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Michael's Quotidian Diet

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#1 Michael

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Posted 26 September 2011 - 06:18 PM


After a long delay ...

As background, see my guidelines for starting CR (and this clarification of those guidelines); my guidelines on protein intake on CR; this post on the "DHA-accelerated aging hypothesis" (and this followup) for my guidelines on intake of unsaturated fats; and reasons to think that saturated fat really is bad for you (followed by additional evidence on saturated fat).

In addition to moderating protein intake, I also moderate my intake of methionine + cysteine and of leucine (see this and this for more recent studies on health effects of high intake of leucine; we were discussing this study and this one). Note that the methionine post was heavy on emphasizing the limitations of the methionine restriction research at that time; today, I find it pretty convincing -- just irrelevant for human application, whereas methionine moderation is justified practice. (Please, please, please, people, stop muddying the water by referring to limiting one's intake of some nutrient to RDAish levels as "restriction" of that nutrient! Biogerontological studies of protein, Met + Cys, Leu, Trp, or Calorie restriction involve restricting consumption of these nutrients to levels far below the animals' "RDA" intake; I don't practice or endorse that, and neither does anyone I know of (including a few folks who do, unfortunately, refer to what they do as "restriction" of that nutrient)).

Beyond that, I also make sure to incorporate specific foods that have been documented in long-term, well-designed prospective epidemiological studies or clinical trials to reduce the risk or improve the outcomes in actual diseases or mortality: short-term results using unvalidated surrogate markers don't count at all, and even results with well-validated disease risk factors (glycemia, blood lipoproteins, etc) must be treated with some caution and do not meet this bar when taken in isolation. On the list: raw vegetables; leafy greens; cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, mustard greens, cabbage, etc); Allium vegetables (onions, garlic, etc); carrots; green vegetables; citrus (including the peel -- but eat organic and wash thoroughly); cooked tomatoes; nuts; green tea; coffee [added fall 2012]; moderate (3-10 oz/d) wine, taken with a meal.

Another food that is definitely on my "must-consume" list is real extra-virgin olive oil (outright fraud is rampant in the olive oil industry -- I have a zillion other links on this, and the author now has a whole book). The official chemical standards for extra-virgin olive oil per the International Olive Association (similar to the USDA and identical to the North American Olive Oil Association (NAOOA) (significance of each explained here and here), but this is a very low bar aesthetically and for your health based on what is achievable with modern miling methods. I insist on verifiably superior EVOO qualities: high (≥76%) oleic acid content (for oxidative stability, and see above on DHA-accelerated aging hypothesis: olives from different cultivars and regions can vary from 55-83% oleic acid); low peroxide value (<9, and preferably <6 meq/kg), and high (≥350 mg/kg) total phenolics, assayed using caffeic acid equivalents. Here, for instance, is a collection of studies on the benefits of high- (vs low-) phenolic olive oil. I recognize that I cannot point to the kind of really strong evidence for insisting on these qualities in EVOO that I can for olive oil full stop -- but I find the effects on surrogate markers in shorter-term clinical trials convincing, and I'm consuming EVOO anyway on the basis of strong evidence, and want to get the best.

An oil can be perfectly pure and of very high quality, but still have low oleic acid or phenolic content for reasons of cultivar, agronomy, or processing decisions, so you really have to work with a supplier who actually analyzes these things and is willing to be transparent with the results. (Recommended olive oil sourcing appended at the end of this post. I greatly respect the family behind this business because of the integrity of what they've worked to do, and have become quite friendly with a couple of them, but am in no way financially involved with the company).

High-cocoa, undutched chocolate (or defatted cocoa products, as in Binging Brownies (scroll down for the recipe; also note that this is a "sometimes food") would be on the list, were it not for worries about Parkinson's disease and heavy metals from chocolate (the dead-link news story on Goldman's study is here). Unfortunately, the study was greatly underpowered, and so was never submitted for formal publication; and while Dr. Goldman initially expressed interest in following up his preliminary result in a larger twin study, but has been unable to secure the funding to do so.

While it's not food, here is my 2012 supplement regimen. I've changed a few things even since then, but the strategy still applies.

What I Eat


Breakfast
Pomegranate juice + Diet Dr. Bob (generic "Dr. Pepper") Green tea w/prebreakfast pills, at least 1 h before breakfast (typically more like 100 mins, with another round of pills + green tea intervening).Nixed the pom juice out of concern about starting my day off with a big blast of sucrose — fall 2012..

Kefir cappuccino ‘shake’ made with nonfat kefir (listed as milk in record) and instant coffee grounds mixed directly into the shake; used as a dip for MegaMuffin.
Salad, composed of all other ingredients except orange; lettuces are a bagged mix; napa is actually raw.
Orange on side
60% (~142 Cals) of a MegaMuffin
MegaMuffin 3.0 Recipe (attached) is for whole batch; makes eg. 28 x 240 Cal Muffins. "Nuts, almonds" include 90 g raw almonds + 160 g whole almond flour. "SPLENDA" is just there as a placeholder reminder: there is no Splenda, but there is 1.5 T pure sucralose. MegaMuffin baking instructions for an earlier, higher-protein recipe here; you can also order MegaMuffins and Binging Brownies from Andrea Feucht, Mistress of the CR Oven. Photo of breakfast:


Posted Image


Lunch
One of several 500 Calorie stews, composed of legumes, cruciferous vegetables, hazelnuts, EVOO, and spices; examples attached, with spices below. Recipes make 6 servings.
Remainder (~99 Cal) of MegaMuffin

Ultra Low-Protein Chili
3 T cilantro flakes
65 g fresh cilantro
1 T Cumin
2 T chili powder
2 tsp black pepper
6 cloves fresh or jarred ground or minced garlic (in COM)
2 T Brewer's Yeast (included in COM)
Salt (12 shakes ~900 mg from my shaker; this varies wildly from one to another)
1 T Bernard Jensen Seasoning

Lentil Curry
6 cloves fresh or jarred ground or minced garlic (in COM)
2.5 T Brewer's Yeast (included in COM)
1.5 T onion flakes
1 T cinnamon powder
4 T curry powder
1 T turmeric powder
Salt (12 shakes ~900 mg from my shaker; this varies wildly from one to another)
1 T Bernard Jensen Seasoning

Dinner
This varies quite a bit: I am blessed that April cooks me dinner >87% of the time, and in addition to being a culinary Goddess and willing to put up with my insanely anal dietary parameters, she's also an inventive and instinctive cook, so I very rarely eat the same thing twice (exept when I cook for myself). My dinners are currently 600 Calories, 10-15% protein, ≤36% carb, ≤40% fat, and ~10% alcohol (3 oz red wine),always includes a teaspoon of flax oil, and usually includes ~2 tsp of EVOO, plus some hazelnuts, dried cured Peruvian olives -- and a lot of vegetables! For some example recipes, you can browse April's CR blog and/or try this search (which will get you a mix of dinners for me, food for her, and occasional scientific-ish Q&As; unfortunately, her blog software lacks a tagging feature for eg. 'recipes'). A few photos:

Posted Image

Curried Pumpkin Portabello Pizzas with Side of Veggies


Posted Image

Cool Dinner for a Hot Summer's Night

Red Cabbage, Romaine, Mustard Green Stems, Etc, Spiced with Quorn for protein


Posted Image

Pasta-Less Vegetarian Lasagna

Quorn grounds; cauliflower and zucchini instead of pasta; low- and nonfat dairy; lots of EVOO and Olives. 13" x 13" pan.


Between meals, I also over the course of the day drink 2 1.25 L of green tea and 4 C of coffee (1 C caffeinated, 1 C half-caf, 2 C decaf) [beverages switched in fall 2012], sweetened with sucralose or aspartame.*

Representative 2-week crunch on CRON-O-Meter:

General
===========================================
Energy | 1731.4 kcal 271%
Protein | 79.3 95 g [Protein bumped up in early 2012 after lab tests showed IGF-1 too low]
Carbs | 188.2 g 63%
Fiber | 67.3 g 224%
Starch | 2.2 g
Sugars | 59.1 g
Fat | 84.0 78 g (Compensating for increased protein)
Alcohol | 9.3 g
Caffeine | 400 mg (includes coffee)
Water | 1879.8 g 125%
Ash | 21.1 g

Vitamins (86%)
===========================================
Vitamin A | 31538.5 IU 1051%
Retinol | 105.2 µg
Alpha-carotene | 1444.6 µg
Beta-carotene | 17592.6 µg
Beta-cryptoxanthin | 23.5 µg
Lycopene | 12416.8 µg
Lutein+Zeaxanthin | 25686.3 µg
Folate | 1164.0 µg 233%
B1 (Thiamine) | 2.7 mg 227%
B2 (Riboflavin) | 2.5 mg 195%
B3 (Niacin) | 26.5 mg 166%
B5 (Pantothenic Acid)| 12.0 mg 240%
B6 (Pyridoxine) | 3.8 mg 224%
B12 (Cyanocobalamin) | 1.3 µg 55%
Vitamin C | 558.1 mg 620%
Vitamin D | 65.4 IU 16%
Vitamin E | 27.2 mg 181%
Beta Tocopherol | 0.2 mg
Delta Tocopherol | 0.0 mg
Gamma Tocopherol | 5.8 mg
Vitamin K | 1256.1 µg 1047%
Biotin | 0.0 µg 0%
Choline | 248.4 mg 45%

Minerals (100%)
===========================================
Calcium | 1214.6 mg 121%
Chromium | 0.0 µg 0%
Copper | 3.4 mg 377%
Fluoride | 92.6 µg
Iron | 21.8 mg 273%
Magnesium | 659.5 mg 157%
Manganese | 11.0 mg 480%
Phosphorus | 1700.8 mg 243%
Potassium | 6508.3 mg 138%
Selenium | 66.9 µg 122%
Sodium | 1235.1 mg 95%
Zinc | 14.5 mg 132%

Amino Acids (93%)
===========================================
ALA | 3.2 g
ARG | 4.9 g
ASP | 6.8 g
CYS | 1.0 g 70%
GLU | 11.5 g
GLY | 2.6 g
HIS | 1.6 g 151%
HYP | 0.0 g
ILE | 2.8 g 194%
LEU | 4.5 g 140%
LYS | 3.7 g 125%
MET | 1.1 g 74%
PHE | 3.0 g 117%
PRO | 3.1 g
SER | 3.1 g
THR | 2.5 g 165%
TRP | 0.8 g 220%
TYR | 2.1 g 85%
VAL | 3.4 g 1116%

Lipids (55%)
===========================================
Saturated | 9.9 g
Monounsaturated | 50.8 g
Polyunsaturated | 17.3 g
Omega-3 | 4.8 g 121%
Omega-6 | 12.5 g
Trans-Fats | 0.0 g
Cholesterol | 27.0 mg 9%
Phytosterol | 199.5 mg



Ultra-Premium EVOO Sourcing

I strongly endorse the fine folks who run Veronica Foods/Delizia Olive Oil, whose oils you can get through any of the client stores listed with the "VF" tag in EVOO author Tom Mueller's database of producers and sources of premium extra-virgin olive oil. These people are absolutely passionate olive oil fanatics -- and I know, because I've been geeking out with them on and off on the subject since June, 2010. Part of what they do to make sure they have some of the best damned EVOO on the planet is the obvious: they have intimate familiarity with their sources' operation, and own several of the farms and presses where the oils are made; AND they have the oils tested at reputable labs, including not only the basic IOC stuff, but novel quality tests introduced in Germany and Australia (diacylglycerol (DAG) ratio and pyropheophytin A), as well as concentration of phenolics and oleic acid content. (Indeed, it was the hereditary owner of the company, the eponymous Veronica Bradley, who first alerted me to the huge variation in oleic content in olive oils).

(One thing you do have to bear in mind when looking at their phenolic numbers: their poly counts are done at a lab that reports their results in tyrosol-equivalents, which tends to exaggerate the level of phenolics in a given oil compared to the more commonly-used caffeic or gallic-acid equivalents. This isn't intended to be deceptive -- it's like when you say you're whizzing down Main street at 55, but you mean in km/h when the benighted locals are used to mph, which makes a big difference! -- but you do have to bear it in mind. And unfortunately, while there is a definite conversion to go from metric to Imperial, poly measurement units' exaggeration of TOTAL polys varies, because of the differing SPECIFIC MIX of polys present in different oils, and variable experimental conditions for doing spectrophotometry from one lab to the next. As a rule of thumb, you can assume that the 'apples-to-apples' poly level of oils reported in tyrosol-equivalents, compared to most scientific studies or CoAs you'll see, is ~20% lower. I am pleased to say that as of summer 2013, VF are reporting their phenolic counts in caffeic acid-equivalents).

In addition to all of the above, a feature of their business model that is AFAIK unique is that they have global sourcing, and order in oil from both hemispheres all year round, so that they can always offer oil that is no more than 6-8 mo old: they bring fresh oils in from the S hemisphere in the (northern hemisphere) summer, and from the N hemisphere in the (northern hemisphere) winter, with a few oddball locations' oils turning up in between. Freshness is important in olive oil: studies show that EVOO with typical chemistry will no longer meet EVOO standards by the end of the year, due to oxidative and other degradation, and the phenolics, squalene, vitamin E, carotenoids, etc).

Artificial Sweeteners Note
* No, I am not worried about aspartame or sucralose. Indeed, the recent, much-hyped reportof increased cancer in aspartame-dosed rodents actually made me less nervous about aspartame: it (a) really didn't clearly show any increased cancer risk (they hyped up non-statistically-significant elevations in incidence of some cancers late in life, but also NS decreases in others), and indeed (b) reported identical survival curves between aspartame-treated and untreated animals (if anything, it looked like females given the highest dose lived LONGER on average than untreated animals); plus, there was massive mortality from inflammatory lung disease and other causes, showing that these people just can't raise healthy mice. Additionally, because aspartame has been on the market for a quarter century and is widely and selectively used, there's now been enough time for both additional direct human and animal research and decades of prospective epidemiology (eg. (1,2)) showing no ill effects over a wide range of intakes in humans. If you were alarmed by a recent scary-sounding paper in an otherwise-respectable journal,(4) please see this post showing that Humphries et al, "Abstract Direct and indirect cellular effects of aspartame on the brain," is junk science. However, I am beginning to become concerned about the emerging evidence suggesting long-term dysregulation of glucoregulatory hormones and signaling related to artificial sweetener use, and have cut back quite substantially on consumption of soda and sweetening tea and coffee. This change dates to fall 2012, and I became yet more aggressive in spring of 2013 in response to this study, which gives the most plausible biological mechanism for what had previously seemed very plausibly to be an artifact of correlation.

To read a thoughtful, non-paranoid, non-"it's-just-not-natural!" counterargument by a reputable and careful scientist, I refer you to Devra Davis' excellent (and disturbing) Secret History of the War on Cancer.

1. Soffritti M, Belpoggi F, Degli Esposti D, Lambertini L, Tibaldi E, Rigano A. First experimental demonstration of the multipotential carcinogenic effects of aspartame administered in the feed to Sprague-Dawley rats]. Environ Health Perspect. 2006 Mar;114(3):379-85. PMID: 16507461 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

2. Gallus S, Scotti L, Negri E, Talamini R, Franceschi S, Montella M, Giacosa A, Dal Maso L, La Vecchia C. Artificial sweeteners and cancer risk in a network of case-control studies. Ann Oncol. 2007 Jan;18(1):40-4. Epub 2006 Oct 16. PMID: 17043096 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

3. Lim U, Subar AF, Mouw T, Hartge P, Morton LM, Stolzenberg-Solomon R, Campbell D, Hollenbeck AR, Schatzkin A. Consumption of aspartame-containing beverages and incidence of hematopoietic and brain malignancies. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2006 Sep;15(9):1654-9. PMID: 16985027 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

4. Humphries P, Pretorius E, Naudé H. Abstract Direct and indirect cellular effects of aspartame on the brain. Eur J Clin Nutr. 2008 Apr;62(4):451-62. Epub 2007 Aug 8. PMID: 17684524 [PubMed - in process]

Attached Files


Edited by Michael, 14 January 2014 - 01:45 AM.

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#2 Donnie

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Posted 27 September 2011 - 01:07 PM

Interesting.

I didn't catch any mushrooms on your list. Are they part of the dinner?

IF you weren't doing CR and had another 5-600 calories to dabble with, how would you utilize them? I'm thinking both specific food choices and macronutrient ratio.

Also, how do you smell after eating the lentil curry salad? :)

#3 ajnast4r

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Posted 27 September 2011 - 04:01 PM

michael, i'm interested to hear what you have to say on copper-zinc ratios. i may be incorrect but i believe i remember you posting about a zinc deficiency induced by high copper intake... i have a very similar vegetarian diet and i am unable to get out of the 3:1 copper:zinc ratio you seem to be in without using supplements.

#4 rwac

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Posted 27 September 2011 - 04:31 PM

Have you abandoned the gelatin?

#5 Michael

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Posted 27 September 2011 - 06:09 PM

I didn't catch any mushrooms on your list. Are they part of the dinner?

As noted, my dinner varies wildly, so sometimes they are and sometimes they're not ;) . I'd estimate I have mushrooms in my food AROUND 40% of the time -- and when I do, it's often a lot (like 4 portabello mushroom caps, used as teh base of pizzas or similar layered, sliceable foods).

IF you weren't doing CR and had another 5-600 calories to dabble with, how would you utilize them? I'm thinking both specific food choices and macronutrient ratio.

Macros: or lower % carb, with more protein and fat. Specific foods: Quorn, nonfat dairy, more EVOO.

michael, i'm interested to hear what you have to say on copper-zinc ratios. i may be incorrect but i believe i remember you posting about a zinc deficiency induced by high copper intake... i have a very similar vegetarian diet and i am unable to get out of the 3:1 copper:zinc ratio you seem to be in without using supplements.

In the same post where I mentioned the secondary deficiency, and that I linked above, I mentioned that I take a 15 mg Zn tablet to avoid this problem. I've tried to push down my copper a bit (not much) and boost the Zn (moderately successful, altho' I'm not confident that the COM value for Zn in napa cabbage is accurate (cf. Japanese food database ( search for hakusai. The discrepancy might conceivably relate to soil levels, but from a first glance doesn't look that way)), but it's quite clear here that a pill is the only way out without sweeping dietary changes that would not be a net benefit.

Have you abandoned the gelatin?

It's sometimes in dinner: as noted, these vary quite a bit.

Edited by Michael, 21 October 2011 - 05:22 PM.


#6 Matt

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Posted 27 September 2011 - 08:35 PM

Thank you for sharing that Michael. :) I'll have to post mine sometime soon. I also had an issue with some mild zinc deficiency symptoms a few years ago which I easily corrected.

#7 hippocampus

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Posted 27 September 2011 - 09:11 PM

from wikipedia:

The prevalence (proportion in a population at a given time) of PD is about 0.3% of the whole population in industrialized countries. PD is more common in the elderly and prevalence rises from 1% in those over 60 years of age to 4% of the population over 80.

and you're actually concerned about parkinson's with that healthy lifestyle? I mean - how much can cocoa hurt you? or are you worried about anything else with cocoa? i haven't found any study with negative health outcomes about cocoa ...

#8 Michael

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Posted 27 September 2011 - 10:07 PM

from wikipedia:

The prevalence (proportion in a population at a given time) of PD is about 0.3% of the whole population in industrialized countries. PD is more common in the elderly and prevalence rises from 1% in those over 60 years of age to 4% of the population over 80.

and you're actually concerned about parkinson's with that healthy lifestyle?

First, whole-population prevalence isnt' terribly useful for strongly age-related diseases. Age-specific prevalence is more useful, but age-specific incidenceand risk are more useful (see here and here).

Second, my lifestyle is healthy, but aside from CR itself, there's not much to protect me against PD specifically (notably, I don't consume much caffeine, and don't want to force myself to consume the ≥5 C/d that seems to be protective; and while the evidence is ambiguous, there's also some hint that high caffeine intake be protective against heart disease in the elderly but deleterious in the young.

And third: the flipside of the above is that my healthy lifestyle and astonishing risk factor profile puts me at laughably low risk of heart disease, which is almost all of what cocoa seems to protect against (and total mortality in the process). So taking up chocolate seems to be unlikely to affect my marginal risk of CVD (against which we have good, disease-modifying drugs), and possibly to significantly increase my marginal risk of PD (a very terrible disease with no current disease-modifying therapies, and which is clearly going to be a bitch to fix once established even when the first early-stage, crude biomedical rejuvenation therapies are available).

or are you worried about anything else with cocoa?

Heavy metals, as noted. I think these are significantly more worrisome for a person who is working to hang onto a body for a century (and hoping for centuries) than a person whose body fails for a myriad of reasons in hir 70s or 80s.

My call: 1 Binging Brownie a week, made with Fair Trade cocoa, and a little Walden Farms chocolate sauce here & there.

(If you're consuming significant quantities of cocoa-based products, please please please buy Fair Trade cocoa and chocolate).

Edited by Michael, 27 September 2011 - 10:08 PM.


#9 1kgcoffee

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Posted 28 September 2011 - 12:22 AM

Michael,
Instead of olive oil, why not take straight up olive leaf extract? It's a much cheaper way to get the polyphenols. Does the oil itself have any special benefits? Dose it help transport the polyphenols?

#10 Sillewater

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Posted 28 September 2011 - 02:38 AM

Regarding the brownies. Does the almond flour and heat not worry you in regards to fat oxidation?

#11 hippocampus

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Posted 28 September 2011 - 09:56 AM


Second, my lifestyle is healthy, but aside from CR itself, there's not much to protect me against PD specifically (notably, I don't consume much caffeine, and don't want to force myself to consume the ≥5 C/d that seems to be protective; and while the evidence is ambiguous, there's also some hint that high caffeine intake be protective against heart disease in the elderly but deleterious in the young.


well, you could still use snus, but I don't recommend it to you, because it's addictive and raises blood pressure.

#12 Matt

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Posted 28 September 2011 - 10:11 AM

Michael,
Instead of olive oil, why not take straight up olive leaf extract? It's a much cheaper way to get the polyphenols. Does the oil itself have any special benefits? Dose it help transport the polyphenols?


He'd still obviously need to make up the calories. I guess he would prefer olive oil than a higher percentage of carbs or protein foods.

#13 hippocampus

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Posted 28 September 2011 - 12:45 PM

MR, what do you think about milk thistle?

#14 Michael

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Posted 30 September 2011 - 01:52 PM

Instead of olive oil, why not take straight up olive leaf extract? It's a much cheaper way to get the polyphenols. Does the oil itself have any special benefits? Dose it help transport the polyphenols?


As I noted, olive oil is one of the very few foods that have been found in "long-term, well-designed prospective epidemiological studies or clinical trials to reduce the risk or improve the outcomes in actual diseases or mortality". I don't think there's a study that's lasted more than a month in olive leaf.

Now, on a much lower list of other reasons to choose olive oil over olive leaf extract: olive leaf -- or even olive fruit -- does not have the same mix of specific polys as olive oil. Also, hydroxytyrosol (a prominent olive oil poly) is not as well-absorbed when added back into food oils as it is when still present in their original food matrix (PMID 12888646), so even an hydroxytyrosol supplement would not be mg-per-mg equivalent to hydroxytyrosol in olive oil. But the key point is that there is actual evidence of health benefits from consuming large amounts of olive oil, and none (or nothing worth paying attention to) for olive leaf extract.

Regarding the brownies. Does the almond flour and heat not worry you in regards to fat oxidation?

Yes -- and more so, the HOSO. I do take several steps to minimize this. First, the core of a batch of Muffins (baked in a tray for the whole batch, not in individual-serving muffin trays) does provide significant protection from oxygen as compared to open-air cooking; also, you'll note there is NAC and a lot of food antioxidants in the Muffins; the temperature inside is restricted somewhat by the evaporation of water from the batter as it cooks; and Andrea does at my request bake under somewhat low heat -- but yes: ideally, I'd rather not cook with fats. I'm not, however, willing to mess with the 'human chow' logic of a (nearly) perfectly-balanced, portable CR food by removing the fat.

MR, what do you think about milk thistle?

I think there is some mediocre-quality evidence that it might be helpful for some kinds of liver disease, which merits following up in further trials -- and that in the meantime, it's unfortunate that thousands of healthy people have been hornswoggled by unscrupulous or ignorant supplement hawkers into paying money for the 'privilege' of conducting an uncontrolled experiment on its effects on their long-term health.
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#15 albedo

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Posted 30 September 2011 - 08:40 PM

My apologizes if this has been answered already but .. is there anything like a recommended intake of EVOO? I have the change of producing it in my family and have been taking all my life but wonder if I have been overusing or underusing. Thank you for your comments.

#16 sthira

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Posted 01 October 2011 - 03:30 AM

hornswoggled = awesome word of the day

Thank you for your writing; you do this community a great service in generously sharing your wealth.

You appear unimpressed by berries (blackberries, raspberries, strawberries, blueberries). Is this due to sugar concerns?

You drink an enormous amount of green tea, and yet you're an even scrawnier dude than I am. Too much green, white tea makes me anxious. Is anxiety ever a problem for you?




#17 Michael

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Posted 02 October 2011 - 10:03 PM

My apologizes if this has been answered already but .. is there anything like a recommended intake of EVOO?

The epidemiology strongly suggests 2-3 T/d. I get an average of 5-6 tsp (ie, 2 T or just a bit shy of it); I also get a lot of additional MUFA from nuts (also on 'the list'), Peruvian olives, and occasional avocado, tho' of course EVOO is not just a MUFA source.

I have the change of producing it in my family and have been taking all my life but wonder if I have been overusing or underusing.

Really? Very cool! Wait ... you're in Switzerland! It's fine if you decide it's none of my bee's wax, but how do you come to have a family EVOO business?

You appear unimpressed by berries (blackberries, raspberries, strawberries, blueberries). Is this due to sugar concerns?

That's just a dose issue: I certainly don't think the sugar content of eg. 1/2 C of berries/d in a CR diet (and thus not loaded with added sugars) is metabolically harmful. No, unimpressed is exactly the right word: they have a relatively low nutrient density compared to most fruits and veggies, and don't make 'the list' because they have not been linked in prospective epidemiological studies to long-term positive health outcomes.

To be clear, I do find at least some of the sadly-deceased Jim Joseph's rodent work promising, as well as the CR Society's Robert Krikorian's pilot studies in humans. But the level of evidence isn't as strong as for garlic, cooked tomatoes, or other carb-dominant foods on 'the list.' I am absolutely not saying that this is a reason for excluding blueberries from the diet, that they're bad CR food, etc etc: I have berries as dessert (often on a base of fat-free ricotta and a drizzling of Walden Farms chocolate sauce) myself a few times a week when they're cheap and in season. I'm just saying there's no strong reason to make sure they're prominent in the diet.

One exception: I generally avoid strawberries. USDA and independent surveys consistently find high pesticide residues on strawberries, they're still using toxic fumigants on strawberries, and it appears that even organic strawberries are often bedded with toxic fumigants early in their development. They're difficult to wash, so if you choose to buy them anyway, do at least go organic: the level of both pesticides to which you and the environment will be exposed are much lower, at least. (In my view, it's the responsible thing to do to eat organic as much as you can find the option and afford for sustainability reasons, but in cases like these there are personal as well as environmental concerns).

You drink an enormous amount of green tea, and yet you're an even scrawnier dude than I am. Too much green, white tea makes me anxious. Is anxiety ever a problem for you?

Nope -- never. I used to be very caffeine-sensitive, and would get a definite mild wire on after a few cups, but never anxiety. (I am much less sensitive now, and for a while was consuming 1 L black + 1 L green/d plus occasional caffeinated diet soda with no ill effects).

Edited by Michael, 02 October 2011 - 10:04 PM.

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#18 hippocampus

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Posted 04 October 2011 - 09:45 AM

I think there is some mediocre-quality evidence that it might be helpful for some kinds of liver disease, which merits following up in further trials -- and that in the meantime, it's unfortunate that thousands of healthy people have been hornswoggled by unscrupulous or ignorant supplement hawkers into paying money for the 'privilege' of conducting an uncontrolled experiment on its effects on their long-term health.


I could say the same for CR (except money issue).
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#19 Michael

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Posted 04 October 2011 - 02:58 PM

I think there is some mediocre-quality evidence that [milk thistle] might be helpful for some kinds of liver disease, which merits following up in further trials -- and that in the meantime, it's unfortunate that thousands of healthy people have been hornswoggled by unscrupulous or ignorant supplement hawkers into paying money for the 'privilege' of conducting an uncontrolled experiment on its effects on their long-term health.

I could say the same for CR (except money issue).

You could, yes -- but you'd be engaged in an unreasonable slippery slope fallacy at best. The effects of CR in normal, healthy, nonobese, well-cared-for, non-toxin-fed, non-mutant organisms have been documented in dozens of well-conducted lifespan studies in numerous rodent species, as well as in dogs and nonhuman primates, and in medium-length clinical trials and decade-long retrospective studies in humans, plus two natural population experiments (Okinawa and an recently-identified centenarian hotspot in Sicily), in addition to the many studies documenting its benefits under more adverse conditions (after administration of carcinogens, in cancer-prone mice, in genetic models of human neurodegenerative disease, etc etc); I'm not aware of any studies of any significant duration involving chronic administration of milk thistle to healthy mammals.

Edited by Michael, 04 October 2011 - 03:02 PM.

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#20 woly

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Posted 06 October 2011 - 02:56 AM

citrus (including the peel -- but eat organic and wash thoroughly)


Do you have any suggestions on how to eat the peel? Do you just it as is or do you prepare it somehow?

#21 APBT

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Posted 06 October 2011 - 11:09 PM

Michael

As always, a thoughtful, well-written, and aptly documented post. As others have noted, I too appreciate you taking your time to share your knowledge and experience.

Regarding your consumption of 2L of green tea, approximately how many tea bags does this equate to and how long do you steep?

Would you quantify, in TBS (tablespoons) of cocoa, what you deem "significant quantities of cocoa-based products" for daily consumption? Do you see any difference between cocoa powder and cocoa nibs in terms of heavy metal content or nutritional value/benefit?

FYI: According to this article, the folks at Veronica Foods have their own olive oil bar. I'd assume they sell their own labeled products, along with others.

#22 albedo

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Posted 07 October 2011 - 02:19 PM

I have the change of producing it in my family and have been taking all my life but wonder if I have been overusing or underusing.

Really? Very cool! Wait ... you're in Switzerland! It's fine if you decide it's none of my bee's wax, but how do you come to have a family EVOO business?

Thank you for your reply on the EVOO dose. It is a privilege having you taking time writing on this board! With regard to my "business" (not really one, unfortunately) it is a long story but produce is in ... Italy! In Switzerland, I tend to add some polyphenols from (dark) chocolate from time to time …. :)

#23 Sillewater

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Posted 09 October 2011 - 05:26 AM

Just a knowledge question:

Over at CRSociety this was discussed under this very topic.
M P wrote:
>
> Michael Rae wrote:
>> M P wrote:

>>> My first question is: why cysteine moderation?
>
>> Because, as noted, it has a Met-sparing effect, effectively increasing
>> the bioavailable Met at a given Met intake. It'd be nice if we knew with
>> confidence exactly which pathways of Met metabolism were harmful and
>> whether they flowed via cysteine;
>
> Following that line of reasoning, couldn't your taurine supplementation*
> also possibly be a problem then, given its relationship with cysteine
> (and methionine)?
>
> (*Described here: [www.longecity.org])

I was wondering why taurine would be a theoretical problem? Is it because the Matt thought that it would increase body levels of MET by backing up the system?

#24 Sillewater

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Posted 09 October 2011 - 05:57 AM

I was just going through some of the CRSociety posts and found these recipes. They are old (so they are probably different now based on macronutrients) but they are still good.

Michael's Monotonous Morning Meal

Michael's Mulligatawny Mess

Michael's Supper Stew

Bastardized "Black Bean Soup"

Michael's High-Hassle Dinner

Hope you don't mind MR.

Edited by Sillewater, 09 October 2011 - 05:57 AM.


#25 Michael

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Posted 10 October 2011 - 01:25 AM

citrus (including the peel -- but eat organic and wash thoroughly)

Do you have any suggestions on how to eat the peel? Do you just it as is or do you prepare it somehow?

Just cut the orange up as most people already do, and don't proceed to remove the peel.

Regarding your consumption of 2L of green tea, approximately how many tea bags does this equate to and how long do you steep?

I don't use tea bags except when it's extremely inconvenient to do otherwise (like in airplanes ;) ). I use whole tea leaves. Tea bag tea is the lowest-quality, which aside from tasting poor is also less likely to deliver much polyphenolic goodness: the leaves involved are the equivalent of "shake" in marijuana, the broken-up scraps out of the less-valuable grades of green tea, with low poly content to begin with and by virtue of exposed surface area and manufacturing will have its polys polymerized away from the true green tea profile more rapidly than tea leaves.Tea bags also inhibit the release of some of the flavor-containing phytochemicals, and I suspect, but don't know, polys may be among them.

Depending on the kind of green tea, I brew between 1.5-2.5 T green tea per quart.

Would you quantify, in TBS (tablespoons) of cocoa, what you deem "significant quantities of cocoa-based products" for daily consumption? Do you see any difference between cocoa powder and cocoa nibs in terms of heavy metal content or nutritional value/benefit?

Well, I only used the phrase "significant quantities of cocoa-based products" in the context of the ethics of chocolate, urging people to use Fair Trade cocoa and chocolate. So while I'd urge you to do it, how much consumption requires making the decision is really a personal matter of conscience: how much slavery and brutal child labor are you comfortable with.

If however you're asking about health risks, the answer is certainly not even one tablespoon of cocoa. Goldman's unpublished twin study found that

those who ate a lot of chocolate — two to three candy bars per week — had more than a three-fold increased risk of having Parkinson’s than those who ate less. He also found a smaller link with wine and with a measure of total [isoquinoline] consumption ... [from foods such as] chocolate, cheese, milk and wine.

(Indeed, there are several studies linking dairy consumption to PD, and isoquinolines are amongst the possible toxicants responsible for the association. There apparently are a lot less isoquinolines in dairy than in cocoa by weight, but OTOH the serving size is bigger). Now, the FDA defines sweet chocolate as needing to contain a minimum of just "15 percent by weight of chocolate liquor" (by which they mean defatted cocoa bean -- ie, cocoa power), and "Milk chocolate contains not less than 10 percent by weight of chocolate liquor" -- and most chocolate-containing candy bars are not straight chocolate, and certainly not straight quality chocolate. So if you think about three candy bars a week, with maybe a Hershey Milk Chocolate bar, a Snicker's, and a Mars Bar, and try to think how little cocoa that really is ...

As I noted, I consume 1 Binging Brownie a week, which contains 500 g cocoa/28 Brownies, or ~17.9 g/3.31 T apiece; averaged out over a week, that's about half a tablespoon a day. Based on the above scrap-of-the-back-of-the-envelope calculation, that's already too much -- and the large, one-shot isoquinoline assault (if assault it be) might reasonably be thought to be riskier than a lower and better-spread-out dose.

FYI: According to this article, the folks at Veronica Foods have their own olive oil bar. I'd assume they sell their own labeled products, along with others.

They're actually pretty good about supporting their local stores -- and their tasting bar doesn't as yet have web sales, so it's mostly a local retail operation.

Over at CRSociety this was discussed under this very topic.

M P wrote:

> Michael Rae wrote:
>> M P wrote:
>>> My first question is: why cysteine moderation?
>
>> Because, as noted, it has a Met-sparing effect, effectively increasing
>> the bioavailable Met at a given Met intake. It'd be nice if we knew with
>> confidence exactly which pathways of Met metabolism were harmful and
>> whether they flowed via cysteine;
>
> Following that line of reasoning, couldn't your taurine supplementation*
> also possibly be a problem then, given its relationship with cysteine
> (and methionine)?
>
> (*Described here: [www.longecity.org])

I was wondering why taurine would be a theoretical problem? Is it because the Matt thought that it would increase body levels of MET by backing up the system?

From context, he presumably either wondered if it might back up the system, or allow for the shunting of Met not used to synthesize taurine (via cysteine) to make the unknown damaging effector metabolites, or that taurine itself might be the damaging effector metabolites. (FWIW, since you've doubtless raised some folks' anxieties by cross-posting the above ;) , my answer was:

I’m not worried about this for a couple of reasons. The first is that there is some mediocre-quality animal and human evidence that taurine intake is quite good for one, including notably for cardiovascular outcomes (2-4) -- just the /opposite/ of high Met intake. This is why I'm taking supplements as a vegetarian.

Second, taurine is so far downstream from Met metabolically as to seem a priori unlikely to either play a direct Met-sparing role, or to be *a* (let alone *the* ) key effector of Met’s deleterious effects. Taurine is produced as a catabolic byproduct of Cys; Cys itself is mostly used as a precursor for the synthesis of numerous protteins and GSH, and to a lesser extent to make coenzyme A and inorganic sulfur. GSH itself serves as a Cys reservoir for later use on demand, and as a transport-molecule to deliver Cys to extrahepatic tissues, so there's more Cys that's bioavailable to the body than might appear if GSH were an irreversible endproduct. Taurine is produced as a catabolic byproduct of Cys, is not itself used for proteins biosynthesis, and only a small fraction (1–3%) of Met+Cys is converted to taurine, as shown in controlled dietary feeding studies and studies in vegans.(1) So it seems unlikely that this is going to have a significant sparing effect on other uses of Cys, and in turn, that any such sparing effect would in turn exert a sparing influence on Met.

References
1: Stipanuk MH. Sulfur amino acid metabolism: pathways for production and removal
of homocysteine and cysteine. Annu Rev Nutr. 2004;24:539-77. Review. PubMed PMID:
15189131.

2: Yamori Y, Liu L, Mori M, Sagara M, Murakami S, Nara Y, Mizushima S. Taurine as
the nutritional factor for the longevity of the Japanese revealed by a world-wide
epidemiological survey. Adv Exp Med Biol. 2009;643:13-25. PubMed PMID: 19239132.

3: Yamori Y, Liu L, Ikeda K, Miura A, Mizushima S, Miki T, Nara Y;
WHO-Cardiovascular Disease and Alimentary Comprarison (CARDIAC) Study Group.
Distribution of twenty-four hour urinary taurine excretion and association with
ischemic heart disease mortality in 24 populations of 16 countries: results from
the WHO-CARDIAC study. Hypertens Res. 2001 Jul;24(4):453-7. PubMed PMID:
11510759.
http://joi.jlc.jst.g...E/hypres/24.453

4: Yamori Y, Taguchi T, Hamada A, Kunimasa K, Mori H, Mori M. Taurine in health
and diseases: consistent evidence from experimental and epidemiological studies.
J Biomed Sci. 2010 Aug 24;17 Suppl 1:S6. Review. PubMed PMID: 20804626; PubMed
Central PMCID: PMC2994368.
http://www.ncbi.nlm....les/PMC2994368/

Edited by Michael, 10 October 2011 - 01:37 AM.


#26 niner

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Posted 10 October 2011 - 02:51 AM

Would you quantify, in TBS (tablespoons) of cocoa, what you deem "significant quantities of cocoa-based products" for daily consumption? Do you see any difference between cocoa powder and cocoa nibs in terms of heavy metal content or nutritional value/benefit?

Well, I only used the phrase "significant quantities of cocoa-based products" in the context of the ethics of chocolate, urging people to use Fair Trade cocoa and chocolate. So while I'd urge you to do it, how much consumption requires making the decision is really a personal matter of conscience: how much slavery and brutal child labor are you comfortable with.

If however you're asking about health risks, the answer is certainly not even one tablespoon of cocoa. Goldman's unpublished twin study found that

those who ate a lot of chocolate — two to three candy bars per week — had more than a three-fold increased risk of having Parkinson’s than those who ate less. He also found a smaller link with wine and with a measure of total [isoquinoline] consumption ... [from foods such as] chocolate, cheese, milk and wine.

(Indeed, there are several studies linking dairy consumption to PD, and isoquinolines are amongst the possible toxicants responsible for the association. There apparently are a lot less isoquinolines in dairy than in cocoa by weight, but OTOH the serving size is bigger). Now, the FDA defines sweet chocolate as needing to contain a minimum of just "15 percent by weight of chocolate liquor" (by which they mean defatted cocoa bean -- ie, cocoa power), and "Milk chocolate contains not less than 10 percent by weight of chocolate liquor" -- and most chocolate-containing candy bars are not straight chocolate, and certainly not straight quality chocolate. So if you think about three candy bars a week, with maybe a Hershey Milk Chocolate bar, a Snicker's, and a Mars Bar, and try to think how little cocoa that really is ...

Cocoa's dark side just keeps on growing. It's also associated with decreased bone mineral density, presumably due to its oxalate content, and is even associated with an increased risk of testicular cancer and hypospadias. Admittedly, the latter study is only based on per capita data at the national level, but the connection to osteoporosis is stronger. I wish I didn't like cocoa so much...

#27 APBT

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Posted 10 October 2011 - 07:44 PM

Which came first, the PD or the increased chocolate consumption?

This study hints it may be the latter. "Although reasons for increased chocolate consumption in PD remain elusive, it may hypothetically be a consequence of the high content of various biogenic amines and/or caffeine analogues with potential antiparkinsonian effects."

#28 APBT

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Posted 10 October 2011 - 08:10 PM

Regarding your consumption of 2L of green tea, approximately how many tea bags does this equate to and how long do you steep?

I don't use tea bags except when it's extremely inconvenient to do otherwise (like in airplanes ;) ). I use whole tea leaves. Tea bag tea [sucks] ... Depending on the kind of green tea, I brew between 1.5-2.5 T green tea per quart..

Since I primarily use tea bags (18-20 daily of different types of tea), I was curious as to an approximate equivalent. That is, 1.5-2.5 T = ~how many tea bags? Or is this an unanswerable request?

In ebb and flow, there is chatter on these forums regarding fluoride (dangers) in tea and the water used to brew it. What are your thoughts on this? Concerned? Worried? Do you think fluoride, in general, is a health hazard? Bad for bone health?

Edited by Michael, 09 January 2012 - 12:53 AM.


#29 APBT

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Posted 10 October 2011 - 09:57 PM



FYI: According to this article, the folks at Veronica Foods have their own olive oil bar. I'd assume they sell their own labeled products, along with others.

They're actually pretty good about supporting their local stores -- and their tasting bar doesn't as yet have web sales, so it's mostly a local retail operation.


Yep, it appears that they don't process Web sales. I was searching -briefly- for on-line sales of Veronica Foods olive oil; I couldn't find any.

#30 niner

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Posted 11 October 2011 - 03:32 AM

Which came first, the PD or the increased chocolate consumption?

This study hints it may be the latter. "Although reasons for increased chocolate consumption in PD remain elusive, it may hypothetically be a consequence of the high content of various biogenic amines and/or caffeine analogues with potential antiparkinsonian effects."

Thanks for that, APBT. That also shows up in depression; it looks like people are self-medicating with chocolate. You know, I'd been thinking about revisiting this thread regarding the PD connection. That's a pretty weak paper; there's a reason it's unpublished. Likewise, the testicular cancer paper doesn't provide a causal connection. There are lots of associations that mean nothing. The bone data is a little stronger.





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