X-Message-Number: 11854
Date: Sun, 30 May 1999 11:06:59 +0100
From:  (John de Rivaz)
Subject: life extension regimens

In article: <>  writes:
> Message #11825
> Date: Wed, 26 May 1999 16:39:08 EDT
> Subject: life extension regimens
> Doug Skrecky and others have commented on the burgeoning of anti-aging 
> studies and interest in them, and of course many readers of CryoNet have
> been personally involved, at least as consumers, for a long time. But
> while many books have been published, including Thomas Donaldson's book
> with update, and while there is an anti-aging newsgroup, it remains (as
> far as I can tell) frustratingly difficult to filter out clear, concise,
> and reliable information.
> The Life Extension Foundation (Kent and Faloon et al) publishes a magazine 
> with a lot of information, including abstracts; but its commercial nature 
> makes it of uncertain completeness and balance.

To be fair they have been known to comment when one of their products fails 
to meets its expectations.
finds such a report.

Here is an excerpt:
Life Extension Foundation members were informed four years ago that shark 
cartilage was ineffective in treating cancer. We obtained this information 
by conducting a survey in early 1995 on people who had purchased shark 
cartilage from us. 

This sort of thing gives the members faith in their integruity. No one can 
be perfect and nothing can be totally safe.

I would agree that the commercial appearance of Life Extension Report 
(LER) does not win friends amongst the professionals, but if it were left to 
professionals as a group everyone would do their duty and die of old age. If 
LER were a pithy professional style journal, how many would pick it up at 
the newsagents or even read it if they had subscribed?

I would also agree that books with titles like "The Miracle of............" 
don't inspire scientific confidence, but one must remember that publishers 
have a duty to their writers and shareholders to sell as many books as 
possible, and it is clearly titles like these that sell.

If you want one good book on this subject, then try:

Encyclopaedia of Nutritional Supplements by Michael Murray

It's not a "safe" book which only talks about the nutritional medicine that 
nutritionists all agree on (in which case it would be pamphlet). It's a big 
fat book with a zillion references by a big honcho naturopath who really 
thinks he can influence some diseases by giving big doses of various 
nutrients. He gives his reasoning and references and lets you decide. Very 
useful. Give me a big fat well-referenced book full of guesses any day, over 
a thin and tepid yawner of a thing full of information about how much folate 
you kill by boiling your carrots too long, and how you might need an extra 
milligram or two of B6 if you take birth control pills. (Steve Harris, MD) 

Dr Harris wrote this after he criticised Pearson and Shaw's Life Extension. 
I asked him what one book on life extension by nutrition he would recommend.


> We would like to make available to members of the Cryonics Institute and 
> Immortalist Society, and readers of  The Immortalist and of our web site, 
> among others, a source of information ... 


>  if possible (1) a summary of the best current advice, with BOTH
>  concise recommendations or opinions, negative as 
>  well as positive (with suitable disclaimers), and also literature
>  references for those who want verification and more detail; and (2)
>  answers to questions on a reasonably timely basis.

to an extent, one can already get that by searching http://www.lef.org

However something more conscise and with a definite "house style" as 
proposed could be worthwhile, but it would take a lot of time from a well 
qualified person to do it properly. This would probably have to be paid for 
which ends us up with the usual commercial restraints.

To the requirement, I would also add overdose symptoms. (Like the heading 
"Safety issues" in Murray's book detailed above.)

The other project that would be worthwhile is a book like Murray's with a CD 
in the back so that you can search it by computer. Many people have said 
that to publish books on CDs is silly because it is easier to read on paper 
than on screen - you don't need to lug apparatus around with you. But 
publishing simultaneously (ie readers get both the book and the CD) may be a 
sensible option, as an electronic search can be far more thorough than using 
a dictionary, and is also much better as a memory substitute. 

Apart from the lawyers' dead hands, a simple solution would be for someone 
to spend a few days scanning Encyclopaedia of Nutritional Supplements in and 
distributing the CD. Persuading Dr Murray that it is a worthwhile idea, and 
that it is worth his time and effort in persuading his publishers that it is 
a good idea and them and that it is worth their time and effort in 
persuading their legal department that it is a profitable idea puts this 
whole concept beyond possibility, in my view.

> http://www.cryonics.org  
Sincerely, John de Rivaz
Homepage:         http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/JohndeR
Longevity Report: http://www.geocities.com/HotSprings/Sauna/3748/lr.htm
Fractal Report:   http://www.longevb.demon.co.uk/fr.htm 
PCS - a  Singles listing sheet for people in Cornwall

Rate This Message: http://www.cryonet.org/cgi-bin/rate.cgi?msg=11854