Ageless Forever Anti-Aging News Blog

Why you need to look beyond your LDL - “bad cholesterol” - level

In the United States, cardiovascular diseases account for about 1 of every 3 deaths.[1] The cornerstone in heart disease treatment is reducing elevations of LDL, popularly known as the “bad cholesterol” (see table below “What do the terms mean?”) [2, 3], primarily with statins, the most widely used cholesterol/ heart disease drug.[4]  
 
However, when one looks at the aggregate effectiveness of statin treatment in all studies, morbidity and mortality rates among statin-treated patients still remain approximately two thirds to three quarters of those found in patients randomized to placebo.[5, 6] In the “Treating to New Targets” study there were still 80% cases of cardiovascular disease, despite intensive treatment with high-dose statins.[7]
 
Thus, many patients – even those treated aggressively with statins to meet LDL goals - have residual cardiovascular risk.[8-13] This remaining risk is associated with low levels of HDL, increased levels of triglycerides, and elevated numbers of small, dense, atherogenic LDL particles.[8, 10, 11, 14-17] and other common metabolic abnormalities that you will find out about in this article...
 
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Fish Oil for Fat Loss - can it really help you get in shape?

Fish oil is most known for its beneficial heart and cardiovascular effects, and continues to top the list of health promoting supplements. Fish oil is unique in its ability to protect against heart disease and promote cardiovascular health in all people, regardless of age or baseline health status [1, 2].
 
Fish oil improves the blood lipid profile and is especially effective at lowering triglycerides (a.k.a. blood fats).[3] It also has beneficial effects on blood platelet activity, blood thickness, as well as blood vessel (endothelial) function [4-11], blood vessel elasticity [12], and blood pressure [13, 14], among other things.
 
In 2004 FDA approved a prescription fish oil preparation for treatment of high triglycerides (hypertriglyceridemia) [3, 15, 16]. Accumulating research shows that fish oil also has other beneficial effects, which are more visually notable… notably, fat loss!
 
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Aspirin – can it save you from heart disease or cancer?

 

In people with pre-existing cardiovascular disease, it has long been well documented that long-term use of aspirin is an effective anti-platelet treatment that significantly reduces the risk of serious cardiovascular events (such as heart attacks and strokes) by 30% and cardiovascular death by 15%.[1, 2] 
 
This benefit greatly exceeds the potential risk of increased bleeding events, which is a side effect of aspirin.[3] Therefore clinical guidelines recommend that people with cardiovascular disease take low dose aspirin (75 to 162 mg) daily to prevent recurrence of cardiovascular events.[4-6]
 
More recently, the use of aspirin in healthy people for prevention of cardiovascular disease, as well as cancer, has been getting more and more attention. However, research on prophylactic use of aspirin conflicting and clinical guidelines are contradictory. Here I will shed some light on new research to help you make an informed decision whether aspirin may protect you…
 
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Red Meat - Good or Bad for Fat Loss?

 
Consumption of red meat has been associated with fat gain (weight gain) because of its high fat and calorie content. Even though the old idea that “a high fat intake causes body fat gain” has been completely debunked in medical research [1-9], red meat still is a food that's on the forbidden or avoid list in most diet plans. And for some reason, women tend to be especially afraid of eating meat…
 
While there are studies showing an association between meat intake and obesity [10-12], there are also studies not showing this [12-14]. And when digging deeper in the data, many of the studies that did report a significant association with meat intake and fat gain / obesity have several flaws that invalidate their conclusions....
 
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Provocative New Research on Testosterone, Prostate Cancer and BPH/LUTS

The number one concern among clinicians worldwide and reason for not prescribing testosterone is the fear that it will cause prostate cancer and/or worsen benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH, age-associated prostate gland enlargement that can cause urination difficulty).

This article is a summary of a recent presentation by Dr. Khera at The Annual European Association of Urology (EAU) Congress held in March 2015.
 
The EAU is Europe’s largest annual event for medical health care professionals, showcasing the latest medical research findings in the andrology and urology fields.
 
In this presentation, Dr. Khera debunks the popular widespread myth that testosterone supposedly is harmful for the prostate, and presents provocative new testosterone research…
 
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Vitamin D - what's the optimal blood level and how to achieve it?

 
Until just a few years ago, it was thought that vitamin D is only needed for building and maintain strong bones.
 
However, over the past decade an impressive body of scientific research has demonstrated the importance of optimal vitamin D status for wide array of health conditions.
 
Vitamin D is interesting for several reasons:
 
1. The role of vitamin D for health promotion has undergone a paradigm shift. Adequate vitamin D levels are necessary to prevent many diseases, especially cardiovascular disease (including high blood pressure), endothelial dysfunction, diabetes (both type1 and type-2), the metabolic syndrome, muscle weakness, cancer, chronic inflammation, osteoporosis (including falls and fractures), cognitive dysfunction and mental illness, autoimmune diseases (e.g. multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis), infectious diseases, as well as infertility and adverse pregnancy and birth outcomes [1-26]. 
 
Vitamin D deficiency/insufficiency is associated with increased all-cause mortality [1, 27], and vitamin D supplementation has been shown to decrease mortality [28, 29]. It has been estimated that doubling blood vitamin D levels in the general population (from 21 ng/mL to 44 ng/mL) would reduce  vitamin D-related disease mortality rate by 20%, and increase life expectancy with about 2 years [30]. 
 
2. Insufficient levels of vitamin D also have direct implications for fitness enthusiasts and athletic performance, due to the importance of vitamin D for muscle function (I will cover this in much more depth in an upcoming article) [31-42].
 
3. In contrast to most other vitamins, vitamin D deficiency/insufficiency is very common (more on that below).
 
4. The vitamin D requirement for health promotion and protection against all-cause mortality and muscle dysfunction is much higher than the dietary recommendations (RDA), which only consider for bone related outcomes [4, 43-48].
 
Having heard about all the vitamin D benefits you might wonder what is the optimal vitamin D blood level? How low is too low? How common is vitamin D deficiency or insufficiency? 
 
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Nitrate supplementation – ramp up the less well-known NO pathway to boost performance and health

 

Nitric oxide (NO) boosting “pre-workout” supplements based on L-arginine have been – and still are – quite popular among many fitness enthusiasts and athletes. While it’s true that arginine is a nitric oxide (NO) precursor and NO is a potent vasodilator [1, 2], most studies in healthy adults have not unequivocally supported the marketing hype that arginine supplementation increases muscle blood flow and/or performance [3-5]. In my previous article “The Arginine Paradox” I explained why.
 
In this article I will cover the less well known, albeit highly significant, NO generating process, the nitrate-nitrite-NO pathway. This new NO producing pathway holds a lot of promise and supplements that target it will probably replace the current arginine based NO boosters in the near future[6, 7].
 
The nitrate-nitrite-NO pathway is especially interesting in that it not only has performance enhancing effects in healthy folks – as well as in people with risk factors – but also offers cardiovascular protection, regardless of baseline health status [7-10].
 
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Testosterone Treatment and Hormonophobia – Cardiovascular risk, the Media, and the Authorities

 
One of the most controversial and debated issue related to testosterone replacement therapy is its effects on cardiovascular risk and related clinical outcomes.
 
In this video presentation, Dr. Morgentaler clarifies misperceptions of testosterone replacement therapy and cardiovascular disease risk, which have created unwarranted concerns and distorted public discussion of testosterone replacement therapy as a medical treatment.
 
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Video Summary of Testosterone Replacement Therapy and Cardiovascular Risk

One of the most controversial and debated issue related to testosterone replacement therapy is its effects on cardiovascular risk and related clinical outcomes.
 
In the February 2015 issue of Mayo Clinic Proceedings a comprehensive medical review paper, written by Dr. Abraham Morgentaler and his coauthors of the Androgen Study Group – www.AndrogenStudyGroup.org - was published.[1]
 
The aim of the review was to analyze all available studies on testosterone replacement therapy and cardiovascular effects, and to clarify the grossly misleading conclusions from two recent studies that caused a tremendous media scare.
 
In this 8 minute video, Dr. Morgentaler presents the key results from this comprehensive analysis…
 
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Dr. Pierce's Medical Organization Affiliations

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