It has been a while since I updated you on my quest for perfect nutrition – on the theory we really are what we eat – so…
DISCLAIMER: I am not a doctor, medical professional, or associated with any school, college, or university medical school. Think of me as just someone you ran into on the street, Do not consider any of my PERSONAL MEDICAL OBSERVATIONS as applying to one person: Me, the author. Look, I know you aren’t a child and have already figured this out, but we live in a Nanny State where corporations hold vast sway over what is reported and said about their chemical cash-cow darlings, statins in particular. Now that’s we’re clear that these are only my 4th Amendment protected personal observations, we may continue.”
This morning’s observation is occasioned by my upcoming periodic visit with my doctor. Every few months, I fast for a day, or so, then go into his office where blood is drawn. Usually, the results trigger alarming calls to advise me that my bloodwork was frightening and I should get on statins right away.
Statins purport to improve your life span and reduce your likelihood of a CVD (cardiovascular disease) episode, but ever since I began to look into the assertion that statins are good, the evidence has been swinging just the other way.
You may remember on previous occasions, I told you I’d gotten my doc a copy of Ignore the Awkward.: How the Cholesterol Myths Are Kept Alive by a Swedish doctor who has published more than 100 articles about cholesterol and tickers and that tax-free state we call dead. Not what you would call a BS’er.
Despite my supplying the book, my doctor decided to take statins himself. He also began serious walking exercise – putting in about 3-miles per day, propelled in part by two large dogs. My approach is a leisurely mile on my treadmill (air conditioning counts with me this time of year) and I still avoid statins like the plague.
My “see and avoid” seems justified by a couple of recent press reports, both of which go on your reading list if you are over 50: The first is “The Cholesterol Paradigm:” The Greatest Health Scam of the Past Century” which appears in this month’s Whole Foods magazine.
- Study: Lowering cholesterol below a certain level doesn’t cut heart risk
- Reducing level of ‘bad’ LDL cholesterol from a ‘high’ to a ‘moderate’ level did have an impact on heart risk, reducing heart emergencies by 13%
- But reducing levels from ‘moderate’ to ‘low’ levels – roughly the level targeted by the NHS – had no effect on patients at all”
My doctor and I will continue to “agree to disagree” when we get together for the ‘thump and draw shortly.’
I am keenly aware of the difficult duality in medicine: Doctors are bound legally to “first do no harm” though that can be difficult when set upon by wild packs of pill promoters sent forth from Big Pharma.
However we are under no such restrictions. I am perfectly capable of reading widely, considering and the evidence. As a side benefit of am MBA, I’m not frightened of ARIMA-12 and other statistical jargonese. GIGO still rules.
I remain quite aggressive about life-extension because I’m gong to get there long before the corporate consensus. That’s the reality of Everything’s a Business Model.
Still, I continue tweaking supplements as part of a giant chemistry set’ my own body. Since I am the interface between it and the outside/objective world, who better as chief scientist/observer than myself?
Over the past couple of years, there has been doing lots of research and personal testing. My latest move was to reduce my wheat intake, based on the work of doctor William Davis’ Wheat Belly: Lose the Wheat, Lose the Weight, and Find Your Path Back to Health.
When I go in for the check-up this time, I will be more than 10 pounds lighter than last time around, More importantly, however, my general health is really good and I feel great.
How do I do it?
It started with reading a tremendous amount about different vitamins and supplements. The more promising vitamins were self-tested. My body and genetic history (northern European T-6), is different than yours. I try for three to four weeks to see if there is any noticeable effect.
If not, test vits goes into my “vitamin scrap pile” which is substantial.
The payoff is that I feel as good at 67.5 as I did at 50. There has been no noticeable change in energy levels. No need for Viagra, thanks, and getting out of bed is never a problem. I have so much energy I have to work at sleeping past 8-hours..
My Current Regimen
Again, this is not medical advice. This is only what presently works for me. It may change.
This list does not include the eye drops for recovery from the (four) eye surgeries in the past 45 days. These were necessitated not by any health issue, except after 25-years in a fairly high UV setting (sailing and flying) an implanted lens (1990) shifted during violent exercise, necessitating its removal and replacement. This was not at all like the quickie 15-minute a first-time cataract operations of today.
Even with three ‘Under” I had no impact beyond a day or two of sluggishness while the anesthetics half-lived out.
As I run through each my capsules, I’ll give you my personal (REPEAT: this is not medical advice!) rationale.
87 GR Baby aspirin: This is a concession to my doctor. The effects of low dose aspirin to reduce the risk of initial heart attack and complications is fairly well-understood. Simply: It thins the blood down a bit to make coagulation slower. Downside: Due to the ‘thinned blood’ I believe it contributed to more intraocular bleeding than ideal in eye surgery #4, but that’s OK because over 3-6 months, the man-made fluid in my eye (visual saline solution) will be recycled by my body into normal eye fluids.
Iodine and Potassium: My ancestry ate a lot of fresh fish and winter veggies, neither of which are available locally year-round. Look up iodine deficiency as a search and ask your doctor to look at your thyroid levels if you are too fat, or too thin. I just feel better with them.
A High Quality Multivitamin: I presently take NOW Foods Adam Men’s Multi, 90 Softgels. Once in the morning, once at night per the label. I put a lot of “label shopping” in to see which multi-vitamins had the most adult minimum daily requirements at what price point.
Chromium Supplement: This one is taken because it “levels out” my energy throughout the day. Because of genetics (and weight with a possible tie-back to wheat) I found that I was eating primarily when my blood sugar was out of kilter (low). The choices were simple: Give up all sugars, including those found in Martinis, or help the body manage the blood sugars more evenly. So I take Life Extension Optimized Chromium with Crominex 3+ 500mcg Veg Cap, 60-Count.
Huperzine-A: This and 16 ounces of black coffee in the morning is what kicks the brain into gear. For me, the effect is noticeable in improved reaction times (which I regularly test btw). It reflects in how well I do in general problem-solving skills at a reference site (Lumosity). It is not like the television show Limitless, but given a choice of problem-solving, why opt for stupid? This is presently cycled three weeks on, one week off. Do your own research on this.
Magnesium Complex: From what I have read, there are three main “channels” the body uses to regulate a whole bunch of biological activity: Potassium, Sodium, and Magnesium. Some people react positively to more magnesium than the FDA RDA, at least I did, and interesting, so does my son. He says it odd, too: Calming, yet with no degradation in mental acuity. I happen to take Life Extension Magnesium Vegetarian Capsules, 500 mg, 100 Count though I usually get the two-pack.
Swedish Flower Pollen: What? Remember I mentioned that I haven’t any need for Viagra? Well, I discovered several years back this product called Swedish Flower Pollen Extract 4:1 – 60 600mg VegiCaps – Stearate Free, Bottled in Glass. I have done a lot of reading on sexual health (in 67.5 years..) and long ago discovered that flower pollen was claimed to have two and maybe three major impacts on men’s health. One is it is alleged to increase the production of seminal fluid, two is it doesn’t hurt the prostate and basically ended the middle of the night pee run and three it MAY help with prostate health overall. Normalizing testosterone levels may have something to do with HGH – human growth hormone – which keeps us young.
Vitamin C: One or two grams of buffered vitamin C. Is that a lot? Well, depends on who you ask. Vitamin C was considered by Dr. Linus Pauling to be a critical part of cardiac health and as a result, I take Twinlab Gentle-C 1000, Buffered Vitamin C with Citrus Bioflavonoid Complex, 1000mg, 100 Tablets (Pack of 2).
Recommended Resource: Read about Vitamin C and Lysine at www.paulingtherapy.com. I add lysine with the C when I remember.
Boron: This is a strange one. I came across the boron story when I was doing some research on tree blight (made worse by boron deficiency in soil) and then when I read about people taking Boron as part of a detox. I’m not crazy enough to swig down dilute borax, but a read over here might convince you that Boron supplementation is worth discussing with your doc. Like I said, food grade ingredients from Amazon seemed a little less “edgy” so I go with NOW Foods Boron, 3 mg, 250 Capsules.
L-Carnitine: I came across L-Carnitine when I was researching shortcuts to weight loss and how to improve muscle mass. See “side effect” #4 over here for some insights. This – and a lot more you can find on the web – is why I also take one per day NOW Foods Acetyl L-Carnitine 500mg, 100 Vcaps.
L-Arginine and L-Citrulline Complex This is one that I got on to thanks to Dr. Ron Klatz of the American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine. Website: http://www.a4m.com// I can’t thank Dr. Ron enough for the favor. Let me see if I can describe what happens: L-Arginine helps the blood to carry oxygen around by being converted to nitric oxide which causes a cardio dilator effect. This, in turn, releases HGH (human growth hormone) insulin, and other substances. It’s over here on WebMD if you want to check. The problem with L-Arginine is that it has a short “half-life” meaning it is metabolized quickly. (Can increase sexual capabilities according to some reports, BTW). The way to partially overcome the short half-life is to add L-Citrulline which is a precursor to L-Arginine. So I take Source Naturals L-Arginine L-Citrulline Complex, 240 Tablets-1000mg, too.
I realize this may seem like a lot of pills to take, but when you feel great from the effects, as I do, you don’t mind as much.
Once again, this is NOT MEDICAL ADVICE. TALK TO A DOCTOR OF HEALTHCARE PROFESSIONAL BEFORE LAUNCHING INTO ANY EXPERIMENTS WITH AGGRESSIVE SUPPLEMENTATION.
My next series of personal experiments will involve Vitamin K2 and MK7. (No, you ninny, not the mountain, the Vitamin.)
Vitamin K’s background is well-described in a the government’s PubMed database including from this entry:
Vitamin K was discovered fortuitously in 1929 as part of experiments on sterol metabolism and was immediately associated with blood coagulation. In the decade that followed, the principal K vitamers, phylloquinone and the menaquinones, were isolated and fully characterized. In the early 1940s, the first vitamin K antagonists were discovered and crystallized with one of its derivatives, warfarin, still being widely used in today’s clinical setting. However, major progress in our understanding of the mechanisms of action of vitamin K came in the 1970s with the discovery of ?-carboxyglutamic acid (Gla), a new amino acid common to all vitamin K proteins.
Now my own (NON-MEDICAL) take on what is really going on with Vitamin K.
There are a couple of types to consider: Regular Vitamin K, And the K2 (and beyond like K4 and K7) series.
The basic K is critical to blood coagulation. But there are HUGE discoveries being made about the roles of K2 and K7 in current journal research.
While reading through the latest papers in the PUBMED database Sunday that I came across what is for me a MIND BLOWING PAPER.
It is modestly titled “Medicines and Vegetable Oils as Hidden Causes of Cardiovascular Disease and Diabetes” but it was the Summary that I got all excited about because not only did K2 get thumbs up, but a whole list of other “healthy food” and some medicines (like statins) got thumbs down. Check this out:
Statin-induced suppression of prenyl intermediates in the cholesterol biosynthetic pathway has been linked to stimulated atherosclerosis and heart failure. On the other hand, certain types of vegetable oil and hydrogenated oil shortened the survival of stroke-prone spontaneously hypertensive rats by decreasing platelet number, increasing hemorrhagic tendency and damaging kidney functions, which could not be accounted for by their fatty acid and phytosterol compositions. These vegetable oils and medicines such as statin and warfarin share, in part, a common mechanism to inhibit vitamin K2-dependent processes, which was interpreted to lead to increased onset of CVD, DM, chronic kidney disease, bone fracture and even mental disorder. Impaired vitamin K2-dependent processes by some types of vegetable oils and medicines, but not plasma high low density lipoprotein cholesterol, were proposed as the cause of CVD, DM and other lifestyle-related diseases. High n-6/n-3 fatty acid ratio of ingested foods, but not animal fats, was emphasized to be another risk factor for many of the diseases described above.
To date, no randomized controlled trials (RCTs) have been performed to prove the above interpretation. However, the opposite types of RCT trials have been performed by increasing the intake of high-linoleic vegetable oils and reducing that of animal fats, which resulted in increased CVD and all-cause mortality. The amounts of these vegetable oils to exhibit adverse effects in animal studies are not huge (<6 energy %), which should not be overlooked nor disregarded.
Since I want to make it to my next birthday (and 100 would be nice) I STRONGLY recommend you flip over here and read the whole article.
It starts off asserting “I. Statins Induce CVD and DM (diabetes) and just gets better from there.
This current article supports and builds on information that has been known since the landmark article was published “The Oiling of America” which can still be found on the Weston Price Foundation website. Between the hydrogenated (Oiling) and rapeseed (“Hidden Causes” study) did America every really have a chance at longevity? Or was some of this known and perhaps capitalized in order to…well, I won’t go there -yet. But you get the idea of where that line of inquiry takes us….
One more data point to toss in is how much glyphosate comes comes up the foodchain as rapeseed/canola oil and oh, boy…here’s another rabbit hole.
You remember the Big Money interests raised (doubled) allowable glyphosate levels in 2013? EPA’s all; too willing to close down coal fields for Obama but ask them to protect food supplies from carcinogenic chemicals such as…well, again, everything is a business model. I think we’ve established that..
Now, the counter arguments: I’m sure there are some. But I’m not hearing them because…
This report was done by Japanese researchers. They are already into K2 and fermented foods (soy sauce is a fermentation, right? Kim Chi and other Asian foods, too…) and the Japanese are not so much “under the Big Pharma thumb.”
In other words, they don’t have the full-circle of captured regulators that our corporate governance circle-jerk imposes; permitting serial looting along the way. How many dips can one get?
By the time you get down to the rat studies (Figure 23 shows an almost 50% reduction in lifespan from rapeseed (canola) oil as compared to soybean oil for example) in bred-to-be-ill rats, you’ll be ready to look at the current (financially ruling) health paradigm in the West as (how to put this nicely?) perhaps well-intended but financially-beholden.
So, as another week begins, Ure’s truly is still busily playing with his “personal chemistry set” – the body that has so far managed to “take a lickin’ and keeps on tickin’” has survived another weekend out here in scorpion and cottonmouth heaven.
Seems yours has, too, since you made it this far.
I’m going to check out Now Foods Vitamin K-2 (MK7) Veg Capsules, 100 mcg, 60 Count and I’ll let you know if I notice any effects after a month of personal experiments. Raw fresh-picked kale has a noticeable effect..so it will be interesting to see if K2 or K7 does in pill form.
Write when you get rich,