, researchers are interested in uncovering molecular targets and drugs that can reproduce some of those effects.
Cartilage Regeneration in Rats Using Embryonic Stem Cells - Wednesday, March 4, 2015
The quality of cartilage tissue depends upon its mechanical properties.
In past years getting that right has proven to be challenging: growing cartilage cells is one thing, but forming the correct three-dimensional structures and extracellular matrix so that the resulting tissue can bear load is quite another. Nonetheless, progress has been made. To follow on from a recent demonstration of cartilage regeneration using induced pluripotent stem cells, here another group is using embryonic stem cells to regrow cartilage in situ.
Healthy Years Lost to Obesity, Hypertension, and Diabetes - Thursday, March 5, 2015
Researchers have put some numbers to the life expectancy lost to obesity and its most common associated conditions.
The message, as always, is that it is a bad idea to let yourself accumulate excess fat tissue. It is easy to let things slide in that direction in this modern age of comparative wealth and plenty, but there are consequences, even for being just moderately overweight.
When Death is Optional - Thursday, March 5, 2015
Many people believe that medical control over aging will be stunningly expensive, and thus indefinite extension of healthy life will only be available to a wealthy elite. This is far from the case.
If you look at the SENS approach to repair therapies, treatments when realized will be mass-produced infusions of cells, proteins, and drugs. Everyone will get the same treatments because everyone ages due to the same underlying cellular and molecular damage. You'll need one round of treatments every ten to twenty years, and they will be given by a bored clinical assistant.
No great attention will be needed by highly trained and expensive medical staff, as all of the complexity will be baked into the manufacturing process. Today's closest analogs are the comparatively new mass-produced biologics used to treat autoimmune conditions, and even in the wildly dysfunctional US medical system these cost less than ten thousand dollars for a treatment.
Rejuvenation won't cost millions, or even hundreds of thousands. It will likely cost less than many people spend on overpriced coffee over the course of two decades of life, and should fall far below that level. When the entire population is the marketplace for competing developers, costs will eventually plummet to those seen for decades-old generic drugs and similar items produced in factory settings: just a handful of dollars per dose. The poorest half of the world will gain access at that point, just as today they have access to drugs that were far beyond their reach when initially developed.
Nonetheless, many people believe that longevity enhancing therapies will only be available for the wealthy, and that this will be an important dynamic in the future. Inequality is something of a cultural fixation at the moment, and it is manufactured as a fantasy where it doesn't exist in reality. This is just another facet of the truth that most people don't really understand economics, either in the sense of predicting likely future changes, or in the sense of what is actually taking place in the world today.
Are Members of Long-Lived Families Healthier? - Friday, March 6, 2015
Epidemiological studies of members of long-lived families are driving much of the interest in the genetics of longevity. While it is thought that genetic variations are much less important than lifestyle choices, they appear to become more influential in extreme old age, in the period of life when individuals are very damaged and frail.
Investigating the root causes of such variations in human longevity is good science, but probably irrelevant to the future of longevity-enhancing medicine: effective therapies will repair damage and keep people young, indefinitely postponing the phase of life and loss of function in which genetic differences have any meaningful effect.
In this study, members of long-lived families are compared with age-matched individuals from families of ordinary longevity, and they are largely more healthy, as you'd expect. Aging is a global phenomenon of damage accumulation, and people who live longer tend to be less damaged and thus more healthy at a given age.
Other studies have provided evidence for a genetic component to familial longevity, but note the spouse effect here however. That spouses marrying into long-lived families are also more healthy than the general population suggests that lifestyle choices continue to have a fairly strong influence on this data even in later ages.
Sitting Time is Associated With Arterial Calcification - Friday, March 6, 2015
One interesting correlation that has emerged fairly recently from very large epidemiological studies of health is that sitting time is associated with worse health and a shorter life expectancy independently of exercise.
Explaining why this is the case is a still a fairly speculative process at this stage, but a first step is to try to pin down specific aspects of age-related disease and degeneration and associate those with sitting time.
Here researchers focus on the calcification of blood vessels, a part of the mineralization of connective tissues that occurs in aging. Along with cross-linking due to sugary metabolic waste, this process stiffens blood vessel walls.
This in turn causes hypertension, contributes to atherosclerosis, and causes all sorts of further damage to tissues throughout the body due to structural failure in small blood vessels and inappropriate blood pressure. As for cross-links, there is a minimal amount of research taking place on how to demineralize tissues, but far from enough.
Read More https://www.fightaging.org/archives/2015/03/sitting-time-is-associated-with-arterial-calcification.php
DISCLAIMER: News summaries are reported by third parties, and there is no guarantee of accuracy. This newsletter is not meant to substitute for your personal due diligence and is not to be taken as medical advice. For originating report, please see www.fightaging.org/
David A. Kekich
Maximum Life Foundation
"Where Biotech, Infotech and Nanotech
Meet to Reverse Aging by 2033"