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Persistent Viruses and the Aging Immune System. Part 1: HSV-1, a.k.a. “herpes” or “oral herpes”

This series of articles is focused on common, human viruses which are not completely “cleared” by the immune system, and instead, hang around for the life of the person. There is substantial evidence in the scientific literature that these common, persistent viruses can negatively affect one’s health, and possibly even one’s lifespan. These viruses can “reactivate”, causing symptoms which are usually milder than the initial infection. But the challenge more relevant to living a Long Life is that these viruses have been associated with things like cancer, weakening of the immune system, and Alzheimer’s. In this series of articles, we present and comment on some of the scientific evidence for the harm these viruses can do to healthspan and lifespan, and consider how that harm might be mitigated or eliminated.

Part 1 (this article) will focus on Herpes simplex virus – 1 (“HSV-1” or “oral herpes”). 

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Vitamin K: Why You Should Care About It

Vitamin K appears to be a relatively under-appreciated nutrient. Many articles on nutrition seem to focus on Vitamins C and E, well-known vitamin antioxidants. I, too, could probably benefit from understanding Vitamin K better than I do. So here, I report on my scan of the scientific literature about Vitamin K, including it’s vitamers, dietary sources, suggested intake, toxicity, and relationship to disease or its prevention. 

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Caffeine, Energy Expenditure, and Aging

In the context of a ketogenic diet, modest calorie restriction, and regular exercise, I have been considering re-introducing caffeine into my daily routine. I removed it months ago because there is substantial evidence that it induces a kind of transient insulin resistance (discussed in this article) – something I didn’t want when I was consuming substantial daily carbs. I also briefly discuss my hypothesis of energy production failure as a primary cause of aging degeneration, and support that with (very few) references (for now)…….

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Low Vitamin D, Insulin Resistance, and Type 2 Diabetes?

A recent study done on Australian men was published, which showed a relationship between low Vitamin D level and the incidence of Type 2 Diabetes. This apparent benefit of optimal Vitamin D level is in addition to the several other apparent benefits of having optimal levels, which include immune function and bone health, among others…..

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Confirmed: Exercise Increases Day-After Ketones

Just a week ago, I received my blood ketone meter. I tested my fasted ketones, and found they were somewhat low. After eating what I thought was a low carb (ketogenesis-friendly) meal, I tested them again, and ketones had dropped, and glucose went to 105. Yikes. So I became more strict on carbs, and increased my exercise, and this is what happened…

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Ketogenic Diet Review: Part 1 – Introduction

I have been intrigued by the idea of the ketogenic diet, but I haven’t yet thoroughly investigated the biochemical details of adopting it. I have an interest in adopting it for myself, but before I do so, I want to thoroughly research its potential positive and negative effects, largely because it is such a strange diet from an evolutionary perspective. … Read article…

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Glycogen and leptin: a neglected interaction in fat loss? Part 2 of 2

(You can find the first post in this two-part series here). Glycogen Glycogen is the storage form of carbohydrate in humans. From what evidence I could gather (which is not as much as I’d like), it appears that humans can store up to 600 g (454 g/lb = 1.32 lbs) of glycogen (see PMID 3165600). I suppose that this will vary depending … Read article…

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Glycogen and leptin: a neglected interaction in fat loss? Part 1 of 2

Back in May of 2007, I began a serious – and successful – weight loss effort. I was ~220 lbs (5’8″), and was, well, fat. I read all about glucose, insulin, glycemic index, and other topics, and after implementing what I learned, I lost ~60 lbs in 6 months. I’m now at – 6 years later – about the same … Read article…

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Human fatty acid metabolism: engineering a deficit for ketosis – Part 1

One of my longevity research acquaintances has spent considerable time investigating the scientific literature on very low carbohydrate (i.e. “ketogenic”) diets. I have not researched this topic as carefully as my acquaintance, and what I’m told makes me curious. Before I started scanning the science literature on this topic in past last week, some parts of what I’m told by this … Read article…