Breakfast Cereal

healthy diet Here is some surprising news about our breakfast cereal.

Cold breakfast cereals are produced by a process called extrusion. Grains are mixed with water, processed into a slurry and placed in a machine called an extruder. The grains are forced out of a tiny hole at high temperature and pressure, which shapes them into little o’s or flakes or shreds. Individual grains passed through the extruder expand to produce puffed wheat, oats and rice. These products are then subjected to sprays that give a coating of oil and sugar to seal off the cereal from the ravages of milk and to give it crunch.

In his book “Fighting the Food Giants”, biochemist Paul Stitt describes the Extrusion Process, which treats the grains with very high heat and pressure, and notes that the processing destroys much of their nutrients. It denatures the fatty acids; it even destroys the synthetic vitamins that are added at the end of the process. The amino acid lysine, a crucial nutrient, is especially damaged by the extrusion process.

Even boxed cereals sold in health food stores are made using the extrusion process. They are made with the same kind of machines and mostly in the same factories. The only “advances” claimed in the extrusion process are those that will cut cost, regardless of how the process alters the nutrient content of the product.

With so many millions of boxes of cereal sold each year, one would expect to see published studies showing the effects of these cereals on animals and humans. But breakfast cereals are a multi-billion dollar industry that has created huge fortunes for a few people. A box of cereal containing a penny’s worth of grain sells for four or five dollars in the grocery store–there is probably no other product on earth with such a large profit margin. These profits have paid for lobbying efforts and journal sponsorships that have effectively kept any research about extruded grains out of the scientific literature and convinced government officials that there is no difference between a natural grain of wheat and a grain that has been altered by the extrusion process.

THE RAT EXPERIMENTS
Unpublished research indicates that the extrusion process turns the proteins in grains into neurotoxins. Stitt describes an experiment, conducted in 1942 by a cereal company but locked away in the company’s file cabinet, in which four sets of rats were given special diets.  One group received plain whole wheat grains, water and synthetic vitamins and minerals. A second group received puffed wheat (an extruded cereal), water and the same nutrient solution. A third set was given water and white sugar. A fourth set was given nothing but water and synthetic nutrients. The rats that received the whole wheat lived over a year on this diet. The rats that got nothing but water and vitamins lived about two months. The animals on a white sugar and water diet lived about a month. The study showed that the rats given the vitamins, water and all the puffed wheat they wanted died within two weeks—even before the rats that got no food at all. These results suggest that there was something very toxic in the puffed wheat itself! Proteins are very similar to certain toxins in molecular structure, and the pressure of the puffing process may produce chemical changes that turn a nutritious grain into a poisonous substance.

Another unpublished experiment was carried out in 1960. Researchers at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor were given eighteen laboratory rats. These were divided into three groups: one group received cornflakes and water; a second group was given the cardboard box that the cornflakes came in and water; the control group received rat chow and water. The rats in the control group remained in good health throughout the experiment. The rats eating the box became lethargic and eventually died of malnutrition. The rats receiving the cornflakes and water died before the rats that were eating the box! (The first box rat died the day the last cornflake rat died.) Furthermore, before death, the cornflakes-eating rats developed aberrant behavior, threw fits, bit each other and finally went into convulsions. Autopsy revealed dysfunction of the pancreas, liver and kidneys and degeneration of the nerves of the spine, all signs of insulin shock. The startling conclusion of this study was that there was more nourishment in the box than in the cornflakes. This experiment was designed as a joke, but the results were far from funny.

Most Americans eat boxed cereals today. Because these are fortified with synthetic nutrients, the USDA can claim that they are as healthy as the grains from which they are made. Many of these cereals contain at least 50 percent of calories as sugar. Those sold in health food stores may be made of whole grains and fewer sweeteners. However, these whole grain extruded cereals are probably more dangerous than their refined grain counterparts sold in the supermarkets, because they are higher in protein, and it is the proteins in these cereals that are rendered toxic by this type of processing.

THE EXTRUSION PROCESS – LOOK OUT!!!!
When we put cereals through an extruder, it alters the structure of the proteins. Zeins, which comprise the majority of proteins in corn, are located in spherical organelles called protein bodies. The scientific literature does contain one study on extruded grains, which investigated changes in protein body, shape and release of encapsulated alpha-zeins as a result of the extrusion processing.  Three researchers found that during extrusion, the protein bodies are completely disrupted and the alpha-zeins dispersed. The results suggest that the zeins in cornflakes are not confined to rigid protein bodies but can interact with each other and other components of the system, forming new compounds that are foreign to the human body. The extrusion process breaks down the organelles and disperses the proteins, which then become toxic. When the proteins are disrupted in this way, it can adversely affect the nervous system, as indicated by the corn flake experiment.

The results were never published and similar studies have not been conducted.

Most of America eats this kind of cereal. In fact, the USDA is gloating over the fact that children today get the vast majority of their important nutrients from the nutrients added to these boxed cereals.

Please remember that cereals sold in health food stores are made by the same method. It may come as a shock to you, but these whole grain extruded cereals are probably more dangerous than those sold in the supermarket, because they are higher in protein and it is the proteins in these cereals that are so denatured by this type of processing.
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PLEASE DO NOT EAT THESE FOODS
1. Soda sodas                                                                                                                                 
Soda is a major factor in overweight and obesity. Drinking one can of soda a day can add more than 1 pound of weight gain every month. A single 12-ounce can of soda has as much as 13 teaspoons of sugar in the form of high-fructose corn syrup.

Soda also damages the liver. Studies have shown that consumption of too many soft drinks puts the liver in danger of cirrhosis similar to what chronic alcoholics have. The preservative sodium benzoate may be the cause.

Soda also has a high phosphoric acid content, a substance known to change the urine in a way that promotes kidney stone formation. Research found that drinking two or more sodas a day, artificially sweetened or regular, was linked to a twofold risk of chronic kidney disease. Chronic kidney disease includes conditions that damage and decrease the kidney’s ability to remove toxins and maintain normal fluid balance.

Heavy soda drinkers are also more likely to develop risk factors that will lead to heart disease. Research suggests that drinking more than one soft drink a day is associated with an increased risk of developing the metabolic syndrome. Metabolic syndrome is a group of symptoms such as central obesity, elevated blood pressure, elevated fasting blood sugar, elevated fasting triglycerides, low levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL or “good” cholesterol). Having three or more of the symptoms increases a person’s risk of developing diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

2. Hot Dogs and Lunch Meat
Sodium nitrate is a salt that is added to hot dogs, bacon and other cured meats that acts as a preservative. The reason they are so bad for us is that when we cook them at high temps, they form Nitrosamines, which are carcinogenic.

Nitrite-based preservatives have been linked to pancreatic cancer.

Another big reason to avoid nitrates is the link to an increased risk of cancer in both children and adults. The Linus Pauling Institute warns that nitrates are associated with an increase in brain tumors, leukemia and nose and throat tumors. With these strong warnings, its best to avoid sodium nitrate whenever possible.

3. French Fries
French fries are fried in trans-fat loaded oils. Trans fats makes the platelets in blood stickier. Platelets are part of the blot clotting mechanisms. These sticky little platelets could form clots that attach to the walls of arteries that form plaque and cause heart disease later in life.

French fries also have high levels of acrylamide, reported to be a possible cancer-causing substance.

Acrylamide is a chemical formed when frying, roasting, grilling or baking carbohydrate-rich foods at temperatures above 120°C.

“Animal tests have shown acrylamide to be a carcinogen, but until recently no studies have demonstrated a link between acrylamide in foods and cancer in humans. Ours is the first epidemiological study using biological markers for measuring acrylamide exposure, and the first to report a positive association between acrylamide and breast cancer,” says Henrik Frandsen, senior scientist at the National Food Institute, Technical University of Denmark.

4. Breakfast Cereal
Cereals begin as nutritious whole grains, but by the time they are packaged and stocked at your local supermarket, they are not only crammed with high levels of refined salt and sugar, but are completely stripped of any real nutrients.

Cereal is produced by a process called “extrusion” which involves high heat and high pressure to form the grain into the O’s, flakes, and other popular cereal shapes. Extrusion destroys most of the nutrients, including some of the chemical vitamins that are added to “fortify” the cereal. Extrusion especially ravages amino acids leaving them highly toxic. Protein structures are greatly altered, and as a result, new compounds form which are completely foreign, potentially harmful, and definitely should not be considered a healthy breakfast.                

Many people believe organic cereal is a healthy option. Not surprisingly, since high fiber, organic cereals made from “healthier” grains are marketed as the best nutritional choice. These cereals tend to have more protein than conventional dry packaged cereals. When the high-protein grains are extruded they produce even more denatured protein. So the “healthy” cereal is actually worse because they contain more high-protein grains that have been ultra-processed.

NOTE:  I called Kashi and they said that they had three cereals that did not go through the “extrusion” process which are Organic Cinnamon Harvest / Autumn Wheat Oat Flakes, Wild Blueberry Clusters and “Strawberry Fields”.

5. Doughnuts
Doughnuts are essentially a concentrated amalgamation of refined flour, sugar, artificial flavors, partially hydrogenated oil and extremely high quantities of trans-fat. That’s a lethal combination.

Doughnuts are fried, full of GMO sugar and white flour, and contain trans fat. Doughnuts are made up of about 35 percent trans fat. The average doughnut contains about 300 calories, mostly from sugar, and few other nutrients.

Trans fats have become synonymous with elevated levels of “bad” LDL cholesterol. Trans fat also lower levels of heart-healthy HDL cholesterol. High trans-fat intake has been linked to coronary heart disease, in which fatty plaques build up in the heart arteries, sometimes leading to a heart attack.

Some people believe in the old adage everything in moderation. However, there are certain things you should never put in your body. If you need some motivation to help you say no, keep in mind that 4 of the 10 leading causes of death in the United States are diet related: heart disease, diabetes, cancer and stroke. Eliminating these foods is a great way to get on track to a healthier you.

With 44% of men and 39% of women now being diagnosed with cancer, it has become more important than ever to understand the foods that will not only nourish your body, but also detoxify it of any cancer causing agents. Here are some of the most potent cancer destroying foods and herbs.

FOODS THAT FIGHT CANCER

Sea Vegetables     
Kelp, kombu, and nori are three of the more common sea vegetables with remarkable effects on cancer. They are one of the richest and most bioavailable sources of iodine, a substance lacking in the average diet that is implicated in many patients with breast and ovarian cancer.

They are also rich in calcium and potassium, as well as all minerals, which assist in promoting a very alkaline environment, which makes it very difficult for existing cancer to survive.

Algae
Chlorella and spirulina are two of the most potent algae and are proven cancer fighters.

Due to their incredible detoxification action (including binding to and eliminating heavy metals) and immune boosting properties (by promoting production of healthy gut flora and fighting candida overgrowth), they are a must have when healing cancer.

Cruciferous Vegetables
Cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, and cabbage have been linked to lower cancer risks and have the ability to halt growth of cancer cells for tumors in the breast, uterine lining, lung, colon, liver, and cervix.

It appears that a phytochemical called sulforaphane can stimulate enzymes that detoxify carcinogens before they damage cells, as well as indole 3-carbinol and crambene, which are also suspected of activating detoxification enzymes.

Medicinal Mushrooms
Medicinal mushrooms such as reishi and chaga have had a number of bioactive molecules, including anti-tumor agents, identified in their structure. These bioactive compounds include polysaccharides, alkaloids, tocopherols, phenolics, flavonoids, carotenoids, folates, ascorbic acid enzymes, and organic acids.

Studies show that long-term consumption of reishi prevents tumor proliferation and growth by increasing the level of antioxidants in an individual’s blood plasma while boosting the immunity of those suffering from advanced stage cancer.

Aloe Vera
Research shows strong immunomodulatory and anti-tumor properties for polysaccharides in aloe vera, which means it boosts immune system function and destroys cancer tumors.

A study in International Immunopharmacology showed that aloe vera polysaccharides exhibited potent macrophage activating activities including producing increased volumes of nitric oxide, which has anti-tumor potential.

Hemphemp
The hemp plant contains some of the most balanced and richest sources of oils on the planet, with an ideal ratio of 3:1 for omega 6 to omega 3. Hemp seed oil also contains 80% essential fatty acids, the highest of any plant.

Essential fatty acids are fundamental to immune function due to their antioxidants and anti-inflammatory fatty acids, which helps oxidize the cells and restores health at a cellular level. Since cancer cannot survive in a highly oxygenated environment, the superb EFA content in hemp makes it a great option for healing cancer.

Garlic
A double blind, randomized study with over 3000 human subjects for seven clinical years showed that cancer risk was cut by 60% for those with the highest intake of allium containing vegetables, including aged garlic.

The miracle nutrient appears to be the enzyme alliinase (a nutrient in the Allium genus) which produces the anti-cancer compounds. The key is to crush it and let it sit for 15 minutes in order to release these anti-cancer compounds.

Turmeric
The Life Extension Foundation has conducted extensive research into the anti-cancer properties of turmeric and found that it targets 10 causative factors involved in cancer development, including DNA damage, chronic inflammation, and disruption of cell signaling pathways. Hundreds of studies have also shown that curcumin is a potent anti-cancer food that blocks cancer development in a number of unique ways.

Sources for this article include:
The Weston A. Price Foundation
http://www.cancer.gov

The Life Extension Foundation

anti aging

Anti Aging Advancement

Another Anti Aging Advancement

Funded by the SENS Research Foundation and allied philanthropists, the researchers at the Spiegel Lab are working on the tools needed to build the means to remove glucosepane cross-links from aged tissue. Like clearancturn back timee of senescent cells, this is one of the more promising near-term approaches to rejuvenation therapies because it is just the single, narrow problem, rather an enormous range of compounds and mechanisms grouped into a category, as is the case for amyloids, lipofuscin, and other forms of damaging metabolic waste. It should be possible to develop and deploy working approaches to glucosepane cross-link breaking in a much shorter period of time, once the initial hurdles are overcome.

Persistent sugary cross-links form in the extracellular matrix as a side-effect of the normal operation of cellular metabolism. In humans the vast majority of lasting, problematic cross-links involve glucospane. These cross-links alter and corrode the structural properties of tissue, making bone and cartilage fragile, and producing loss of elasticity in skin and blood vessels. While all of these are bad, the loss of blood vessel elasticity is probably the most important of these consequences, as increased vascular stiffness with advancing age drives the progression of hypertension, cardiac hypertrophy, and fatal cardiovascular disease. The sooner the research community makes the leap to far greater funding and interest in cross-link breaking, the better. This requires better tools, such as those planned in this new research project.

Quote:

SENS Research Foundation (SRF) has launched a new research program focused on developing monoclonal antibodies against glucosepane. David A. Spiegel will be running the project in his laboratory, which focuses on developing new methods and molecules that will facilitate our understanding and treatment of human disease.

Glucosepane is the most prevalent crosslink found in collagen in people over 65 years of age, and its presence has been correlated to age-related tissue damage through various mechanisms. Understanding of glucosepane has been hampered by the molecule’s complex and sensitive chemical structure; it can only be isolated from human samples in minute quantities and in an impure form. To enable these advances in both basic and therapeutic science, the Spiegel laboratory has recently accomplished the first total synthesis of glucosepane.

The lab is now utilizing its novel synthetic glucosepane derivatives to generate the first monoclonal anti-glucosepane antibodies. Access to these antibodies would profoundly accelerate the goal of developing the first discrete, specific reagents for labeling, studying, and perhaps also cleaving glucosepane in vivo. Such tools have tremendous potential to help illuminate, and reverse, age-related damage as it occurs in human tissues.

This research has been made possible through the generous support of Michael Antonov and the Forever Healthy Foundation and its founder Michael Greve. The Forever Healthy Foundation is a private nonprofit initiative whose mission is to enable people to vastly extend their healthy lifespans and be part of the first generation to cure aging. In order to accelerate the development of therapies to bring aging under full medical control, the Forever Healthy Foundation directly supports cutting-edge research aimed at the molecular and cellular repair of damage caused by the aging process.

Link: http://www.sens.org/outreach/press-releases/srf-and-spiegel-lab-to-collaborate-on-antibodies-to-glucosepane

A Drug That Actually Reverses Ageing

A drug that actually reverses ageing

University of New South Wales researchers have made a discovery that could lead to a revolutionary drug that actually reverses ageing.  It improves DNA repair and could even help NASA get its astronauts to Mars.

In a paper published in Science today, the team identifies a critical step in the molecular process that allows cells to repair damaged DNA.

Their experiments in mice suggest a treatment is possible for DNA damage from ageing and radiation. It is so promising it has attracted the attention of NASA, which believes the treatment can help its Mars mission.

While our cells have an innate capability to repair DNA damage —  which happens every time we go out into the sun, for example — their ability to do this declines as we age.

The scientists identified that the metabolite NAD+, which is naturally present in every cell of our body.  It has a key role as a regulator in protein-to-protein interactions that control DNA repair.

Treating mice with a NAD+ precursor, or “booster,” called NMN improved their cells’ ability to repair DNA damage caused by radiation exposure or old age.

“The cells of the old mice were indistinguishable from the young mice, after just one week of treatment,” said lead author Professor David Sinclair of UNSW School of Medical Sciences and Harvard Medical School Boston.

Human trials of NMN therapy will begin within six months.

“This is the closest we are to a safe and effective anti-ageing drug that’s perhaps only three to five years away from being on the market if the trials go well,” says Sinclair, who maintains a lab at UNSW in Sydney.

What it means for astronauts, childhood cancer survivors, and the rest of us

The work has excited NASA, which is considering the challenge of keeping its astronauts healthy during a four-year mission to Mars.

Even on short missions, astronauts experience accelerated ageing from cosmic radiation, suffering from muscle weakness, memory loss and other symptoms when they return. On a trip to Mars, the situation would be far worse: five per cent of the astronauts’ cells would die and their chances of cancer would approach 100 per cent.

Professor Sinclair and his UNSW colleague Dr Lindsay Wu were winners in NASA’s iTech competition in December last year.

“We came in with a solution for a biological problem and it won the competition out of 300 entries,” Dr Wu says.

Cosmic radiation is not only an issue for astronauts. We’re all exposed to it aboard aircraft, with a London-Singapore-Melbourne flight roughly equivalent in radiation to a chest x-ray.

In theory, the same treatment could mitigate any effects of DNA damage for frequent flyers. The other group that could benefit from this work is survivors of childhood cancers.

Dr Wu says 96 percent of childhood cancer survivors suffer a chronic illness by age 45, including cardiovascular disease, Type 2 diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, and cancers unrelated to the original cancer.

“All of this adds up to the fact they have accelerated ageing, which is devastating,” he says.

“It would be great to do something about that, and we believe we can with this molecule.”

An anti-ageing pill could be on the horizon

For the past four years, Professor Sinclair and Dr Wu have been working on making NMN into a drug substance with their companies MetroBiotech NSW and MetroBiotech International.

The human trials will begin this year at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, in Boston.

The findings on NAD+ and NMN add momentum to the exciting work the UNSW Laboratory for Ageing Research has done over the past four years.

They’ve been looking at the interplay of a number of proteins and molecules and their roles in the ageing process.

They had already established that NAD+ could be useful for treating various diseases of ageing, female infertility and also treating side effects of chemotherapy.

In 2003, Professor Sinclair made a link between the anti-ageing enzyme SIRT1 and resveratrol.  Which is a naturally occurring molecule found in tiny quantities in red wine.

While resveratrol activates SIRT1 alone, NAD+ boosters activate all seven sirtuins, SIRT1-7, and should have an even greater impact on health and longevity.

Story Source:

Materials provided by University of New South Wales. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.

Journal Reference:

  1. Jun Li, Michael S. Bonkowski, Sébastien Moniot, Dapeng Zhang, Basil P. Hubbard, Alvin J. Y. Ling, Luis A. Rajman, Bo Qin, Zhenkun Lou, Vera Gorbunova, L. Aravind, Clemens Steegborn, David A. Sinclair. A conserved NAD binding pocket that regulates protein-protein interactions during aging. Science, 24 Mar 2017: Vol. 355, Issue 6331, pp. 1312-1317 DOI: 10.1126/science.aad8242

Calorie Restriction = Extended Lifespan

What You Need to Know about Caloric Restriction

Caloric Restriction (CR), a significant, sustained reduction of caloric intake from baseline levels, is the most thoroughly and successfully researched method for lifespan and healthspan extension in a broad range of animals and non-human primates.

In many cases, the reduction of caloric intake by 30 to 40 percent in animal models has resulted in longevity increases by 40 percent or more.

Although there is not yet direct human evidence of lifespan extension in humans from CR, results of the NIA-funded CALERIE study have shown significant reductions in risk factors for disease (cardiovascular disease, diabetes, some cancers), from moderate CR.

CR in humans reduces fasting insulin levels and lowers resting body temperature, which are two biomarkers for aging reversal.

Although CR has classically been defined as a long-term 30 to 40 percent reduction in calories, some CR health benefits in humans have been observed at less-restrictive caloric reductions (16 to 25 percent) over short time periods (weeks to months).

CR may work by reducing oxidative damage, increasing cellular repair, lowering production of inflammatory cytokines, or by hormesis, a mild stress that may stimulate cellular protection.

Several compounds may mimic the effects of CR without requiring a reduction in calories; these include resveratrol, metformin, green tea polyphenols, aspirin, pyrroloquinoline quinone (PQQ), and branched-chain amino acids.

Maintaining a dramatically reduced caloric intake over the long-term can be very demanding. Few people are willing to reduce their caloric consumption by the 30 to 40 percent to meet the classic CR definition,111 and even the less restrictive protocols (16-25%) used in human interventions have not been met with full compliance. The search for an alternative or complement to CR has involved the identification or development of compounds that mimic some of the physiological or gene-expression changes associated with CR, without the requirement of lowered caloric intake or loss of body weight. While many compounds can be broadly interpreted as CRMs, a more focused definition of CRM would be a compound or intervention that mimics the metabolic, hormonal, or physiological effects of CR without reducing long-term food intake, while stimulating maintenance and repair processes, and producing CR-like effects on longevity and reduction of age-related disease.

Several compounds have been investigated as CRMs, with encouraging preliminary results in animal models. Tetrahydrocurcumin (a curcumin metabolite) and green tea polyphenols have both demonstrated increases in average and maximum lifespans in mice.  The effects were observed when the mice received treatments by month 13 (if given later in life, the treatments had no effect on lifespan), and in the case of green tea extract, the treatment had no effect on body weight. An investigation of ginkgo biloba on cognitive behavior in male Fischer rats revealed an unexpected, statistically significant increase in average lifespan when compared to controls (26.4 vs. 31.0 months).The NIA Aging Intervention Testing program, a multi-center study on longevity-enhancing compounds, has already identified life-extending or CR mimetic activities in rapamycin and aspirin in rodents, and is currently testing other potential compounds including medium chain triglycerides, caffeic acid esters, and curcumin.

Stress-induced plant compounds can stimulate stress responses in other species, this cross-species hormesis is called xenohormesis. Xenohormesis may have evolved as an early warning in animals about impending changes in the environment (such as scarcities in the food supply), allowing them to adapt accordingly. The most familiar of these stress-inducing compounds is resveratrol, well-known for its presence in grape skin, but present at detectable levels in several plant species. Resveratrol simulates caloric restriction in the absence of actual nutrient deficiency by activating sirtuins (SIRT1 is the human homolog), and has been shown to increase lifespan in fungi, nematodes, flies, fish, and mice SIRT1 also suppresses NF-kB (and the inflammatory cytokines and enzymes NF-kB activates), lending resveratrol anti-inflammatory activity in cell culture and animal models.  High-dose resveratrol reduced IGF-1 levels in healthy human volunteers, a chemopreventive activity that is also associated with CR. Pterostilbene, a methylated analogue of resveratrol from blueberries, similarly attenuates inflammation in a CR-like manner, reducing NF-kB signaling and COX-2 activities in cell culture.

Other plant-derived polyphenolic compounds (such as catechins, curcumin, or flavonoids) may also have xenohormesis activities as well; it has been suggested that the majority of health benefits from plant phytochemical consumption might not be from their antioxidant properties, but rather by a CR-like modulation of stress-response pathways. Fisetin, quercetin, proanthocyanidins, and theaflavins are examples of compounds that have inherent chain-breaking antioxidant chemistries, but appear to exert profound health effects unrelated to their ability to quench free radicals. Fisetin and quercetin have both been shown to stimulate SIRT, a central activity of CR. In vitro, fisetin, like CR, reduced mTOR signaling, Nf-kB activation and COX-2 gene expression, and activated antioxidative and detoxifying gene pathways (Nrf2). Fisetin has also been shown to increase lifespan in Saccharomyces 136 and Drosophila.Quercetin, in addition to proanthocyanidins from grape seed, have also been shown to reduce the production of inflammatory cytokines, and the expression of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), which may prevent tumors from recruiting blood vessels. This same chemoprotective activity has been observed in rats under CR. Theaflavins are flavan-3-ols from black tea that are produced during the oxidation (fermentation) of tea leaves. Aside from their suppression of NF-kB and inflammatory cytokines in vitro and in mice and their induction of apoptosis in cancer cells, theaflavins also stimulate the longevity factor Forkhead box 1 (FOXO1) in invertebrate and mammalian cells.

Nicotinamide riboside is another naturally-occurring compound that may act as a CRM. It is a source of vitamin B3 and a precursor for nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+), a molecule involved in a wide array of biological processes. NAD+, one of the important biologically active forms of NAD, is necessary for the activation of proteins called sirtuins, including SIRT1, that regulate cellular metabolism and DNA transcription. NAD+ levels are known to decrease with age, resulting in lower sirtuin activity. This may contribute to dysfunction in cell nuclei and mitochondria, and to a range of age-related disorders. Like calorie restriction and exercise, nicotinamide riboside can increase NAD+ levels and SIRT1 activation, and may be able to prevent or reverse age-related mitochondrial and metabolic dysfunction and disease in yeast cells, nicotinamide riboside supplementation raised NAD+ levels and increased lifespan without calorie restriction. Even in mice on a high-fat diet, nicotinamide riboside supplementation was found to raise NAD+ levels and SIRT1 activity, and was associated with positive metabolic effects, including less weight gain, improved exercise performance, and decreased liver fat.179

The glucoregulatory agent metformin can produce many of the gene expression changes found in mice on long-term caloric restriction, in particular, it can decrease the expression of chaperones; a set of proteins which, in addition to their other functions, can reduce apoptosis (self-destruction of damaged or malignant cells) and promote tumorgenesis. Metformin has increased mean lifespan in the worm C elegans.144 Along with the related anti-diabetic biguanide drugs phenformin and buformin, metformin extended the mean life span of mice by up to 37.9 percent and their maximum life span by up to 26 percent in multiple studies (reviewed in) while significantly decreasing the incidence and size of mammary tumors. These effects on spontaneous tumor incidence, however, were limited to female animals.  Metformin’s CR-like effects are possibly due to influence on insulin or IGF-1 signaling. This mechanism may also explain the lifespan extension properties of the glucoregulatory herb Cinnamomum cassia (cinnamon bark) in the C. elegans.

Numerous studies have found that metformin, which can induce a calorie restriction-like state, activates a critical enzyme called adenosine monophosphate-activated protein kinase (AMPK). This enzyme, which affects glucose metabolism and fat storage, has been called a “metabolic master switch” because it controls numerous pathways related to extracting energy from food and storing and distributing that energy throughout the body.

Gynostemma pentaphyllum (G. pentaphyllum) is used in Asian medicine to promote longevity.163 Its longevity effects appear to be due, in part, to its ability to activate AMPK.161 Studies of G. pentaphyllum supplementation in humans demonstrate effects also found in calorie restriction, such as improved glucose metabolism, and reduced body weight, abdominal fat, and overall fat.  Other studies found that G. pentaphyllum significantly improves insulin sensitivity, a mechanism also observed in studies of caloric restriction.

Trans-tiliroside is an extract obtained from rose hips that has been used for nearly a century to treat a variety of conditions, including cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and inflammatory diseases.  Trans-tiliroside’s effects appear to be due in part to its ability to activate AMPK. Caloric restriction and exercise are both efficient activators of AMPK, as this enzyme pathway is stimulated when energy demand exceeds supply.

In a clinical trial, rose hip extract supplementation in 32 overweight individuals resulted in significantly less total abdominal fat, abdominal visceral fat, body weight, and body mass index by the end of the 12-week trial compared with those who received placebo. Numerous preclinical trials have shown that trans-tiliroside and its derivatives boost AMPK signaling. In a mouse study, administration of a rose hips extract significantly reduced dangerous after-meal glucose spikes and inhibited weight gain, particularly abdominal fat deposition.

Fish oil, while not a CRM, appears to increase the efficacy of CR at preventing free radical damage; fish oil feeding with 40% CR in mice demonstrated synergistic reductions in thiobarbituric acid reactive substances (TBARS, a marker of lipid peroxidation), and was more effective at reducing inflammatory markers (COX-2 and iNOS expression) that CR or fish oil alone. 

The branched-chain amino acids (leucine, isoleucine, and valine) exhibit several CR-like properties, particularly related to mitochondrial biogenesis. Leucine increased mitochondrial mass in cultured human myocytes (muscle cells), and activated genes associated with CR (PGC-1α and SIRT-1).  Elevations in CR gene expression were observed in mouse cardiomyocytes using a mixture of all three BCAAs.151 The BCAAs have also extended lifespan in Saccharomyces as well as in mice, when supplied above normal dietary levels. Similarly, pyrroloquinoline quinone (PQQ), a bacterial electron carrier and cofactor for several bacterial enzymes (and at least one mammalian enzyme increased mitochondrial DNA content and stimulated oxygen respiration (both indicative of biogenesis) in cultured mouse hepatoma cells through the activation of the CR gene PGC.

 

 


Disclaimer and Safety Information

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Robots And Our Future!

Ray Kurzweil is the Mind Behind the Theory of The Singularity

Futurist and inventor, Ray Kurzweil, is the mind behind the theory of the singularity taking place by 2045, the point when humans multiply our effective intelligence a billionfold by merging with the intelligence we have created. He is attending the festival this year with PHD in order to appear on stage and film elements of a new film the media agency is making around the topic of AI. It is also using the presence of Kurzweil to launch a book on the topic, appropriately named ‘Merge’.

“It’s an optimistic group that welcomes the future as I do,” says Kurzweil when asked what he thinks of the festival. He is sitting quietly on a large deep chair in the middle of the grand lobby of the JW Marriott on Le Croisette having flown in just that morning from the US. He is clearly tired when The Drum greets him but soon warms up while discussing the topic he has spent his professional life leading – the transformational power of technology on people and language.

Asked about his views on the advancement of advertising and communications as a result of technological progress, Kurzweil immediately turns to how useful advertising can be now as it becomes more focused through understanding online user interests.

“Advertising is really blending in with other forms of communication and that is something that people welcome because it is topics that they have an interest in,” he says.

“Brands are very important because we need to trust information. Not everything on the internet can be relied on so we use brands as a way of knowing what is reliable,” he explains, before later adding that AI can help ensure people are treated as individuals rather than a mass audience being served the same message in unison.

“People will resent wasting their time with messages that don’t agree with them, that are in areas they are not interested in, so AI is going to tell people they are going to like a movie or a song and we appreciate that because it’s usually right and brands have to be associated with good quality information. You can’t sell something that people are not going to like,” he says.

He cites advice his aunt, who was a senior vice president of Doyle Dane and Bernbach (DDB) in New York gave, that trying to advertise a brand that people aren’t going to like is the quickest way to kill it: “You have to be selling something that is worthwhile and then people will appreciate the message and it’s more and more important that people can trust in an era that is filled with misinformation.”

He goes on to claim that “language is at the heart of human intelligence” and says that the understanding of human language cannot be faked when asked what technological developments are exciting him currently.

“To really understand language you really have to understand human intelligence and knowledge at human levels. That’s what I work on and that is what I think is most exciting but AI keeps doing things that people thought were only the province of human intelligence. Every time AI does something we say ‘that’s not really AI’ and it has been called ‘the set of problems we haven’t solved yet’ but that is getting smaller and smaller.”

He repeatedly states that the dawn of AI is not “an alien invasion from Mars” but a result of human ingenuity and believes that technology will ultimately “go inside our bodies and brains” to aid health and and that the neo-cortex of the human brain will be linked directly to the cloud, taking man’s evolution a step further as technology assists brains to access more knowledge than ever before.

“We are going to connect our neo-cortex to the cloud and add again to the hierarchy and make ourselves smarter and create capabilities we can’t even imagine today. Try explaining language or music or humor to a primate that doesn’t understand those concepts. We’ll create new types of knowledge that we can’t understand today when we increase our neo-cortex wirelessly to the cloud. That’s my vision of the future that’s a 2030 scenario,” he confides.

“If you read my predictions going back to the 80s and 90s, I am always surprised when things I have talked about come true,” he later admits. “Although I write about them I still find them remarkable. People very quickly get used to them. It’s always been that way,” he says, before using the smartphone as an example of something that was mass adopted five years ago and quickly change society.

And it’s the accuracy of such predictions that have made Kurzweil’s name. For all his writings, he is still best known for his prediction of the Singularity, and despite the continued increase in the speed of technological advancements, he says he still stands by his assertion that the artificial intelligence will be able to pass a Turing test 12 years from now, and that the singularity will still happen in 2045 despite the continued debate of others in the field.

“There are more and more developments that support that view. My view has stayed the same, the consensus view of experts and the general public is moving towards me,” he says.

He continues: “There is a growing group of people who think I’m too conservative but I see no reason to change my view. AI is doing more and more things that people said it would never do… by 2029 they will do anything humans can do…

“We make these machines to be smarter and we are already smarter. The idea that we are going to merge with this technology is not radical. We are doing it right now and the typical dystopian futurist movie is the AI versus the brave band of humans fighting for control of humanity. We don’t have one single AI in the world today, we have, on last count around 3 billion. Phones are AIs. They have really empowered the individual. They are getting more and more capable and they will be in 8 billion hands within a few years and they are getting more and more integrated with us and they are starting to go into our bodies and brains and it starts with extreme cases like Parkinson’s patients but that will be ubiquitous in the 2030s. Whether they are inside our bodies or not, they are already extending our capability.”

Finally, when asked about the most accurate depiction of AI he has seen in film, he says that Spike Jonze‘s Oscar-winning ‘Her’ is his favourite, but that he felt the ending was a ‘cop out’ and admits that despite the Terminator being one of the most famous depictions of AI on screen, he has yet to meet its famous director and writer James Cameron.

“He did express an interest in an interview for a series he’s doing but I haven’t met him yet,” he responds casually.

This century, if Kurzweil is correct, humanity is set to evolve and reach a new level of intelligence and expand its horizons to new heights with the aid of intelligence. How marketers will deal with that challenge when they are already struggling to deal with other technological developments appearing at a rapid rate will be a fascinating leap for the industry to deal with. How do you advertise to robots anyway