APPENDIX C: When To Start a Life Extension Program
Anyone who doubts the importance of beginning a Life Extension program before the age of 20 should read carefully the following 2 abstracts from reports in the medical literature. These reports are representative of many similar studies.
NATURAL HISTORY OF AORTIC AND CORONARY ATHEROSCLEROTIC LESIONS IN YOUTH. FINDINGS FROM THE PDAY STUDY.
Pathobiological Determinants of Atherosclerosis in Youth (PDAY) Research Group.
Arterioscler Thromb (United States) Sep 1993, 13 (9) p1291-8.
Pathology laboratories in nine cooperating centers collected arteries from 1532 persons 15 through 34 years of age who died of external causes, principally homicides, accidents, and suicides. A central laboratory stained the arteries and evaluated the atherosclerotic lesions. All of the aortas and about half of the right coronary arteries in the youngest age group (15 through 19 years) had lesions. The mean percent intimal surface involved by lesions, in 5-year age groups, increased from 15 through 34 years. Raised lesions increased with age in extent and prevalence in the aorta and the right coronary artery. Black subjects had more extensive fatty streaks than white subjects in all three arterial segments. Young women had more extensive fatty streaks in the abdominal aorta; young men had more in the thoracic aorta. Male subjects had more extensive and a higher prevalence of raised lesions than did female subjects in the right coronary artery. White and black subjects did not differ significantly in the extent of raised lesions. Among the three arterial segments, the right coronary had the least percentage of intimal surface involved with all types of lesions but had the highest proportion of raised lesions among total lesions. These results confirm the origin of atherosclerosis in childhood and show that the prevalence and extent of fatty streaks and fibrous plaques increase rapidly during the 15- through 34-year age span.
PHOTODAMAGE, PHOTOAGING AND PHOTOPROTECTION OF THE SKIN.
Guercio-Hauer C; Macfarlane DF; Deleo VA State University of New York Health Science Center at Brooklyn.
American Family Physician (United States) Aug 1994, 50 (2) p327-32, 334.
Overexposure to ultraviolet and visible radiation causes sunburn. Aspirin and other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, cool baths and topical steroids offer only mild relief. Long-term sun exposure causes chronic inflammatory skin changes. Photodamage, rather than the normal aging process, may account for 90 percent of age-associated cosmetic skin problems. Physicians should stress to their patients that all ultraviolet exposure (including sun beds and tanning salons) causes skin damage. Regular sunscreen use during childhood and adolescence may result in an 80 percent reduction in the lifetime incidence of ultraviolet-induced skin damage, including nonmelanoma skin cancers.
The warning above about sun damage to skin must be weighed against the fact that moderate exposure to sunlight is beneficial for production of vitamin D. Low levels of vitamin D are very common in many countries.
The hormone-replacement techniques used for adult life extension are not appropriate for children unless done under medical supervision for specific conditions. Many other life extension techniques appropriate for adults are also untested in children.
Annual blood chemistry testing and modest antioxidant supplementation are quite appropriate, with particular attention being paid to nutritional methods of preventing cardiovascular disease. Children should be exposed to preventive medicine so they do not associate medical professionals with pain and illness, but learn lifelong habits of staying healthy.
To prevent skin aging and skin cancer, people of all ages should get into the habit of using a good sunscreen, even for brief sun exposure. There is evidence that using a small amount of .025% or .05% Retin-A cream two or three times a week beginning in one's early twenties may significantly reduce the later effects of skin aging.