Lower risk of disability with greater fruit vegetable and dairy intake

February 7, 2005 Printer Friendly
In this issue

Life Extension Update Exclusive:

Lower risk of disability with greater fruit, vegetable and dairy intake



Featured Products:

Bone Restore

Super Booster

Life Extension Magazine

February 2005 issue now online!

Life Extension Update Exclusive

Lower risk of disability with greater fruit, vegetable and dairy intake
A study published in the February 2005 issue of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition ( found yet another reason for consuming a plant based diet: less disability later in life. It is estimated that 50 percent of those over the age of 65 will require nursing home care due to disability at some point during the remainder of their lives. The number of disabled people is predicted to triple between 1985 and 2050.

Denise K Houston PhD and colleagues at Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center evaluated data from 9,404 participants in the Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities study. The subjects were between the ages of 45 and 64 upon enrollment and were followed for an average of 9 years. Food frequency questionnaires provided the researchers with information on the amount and type of food consumed. At the end of the study, participants were surveyed on their ability to perform 12 activities of daily living as an assessment of disability, and lower extremity function was evaluated.

Participants who consumed the most fruits, vegetables and dairy products (3 servings each of fruits and vegetables and 2 of dairy) were found to have a lower risk for functional limitations that precede disability than those whose intake was the lowest (one or fewer servings of fruits and vegetables per day and less than ½ serving of dairy). The finding was particularly striking in African American women whose intake of these foods was high, who experienced a 30 percent lower risk of disability than those whose intake of fruits, vegetables and dairy was among the lowest.

Dr Houston commented, "We know that obesity, lack of physical exercise, alcohol consumption and smoking are modifiable risk factors for disability, but little is known about the role of diet. Getting the recommended number of servings of dairy, fruits and vegetables should be investigated for its potential to reduce the prevalence of disability in the aging population."

The study is the first to report an association between the intake of certain foods and the (lowered) risk of disability. The authors explained that the calcium and vitamin D in dairy foods could decrease disability risk associated with lowered muscle strength and osteoporosis, and the antioxidants in fruits and vegetables could slow age-related disability and the risk of chronic disease by reducing the accumulation of oxidative damage in tissues.


It used to be thought that little could be done to postpone what nature has in store for us. Today, a growing scientific consensus indicates that individuals possess a great deal of control over how long they are going to live and what their state of health will be.

Mainstream medicine has relied on simple measures of preventing disease, such as controlling hypertension, yet many doctors are coming to the realization that additional steps can be taken to protect against premature aging and death.

In fact, the results of tens of thousands of scientific studies make it abundantly clear that following the proper lifestyle can add a significant number of healthy years to the average person's lifespan.

The premise of taking actions to maintain youthful health and vigor is based on findings from peer-reviewed scientific studies that identify specific factors that cause us to develop degenerative disease. These studies suggest that the consumption of certain foods, food extracts, hormones, or drugs will help to prevent common diseases that are associated with normal aging.

In the April 9, 1998, issue of the New England Journal of Medicine, an editorial was entitled "Eat Right and Take a Multi-Vitamin." This article was based on studies indicating that certain supplements could reduce homocysteine serum levels and therefore lower heart attack and stroke risk. This was the first time this prestigious medical journal recommended vitamin supplements (Oakley 1998).
An even stronger endorsement for the use of vitamin supplements was in the June 19, 2002, issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA). According to the Harvard University doctors who wrote the JAMA guidelines, it now appears that people who get enough vitamins may be able to prevent such common illnesses as cancer, heart disease, and osteoporosis. The Harvard researchers concluded that suboptimal levels of folic acid and vitamins B6 and B12 are a risk factor for heart disease and colon and breast cancers; low levels of vitamin D contribute to osteoporosis; and inadequate levels of the antioxidant vitamins A, E, and C may increase the risk of cancer and heart disease (Fairfield et al. 2002).

Featured Products

Bone Restore

A problem overlooked by most doctors is that loss of bone density is associated with deficiencies of not just calcium, but a host of other nutrients including magnesium and vitamin D3. In order for calcium to prevent bone loss, adequate amounts of vitamin D3, zinc, manganese and other nutrients should be available so that calcium, magnesium, and phosphorus can be incorporated into the bone matrix. Another issue that many people are not aware of is that many forms of calcium do not absorb particularly well.

In order to overcome the impediments that preclude aging women from achieving optimal calcium status, a mineral formula has been designed that provides 1200 elemental milligrams of a new highly absorbable form of calcium per daily dose, along with critically important nutrients needed to protect bone density. Bone Restore™ provides calcium along with nutrients like boron and silicon to further boost the body’s ability to maintain healthy bone density.

Super Booster softgels

Just one softgel capsule of Life Extension Super Booster provides important nutrients such as gamma-tocopherol that are lacking in multinutrient formulas. The new Super Booster also provides sesame lignans to enhance the dissemination of gamma-tocopherol to cells throughout the body.

In human and animal studies, administration of sesame lignans increases tissue and serum levels of gamma and alpha-tocopherol. This is critical because gamma-tocopherol, but not alpha-tocopherol, quenches reactive nitrogen species, such as the dangerous peroxynitrite radical. Studies have shown that adding sesame to a rat diet reduced a measurement of free-radical damage by 82.8%. A human study conducted by Life Extension showed that the combination of gamma-tocopherol and sesame was 25 percent more effective in suppressing blood markers of free-radical damage and inflammation compared to gamma-tocopherol and tocotrienols.

To reduce the cost and inconvenience of taking many different pills, Life Extension Super Booster provides optimal doses of ginkgo extract, vitamin K, chlorophyllin, lycopene, gamma-tocopherol, sesame, and other nutrients in just one capsule.

Life Extension Magazine February 2005 issue now online!



On the cover: Do your antioxidants suppress enough free radicals? By Jim English


Arthritis after Vioxx® by Richard P. Huemer, MD
The media’s focus on prescription pain killers ignores natural remedies for preventing and treating arthritis


Promoting mitochondrial health: Nutrients that optimize cellular energy, by Dale Kiefer


R-dihydrolipoic acid: The optimal form of lipoic acid, by Jim English


Preventing arrhythmia: A nutritional guide to keeping your heart in rhythm, by William Davis, MD



As we see it: A revolutionary concept slowly gains recognition, by William Faloon


In the news: SAMe improves efficacy of antidepressant therapy, DHEA supplements may reduce abdominal fat, Broccoli compound halts breast cancer growth, Multivitamins slow progression of HIV, Vitamin D inhibits breast, prostate cancer cells, High glycemic diet raises colorectal cancer risk, Low chromium tied to heart disease, diabetes risk


Profile: Gordon Reynolds, MD: A former obstetrician makes preventive medicine his "second career" by Jon VanZile


February 2005 abstracts: Sesame, arrhythmia, lipoic acid

If you have questions or comments concerning this issue or past issues of Life Extension Update, send them to or call 954 766 8433 extension 7716.

For longer life,

Dayna Dye
Editor, Life Extension Update
1100 West Commercial Boulevard
Fort Lauderdale FL 33309
954 766 8433 extension 7716

Sign up for Life Extension Update at

Help spread the good news about living longer and healthier. Forward this email to a friend!

View previous issues of Life Extension Update in the Newsletter Archive.