Breaking News
March 23, 2019 - Combination of two topical creams can prevent cancer
March 23, 2019 - Study suggests depression screening when assessing African-Americans for schizophrenia
March 23, 2019 - New electronic support system for choosing drug treatment based on patient’s genotype
March 23, 2019 - First-of-its-kind study provides pregnancy statistics of imprisoned U.S. women
March 23, 2019 - Marinus Pharmaceuticals Initiates Phase 3 Study in Children with PCDH19-Related Epilepsy
March 23, 2019 - Laparoscopy: MedlinePlus Lab Test Information
March 23, 2019 - Shellfish allergies: can they be treated?
March 23, 2019 - Toilet seat heart monitoring system
March 23, 2019 - Researchers identify way to improve common treatment for PTSD
March 23, 2019 - High potency cannabis use linked to psychosis finds study
March 23, 2019 - Evoke Pharma Submits Response to FDA Review Letter for Gimoti NDA
March 23, 2019 - Tracking HIV’s ever-evolving genome in effort to prioritize public health resources
March 23, 2019 - Scientists grow most sophisticated brain organoid to date
March 23, 2019 - ADHD drug raising risk of psychosis
March 22, 2019 - FDA approves brexanolone, first drug developed to treat postpartum depression
March 22, 2019 - Gruesome cat and dog experiments by the USDA exposed
March 22, 2019 - Ball pits used in children’s physical therapy may contribute to germ transmission
March 22, 2019 - Long-term use of inexpensive weight-loss drug may be safe and effective
March 22, 2019 - FDA Approves Sunosi (solriamfetol) for Excessive Daytime Sleepiness Associated with Narcolepsy or Obstructive Sleep Apnea
March 22, 2019 - Anti-Müllerian Hormone Test: MedlinePlus Lab Test Information
March 22, 2019 - Finding the right exercise, diet aids for HIV patients
March 22, 2019 - Health Plans For State Employees Use Medicare’s Hammer On Hospital Bills
March 22, 2019 - Researchers develop new tool for imaging large groups of neurons in living animals
March 22, 2019 - Certain bacteria and immune factors in vagina may cause or protect against preterm birth
March 22, 2019 - Novel breath test could pave new way to non-invasively measure gut health
March 22, 2019 - Pharmaceutical and personal care products may result in new contaminants in waterways
March 22, 2019 - ACC: Catheter Ablation Does Not Cut Mortality, Stroke in A-Fib
March 22, 2019 - Wiedemann-Rautenstrauch syndrome – Genetics Home Reference
March 22, 2019 - Health insurance is not assurance of healthcare
March 22, 2019 - Supporting “curiosity-driven research” at the Discovery Innovation Awards
March 22, 2019 - Must-Reads Of The Week (Some Flying Below The Radar)
March 22, 2019 - Newly engineered nanoscale protein micelles can be tracked by MRI
March 22, 2019 - Mayo Clinic study identifies potential new drug therapy for liver diseases
March 22, 2019 - Pitt engineers win $550,000 NSF CAREER award to develop new intervention for people with ASD
March 22, 2019 - Early discharge does not increase readmission risk for patients after lung surgery
March 22, 2019 - Creating diverse pool of trained scientists to address Alzheimer’s research needs
March 22, 2019 - Surprising discovery offers clues to limit graft-vs.-host disease
March 22, 2019 - Study shows ACA’s positive impact on healthcare affordability and access for women
March 22, 2019 - Study provides new pathway for controlling inflammation
March 22, 2019 - New combination treatment shows promise for common brain tumor in children
March 22, 2019 - Virginia Tech Helmet Lab releases first youth-specific football helmet ratings
March 22, 2019 - New algae-based treatment could reduce need for limb amputation
March 22, 2019 - Stroke risk reduces in both black and white older Medicare beneficiaries, study reports
March 22, 2019 - City of Hope exhibits current studies and data on cancer therapies at AACR
March 22, 2019 - New study identifies CD40 molecule as key entry point for dangerous bacteria
March 22, 2019 - Health Tip: Six Steps to a Healthier Life
March 22, 2019 - even a little activity helps you live longer
March 22, 2019 - Many individuals recovering from addiction continue to suffer from chronic physical disease
March 22, 2019 - New drugs on PBS for Parkinson’s, MND and Cutaneous T cell lymphoma
March 22, 2019 - Saving energy also saves lives, UW-Madison study says
March 22, 2019 - Former inmates who receive social support have better mental health, study finds
March 22, 2019 - Nanofibrous membrane could enhance periodontal tissue regeneration
March 22, 2019 - Anti-vaxxer Italian leader down with chickenpox
March 22, 2019 - Servier collaborates with Harvard researchers to fight metabolic diseases
March 22, 2019 - National Eating Disorders Association
March 22, 2019 - Pumping up red blood cell production
March 22, 2019 - Excessive phosphate fertilizer may hurt plants by altering microbial composition in soil
March 22, 2019 - Medical marijuana laws could be improving older Americans’ health, study suggests
March 22, 2019 - Study indicates the benefits of stopping aspirin in heart attack patients
March 22, 2019 - Deep brain stimulation offers significant relief for patients with treatment-resistant depression
March 22, 2019 - Mental health problems in young adults on the rise
March 22, 2019 - Innovative membrane offers a viable solution for periodontitis
March 22, 2019 - The FDA Grants Rare Pediatric Disease Designation to Odiparcil for the Treatment of MPS VI
March 22, 2019 - insulin therapy: MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia
March 22, 2019 - Guidelines on the use of genetic testing in psychiatry
March 22, 2019 - Aspiring Doctors Seek Advanced Training In Addiction Medicine
March 22, 2019 - A change in focus could enable the development of new treatments for Alzheimer’s disease
March 22, 2019 - A new way to visualize the immune cell “landscape” of bowel cancer tumors
March 22, 2019 - Understanding maintenance of quiescent stem cells in chronic myelogenous leukemia
March 22, 2019 - Ludwig scientists to share advances in cancer research at AACR Annual Meeting 2019
March 22, 2019 - Less invasive valve replacement can be safe and effective alternative for healthier patients
March 22, 2019 - Aphasia research reveals new, complex interactions between thought and language
March 22, 2019 - Artificial neural networks can predict how different areas in the brain respond to words
March 22, 2019 - Age-related changes to gut microbiome have adverse impact on vascular health, study shows
March 22, 2019 - Study provides new insight into blood cell and immune cell production
March 22, 2019 - Isolated seniors chat online to prevent cognitive decline
March 22, 2019 - Repurposing drugs to outsmart cancers
March 22, 2019 - Naltrexone implant more effective in reducing relapses in HIV patients with opioid addiction
March 22, 2019 - The Brain Institute wins $7.04 million grant to investigate ‘neurophilosphy of free will’
March 22, 2019 - Karyopharm Announces FDA Extension of Review Period for Selinexor New Drug Application
Adequate consumption of ‘longevity’ vitamins could prolong healthy aging, nutrition scientist says

Adequate consumption of ‘longevity’ vitamins could prolong healthy aging, nutrition scientist says

image_pdfDownload PDFimage_print
Credit: CC0 Public Domain

A detailed new review of nutritional science argues that most American diets are deficient in a key class of vitamins and minerals that play previously unrecognized roles in promoting longevity and in staving off chronic diseases such as heart disease, cancer and, potentially, neurodegeneration.

In the review, published Oct. 15, 2018, as a “Perspective” article in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Bruce Ames, Ph.D., presents the conclusions of more than a decade of research in his laboratory at Children’s Hospital Oakland Research Institute (CHORI), which is affiliated with UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals.

These findings are presented alongside a detailed survey of additional evidence published by other scientists. Ames concludes that healthy aging can be extended by ingesting optimal levels of 30 known vitamins and essential minerals, and he suggests that these, along with 11 additional substances not currently classified as vitamins, should be recognized as essential “longevity vitamins” because of their potential to extend a healthy life.

vitamins and nutritional minerals are key components of a vast number of different enzymes that are necessary for the body’s metabolic health, but according to research cited in the new review, as many as 70 percent of Americans are deficient in one or more these key nutrients. Most are not so deficient as to put their immediate health at risk from diseases such as rickets or scurvy, but Ames, a senior scientist at CHORI and emeritus professor of biochemistry and molecular biology at UC Berkeley, suggests that even minor vitamin deficiencies could impact long-term health.

Ames, who directs CHORI’s Nutrition and Metabolism Center, argues that nutrition science has long overlooked the fact that most vitamins and minerals are required by dozens to hundreds of different enzymes within our cells. This means that the same nutrients we need to maintain our day-to-day health—such as vitamin D, omega-3 fatty acids, and magnesium—are also critical components of enzymes required for our bodies’ long-term maintenance, in roles such as DNA repair, cardiovascular health and prevention of oxidative damage.

As a consequence, Ames writes, when the body is faced with shortages of key nutrients, it must “ration” them, enabling enzymes critical to our immediate survival and reproductive capacity to keep functioning at the expense of longer-term physiological needs. Ames— who is known for creating the “Ames test,” a method he devised during the 1970s to rapidly predict a given chemical’s potential to cause cancer—calls this theoretical framework “triage theory.”

“The prevention of the degenerative diseases of aging is a different science than curing disease: it will involve expertise in metabolism, nutrition, biochemistry and genetic regulatory elements and polymorphisms,” Ames writes. “This approach is critical for lowering medical costs. It has been estimated that the E.U. would save €4 billion from osteoporosis alone by using vitamin D and calcium supplementation.”

In several recent publications, his team has found evidence that such trade-offs can be seen in people with chronic, low-level deficiencies in vitamin K and the element selenium (which are key components of 16 and 25 different enzymes, respectively). Published studies from the Ames lab suggest that, when forced to ration scarce vitamin K for its critical role in blood clotting, the body produces fewer enzymes required for keeping arteries clear, which has been linked to higher rates of mortality from cardiovascular disease.

“Diet is very important for our long-term health and this theoretical framework just reinforces that you should try to do what your mother told you: eat your veggies, eat your fruit, give up sugary soft drinks and empty carbohydrates,” Ames said.

Ames suspects many more longevity vitamins may remain to be discovered because—unlike so-called survival vitamins, such as vitamin C, that were originally identified because we quickly become sick without them—their identification requires very long-term observation, since the damage caused by deprivation of these vitamins is, by nature, an insidious and slow process into old age.

Ames, who has published more than 500 scientific papers in a career spanning nearly seven decades, said he considers this an important publication. “This may be a theoretical paper, but I hope it can add a few years to everyone’s lives.”


Explore further:
Nutrient supplement bar improves lung function in asthmatic adolescents

More information:
Bruce N. Ames. Prolonging healthy aging: Longevity vitamins and proteins, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (2018). DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1809045115

Journal reference:
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences

Provided by:
University of California, San Francisco

Tagged with:

About author

Related Articles