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  1. TomBAvoider

    Kill The HYPE!

    I've been on a many years campaign to stop the hype and point out when studies are IN MICE. Apparently I'm not alone. There's now a big movement in that direction: https://www.vox.com/future-perfect/2019/6/15/18679138/nutrition-health-science-mice-news
  2. TomBAvoider

    Reputable Online Pharmacy?

    I too would rather pay more and be assured I'm getting the real thing. But here's the irony: apparently the problems are so widespread that even if you are paying full price from a reputable source, you still have a big chance that you're getting something that's not up to par (see the recent cancer causing impurities in Teva blood pressure medications). So they get you either way. Paying full fare and buying stateside from the traditional sources does not eliminate risk, and the problems are increasing, in tandem with the FDA becoming ever weaker and more conflicted if not outright corrupt. The problems are so profound that there are some tentative measures to address this intolerable situation, in this case through blockchain, as this article explains: https://www.forbes.com/sites/rachelwolfson/2019/06/13/merck-and-walmart-will-track-prescription-drugs-on-ibm-blockchain-in-fda-pilot/ But that's not an immediate solution to this mess. At this particular point in time, I'm afraid you pays your money and you takes your chances, pardner, like back in the day.
  3. TomBAvoider

    Reputable Online Pharmacy?

    Thank you, Gordo for your excellent recommendation. And let me add that I agree with you 100% that one should not simply pop medication without extensive research and a very high degree of confidence. Interactions are the most obvious concern, but so is your particular health status. I would only recommend it for those who are thoroughly educated in this regard. I do admit to some degree of bias in favor of domestic providers, on account of worries about the quality of product - ironically even stateside providers who either import or outsource medicines made outside of the FDA supervisory regimen have been caught out by unacceptably poor quality. Indian manufacturers have been the biggest offenders. Some googling will provide scores of sources for this info. Example - which should be of concern to anyone currently taking any generics: https://www.cbsnews.com/news/generic-drugs-manufactured-overseas-may-not-be-as-safe-as-you-think/ Personally, cost is not my primary concern (or secondary!), I’d rather pay more for assured quality. That said l don’t have blind prejudice against Indian sources, and if a given provider has a well earned good reputation, I see no reason to withhold my custom.
  4. TomBAvoider

    Reputable Online Pharmacy?

    I was wondering what online pharmacies folks are using to buy medication that is not a "controlled", i.e. I'm not taking about scheduled pain medications, or medications that can rebound to general population harm, such as antibiotics. I'm talking ordinary FDA approved medications such as acarbose or bog standard generic statins and the like. I wonder if there exist ones which are reputable in that they will actually send you the actual medication, and not some poorly made counterfeit - and the crucial requirement is that they won't make you jump through hoops with requiring prescriptions from your current physician. For example, they might have online consultation with a physician for a prescription - that is fine and expected - as long as they send you the thing you want, no further questions asked. I'm located in California, U.S. I'm not interested in breaking the law, or buying from pharmacies located in dodgy locations worldwide. I'd like something that is reputable and legal, even if somewhat costly. I'd like to be responsible for my own care, and not have to convince my PCP that I need this or that. I suppose I could engage in extensive doctor shopping, but I thought maybe there's a simpler way, because I'm not asking for any controlled medications, just very standard ones. Of course, if this is impossible, I guess I'll have to start the laborious process of finding a reasonable physician. My current one is a good guy, but extremely by the book and frankly somewhat behind the times - can't convince him of anything new past his medical school years, I can't even get him to adjust the dose on a medication I'm already taking! For example, I already take metformin and atorvastatin (insurance pays for it), but I'd like a dose adjustment and can't get it, so I'd rather buy it myself and pay for it. You can send me a private message if you wish. TIA!
  5. Btw., if someone wants to see the kind of considerations involved in validating demographic data wrt. age, especially centenarians, here's an interesting read: https://www.demogr.mpg.de/books/odense/6/12.htm I think it shows pretty comprehensively why you should exercise extreme caution in taking statistics coming out of most countries at face value. Bottom line: disregard most such comparisons between countries.
  6. That graphic about the economies with the biggest percentage of centenarians is an example of data that is meaningless. The primary reason is the most fundamental - the integrity of the data is abysmal. Even in a highly developed country, with presumably excellent records - like Japan. Here is the Japanese scam with regard to centenarians: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-pacific-11258071 Executive summary: vast numbers of centenarians in Japan are fictional - people's deaths are not recorded so that families may continue to draw pension benefits. I wouldn't trust longevity statistics coming out of Japan, period. The other countries are just ludicrous if you know anything about the realities on the ground - Uruguay, Dominican Republic, Chile - LOL. The records over there are worth exactly nothing, with vast numbers of people whose birth records are approximate at best, so good luck trying to establish age based on such. You can't base any kind of age analysis on records this poor. Places like Vietnam, that have experienced war and displacement on a vast scale, have seriously distorted demographic numbers due to people dying, emigrating and being displaced. When you have people fleeing in vast numbers, it's almost never the very old, so what is left behind is a distorted age group - they are not a consistent cohort who have gone through all the natural stages of birth and death in their natural numbers. Such stats are meaningless. With the possible exception of Scandinavian countries (Finland too is iffy, on account of WWII), you should not place too much faith in the age-distribution of the population as saying much of anything about longevity factors. And when it comes to supercentenarians the situation grows even worse due to the tiny numbers. You are left with essentially anecdotes. Jeanne Calment is a wild outlier with no one even coming close - and now serious questions have been raised as to how legitimate her age actually was (see the thread I started about this). And what conclusion should you reach about DIET when the oldest man (112+ yo) for a while was a Jewish immigrant to Israel who lived through years of ghetto starvation and concentration camps - how good do you suppose his diet was during that years long time? Btw. his profession was a candymaker - do you suppose he ever dipped into his own production? Or maybe you want to reach conclusions about COLD and geographic lattitude based on this fellow, who spent decades in one of the hottest spots on earth, Israel. Put me down as deeply suspicious of the whole hype about Blue Zones. Because I think it's a natural human tendency to try to find and believe in good news. I am very, very skeptical about the integrity of statistics and demographic data coming from any of these places, including Okinawa which saw extreme WWII action, and whose pension system (and all its weaknesses and temptations) is Japanese. But that's just me. I suppose I'm cursed by an aversion to hype.
  7. TomBAvoider

    Aging in bats is instructive

  8. TomBAvoider

    There is no optimal diet for everyone

    I’m fond of repeating on these boards that the way forward is through personalized medicine. There’ve been other posts here about how different people respond differently to different foods, and here is another comprehensive study showing that the same individual may respond differently at different times of their lives: https://www.businessinsider.com/what-is-the-best-diet-no-such-thing-2019-6 It really puts a magnifying glass over all the claims one constantly reads about how “this food” is healthy and “that food” is not. Everyone is an individual.
  9. I spend a fair amount of time at my desk, and I try to take breaks by walking around so as not to experience the devastating drawbacks of sedentary behavior. However, I have also noticed that when I do sit down, I almost always cross my legs pretty much immediately (at the knee). I therefore grew curious as to what the possible harms/benefits were of this habit. I googled around and didn’t find much, though I came across this article: http://www.bbc.com/future/story/20151013-is-crossing-your-legs-bad-for-you Spoiler alert, nothing earth shattering, but some minor benefits are possible. No apparent harms have been definitively shown, except possibly for those who are prone to developing clots - they should not sit for a prolonged period of time in such a position. Of course, nobody should be sitting for a prolonged time in the first place, but I guess it’s an additional caution. Reading about the possible benefits of crossing your legs, I wondered therefore if one shouldn’t switch up - sometimes right over left sometimes the other way around. I personally switch naturally, and find myself not preferring one way vs the other. YMMV.
  10. TomBAvoider

    Inspiratory Muscle Strength Training

    I believe the device Powerbreathe has been developed with Prof Alison McConnell, who has been researching Inspiratory Muscle Training for a long time now - in my OP I linked to the video she did giving an overview of research in that area in the last few decades. Here is her bio mentioning Powerbreathe: https://staffprofiles.bournemouth.ac.uk/display/amcconnell The device I bought and linked to on Amazon is sold by POWERbreathe International Ltd. From the website it appears that Prof Alison McConnell is the linchpin as shown here: https://www.powerbreathe.com/respiratory-muscle-training-by-alison-mcconnell I don't know if she supervised the specific model I mentioned, but she does appear connected to the same company. Again, I'm agnostic as to whether this whole thing is legit or not, but it might be technique dependent as I mentioned when citing the PubMed link. At least that particular study seems to indicate that some benefits occur when used in a specific way - and the researcher don't seem connected to any commercial interests: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/3769566 So it's not like there is no science behind the intervention. Now, perhaps the specific device I linked to is not legit, but I have no particular reason to think that. Anyhow, I've been doing it for a week now, and as yet it's too early to say what the effect will be. Regardless, I didn't post this to try to convince anyone to go ahead and do this - in fact, I posted this as an example of my tendency to recklessly try any cockamamie procedure and gadget (like the whole body vibration machine). So this is a giant CAVEAT EMPTOR. Not promoting this at all! I'll give my report after a few weeks - supposedly you should feel some effect after 6 weeks or so. We'll see if I get at least a placebo effect. YMMV.
  11. TomBAvoider

    Does IF damage the heart?

    I read through that longecity thread, and it's fair to say "it's complicated" (isn't everything in medical science?). First and foremost, this is EOD - so if you are practicing every other day fasting, then it might be relevant - I think few of us are. People sometimes practice limited window feeding (4, 6, 8 hours), resulting in 16+/- hours of fasting within a 24 hour window - and call it "intermittent fasting" - that is NOT the same thing. The second problem is that this is a study in rats. Sorry, I know a lot of CR results do appear to translate roughly from rats to humans, but these are still rats, and therefore you simply cannot say "because result X translates to humans therefore we assume that result Y will too". I find the objection "it's rats!" particularly relevant in this case - because it hits at one of the weak points of translatability to humans - time scale and circadian rhythms. EOD in a rat is not the same as EOD in a human - a 24 hour fast in rats is much more stressful for a rat physiology than it is for a human.You would not take the same absolute amount of a drug and administer it to both a rat and a human and declare the results equivalent, so why would you administer the same amount of time (24 hours) in an intervention and expect it to be equivalent in effect in rat and human. In conclusion, I say yet again - to hell with results in rats/animals; give me results in humans or I put it on "ignore". Does IF damage the heart? - this is an example of Betteridge's Law of Headlines which says, "Any headline that ends in a question mark can be answered by the word no." In this case the evidence cited for possible concern is derived from RAT studies. That right there - yeah, no thanks. My principle - which I've been promoting endlessly on these boards - is: Result in RATS/animals ---->IGNORE. Personally, I find this result to be irrelevant to my life. YMMV, obviously.
  12. TomBAvoider

    Average age of death per calorie!

    We don't have such data. At best we could attempt to extrapolate from animals, but I doubt it would have much validity. Translatability is a serious problem. Besides, at what age do we start? How large is the person in quesiton? There is no way to meaningfully answer the questions as posed, IMHO.
  13. TomBAvoider

    Whole Body Vibration Therapy for Bone Health

    The modest cost part though is delusional. To make any practical use of this gadget will require a ridiculous amount of time and effort. The knowledge that it is a huge time sink is precisely the reason why I consciously stayed away from arduino development 🙂
  14. TomBAvoider

    Inspiratory Muscle Strength Training

    Inspiratory Muscle Strength Training, using an inspiratory resistance device. The fundamental idea behind this is that your breathing muscles need training just like any other. Apparently, with such training there are multiple unexpected benefits including lowering blood pressure, increased exercise performance, benefits for brain health and so on. Article: http://www.sci-news.com/medicine/inspiratory-muscle-strength-training-blood-pressure-brain-07077.html A more detailed presentation from a researcher long involved in this area and giving an overview of research in this area (unfortunately in the form of a lengthy youtube video): https://youtu.be/KtIZ9t345-A However, as has always been my habit, before I undertake any therapy or procedure, I like to thoroughly research protocol. It is in this context, that I found a paper that seems to imply that a slightly different protocol is actually effective: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/3769566 In any case, I have decided to plunge into yet another crazy project, and went ahead and purchased this device - which was apparently developed with the help of the foremost reasearcher in this area: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001O67BYM/ I have just started out on this device, and so I'm not as yet in a position to give a personal report on its effects. YMMV.
  15. TomBAvoider

    Whole Body Vibration Therapy for Bone Health

    I must admit shamefacedly, that my vibration machine has been stashed away where I don't have to look at it - have not used it in a very long time 😞 It appears that it's yet another gadget that I purchased and then not used beyond the initial burst of enthusiasm. I suppose what sapped my determination is a lack of very clear cut benefits for someone in my position - i.e. I am not "young" or an "athlete" or "woman" or "elderly in assisted living facility", or "victim of an accident", or "in physical therapy" etc., etc., etc. Be that as it may, I have not learned my lesson. Instead, I have gone ahead and purchased yet another gadget, and I suppose I should man up and describe what it is in a new thread. I'm in the process of gathering courage and fighting off embarassement. Stay tuned.