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Table of Contents

Anti-aging: Being youthful is not a matter of age, it's a way of life

By Hellinoos

Do you want to age to age late and live a long life of optimal health?

Stop looking for youth elixirs and stop following complex and mysterious processes. In-fact The most effective secrets are affordable and simple.

As Aristotle once said, many years before the embarking of scientific studies that look for ways to eliminate aging and increase lifespan.”The way we will age depends on the way we live”.

The quest for eternal youth is man's dream since the beginning of humanity. However, no one has ever escaped from aging and wear. Most of us have accepted both as conditions for the existence of life, but always hope for a miracle, as aging slowly decreases our strength, fertility, attractiveness, memory and erodes our health.

Can we then escape from old age?

This question is, without doubt, the biggest challenge for scientists. The biochemistry of aging is, above all, a mystery and encompasses a broad field of research. Aging, at least by today's standards, can not be prevented, but we have managed to achieve effective rejuvenation, youth extension and prolongation of life expectancy.

What is anti-aging?

As anti-aging we define the process by which we attempt to delay aging. Aging is the natural deterioration of both the internal and external organs (skin is after all our larger organ) of our organism. This process befalls as the years go by and leads to the progressive deterioration of cells, tissues, organs and the declination of an individuals abilities. It is also very difficult to define the exact start time of aging. Many scientists consider that aging begins immediately after birth. It has now been scientifically proven that the number of neurons in our brain decreases continuously from birth. Some body functions of the organism start to decline very early, to be exact, immediately after puberty. For example, our ability to remember new words begins to decrease, from the middle of our second decade of life. Perhaps aging, starts very early, signs of aging though begin to be visible only when it is too late and the years have passed.

What is the goal of anti-aging?

In the worlds largest conferences, scientists share their views on how to eventually age as late as possible and in the best possible way, either in terms of our outward appearance or the deterioration that occurs to our memory and intellectual functions as we age. The truth is that great progress has been made in this direction. Most experts advice on anti-aging relate to those of longevity, since in both cases the aim is to live a good life for many years without the severe symptoms of old age.

What we have achieved when it comes to anti-aging?

The endeavor of increasing the years of youth and life expectancy has been our expectation since the beginning of time. Many magicians, philosophers, or charlatans fed these hopes. Miraculous water, potions, secret recipes, rare herbs promised to eliminate old age, but alas they were nothing more than scams. No one till our times has managed to fit in a pill or a jar with what could help us stop aging. What we, however, have achieved for certain is to delay and soften the signs of aging. Life expectancy, from 85 years at present, is expected to reach 93 years in 2050. During the last 50 years life expectancy steadily increased by about 2 years per decade. Is, it is as if we have won an additional 20% of lifetime. Humans now live on average longer than any other time in human history. The technologies and means that generally enhance survival and anti-aging (vaccines, antibiotics, water purification systems, electricity, etc.) are accessible and only require to effectively used. Furthermore, plastic surgery, dermatological treatments, regular exercise and proper diet are employed in the battle against aging. Success, of course, arguably brings new challenges. The longer lifetime achieved today leads us to unexplored fields.

The false hope

The modern approach to aging revolves around various chemical compounds and substances such as estrogen, testosterone, vitamins, nutritional supplements based on herbs, etc. However, all these need special attention. The mostly American but also European market is flooded with “anti-aging formulations” containing various combinations of antioxidants or neurotrophic factors, proteins, herbs, hormones (estrogen, testosterone, growth hormone, melatonin, etc.). It is important, however, keep in mind that most of these products have nothing to do with drugs that have been approved by FDA, EMA or other official formulations, such as nutritional supplements, vitamins, etc., that are not listed in any official pharmacological treatise as anti-aging. They are sold without a prescription over the internet or at health food stores or at stores for athletes. It is preferable, however, to receive most of your antioxidants from food. It is also best to minimize your exposure to oxidative stress such as smoking, excessive stress and exposure to air pollutants rather than taking such compounds uncontrollably. If you still desire to use supplements you must always read the directions that are written on their packages and never consume more than the recommended dosage.


The hormones of youth

The levels of many hormones decline with age. Today, the scientific world knows that hormones play an important role on the rate of aging. Many scientists believe that hormonal factors affect and aid the body in maintaining optimal function, so the attention turns to the ability of substituting these degrading levels of hormones as the years pass by. Nevertheless, the idea of restoration of all hormones as a means of revitalizing could be dangerous. Most studies done to date are negative, alarming us about the potential side effects that such an endeavor could have. The use of hormones in the battle of aging so far, is limited to hormone replacement for women during menopause as a means of alleviating its symptoms (hot flushes, sweats, vaginal dryness, etc.) and ensuring a better quality of life in the future, reducing the risk of osteoporosis, and improving the appearance and texture of the skin. What, however, you need to know is that hormonal substitution apart from positive influences can lead to potential risks, since, according to studies, systemic hormone replacement therapy in women at menopause increases the endangerment for breast cancer and cardiovascular problems. Many scientists note that only when cancer is combated, it is safe to replace all hormones that decrease as age increases. So before taking hormone replacement, you should weigh in the dangers and never without the guidance and supervision of an endocrinologist.

The main anti-aging hormones are:

Melatonin

Melatonin is an adrenal hormone produced by the pineal gland, who is located below our brain and is characterized as the pacemaker of the human aging clock. Melatonin is released each night as assistance in inducing sleep. With the advancing of age though its production gradually decreases. It is the basic 'candidate' hormone for slowing the aging process.

DHEA (dehydroepiandrosterone)

This is a hormone of the adrenal glands whose production reaches its maximum at the age of 25-30 years and then gradually reduces, till at the age of 80 years it is merely 10% of the maximum level. Humans have much higher levels of dehydroepiandrosterone than any other species. Studies done in animals show that it has positive effects mainly in strengthening the immune system, but its role is not fully understood, resulting that its relationship with aging is not clear.

Human Growth Hormone (HGH)

Human Growth hormone is secreted by the pituitary gland of the brain throughout the human life. HGH contributes largely to the development of the human body and plays a major role in the metabolism of nutrients. It's production is diminished with the passage of age (approximately 14% per decade after the age of 25 years). The reduction of HGH causes an increase in body fat and a decrease in muscle mass.

Prescription:

For the time being the only case in which doctors may prescribe growth hormone for is in children who have short stature due to lack of HGH. Several countries have made proposals for administration of growth hormone to revive and prevent aging, in some cases even to reverse the aging process. The administration, however, has not been proven neither effective nor safe, as there are numerous side effects to it.


Is the secret of youth in your refrigerator then?

Tell me what you eat, to tell you how long you will live. Indeed youth, health and longevity could be lurking on our plate. A plethora of studies have shown that a reduced calorie intake and the adoption of the Mediterranean Diet, which is a Greek tradition for thousands of years and is an excellent source of antioxidants and magnesium can contribute significantly to the protection of health and longevity.

Greens rich in antioxidants

Antioxidants are the “key” to prolonging youth, as experts say. As an antioxidant we identify any organic substance which can delay or prevent the destructive oxidative action of free radicals. Antioxidants are produced “endogenously” (from our organism) by enzymes but there are also “exogenous” antioxidants that we get through diet. Some antioxidants suppress the harmful oxidative processes of free radicals others prevent their creation (inhibitory antioxidants) there are also antioxidants that destroy or inactivate the (cleaners antioxidants) or prevent the oxidative chain reaction from taking place. Under normal conditions, the body is protected by the overproduction of free radicals due to endogenous antioxidant network of enzymes. However, although this impressive defense system is particularly efficient, it is often not sufficient enough and the intake of antioxidants in our daily diet is considered necessary. Today, research has focused on vitamins C and E, which are found mainly in fruits and vegetables. Our human body has high demands in these vitamins, as it can not synthesize them and they must be obtained from our daily diet in sufficient quantity. However, there is a plethora of other antioxidants such as carotenoids, flavonoids and poly-phenols, which are equally important for the health and protection from premature aging. These are found mainly in fruits, vegetables, herbs, and in tea and wine. Moreover, they have antioxidant and catechins and quercetin (found mainly in tea, wine, apples and onions), lycopene and lutein (found in tomatoes, spinach and herbs), selenium (found mainly in seafood, liver, beef, cereals, nuts and fish) and zinc (found in large amounts in lamb, and shellfish).

Magnesium

Magnesium deficiency accelerates aging. Recent research conducted in the U.S. showed that magnesium deficiency causes premature aging. Magnesium is essential for hundreds biochemical functions of the human body: Helps maintain normal muscle and nerve functions. Maintains a constant function of the heart.

Strengthen your bones with Magnesium.

A recent published studies- the (7 April 2008), held at the Research Hospital Oakland by Bruce Ames and his colleagues dealt with the long-term effects of magnesium deficiency in human cells. The researchers found that while the cells develop normally under normal magnesium levels in shortage situation though it appears that premature and accelerated aging occurs (more than half the U.S. population lacks magnesium). For this reason, it is recommended that consumption of foods rich in magnesium such as spinach, beans, nuts and whole grains.

Iodine - a critical ingredient for proper health

Iodine is essential for the production of thyroid hormones and fetal and infant development. That is why it is a vital nutrient for proper health at all stages of our lives. Since our body can not produce iodine, it must be regularly provided through a healthy diet. According to a report by the World Health Organization (WHO), iodine deficiency is present in about 54 countries around the world. This is because the soils in these countries contain very little to none of it.

Iodine is the basic ingredient for the production of the thyroid hormone thyroxine (T4) and triiodothyronine (T3). Thyroid hormones help the body use the energy in the best way to keep warm, and also help the brain, heart, muscles, and other organs work as they should. Thyroid hormones, and thus iodine are essential for embryo development, maturation of bone and brain development. According to the World Health Organization (WHO, 1994) inadequate iodine intake is recognized as the most common preventable cause of mental retardation.

Sources of iodine are seafood, especially cod, tuna and shrimp, seaweed, kelp seaweed and iodized salt.

Boron

Boron is an essential mineral and micro-nutrient for the conversion of estrogen and vitamin D to more active forms. Both estrogen and vitamin D play an important role in bone health. Boron is also a vital mineral that battles against osteoporosis and promotes bone health. Moreover, the decline in menopause estrogen levels results in osteoclasts, cells that catabolize bone tissue to become more sensitive to signals of the parathyroid hormone accelerating the catabolism of bone and thus increasing the risk of osteoporosis. Therefore studies have shown that boron may protect against osteoporosis during menopause, and reproduces many of the positive effects of estrogen therapy.

Boron against lung cancer

According to findings published in the journal American Journal of Epidemiology, higher amounts of boron in our diet are associated with reduced risk of lung cancer.

Researchers at MD Anderson Medical Center, University of Texas studied the correlations between risk of lung cancer in women and the consumption of boron and hormone replacement therapy (HRT), which is known to reduce the risk of lung cancer, using data from an ongoing study.

Compared with the highest intake of boron, the lowest consumption was associated with a 92% increased risk of lung cancer.

This trend was evident in women 60 years or younger and among women with high body weight.

The use of HRT was associated with 31% reduction in the risk of lung cancer.

The highest risk of disease observed in women with low boron who did not use HRT and were over 60 years old.

The above research explains why the nutrient boron may play a role in defense against cancer caused by inflammation.

Boron is ubiquitous in many foods. The ten main dietary sources of boron are: coffee, wine, apples,pears,avocados peanut butter and peanuts, grapes and raisins, orange juice, salads, beans and other legumes, bananas and broccoli.

Chromium

Chromium is a metal, which is necessary for the human body in small quantities. In nature is in the form of two different ions. The first Cr +3 found in foods and is biologically active, while the second ion is toxic Cr +6 derived from industrial waste.

Chromium has been proved by scientific studies that it induces the secretion of insulin, growth hormone essential for the metabolism of carbohydrates, fat and protein in the human body. In recent years studies converge to the conclusion that chromium supplementation may prevent some people from the onset of diabetes mellitus type II, or help to better control of blood glucose in diabetic patients. However, research on chromium is still in it's early stages and there are many questions that need to be answered. Of these the most important is which people benefit from chromium supplementation, as it seems that there are significant inter-individual differences in response to treatment with chromium supplements.

Moreover, the evaluation of content and bioavailability of different foods that contain chromium is still under development, while it is not yet determined whether the deficiency in chromium intake through diet can have negative effects on the human body. Moreover, the scientific community has not yet agreed on a reliable global measurement model for evaluating the warehouses of chromium in our human body.

Dietary Sources of Chromium

Most foods contain traces of chromium, while relatively good sources are meats, whole grains, and some fruits, vegetables and spices. In contrast, foods rich in simple sugars (fructose, glucose) are low in chromium. The table below summarizes the content of some food in chromium although the bioavailability of chromium varied much during the processing of foods so these numbers do not fully reflect the amount of chromium that eventually reaches our body through food.

FoodChromium (mcg)
½ cup broccoli11
1 cup grape juice8
60g. Whole wheat bread4
1 cup mashed potatoes3
1 tsp garlic3
1 tsp dried basil2
100 gr. veal2
1 cup orange juice2
100 gr. Turkey breast2
30g. wholemeal crackers1
150 ml red wine1-13
1 apple with peel1
1 medium banana1
½ cup green beans1
How much chromium do we need?

The needs in chromium vary upon the age group and gender that each person belongs to. Also, the need for chromium increases in women who are pregnant or breastfeeding.

AgeInfants and Children (mcg / date.)Men (Mcg / date.)Women (Mcg / date.)Pregnant (Mcg / date.)Nursing (Mcg / date.)
0 to 6 months0.2----
7 to 12 months old5.5----
1-3 years11----
4-8 years15----
9-13 years-2521--
14-18 years-35242944
19-50 years-35253045
> 50 years-3020--
When you need supplemental chromium?

The absorption of chromium takes place in the small intestine and is favored by the presence of vitamin C and niacin and is stored principally in the liver, spleen and bones. Although needed, significant amounts of chromium are excreted from the urine tract. These amounts vary and seem to be elevated in pregnant or lactating women in heavily injured, and also in cases of intence stress and intense exercise. Moreover, it has been shown that older people tend to have lower levels of chromium in their bodies than a healthy adult. Therefore, pregnant and lactating, seriously injured, athletes and the elderly are likely to need chromium supplements. Finally, people who suffer from Type II diabetes and glucose intolerance may benefit from a supplement of chromium.

Chromium, lipids and slimming

Some isolated studies showed that chromium supplementation resulted in a drop in LDL (bad) cholesterol and triglycerides, while it led to increased HDL (good) cholesterol in the human population. However, these results come from early studies that do are not verified by the most recent ones.

Regarding the effect of chromium supplementation on body composition, there are a few studies that suggest the administration of chromium reduces fat and increases lean body mass. The majority of studies though do not agree with these results, therefore, further research is needed in this direction in order to clarify whether or not and under which conditions (exercise, diet) chromium supplementation may have beneficial effects on body composition.

In conclusion, the chromium a healthy person needs can be gained through a balanced diet rich in vegetables and fruits, poultry, legumes, whole grains and dairy by-products. The additional supplementation with chromium appears to only be needed by pregnant and lactating women, athletes and seriously injured and possibly by some seniors.

Chromium supplementation should always be taken only after medical advise, as there are important interactions between chromium and certain drugs. The assessment of a dietary scientist or dietitian is required before the start of chromium supplementation. Finally, it should be noted that symptoms of toxicity have been seen from excessive intake of chromium.


Eat... like a Mediterranean

The longevity of the Cretans, raised scientists eyebrows, and soon became the subject of intense research. They concluded that the most major component of the Cretans longevity was in fact their diet. Besides Cretans, for the same reasons longevity is enjoyed by populations of the Mediterranean Sea in general. Unfortunately, in recent years, abandoning the Mediterranean diet, tending towards more westernized dietary patterns became the norm. According to a feature written in the “New York Times” a few years ago, “the Greeks have become more Westerners and the Westerners more Greek-Mediterranean”. This inverse shift in diet resulted in the rapid growth of “wear diseases” (Cardiovascular diseases, various cancers). Therefore, if you intend to be robust and youthful for many years, it is necessary to adopt and for Mediterraneans to return to the Mediterranean diet.

The Mediterranean requirements:

- Eat daily whole grains and their products (4 small slices of bread or 2 cups of a cooked rice or wholemeal pasta), milk (2 glasses of milk or 2 yogurt or 60 g. Cheese), vegetables (2-3 servings) and fruits (3 to 4 servings) and olive oil. - Eat potatoes every week (five servings), fish (at least 2 servings), pulses aka legumes (2-3 servings), nuts (1-2 servings), poultry (1-2 servings), eggs (2-3 servings) red meat (1 serving per week) and sweets (1 serving). - A drink of wine (one glass per day).


Sources of antioxidants:

Vitamin C

Fruits and vegetables (mainly strawberries, citrus fruits, kiwi, cherries, berries, melon, tomato, cabbage, green peppers, broccoli)

Vitamin E

Green leafy vegetables (spinach, arugula), almonds, walnuts, hazelnuts, and vegetable oils (especially sunflower)

Carotenoids

Citrus, melon, apricot, green leafy vegetables, carrot, tomato and sweet potato

Flavonoids

Citrus fruits, blueberries, apples, grapes, cherries, onions, tea, red wine, parsley

Selenium

Seafood, fish, liver, beef, olives, nuts, avocados, grains, seeds, fruits and vegetables

Phenols

Olive oil,olives,citrus,cocoa,wine,flax-seed,broccoli,garlic,bitter chocolate,green tea, Zinc,Seafood,lamb,liver,cereals,pulses,wheat,brewer's yeast,eggs


Calorie restriction and longevity:

A number of clinical investigations from researchers concluded that a drastic reduction in calories can contribute significantly to slowing the aging process. Specifically, surveys made in the last 20 years in animals showed an increase up to 40% of their lifespan. Reducing calories also offers several health benefits, as it reduces the risk of many pathological conditions brought about by aging. What is also encouraging is that, in recent years, there were more signs that caloric restriction increases lifespan in humans. The precise mechanisms, however, that trigger this phenomenon are still under investigation. Many experts worry that after these findings some people will become malnourished, in hope of living longer. Therefore, caution should be taken into account, as in any case the caloric restriction should not cause subnormal weight loss. Studies have shown that too thin people are at increased risk of disease and have indeed a reduced life span compared to regular weight people.


The foods that battle oxidation

Recently a group of researchers of the National Institute on Aging of America developed a new method to measure the antioxidant activity of food. This is called ORAC (oxygen radical absorbance capacity) and consists of a scale that measures the ability of food in binding free radicals. Below is a list of the USDA (United States Department of Agriculture) with the score of certain foods.

ORAC Prices (Binding Capacity of Free Radicals) per 100 g.

Cinnamon 6.045
Prunes 5,770
Pomegranate 3,037
Blackberries 2,036
Strawberries1,540
Spinach 1,260
Brussels Sprouts 980
Fresh plums 960
Broccoli 890
Orange 750
Red grapes 739
Red sweet peppers 710
Cherries 670
Kiwi 602
Onions 450
Corn 400
Eggplant 390
Carrots 210

Studies have shown that 5,000 units a day may have a beneficial effect against oxidative action of free radicals.


Protect your skin with proper diet

The daily exposure to sunlight and smog, stress, smoking and of course the passage of time inevitably leave scars on your skin. Cosmetic products you may use certainly help, but act locally, unlike nutrients certain foods that act in depth and contribute to the smooth functioning of the skin in all its layers. The secret, according to studies, is one of the carotenoids, polyunsaturated fatty acids (omega-3, omega-6) and flavonoids (antioxidants). These valuable nutrients appears to have photo-protective action. So boost your diet with foods rich in antioxidant vitamins (A, E, C). The vitamin C contributes to the regeneration of natural collagen disorder which leads to the appearance of wrinkles. Also an important category of nutrients for the skin are polyunsaturated fatty acids, which maintain the flexibility and the functionality of the cell membranes of the skin. Good sources of polyunsaturated fatty acids are vegetable oils, fatty fish (salmon, mackerel), walnuts, sunflower seeds and almonds.


Shield your blood vessels from aging

The heart and blood vessels are our indicators of natural aging of the organism. The passage of time can cause atherosclerosis, impaired blood circulation and cardiovascular problems and diseases. The diet we need to follow in order to delay the signs of vascular age should be low in saturated fat and sugar and rich in vitamins (eg B6, folic acid) and protective antioxidants (e.g., flavonoids, carotenoids, phenols).

Green tea for healthy blood vessels.

Recent studies show that drinking green tea contributes to healthy blood vessels. This is due to the increased content of catechins, which have the ability to bind free radicals which attack our blood vessels, while causing secretion of nitric oxide and vasodilation, greatly facilitating blood circulation.


Delay bone deterioration.

By doing your best to keep your bones in good condition you can definitely delay their deterioration, which, apart from problems such as osteoporosis, is accompanied by difficulty in movement, decreased physical activity, and psychological aging. The foremost way to prevent bone aging, in addition to exercise, is a diet rich in calcium. Making our body immune to bone aging with adequate levels of calcium not only from childhood, but throughout the course of your life, may delay or reduce bone loss. The best dietary source of calcium are dairy products (milk, yogurt, cheeses, mostly yellow), with a very good rate of absorption by the body. Significant amounts of calcium are also detected in fatty fish that are consumed with their bones (eg sardines) in green leafy vegetables (spinach, broccoli), beans and whole grains. Here, it should be noted that in plant foods a decreased absorption rate is observed, because of the presence of acids that bind a significant amount of calcium.


Anti-aging Weaponry

A prerequisite to prolonging one's youth is good physical and mental health.

What can you do to maintain the above? That's simple, just follow my guidelines below:

Have a good nights sleep

Do not sleep more than nine hours and less than 4.

Do more sex with your partner. Research shows that couples that prolong their love life, live longer.

Wedding

Get married and make family. Research shows that married couples living a quiet life with a fixed schedule, balanced diet, enough sleep and fewer abuses leave longer.

Positive thinking towards life

Humans arriving into old age do not get nervous and do not fret at the slightest provocation. Health checkups are an essential element of longevity. Losing excess weight is perhaps the surest ticket to longevity. Try, therefore, to maintain the normal weight.


Feed your...Mind

Proper nutrition is essential for good brain function. The components associated with the proper brain function are:

Glucose is the first and primary substance needed, so we call it “brain food.” It comes from the breakdown of carbohydrates, such as sugar and starch, which are bread and its products, pasta, fruits, vegetables, grains, legumes, honey and various pastries. It is important, therefore, to provide to our body daily with all the necessary amounts of glucose for normal brain function.

B vitamins

The vitamins (with the main B1, B2, B6, B12) indirectly contribute to good brain function as well as assist in the conversion of various nutrients into glucose. Found in milk, bread and flour products, cereals and grain products and legumes. We should particularly mention vitamin B12, which is a component of our nerves and without it brain stimuli cannot be transferred correctly. Unlike other B vitamins, it is found mostly in animal foods such as meat, milk, egg, fish and shellfish.

Amino acids

Amino acids are a major class of compounds with the tyrosine and tryptophan, which are precursors for hormones-brain neurotransmitters essential for the regulation of brain functions. They are found mainly in meat, dairy and chocolate.

Polyunsaturated fatty acids.

They are a particular category of nutritional components that contribute to good brain function, polyunsaturated omega-3 fatty acids are the basic structural components of the brain, which are necessary for the formation of brain neurons. However, given that the body can not produce them on its own, they should be obtained through diet. They are found mainly in vegetable oils (soybean oil, sesame oil and other vegetable oils and less in olive oil), oily fish (salmon, mackerel, sardines) in fish oil, seafood and leafy vegetables such as purslane.


The nine commandments of anti-aging

We want to live and grow old healthy. To accomplish that though we must make changes in our lifestyle and diet. Scientific research has shown that the extension of youth requires the care of both mind and body.

Practice your mind not to grow old

To carry on our well-being and creation till our old age, we need to keep our memory in stellar condition. Without memory and logic, learning would be impossible, our past absent, our present incomprehensible and the future uncertain.

Surveys have shown that neurons of the brain tend to survive when exposed to a learning process. Of course, as we age, we lose nerve cells, the memory can be weakened, and in some cases lost. To keep your memory in the best possible condition, Practice. The more you practice as efficiently as possible. Dementia is your brains greatest enemy, as it is the loss of our memory and cognition, it affects mainly those who do not “train” their minds. If you want to keep your mental abilities vigorous, follow these tips.

Educate yourselves.

Cinema, theater, visual arts, music, reading books, newspapers and magazines, and general education enhance brain function and thus the various functions, such as memory. It has been proven that people who have studied have greatly enhanced their brain neurons.

"Exercise" your mind with foreign languages

The best… gymnastics for your memory is considered to be the learning of a foreign language and that is because the effort of learning a new language is so great that greatly mobilizes your memory and keeps it alert.

Learn a musical instrument

Learning a musical instrument is a great exercise for your mind, since it requires a combination of many brain functions such as memory, learning, movement, emotion, hearing and creativity. That's why the musical abilities of individuals are so often investigated by neuroscience.

Develop social contacts

Social contacts seem to keep brain cells alive. The more often you talk on the phone, the more often you go out to have fun and exchange views, the best memory you have. This process triggers the chat memory. At least this is the conclusion led by a scientific team from the University of Michigan, which asked 3,617 people aged 24 to 96 years how many hours they are talking on the phone or how often they went out with friends. Participants also underwent a test to determine the state of their memory. From the study of the data showed that those who were socially active had increased mental clarity.

Get rid of stress

Emotional balance protects the memory from the adverse effects of stress. There is evidence that high levels of stress hormones deplete brain cells and damage the hippo-campus (important organ that regulates memory). The feeling that we are psychologically well slows down the production of these hormones. Therefore, we should occasionally implementing some relaxation exercises and breathing.

Exercise

As ancient Greeks said thousands of years ago “A healthy mind in a healthy body,” nowadays they are proven absolutely right. The saying is indeed confirmed by many studies that demonstrate that physical activity helps to maintain vigorous mental abilities. A regular form of physical exercise stimulates the regeneration of nerve cells and contributes to the good cardiac function which properly oxygenates the brain. The good perfusion of the brain after all has been shown to enhance our mental functions.

Sleep well

Sleep relaxes the brain, aids memory and is necessary for the learning process. Specifically, it helps information inserted during the day to be stored and “classified” in our memory. Therefore to have the “memory of an elephant”, it is necessary to have a full eight hours of sleep every day.

Keep your brain fit

The new trend is the brain fitness with specially designed “games” for PC, gaming consoles or Internet that sharpen the mind.


Free radicals, the greatest enemy of youth

The ardent desire of man to be forever young and lengthen his life expectancy, paved the way to more than 300 theories with which scientists have attempted to study aging and longevity. One of the most prevalent theories is the one that studies the harmful effects of free radicals of oxygen in living organisms. Free radicals are highly unstable and highly reactive molecules or atoms having a free lone electron in their outer layer. The oxidation of these substances in an attempt to increase their stability, “steal” electrons from other molecules, thus triggering chain reactions that generate other free radicals. Out in nature, the process is normal, but in the body, especially when the presence of these molecules are numerically large, they cause significant biological damage in almost all cell systems (such as cell membranes, proteins, lipids, DNA and the RNA), which lead to morbidity and mortality. The free radicals are mainly produced naturally in the body as bio metabolism of food. Also produced by stress and environmental factors such as radiation, air pollution and smoking. Free radicals have been associated with numerous diseases and contribute to the acceleration of the aging process and the rate at which it progresses. To protect cells from oxidative damage, the body is equipped with an extensive and complex defensive system: our well known antioxidants.


Fight Wrinkles

Wrinkles are perhaps the foremost and the most irrefutable indicator of the age of our skin. Over the years, wrinkles carve our face and skin and relaxation stigmatizes our body. As the years pass, our skin ages, and this is due to two main factors: internal aging, associated with our genetic predisposition and environmental factors such as ultraviolet radiation, smoking, stress and pollution. The latter fact lays down at least to some extent, how quickly we will grow old. During the aging process, our skin becomes thin, dull, loses moisture and elasticity, showing dark spots, “sags” and gets creases and wrinkles.

What you can do to help secure your complexion.

Take cover from the sun. Avoid excessive sun exposure. The worst enemy of our skin is solar radiation. It is now known that excessive exposure to the sun causes include premature aging. Therefore, protect your skin by always wearing sunscreen with a high SPF, hats and appropriate clothing. The application of sunscreen should be done 20 minutes before exposure to the sun and renewed every 2 hours and every time you go by the sea.

Stop smoking

Another great enemy of the skin and the whole of our organization is the cigarette. Smoking damages blood vessels, makes our skin look yellow and is loading our face with extra wrinkles due to movements and expressions that we make as we smoke.

Ensure proper hydration

Skin hydration is achieved first and foremost by fluid intake, ie water, fresh juices, fruits and vegetables, and by applying moisturizer appropriate for your skin type. The moisturizers, in fact, protect the moisture of our skin. Boost skin elasticity after 40, you can fill in the anti-aging skin with an anti-aging cream.


Earn 4 years and life with exercise

Experts highlight the important factor of how exercise improves health and greatly enhance our quality of life. Do not think though that you have to spend all your precious free time in the gym to get results. As numerous studies have shown, even 30 minutes of exercise (brisk walking, jogging, swimming, etc.), three times a week can significantly contribute to the prospect of celebrating your 100th birthday and keeps your bones sturdy and your skin firm.

Exercise equals less stress!

Exercise helps combat stress, boosts your confidence with a feeling of success, eg when you complete a workout or training routine in one month in the gym, and of course the great change in mood and the feeling of accomplishment when you see your external appearance change for the… best. Exercise has even been shown to combat depression.

Exercise and management of chronic disease

Regular exercise can help you troubleshoot or even prevent several chronic diseases such as hypertension, several heart disease, osteoporosis, type 2 diabetes and even some forms of cancer.

Better control of body weight with exercise

As exercise burns down calories it aids in keeping your weight “under control”. When you do aerobic exercise, you burn calories “on site”. When doing strength training exercises (eg weights) helps in increasing your lean muscle mass and combats against fat. The more muscle mass you have the more your metabolism is raised, meaning in burning more calories and fat even at rest times. Exercise improves the function of the heart and of the respiratory system exercise works out and the heart muscle and makes it more efficient. Pumping more blood, helps improve blood vessel function and supply’s the muscles with oxygen. Similarly, lungs, because they need to manage more oxygen, they improve their effectiveness with exercise.

Better quality of sleep

Regular exercise can help you sleep more easily and deeply. However avoid the gym late at night as it causes tension. Give your body at least 3-4 hours of rest before going to bed to prevent loose of sleep. Exercise except that it relaxes you, it can help in better concentration, increased efficiency and better mood during the day. The normal drop in body temperature 5-6 hours after exercise will help you fall asleep more easily.

More Power

Exercise in all it's forms fortifies your body with greater strength, greater speed, greater agility and improves endurance. When you do aerobic exercise, you burn calories while strength training, in addition to prevention and treatment of osteoporosis, helps in muscle toning.


Active aesthetic procedures...

Plastic surgery, perhaps the most extreme answer for you. Stopping time is still a dream, but to delay its negative consequences on our skin, is quite feasible with the options that plastic surgery now offers us. Among the most popular procedures, a facelift can erase at least 15 years from your face. New techniques, sophisticated implants and drugs improve your body and your face, giving you a more youthful appearance. However, it takes a lot of thinking before you do such an intervention, as all plastic surgery procedures have their own rules, their indications and contraindications, complications, pros and cons. Furthermore, plastic surgery, dermatological treatments, regular exercise and proper diet are employed in the battle against aging. Success, of course, arguably brings new challenges. The longer lifetime achieved today leads us to unexplored fields.


The false hope

From the beginning of time. Many magicians, philosophers, or charlatans fed these hopes. Miraculous water, potions, secret recipes, rare herbs promised to eliminate old age, but alas they were nothing more than scams. No one till our times has managed to fit in a pill or a jar with what could help us stop aging. What we, however, have achieved for certain is to delay and soften the signs of aging. Life expectancy, from 85 years at present, is expected to reach 120 years until 2050. The last 50 years the life expectancy is steadily increasing about 2 years per decade. It is as if we have won an additional 20% of lifetime. Humans now live on average longer than any other time in human history. The technologies and means that generally enhance survival and anti-aging (vaccines, antibiotics, water purification systems, electricity, etc.) are accessible and only require to effectively used.


What the future holds

The achievements of specialists regarding the delay of symptoms of aging gave rise to expectations for even greater achievements. Where this will eventually lead? Well, the future is near. Research today is oriented to treatments that are expected to stop or reverse aging. Of course, the reversal of aging will require technologies or treatments which are not yet available.

These include:

The implementation of stem cell therapy for replacing old senescent cells.

The use of specific enzymes to degrade certain types of cellular debris in order to vent the cells in order to become more functional. Technologies based on the expression of selected genes, which will contribute to longevity. Furthermore, most scholars emphasize that we must first clarify the various mechanisms of aging. They consider that only if the mechanisms that control the rate of aging become known, will we be able to hold them back. Currently, we only know the changes experienced by people as they age, but what remains unknown is the mechanism that triggers them and why they occur. Despite the fact that several genes have been identified and studied, at the cellular-genetic level, our knowledge of the aging process is still limited.

The promising role of stem cells

Stem cell research in terms of aging is still at an embryonic stage. It has been suggested that many degenerative diseases of old age are caused by the shutdown of stem cells, which renew the different tissues of the body. It will probably take some time, until we see a stem cell injection that will achieve a youthful, flawless skin, for aesthetic reasons or slow down and perhaps even reverse the aging process. “Stem cell therapy will allow people to regain lost hair, remove wrinkles and renew their skin, as well as develop new nerves for patients with paralysis,” told Michael Klentze from the Institute of Aging at Munich.


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Further reading

Books

Biological Aging Measurement. Clinical Applications. Ward Dean, MD. The Center for Bio-Gerontology. 1988. Paperback, 426 pp.Β ISBN 0-937777-00-5
The Biology of Life Span: A Quantitative Approach. Leonid A. Gavrilov & Natalia S. Gavrilova (1991), New York: Harwood Academic Publisher, ISBN 3-7186-4983-7
Brain Boosters. Foods And Drugs That Make You Smarter. (A quote from the book: “It's hard to distinguish between the health and anti-aging uses of the smart drugs and nutrients.”) Beverly Potter & Sebastian Orfali. Ronin Publishing. 1993. Paperback, 257 pages. ISBN 0-914171-65-8
Brain Fitness. Anti-Aging Strategies To Fight Alzheimer's Disease, Supercharge Your Memory, Sharpen Your Intelligence, De-Stress Your Mind, Control Mood Swings, and Much More… Robert Goldman, MD, DO, PhD, With Ronald Klatz, MD, DO, and Liza Berger. Doubleday. 1995. Paperpack, 346 pp.Β ISBN 0-385-48869-6
The Directory of Life Extension Supplements. Life Extension Foundation. Published annually.
50 Simple Ways To Live A Longer Life: Everyday Techniques From The Forefront Of Science. Suzanne Bohan and Glenn Thompson. Sourcebooks. 2005. Paperback, 287 pages. ISBN 1-4022-0375-6
Formula for Life. The Definitive Book on Correct Nutrition, Anti-Oxidants and Vitamins, Disease Prevention, and Longevity. Eberhard Kronhausen, EdD, and Phyllis Kronhausen EdD, with Harry B. Demopoulos, MD. William Morrow and Company. 1989. Paperback, 622 pages. ISBN 0-688-09426-0
How To Live Longer And Feel Better. Linus Pauling. W.H. Freeman and Company. 1986. Paperback, 413 pages. ISBN 0-380-70289-4
Life Extension. A Practical Scientific Approach. Adding Years to Your Life and Life to Your Years. Durk Pearson and Sandy Shaw. Warner Books. 1982. Hardcover, 858 pp.Β ISBN 0-446-51229-X
The Life Extension Companion. The Latest Breakthroughs in Health Science. Durk Pearson and Sandy Shaw. Warner Books. 1984. Hardcover, 430 pages. ISBN 0-446-51277-X
The Life Extension Revolution: The New Science of Growing Older Without Aging. Philip Lee Miller and Monica Reinagel. Bantam. 2005. Hardcover, (416 pages). ISBN 0-553-80353-0
The Life Extension Weight Loss Programme. Durk Pearson and Sandy Shaw.
LifeSpan-Plus. 900 Natural Techniques To Live Longer. Rejuvenate Your Heart; Stay Infection-Free; Prevent a Stroke; Reduce Stress; Control Your Blood Pressure; Strengthen Your Bones; Eliminate Body Toxins. By the editors of Prevention Magazine. Rodale. 1990. Hardcover, 422 pages. ISBN 0-87857-908-7
Live Longer Now. The First One Hundred Years Of Your Life. Jon N. Leanard, Jack L. Hofer, and Nathan Pritikin. Grosset and Dunlap. 1974 (predates the life extension movement, and therefore lacks megadosing recommendations.) Paperpack, 232 pages. ISBN 0-441-48514-6
The Long Tomorrow. Michael Rose. Oxford University Press. 2005. ISBN 0-19-517939-0
Merchants of Immortality. Chasing The Dream Of Human Life Extension. Stephen S. Hall. Houghton Mifflin Company. 2003. Paperback, 439 pp.Β ISBN 0-618-49221-6
Mind Food and Smart Pills. How To Increase Your Intelligence and Prevent Brain Aging. Ross Pelton. 1986. Paperback, 170 pp.Β ISBN 0-936809-00-0
No More Dying. The Conquest Of Aging And The Extension Of Human Life. Joel Kurtzman and Phillip Gordon. Dell. 1976. Paperpback, 252 pages. ISBN 0-440-36247-4
Prevention's The Sugar Solution. Edited by Sari Harrar, Prevention Health News Editor. Rodale. 2005. Hardcover, 406 pages. ISBN 1-57954-912-8
Secrets of Life Extension. How to halt or reverse the aging process and live a long and healthy life. You can extend the rest of your life. All the new scientific breakthroughs John A. Mann. Bantam Books. 1980. Paperback, 296 pages. ISBN 0-553-23450-1
Smart Drugs & Nutrients. How To Improve Your Membory And Increase Your Intelligence Using The Latest Discoveries In Neuroscience. (Many of the substances in this book have life-extending or cell regenerating effects.) Ward Dean, MD and Joh Morgenthaler. B&J Publications. 1990. Paperback, 222 pp.Β ISBN 0-9627418-9-2
Smart Drugs II: The Next Generation: New Drugs and Nutrients to Improve Your Memory and Increase Your Intelligence. Ward Dean (MD), John Morgenthaler, Steven Wm Fowkes. Smart Publications. 1993. Paperback, 287 pages. ISBN 0-9627418-7-6
Stop Aging Now! The Ultimate Plan For Staying Young & Reversing The Aging Process. Based On Cutting-Edge Research Revealing The Amazing Anti-aging Powers Of Supplements, Herbs, & Food. Jean Carper. Harper Perennial. 1995. Paperback, 372 pp.Β ISBN 0-06-098500-3
Stop the FDA. Save Your Health Freedom. Articles by Linus Pauling, PhD; Abram Hoffer, MD; Ward Dean, MD; Senator Orrin Hatch; Durk Pearson and Sandy Shaw; and many more. (Many essays on health politics, by various leaders of the Life Extension Movement). Edited by John Morgenthaler & Steven Wm. Fowkes. Health Freedom Publications. 1992. Paperback, 186 pp.Β ISBN 0-9627418-8-4
The Wrinkle Cure. The All-Natural Formula for Stopping Time. Unlock the Power of Cosmeceuticals for Supple, Youthful Skin. Nicholas Perricone, MD. Rodale. 2000. Hardcover, 208 pages. ISBN 1-57954-237-9
Your Personal Life-Extension Program. A Practical Guide to the New Science That Can Make You Stronger, Smarter, Sexier, More Energetic, and More Youthful. Saul Kent. Morrow. 1985. Hardcover, 384 pages. ISBN 0-688-00629-9
Journal of Medical Ethics 31 (5): 273–7. doi:10.1136/jme.2004.009035. PMC 1734155. PMID 15863685.
Hayden EC (2007). It's hard to distinguish between the health and anti-aging uses of the smart drugs and nutrients.J Publications. 1990. Paperback, 222 pp.Β ISBN 0-9627418-9-2
Smart Drugs II: The Next Generation: New Drugs and Nutrients to Improve Your Memory and Increase Your Intelligence. Ward Dean (MD), John Morgenthaler, Steven Wm Fowkes. Smart Publications. 1993. Paperback, 287 pages. ISBN 0-9627418-7-6
Stop Aging Now! The Ultimate Plan For Staying Young J Publications. 1990. Paperback, 222 pp.Β ISBN 0-9627418-9-2
Smart Drugs II: The Next Generation: New Drugs and Nutrients to Improve Your Memory and Increase Your Intelligence. Ward Dean (MD), John Morgenthaler, Steven Wm Fowkes. Smart Publications. 1993. Paperback, 287 pages. ISBN 0-9627418-7-6
Stop Aging Now! The Ultimate Plan For Staying Young & Reversing The Aging Process. Based On Cutting-Edge Research Revealing The Amazing Anti-aging Powers Of Supplements, Herbs, & Food. Jean Carper. Harper Perennial. 1995. Paperback, 372 pp. ISBN 0-06-098500-3

Scientific journals

2 American Thyroid Association. Thyroid Function Tests. http://www.thyroid.org/patients/brochures/FunctionTests_brochure.pdf 2005 Accessed November 2011
Holzenberger M, Dupont J, Ducos B, et al. (January 2003). “IGF-1 receptor regulates lifespan and resistance to oxidative stress in mice”. Nature 421 (6919): 182–7. doi:10.1038/nature01298. PMIDΒ 12483226.
http://www.dovepress.com/clinical-interventions-in-aging-journal
Clinical Interventions in Aging Editor-in-Chief: Dr Richard F Walker. Publisher: Dove Medical Press Ltd. ISSN 1176-9092. Published Quarterly
Rejuvenation Research Editor: Aubrey de Grey. Publisher: Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. ISSN 1549-1684 –Published Quarterly
Experimental gerontology 42 (8): 707–712. doi:10.1016/j.exger.2007.03.009. PMC 2493043. PMID 18704162.
Mortality in Randomized Trials of Antioxidant Supplements for Primary and Secondary Prevention, a Systematic Review and Meta-analysis by Goran Bjelakovic, MD, DrMedSci; Dimitrinka Nikolova, MA; Lise Lotte Gluud, MD, DrMedSci; Rosa G. Simonetti, MD; Christian Gluud, MD, DrMedSci in JAMA. 2007;297:842-857. http://jama.ama-assn.org/cgi/content/full/jama;297/8/842
. Experimental gerontology 42 (8): 707–712. doi:10.1016/j.exger.2007.03.009. PMC 2493043. PMID 18704162.
Mortality in Randomized Trials of Antioxidant Supplements for Primary and Secondary Prevention, a Systematic Review and Meta-analysis by Goran Bjelakovic, MD, DrMedSci; Dimitrinka Nikolova, MA; Lise Lotte Gluud, MD, DrMedSci; Rosa G. Simonetti, MD; Christian Gluud, MD, DrMedSci in JAMA. 2007;297:842-857. http://jama.ama-assn.org/cgi/content/full/jama;297/8/842

Further reading

Books

Biological Aging Measurement. Clinical Applications. Ward Dean, MD. The Center for Bio-Gerontology. 1988. Paperback, 426 pp.Β ISBN 0-937777-00-5
The Biology of Life Span: A Quantitative Approach. Leonid A. Gavrilov . Mechanisms of Ageing and Development 57 (1): 87–100. doi:10.1016/0047-6374(91)90026-V. PMID 2002700.
a b Bonkowski, MS; Pamenter, RW; Rocha, JS; Masternak, MM; Panici, JA; Bartke, A (1 June 2006). Tragedy and delight: the ethics of decelerated ageing.. Mechanisms of Ageing and Development 57 (1): 87–100. doi:10.1016/0047-6374(91)90026-V. PMID 2002700.

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