The video above is Guy's presentation about his new book, Enchantment: The Art of Changing Hearts, Minds, and Actions which I have read and recommend if you want to get ahead in your life. If not, don't read this book.
The video above is Guy's presentation about his new book, Enchantment: The Art of Changing Hearts, Minds, and Actions which I have read and recommend if you want to get ahead in your life. If not, don't read this book.
Tweets from Tahrir. The Egyptian Revolution in Tweets. Amazing.
Julian Assange pleads with his followers to "make this ridiculous time I spend on this nonsense worthwhile."
My friend Don Nace works in the daytime as a scenic artist for movies and for Broadway plays. If you've see Julie Taymore's "Across the Universe" you've seen his work (one of the main characters, Jude, is an artist and all the drawings and paintings in his Greenwich Village apartment and in his sketchbook are Nace's work).
In his spare time, when he's not lifting weights or cooking up his favorite dish, a spinach and scrambled egg concoction, Nace is drawing, always drawing. Over the years, he has produced thousands of original works. He seldom exhibits, but has published a critically acclaimed book of his drawings called "Drawn Out" (published by Soft Scull Press).
Lately, Nace has taken to scattering his drawns across a floor for people to actually walk on and presumably admire. He's agreed to exhibit his "drawing on the floor" at an upcoming fundraiser for the Rockland Center for the Arts in Nyack, New York, where he lives.
I think this is remarkable and I wish I could be there.
He died last week at 96. I don't think he has to worry about ruining his image, though.
editor's note: orginally published in Seth Godin's Blog
When I interviewed Jack LaLanne he had just bought a Red Corvette. He told me "this baby will top 140, easy!" Jack was 92 at the time. To read my interview with Jack and his wife, Elaine, click here.
I interviewed Jack LaLanne and his beautiful wife, Elaine, in February, 2007, for an article in ELDR magazine. Jack was then 92 and Elaine 81. In honor of Jack LaLanne, who died at his home on Sunday at age 96, I am republishing my interview. To me, Jack was one a truly great American and I'm am honored to have known him.
Meet Fitness Legends Jack and Elaine LaLanne
Elaine and Jack recently appeared in Times Square to celebrate Jack’s 92nd birthday. They were set up for three hours outside ABC’s studio under the giant Jumbotron, which was airing their juicer infomercial. People enjoyed samples of juices which were made with Jack LaLanne’s Power Juicer. The LaLannes also gave away books and signed autographs as people lined up for blocks waiting for a chance to see them.
For 34 years, Jack and Elaine appeared five days a week on The Jack LaLanne Show, where they convinced millions of people to join the fitness craze by exercising and eating a healthy diet based on fresh fruits and vegetables. In 1936, Jack opened America’s first health club in Oakland, California, called the “Jack LaLanne Physical Culture Studio.”
Over the years, he invented many of the exercise machines that are common in today’s clubs, including the leg extension machine and the machines using cables. Through television shows, public appearances, and books—and by selling health-related products—they have been the most vocal and effective evangelists for preventive health the world has ever known.
There is little doubt that obesity, heart disease, diabetes and cancer rates, though alarming, would be even higher today if not for the Herculean efforts of Jack and Elaine LaLanne. Amazingly, at their “advanced” ages, they are now experiencing their most effective and successful time of life.
“This is the best year we’ve ever had,” Jack begins. “At 92, everyone wants us, they turn the crowds away and we always get standing ovations.”
“We work together so we can be together,” Elaine adds.
“We work together so we can play together,” Jack corrects her.
ELDR: You both have a lot of fun in your lives. Is that true?
“Oh yes,” Elaine says.
“If you go through life,” Jack says, “and you can’t have a little fun, then you’re sick.”
“Our secret,” Elaine confides, “is you have to have a friend.” She looks over to Jack and says, “Your wife is your friend, right?”
“Yeah,” Jack replies, “and don’t try to change each other.”
“That’s right,” Elaine says. “The trouble is too many people want to change the other person into what they are and you can’t do this. No two people are the same, just as no two leaves on a tree are alike. We are all individuals and we have to understand each other as such.”
“People don’t change, let me tell you,” Jacks says. “Everyone can’t be perfect like my wife.”
Can I ask you how you met?
Jack, who seems to be always quick with the one-liners, snaps back at me, “That’s none of your business.” Then he laughs.
“We met at KGO TV in San Francisco when I was co-host of the Les Malloy Show, a live 90 minute daily interview show with a 12 piece orchestra.
I did all the bookings and also appeared on the show. “I got a call from Oakland one day,” she continues, “and the person on the line said, ‘We’ve got this guy over here who can do pushups during your whole show,’ so I booked Jack on the program.”
When were you married?
Jack once again gets in the first response. “Forever. We’ve been together for 53 years. How do you like that?”
“Yeah, but we haven’t been married that long, I left Les Malloy and went with Jack in 1956,” Elaine volunteers, “and we were married in Las Vegas shortly thereafter.”
Do you guys still work out?
This time Elaine gets the first jab. “He rolls out and I roll over!”
“You’ve got to go at it hard and work on different muscles,” he continues.
“You know how you stay young, don’t you? You work your butt off. Anything you do in life that’s worthwhile, there’s a price to pay.”
Jack is on a roll now, and he changes the topic:
“I’ve never thought about making money. I only think about how can I help that lady, that old man...look at that fat person. How can I get him to start exercising and eating right? I’m really here to help people; I’m their salvation.”
“Any stupid ass can make money, but can you make money and help
people doing it?”
“I just bought a new Corvette. Would I put water in the gas tank? Of course not! You put junk into the human machine and it doesn’t run very good. First thing you know, you’re in the ol’ grave. Living is like training for an athletic event. You have to have goals and challenges; you need to exercise and eat right.”
“Isn’t he enthusiastic?” Elaine chimes in. “Have you ever seen anyone so enthusiastic? And I have to live with him.”
Elaine’s intervention gives me a chance to get a word in. I still want to know about Elaine’s exercise program.” “I work out in the gym and in the pool just like Jack,” she says. “I also work out in the hot tub doing hydronastics, which are aerobic water exercises Jack created.”
“We have a new pool,” she continues, “called the ‘River Pool,’ which is
a resistance pool. “We both work out every day,” she says. “Jack even has a series of exercises we do in our hotel room when we’re traveling.”
Do you still dance?
“Not regularly,” she replies, “but l still play golf and at the country club the other night Jack and I danced a few jitterbugs.”
At this point in the conversation, Jack breaks out singing a song to Elaine.
“You know what, Elaine? I’m writing you a song,” he sings. “I’m dancing with tears in my eyes, I’m dancing with you, Elaine, I’m dancing with you.”
“Oh, come on Jack,” Elaine says in a mildly chiding voice.
“Come on, Elaine,” he replies.
“What’s the matter with you? We do have a lot of fun in our lives, right?”
“Oh, yeah,” says Elaine.
You don’t have to answer this, but when I first met you, you were dancing at the Clairemont Hotel in Berkeley, and you were only 89 then. You told me you still had sex nearly every day.
Jack responds, “Nearly on Monday, nearly on Tuesday, nearly on
“I don’t think he said ‘every day,’” Elaine comments.
I swear he said that. He must have had two glasses of wine that night.
“Yeah, he must have,” replies Elaine. “We were on the Howard Stern show and I said, ‘nearly every day,’ and Jack came back with ‘nearly Monday, nearly Tuesday, etc.’—that’s where that came from.”
“Then Howard says,” Jack joins in, “what are you trying to do, steal my show, Jack? “I love his show and when nobody else would go on because he was so
controversial I went on and he’s never forgotten it,” Jack continues. “He works out every day.”
Does he really?
“Yeah, but he doesn’t know how to be funny.”
Is there anything you’d like to say about how the world is today?
Jack answers, “There is much to be done today. There are more overweight and sick people in America than ever before; it’s an epidemic. Anything in life is possible if you make it happen. It’s all up to you.”
“My dad died at 50 from a heart attack because he didn’t eat right, he didn’t exercise, he got fat…all that junk food and Jack couldn’t talk to him about this,”
Elaine adds. “His mother lived into her 90s because Jack was able to talk to her and get her into the gym.”
Do you have children?
“We have three one of each,” Jack jokes. “They’re all terrific because they don’t take after their dad; they take after Elaine.”
“We have two sons and a daughter, plus another daughter who died at age 21 from an automobile accident,”
Elaine says. “She looks down upon us and is always with us.”
“Our daughter is a chiropractor, one son is a terrific photographer and the other makes surfboards,” Jack continues.
Where are you two going to retire?
That is retiring,” Jack replies. “You’ve got to work at living. Do something you enjoy where you can help people.”
“If some of the older people have to retire from their jobs,” Elaine says, “they shouldn’t sit around the house and do nothing. They should get some interest or hobby to keep active, get out and be involved in the world.”
by Michael Moore
Yesterday, in the Westminster Magistrates Court in London, the lawyers for WikiLeaks co-founder Julian Assange presented to the judge a document from me stating that I have put up $20,000 of my own money to help bail Mr. Assange out of jail.
Furthermore, I am publicly offering the assistance of my website, my servers, my domain names and anything else I can do to keep WikiLeaks alive and thriving as it continues its work to expose the crimes that were concocted in secret and carried out in our name and with our tax dollars.
We were taken to war in Iraq on a lie. Hundreds of thousands are now dead. Just imagine if the men who planned this war crime back in 2002 had had a WikiLeaks to deal with. They might not have been able to pull it off. The only reason they thought they could get away with it was because they had a guaranteed cloak of secrecy. That guarantee has now been ripped from them, and I hope they are never able to operate in secret again.
So why is WikiLeaks, after performing such an important public service, under such vicious attack? Because they have outed and embarrassed those who have covered up the truth. The assault on them has been over the top:
**Sen. Joe Lieberman says WikiLeaks "has violated the Espionage Act."
**The New Yorker's George Packer calls Assange "super-secretive, thin-skinned, [and] megalomaniacal."
**Sarah Palin claims he's "an anti-American operative with blood on his hands" whom we should pursue "with the same urgency we pursue al Qaeda and Taliban leaders."
**Democrat Bob Beckel (Walter Mondale's 1984 campaign manager) said about Assange on Fox: "A dead man can't leak stuff ... there's only one way to do it: illegally shoot the son of a bitch."
**Republican Mary Matalin says "he's a psychopath, a sociopath ... He's a terrorist."
**Rep. Peter A. King calls WikiLeaks a "terrorist organization."
And indeed they are! They exist to terrorize the liars and warmongers who have brought ruin to our nation and to others. Perhaps the next war won't be so easy because the tables have been turned -- and now it's Big Brother who's being watched ... by us!
WikiLeaks deserves our thanks for shining a huge spotlight on all this. But some in the corporate-owned press have dismissed the importance of WikiLeaks ("they've released little that's new!") or have painted them as simple anarchists ("WikiLeaks just releases everything without any editorial control!"). WikiLeaks exists, in part, because the mainstream media has failed to live up to its responsibility. The corporate owners have decimated newsrooms, making it impossible for good journalists to do their job. There's no time or money anymore for investigative journalism. Simply put, investors don't want those stories exposed. They like their secrets kept ... as secrets.
I ask you to imagine how much different our world would be if WikiLeaks had existed 10 years ago. Take a look at this photo. That's Mr. Bush about to be handed a "secret" document on August 6th, 2001. Its heading read: "Bin Ladin Determined To Strike in US." And on those pages it said the FBI had discovered "patterns of suspicious activity in this country consistent with preparations for hijackings." Mr. Bush decided to ignore it and went fishing for the next four weeks.
But if that document had been leaked, how would you or I have reacted? What would Congress or the FAA have done? Was there not a greater chance that someone, somewhere would have done something if all of us knew about bin Laden's impending attack using hijacked planes?
But back then only a few people had access to that document. Because the secret was kept, a flight school instructor in San Diego who noticed that two Saudi students took no interest in takeoffs or landings, did nothing. Had he read about the bin Laden threat in the paper, might he have called the FBI? (Please read this essay by former FBI Agent Coleen Rowley, Time's 2002 co-Person of the Year, about her belief that had WikiLeaks been around in 2001, 9/11 might have been prevented.)
Or what if the public in 2003 had been able to read "secret" memos from Dick Cheney as he pressured the CIA to give him the "facts" he wanted in order to build his false case for war? If a WikiLeaks had revealed at that time that there were, in fact, no weapons of mass destruction, do you think that the war would have been launched -- or rather, wouldn't there have been calls for Cheney's arrest?
Openness, transparency -- these are among the few weapons the citizenry has to protect itself from the powerful and the corrupt. What if within days of August 4th, 1964 -- after the Pentagon had made up the lie that our ship was attacked by the North Vietnamese in the Gulf of Tonkin -- there had been a WikiLeaks to tell the American people that the whole thing was made up? I guess 58,000 of our soldiers (and 2 million Vietnamese) might be alive today.
Instead, secrets killed them.
For those of you who think it's wrong to support Julian Assange because of the sexual assault allegations he's being held for, all I ask is that you not be naive about how the government works when it decides to go after its prey. Please -- never, ever believe the "official story." And regardless of Assange's guilt or innocence (see the strange nature of the allegations here), this man has the right to have bail posted and to defend himself. I have joined with filmmakers Ken Loach and John Pilger and writer Jemima Khan in putting up the bail money -- and we hope the judge will accept this and grant his release today.
Might WikiLeaks cause some unintended harm to diplomatic negotiations and U.S. interests around the world? Perhaps. But that's the price you pay when you and your government take us into a war based on a lie. Your punishment for misbehaving is that someone has to turn on all the lights in the room so that we can see what you're up to. You simply can't be trusted. So every cable, every email you write is now fair game. Sorry, but you brought this upon yourself. No one can hide from the truth now. No one can plot the next Big Lie if they know that they might be exposed.
And that is the best thing that WikiLeaks has done. WikiLeaks, God bless them, will save lives as a result of their actions. And any of you who join me in supporting them are committing a true act of patriotism. Period.
I stand today in absentia with Julian Assange in London and I ask the judge to grant him his release. I am willing to guarantee his return to court with the bail money I have wired to said court. I will not allow this injustice to continue unchallenged.
by Julian Assange
IN 1958 a young Rupert Murdoch, then owner and editor of Adelaide's The News, wrote: "In the race between secrecy and truth, it seems inevitable that truth will always win."
His observation perhaps reflected his father Keith Murdoch's expose that Australian troops were being needlessly sacrificed by incompetent British commanders on the shores of Gallipoli. The British tried to shut him up but Keith Murdoch would not be silenced and his efforts led to the termination of the disastrous Gallipoli campaign.
Nearly a century later, WikiLeaks is also fearlessly publishing facts that need to be made public.
I grew up in a Queensland country town where people spoke their minds bluntly. They distrusted big government as something that could be corrupted if not watched carefully. The dark days of corruption in the Queensland government before the Fitzgerald inquiry are testimony to what happens when the politicians gag the media from reporting the truth.
These things have stayed with me. WikiLeaks was created around these core values. The idea, conceived in Australia, was to use internet technologies in new ways to report the truth.
WikiLeaks coined a new type of journalism: scientific journalism. We work with other media outlets to bring people the news, but also to prove it is true. Scientific journalism allows you to read a news story, then to click online to see the original document it is based on. That way you can judge for yourself: Is the story true? Did the journalist report it accurately?
Democratic societies need a strong media and WikiLeaks is part of that media. The media helps keep government honest. WikiLeaks has revealed some hard truths about the Iraq and Afghan wars, and broken stories about corporate corruption.
People have said I am anti-war: for the record, I am not. Sometimes nations need to go to war, and there are just wars. But there is nothing more wrong than a government lying to its people about those wars, then asking these same citizens to put their lives and their taxes on the line for those lies. If a war is justified, then tell the truth and the people will decide whether to support it.
If you have read any of the Afghan or Iraq war logs, any of the US embassy cables or any of the stories about the things WikiLeaks has reported, consider how important it is for all media to be able to report these things freely.
WikiLeaks is not the only publisher of the US embassy cables. Other media outlets, including Britain's The Guardian, The New York Times, El Pais in Spain and Der Spiegel in Germany have published the same redacted cables.
Yet it is WikiLeaks, as the co-ordinator of these other groups, that has copped the most vicious attacks and accusations from the US government and its acolytes. I have been accused of treason, even though I am an Australian, not a US, citizen. There have been dozens of serious calls in the US for me to be "taken out" by US special forces. Sarah Palin says I should be "hunted down like Osama bin Laden", a Republican bill sits before the US Senate seeking to have me declared a "transnational threat" and disposed of accordingly. An adviser to the Canadian Prime Minister's office has called on national television for me to be assassinated. An American blogger has called for my 20-year-old son, here in Australia, to be kidnapped and harmed for no other reason than to get at me.
And Australians should observe with no pride the disgraceful pandering to these sentiments by Julia Gillard and her government. The powers of the Australian government appear to be fully at the disposal of the US as to whether to cancel my Australian passport, or to spy on or harass WikiLeaks supporters. The Australian Attorney-General is doing everything he can to help a US investigation clearly directed at framing Australian citizens and shipping them to the US.
Prime Minister Gillard and US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton have not had a word of criticism for the other media organisations. That is because The Guardian, The New York Times and Der Spiegel are old and large, while WikiLeaks is as yet young and small.
We are the underdogs. The Gillard government is trying to shoot the messenger because it doesn't want the truth revealed, including information about its own diplomatic and political dealings.
Has there been any response from the Australian government to the numerous public threats of violence against me and other WikiLeaks personnel? One might have thought an Australian prime minister would be defending her citizens against such things, but there have only been wholly unsubstantiated claims of illegality. The Prime Minister and especially the Attorney-General are meant to carry out their duties with dignity and above the fray. Rest assured, these two mean to save their own skins. They will not.
Every time WikiLeaks publishes the truth about abuses committed by US agencies, Australian politicians chant a provably false chorus with the State Department: "You'll risk lives! National security! You'll endanger troops!" Then they say there is nothing of importance in what WikiLeaks publishes. It can't be both. Which is it?
It is neither. WikiLeaks has a four-year publishing history. During that time we have changed whole governments, but not a single person, as far as anyone is aware, has been harmed. But the US, with Australian government connivance, has killed thousands in the past few months alone.
US Secretary of Defence Robert Gates admitted in a letter to the US congress that no sensitive intelligence sources or methods had been compromised by the Afghan war logs disclosure. The Pentagon stated there was no evidence the WikiLeaks reports had led to anyone being harmed in Afghanistan. NATO in Kabul told CNN it couldn't find a single person who needed protecting. The Australian Department of Defence said the same. No Australian troops or sources have been hurt by anything we have published.
But our publications have been far from unimportant. The US diplomatic cables reveal some startling facts:
► The US asked its diplomats to steal personal human material and information from UN officials and human rights groups, including DNA, fingerprints, iris scans, credit card numbers, internet passwords and ID photos, in violation of international treaties. Presumably Australian UN diplomats may be targeted, too.
► King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia asked the US to attack Iran.
► Officials in Jordan and Bahrain want Iran's nuclear program stopped by any means available.
► Britain's Iraq inquiry was fixed to protect "US interests".
► Sweden is a covert member of NATO and US intelligence sharing is kept from parliament.
► The US is playing hardball to get other countries to take freed detainees from Guantanamo Bay. Barack Obama agreed to meet the Slovenian President only if Slovenia took a prisoner. Our Pacific neighbour Kiribati was offered millions of dollars to accept detainees.
In its landmark ruling in the Pentagon Papers case, the US Supreme Court said "only a free and unrestrained press can effectively expose deception in government". The swirling storm around WikiLeaks today reinforces the need to defend the right of all media to reveal the truth.
Julian Assange is the editor-in-chief of WikiLeaks.
On November 30, 2010, the Institute of Medicine's Food and Nutrition Board (FNB) released their updated recommendations for vitamin D (and calcium), which has sent shockwaves of disappointment through natural health community.
According to the FNB, the new recommended daily allowance (RDA) for pregnant women and adults up to 70 years of age is the same as that for infants and children – a measly 600 IU's. This despite the overwhelming evidence showing that vitamin D is extremely important for a wide variety of health conditions besides bone health, and that most people need about ten times this amount or more.
In this interview, Dr. Cannell, founder of the Vitamin D Council, and Carole Baggerly, founder of GrassrootsHealth, share their concerns about this recent development.
Dr. Mercola's Comments:
In their latest vitamin D report, the Institute of Medicine's Food and Nutrition Board (FNB) claims the only evidence for the benefit of vitamin D they could document was the improvement of bone health.
How they could come to this conclusion is truly beyond belief, because there are literally hundreds if not thousands of studies showing that it benefits dozens if not hundreds of clinical conditions.
Based on their limited findings, the FNB's updated recommended daily allowance (RDA) for vitamin D is as follows:
|Infants 0-12 months||0 IU/day|
|1-18 years||600 IU/day|
|Over 70 years old||800 IU/day|
|Pregnant women aged 14-50||600 IU/day|
As Dr. Cannell points out in our interview, these recommendations do not take into account the amount of vitamin D you need to prevent influenza, heart- or liver- disease, respiratory infections, cancer, or any of the numerous diseases that have a clearly documented link to vitamin D deficiency.
Why should we care about the IOM's recommendations?
Well, as the Alliance for Natural Health states:
"Unless these findings are challenged, the public will accept it as true. Doctors, medical institutions, the media, and governmental agencies will all parrot these ultra-low recommendations on vitamin D dosage, pooh-poohing its important therapeutic benefits, and keeping the American public dangerously deficient in the vitamin.
This will mean more colds, more flu, greater dependence on dangerous flu shots and antibiotics, more illness in general, more weak bones, more cancer, and many more deaths. Some experts calculate that proper vitamin D supplementation could save Americans $4.4 trillion over a decade—about $1,346 per person every year."
Dr. Heaney is widely believed to be one of the most prominent and well respected researchers on vitamin D. He's authored more than 400 vitamin D papers in his lifetime, including the 2007 cancer study that showed a full 77 percent of all cancers could be prevented with a vitamin D level of at least 40 ng/ml.
Dr. Heaney was also part of the previous FNB vitamin D panel (but not this one as previous panel members are excluded from future panels). Here's what he had to say about the latest IOM/FNB recommendations:
"There is an impressive body of scientific evidence supporting levels higher than the Institute of Medicine panel is currently recommending. For reasons that are not entirely clear, the panel has discounted that evidence.
The public needs to know that evidence exist so that they can make up their own minds. It is helpful in making those decisions to know that intakes higher than the recommendations are safe.
For me that decision is easy even if the evidence for higher intake were uncertain. And I don't believe it is. Intakes two to five times their recommendations would carry a good chance for benefit at essentially no cost and no risk.
… Finally, I believe that the presumption of adequacy should rest with vitamin D intakes needed to achieve the serum levels (40–60 ng/mL) that prevailed during the evolution of human physiology.
Correspondingly, the burden of proof should fall on those maintaining that there is no preventable disease or dysfunction at lower levels. The IOM has not met that standard."
Clearly, the FNB moved their recommendations in the right direction. As Dr. Cannell points out, the recommended dose for infants, children and pregnant women was tripled, from 200 units to 600 units, and the dose for older people was increased by about 33 percent. The upper limits were also doubled.
However, these recommendations still leave a lot to be desired.
"What's shocking to me is that the levels they are recommending will not even approximate what you would get if you were exposed to healthy levels of sunshine," Dr. Cannell says.
A more appropriate way to analyze vitamin D requirements would indeed be to look at the vitamin D levels of early man. Those are the levels we want to have, because that's what the human genome is designed for, or used to, from an evolutionary perspective.
"One thing that did concern me is they have 15 vitamin D experts to review their report before they released it. But they refuse to let anybody look at the vitamin D experts' opinions about their reports," Cannell says.
" Yesterday, we instructed our attorney to try to obtain them under the Freedom of Information Act."
Time will tell whether or not that documentation will be released. I too am very curious to see what the vitamin D experts' opinions were about the FNB's conclusions…
Please remember that you have the freedom to do your own research and are not obligated in any way to adhere to "government sanctioned" nutrient recommendations.
In this case, conventional medicine is still lagging far behind in their implementation of what the science shows about vitamin D.
"[P]eople need to remember about this report is that these are recommendations for those who want to proceed on their own without a doctor's advice," Cannell says.
"If you're under the care of a physician, this report is almost meaningless… It doesn't in any way preclude a physician from prescribing the usual dosages that they do; the 50,000 units once or twice a week. [The report] is not designed to prevent that."
So, if what the Vitamin D Council and I have been posting about the health benefits of vitamin D and the optimal vitamin D levels make sense to you, then you can choose to flat out ignore this new recommendation from the Institute of Medicine.
As Carole Baggerly points out in the interview above, the FNB is recommending a vitamin D blood serum level of just 20 ng/ml, which, based on more appropriate parameters for optimal health, signifies a state of severe deficiency!
To me, it borders on criminal negligent malpractice to ignore the abundance of scientific evidence that suggest that the deficiency levels are far above 20 ng/ml.
This serum level may not even be sufficient to maintain bone health, as the IOM/FNB claims.
According to a statement issued by Dr. Heaney:
"The statement by the IOM that skeletal health can be maintained at serum 25(OH)D levels of 20 ng/ml is incorrect. 30 ng/ml should be looked at as the lower end of the acceptable range for bone health.
There have been randomized controlled trials showing major reductions in fractures by getting the serum level to 29 ng/ml. Fracture reduction does not reliably occur at levels less than 30 ng/ml and in some cases as high as 40 ng/ml.
Osteoid seam width, a measure of vitamin D deficiency, only reaches normal values when the level is above 30 ng/ml. There is significant evidence above the IOM panel's "adequate" level of 20 ng/ml."
This is further supported by Drs. Heike Bischoff-Ferrari and Walter Willett. You can read their entire critique of the IOM recommendations here.
Dr. Cannell brings up additional food for thought with regards to some of the studies that suggest detrimental effects from vitamin D.
"It's important for people to realize that of the several hundred studies that have come out in the last couple of years, not all of them are positive, for reasons that I believe has to do with vitamin A.
There is a U-shaped curve in some of the studies, especially the ones that come from Scandinavian countries… Most of the cohorts that were studied in these papers had their dietary information taken in the 80s and 90s and their blood drawn at that time. The intake of cod liver oil especially in the Scandinavian countries in that time was substantial.
When you take cod liver oil, you'll increase your vitamin D level but with it you'll get toxic amounts of vitamin A. There are a number of studies that shows that vitamin A is not a good thing to have an excess of."
That said, the randomized control trials that have been done have not shown any damage or any danger from high amounts of vitamin D. In fact, most studies that are now using higher vitamin D dosages are showing significant, positive treatment effects.
Dr. Cannell's passion is to carefully review the medical literature on vitamin D, and there's no shortage of vitamin D studies showing its benefits. One of the latest studies to be published on vitamin D found that it is also linked to your risk of developing macular degeneration, which many have mistakenly attributed to 'normal aging,' as well as cataracts.
Dr. Cannell says:
"It turns out that the higher your vitamin D level the less likely it is for that [macular degeneration] to happen. There is even a cross-sectional study that indicates that the lower your vitamin D level the more likely you are to get cataracts (and one of the reasons you've always been told to stay out of the sun is because you'll get cataracts)."
There is also an interesting new paper about Parkinsonism that suggests that low vitamin D levels exacerbate the disease.
"So if you know of anyone with Parkinsonism make sure their vitamin D levels are in the high range; higher than normal, between 50-80 ng/ml," Cannell suggests.
This would also hold true for other chronic neurological diseases, such as Alzheimer's.
"That's a really important point," Cannell says. "People are asking me, "What's the right vitamin D level?"
If you're otherwise perfectly healthy, then a level of around 50 is fine… But many people who have heart disease, Parkinsonism, Alzheimer's, emphysema, or cancer… It's my opinion that [those] people should get their levels up into the high range of normal.
The rationale for that is that there are a number of studies with cancer now that show that the blood level of vitamin D you have at the time you're diagnosed with cancer predicts how long you're going to live. That is, high vitamin D levels at the time of diagnosis prolongs life.
… [I]f you're sick, you want to keep your levels at 80-90 ng/ml."
Likewise, there's very compelling evidence backing up the advice that pregnant women should optimize their vitamin D levels prior to and during pregnancy to prevent neurological problems, such as autism, in their children.
There's even evidence suggesting the child is significantly protected from type 1 diabetes if the mother has sufficient vitamin D levels during gestation, and/or if the infant receives sufficient amounts of vitamin D.
From my perspective, with the mountain of scientific evidence we now have on the benefits of optimal vitamin D levels in pregnancy it is reprehensible malpractice to not routinely check a pregnant woman's vitamin D level during the pregnancy.
Of course, it is still not the "standard of care" at this point and no physician will lose his or her license for failing to do this check.
According to Dr. Cannell:
"[I]f you're thinking of having a child, both parents should take the steps necessary to be vitamin D sufficient. Once a woman is pregnant, she's going to need probably 7,000-8,000 IU's a day while she's pregnant and lactating. And then when the infant is off breast milk, the infant needs an independent source of vitamin D.
The Food and Nutrition Board now say 400 IU is adequate [for pregnant/lactating women]. Four hundred is pretty good, but 1,000 IU's is better."
Interestingly enough, while the importance of sunlight and oral vitamin D supplements are being suppressed, a patentable vitamin D drug is currently in the works, the Alliance for Natural Health reports
"A pharmaceutical company is developing a patentable man-made vitamin D analog—yes, a synthetic drug version of vitamin D. And Glenville Jones, PhD, one of the committee members who determined the new vitamin D guidelines and who is quoted as saying that under these guidelines, most people "probably don't have vitamin D deficiency" and "We think there has been an exaggeration of the public's interest in vitamin D deficiency," is an advisor for that same pharmaceutical company."
Might this have anything to do with the IOM's blatant disregard for the evidence at hand?
The second part of the video above features Carole Baggerly, the founder of GrassrootsHealth. She has been instrumental in managing and implementing a massive effort to educate Americans and Canadians about the importance of vitamin D, both on a consumer and government level.
For example, she was a primary force behind getting Canadian health authorities to investigate the use of vitamin D against the swine flu last year.
She brings up several shocking facts about the manner in which the IOM/FNB came to their final conclusions. According to Baggerly, the panel carefully selected the type of data they wanted to review, and excluded a wide variety of important data.
"They did not look at epidemiological data at all," she says, "of which there are decades of research substantiating that people die of all kinds of diseases that are impacted by vitamin D.
… They excluded all kinds of data that would be, in the public health field, considered very relevant data.
… [T]he agenda was very clearly set from the very beginning, and those of us who looked to see what kind of data they were choosing to include… knew the outcome would not be favorable for the implementation of vitamin D health."
Exactly who set this agenda is still unclear. What is clear is that the IOM/FNB decided to ignore certain sets of pertinent data. Clearly, had it been included, it would have been impossible to justify their current position.
Carol has been working as a consultant to the Ontario government, primarily pertaining to what they should do about their vitamin D testing. They have, as of December 1, "de-listed" vitamin D, which means the government will no longer include payments for vitamin D testing as part of their health insurance.
This is a major setback. However, Canadians can still purchase vitamin D tests on their own. And Grassroots Health has initiated several vitamin D initiatives to help Canadians get their tests at a reduced cost, by enrolling them in a Grassroots Health vitamin D study.
The Canadian government may use the latest IOM/FNB recommendations as justification for taking out vitamin D testing.
However, there's still some good news.
Heather Chappell of the Canadian Cancer Society (CCS) has stated that the organization will not lower their recommendations -- which is currently 1,000 IUs per day, based on the vitamin D cancer research done by Dr. Heaney and Lappe – because the IOM recommendations cover bone health only. And the CCS is still concerned about vitamin D deficiency and cancer.
So, just who's on the IOM's vitamin D panel?
Contrary to common sense, the panel did not consist primarily of vitamin D experts.
According to Carol:
"They did have a few people on the panel with a little bit of vitamin D experience but not much. (The full list of panel members is available on www.IOM.edu.)
Their experience certainly was not in the epidemiological realm at all like Dr. Garland.
What was disturbing to some of our panel, the vitamin D researchers, was that a number of them have been recommended or volunteered previously on the panel and they were explicitly rejected.
That is disturbing."
Again, the position of the Vitamin D Council, GrassrootsHealth and myself is that you need to adhere to the scientific vitamin D panel recommendation, which is a vitamin D level of 40 ng/ml at minimum.
In my view, many people still would not be able to reach a therapeutically healthy range taking 4,000 IUs of vitamin D a day, which is the maximum dosage now recommended by the IOM. I've seen people who need double that, or more, to get to a level that's going to make a difference in their health.
Dr. Hollis has released preliminary findings of a brand new study that has not yet been formally published. In the interview above, Carol shares some of those details:
"One of the most significant findings is how much intake it takes to get to these higher levels.
For example, there has been a rule of thumb that for each 1,000 IUs of vitamin D you take you would get a serum level rise of about 10 ng/mL…
Well, it doesn't work that way.
What we are finding is that once you get above the age of 30, the amount of rise that you get for each dosage [of oral vitamin D] is considerably less than that.
For example, between the age of 40 and 50, you'd have to take about 2,000 IU to reach a serum level of 10 ng/ml. You only get a 5 ng/mL rise for each 1,000 IU, not 10 ng/ml.
… What this means is that people have to take a lot more. It's going to take about 6,000 IU a day to get about 90-95 percent of the population above 40 ng/mL."
Some people will clearly need more.
D*Action is a worldwide public health campaign created by GrassrootsHealth, aiming to solve the vitamin D deficiency epidemic in one year through focus on testing, education, and grassroots word of mouth.
You can participate in the D*action study, if you like! Best of all, Mercola subscribers will receive a 15 percent discount on the 5-year sponsorship.
To sign up, and get your discount, follow these instructions:
When you sign up, at the beginning of the Payment Options (The area where it says "Please input any CLINIC ID or COUPON CODE assigned to your organization and click Apply:") on the Order form, please enter 'Mercola.' Then continue with your payment process.
When you join D*action, you agree to test your vitamin D levels twice a year during a 5 year program, and share your health status to demonstrate the public health impact of this nutrient.
There is a $60 fee for every 6 months for your sponsorship of the project (Mercola sponsors get a 15 percent discount), which includes a complete new test kit to be used at home (except in the state of New York), and electronic reports on your ongoing progress.
When you finish the questionnaire, you can choose your subscription option. You will get a follow up email every 6 months reminding you "it's time for your next test and health survey."
To join now, please follow this link to the sign up form.
I, along with GrassrootsHealth, expect this study will demonstrate the real significance of this nutrient on your health and, of course, its value in the prevention of many diseases. So please sign up today so you can be part of a team of Mercola subscribers setting out to demonstrate that PREVENTION WORKS!
Founders Nigel Jones and Adrian Henderson (pictured above) want you to know their Jerk Meats are smoke roasted Jamaican style. The spices and herbs are from the Caribbean, and in order to achieve a high-quality fresh taste, they purchase seasonal vegetables and fruits daily from local farmers.
Jamaican Dinner EVENT at Guerilla Cafe
Friday, December 10
6 p.m. - 10 p.m.
Salt Fish Fritters $7.00
Plantain with black bean sauce and sour cream $7.00
served with green salad, rice & peas $12.50
SALMON STEAK WITH GINGER BUTTER
served with sweet potato fries & swiss chard with dried cherries & pine nuts
ROASTED LAMB WITH ROSEMARY & THYME
served with sautéed string beans, rice and peas - $15.00
Sweet potato fries, swiss chard & sautéed string beans
Deserts from Pietisserie
(Random Acts of Sweetness)
GINGER-LEMON PIE $6.50
BANANA CHAI/NILLA crust PIE $6.50
Sangria and a SELECTION OF BEERS AND WINES
SELECTION OF COFFEE AND TEA DRINKS
We are using fresh and seasonal ingredients, some items may be limited.
3-Course New York Steak & Wine Dinner
Jamaican Dinner EVENT at Guerilla Cafe
Friday, December 3
6 p.m. - 10 p.m.
Salt Fish Fritters $8.00
Pumpkin-Carrot-Ginger Soup $6.00
Plantain with black bean sauce and sour cream $8.00
served with sweet potato fries & green salad $12.50
served with kale, dried cherries, pine nuts and rice - $13.00
ROASTED RIBEYE STEAK
served with sautéed string beans and rice - $15.00
Sweet potato fries, kale & sautéed string beans
Deserts from Pietisserie
(Random Acts of Sweetness)
Yam/GINGER PIE $6.50
Banana Chai/nilla crust PIE $6.50
White chocolate raspberry cheesecake $6.50
Sangria and a SELECTION OF BEERS AND WINES
SELECTION OF COFFEE AND TEA DRINKS
We are using fresh and seasonal ingredients, some items may be limited.
The joint was rockin, that's for sure--when "Kingston 11," the new Nigel Jones's Jamaican Restaurant, took over the Guerilla Cafe last Thursday evening for its lively debut. People were lined up at the door at 6 p.m. and it stayed that way well past 9.
The food was great, but for me the music, beautiful people, and party atmosphere were equally great. And this is only the beginning. Nigel's goal is to turn every Friday at Guerilla Cafe into a Kingston 11 evening where "all folks can enjoy our changing food offerings and feel like they are in a Caribbean kitchen with friends enjoying the food, music and lively scene."
Growing up in Kingston, Nigel's cooking career started at age 10 when he complained to his grandmother about the food choices they had for an evening meal. She said to him, "if you don't like what we are having for dinner, then you need to learn how to cook for yourself." His grandmother then proceeeded to give him cooking lessons and from that moment on he was obsessed.
The influence of the Jamaican world on his culinary development was enormous, "food was everywhere, constantly in a pot being cooked at home, a freind's house, from street vendors to the highest level and priced food. And it all seemed good to me."
Nigel has no formal training as a chef, but this hardly seems to matter as you'd be hard-pressed to find better Jamaican food anywhere else. His jerk chicken, pictured above with sweet potato fries, is marinated overnight with just the right amount of seasoning or "jerk" to give it a kick without knocking you out. It is then perfectly grilled on a smoke grill.
My favorite dish was the plantains with black bean sauce and sour cream. The plantains were firm on the outside, and gooey on the inside; the beans spicy and the sour cream cold and refreshing. I imagine the plantains and jerk chicken will become mainstays of the Kingston 11 menu. In fact, Nigel confirmed this to me in an email concerning the menu for this coming week.
"This week (Friday) we will offer a pumpkin-carrot-ginger soup along with salt-fish fritters and plantain dishes for starts. Additionally we will have a curry shrimp and roasted ribeye steak along with the jerk chicken for the 3 main course dishes."
I'd strongly urge anyone who missed last week's opening to make a point of coming to Guerilla Cafe on Friday night. The fun starts at 6 pm. Or as they say in Jamaica, a Kingston 11 night is "bad like yaz."
Guerilla Cafe is located at 1620 Shattuck Avenue in Berkeley, near Cedar Street. For reservations or more information, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Codfish Cakes $8
Mixed Green Salad with Plum & Pear $7
Plantain with Black Bean Sauce & Sour Creme $8
Jerk Chicken served with Sweet Potato Fries & Green Salad $12.50
Fish Steak with Ginger Butter served with Kale, Dried Cherries, Pine Nuts & Rice $14
Roasted Lamb with Rosemary & Thyme served with sauteed String Beans & Rice $16
Pumpkin/Chocolate Crust Pie $6.50
Banana Chai/Nilla Crust Pie $6.50
(Ginger Beer. Selection of Beers & Wines. Coffee & Tea Drinks)
We only use fresh, seasonal ingrediants so some items may be limited.
There are about 350 full-body scanners being used in close to 70 U.S. airports, and that number is expected to increase to 1,000 scanners by the end of 2011.
Dubbed "naked" scanners because they give a graphic image of your body, including genitalia and other personal effects like sanitary napkins, the devices are raising privacy and health concerns among frequent travelers and pilots groups alike.
The alternative is also causing outrage. Those who opt out of being scanned must now submit to a far more intrusive form of pat-down, and a large number of horror stories have already surfaced, where people of all ages have been humiliated, or worse, during these 'enhanced' pat-downs.
Increasing numbers of people are expressing their outrage over being submitted to full-body scanning. Already the U.S. Travel Association has received hundreds of e-mails and phone calls from angry travelers who say they will stop flying until the scanners are no longer in force.
The Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) has also sought a court order to stop the use of the scanners, citing privacy and health risks and calling for the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) to conduct a public rule-making to assess the safety and security issues.
Marc Rotenberg, president of EPIC, wrote on CNN.com:
"The courts give the government a great deal of latitude in airports, but it is not unbounded, and the current screening procedures -- the digital X-ray cameras called "body scanners" and the genital-groping searches called "pat-downs" -- have never been reviewed by a court.
Is a court really prepared to say that in the absence of suspicion, these search procedures -- which the law would otherwise treat as sexual battery -- are "reasonable"?
… No other country in the world subjects its air travelers to the combination of screening procedures that Americans are being asked to endure."
Pilots' unions for US Airways and American Airlines have also urged their pilots not to submit to Advanced Imaging Technology (AIT) screening due to potential health risks and privacy issues.
Grassroots efforts are also underway, with one online group at the Web site WeWontFly.com likening the scanners to a strip search.
"We are opposed to the full-body backscatter X-ray airport scanners on grounds of health and privacy. We do not consent to strip searches, virtual or otherwise. We do not wish to be guinea pigs for new, and possibly dangerous, technology. We are not criminals. We are your customers. We will not beg the government anymore. We will simply stop flying until the porno-scanners are history."
There are also concerns that the images from the scanners could be saved, an assertion the TSA denies. However, reports have already surfaced of workers saving such images and using them to humiliate colleagues.
You can opt out of the full-body scans at this time, but doing so means you will be subjected to an "enhanced physical pat-down" during which TSA agents use open hands and fingers to search your body physically, including your breasts and genital area. Previously, agents would use only the backs of their hands during pat-downs.
Some of the horror stories now emerging are causing a fury, and rightfully so.
Is there no limit to how far TSA agents can go when frisking passengers?
Take the case of a female flight attendant who was forced to pull out her prosthetic breast, for example. Several other women have reported feeling shocked by what they call "sexual violations," including having their labia groped without warning. TSA agents have even been accused of treating young children in such a way that they'd be brought up on child molestation charges had it not occurred in an airport.
The following video contains several examples of such outrageous cases.
There are stories of all sorts of inhumane treatment, such as the one from Tom Sawyer, a bladder cancer survivor whose urostomy bag was ruptured by an unconcerned TSA agent, leaving him covered in his own urine. In an interview with MSNBC.com, Sawyer said:
"I am a good American and I want safety for all passengers as much as the next person. But if this country is going to sacrifice treating people like human beings in the name of safety, then we have already lost the war."
According to Jeffrey Goldberg, a national correspondent for The Atlantic, these 'enhanced' tactics are purposely designed and intended to be intimidating and humiliating, in order to stop you from opting out of the scanner!
Making matters even worse, not to mention bizarre, once you're at the security check, there's no turning back; you have no choice but to submit to either, or both, of the new and enhanced security techniques, according to the TSA.
"The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is warning that any would-be commercial airline passenger who enters an airport checkpoint and then refuses to undergo the method of inspection designated by TSA will not be allowed to fly and also will not be permitted to simply leave the airport," the Sun Sentinel reports.
"That person will have to remain on the premises to be questioned by the TSA and possibly by local law enforcement. Anyone refusing faces fines up to $11,000 and possible arrest."
It's a little-known fact that airports are not required to use TSA screenings at all. They can opt-out of such programs altogether – including the body scanners and "enhanced pat-downs" -- and hire private screening agencies instead.
As Byron York, chief political correspondent with the Washington Examiner, recently wrote:
"… With the TSA engulfed in controversy and hated by millions of weary and sometimes humiliated travelers, Rep. John Mica, the Republican who will soon be chairman of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, is reminding airports that they have a choice.
Mica, one of the authors of the original TSA bill, has recently written to the heads of more than 150 airports nationwide suggesting they opt out of TSA screening.
"When the TSA was established, it was never envisioned that it would become a huge, unwieldy bureaucracy which was soon to grow to 67,000 employees," Mica writes. "As TSA has grown larger, more impersonal, and administratively top-heavy, I believe it is important that airports across the country consider utilizing the opt-out provision provided by law.""
Many airports choose not to hire private screeners out of liability concerns if a terrorist managed to get through, and there's no way to know right now whether such changes would make airport screening any safer or less intrusive. Still, it's an option that many do not realize exist.
Some airports in Florida may ditch TSA. According to Larry Dale, president of the Sanford Airport Authority in Orlando, says the change to a private screening company was approved on Oct. 5, CNN reports.
However, security contractors must still follow TSA security guidelines. According to TSA spokesman Greg Soule:
"All commercial airports are regulated by TSA whether the actual screening is performed by the TSA officers or private companies. The TSA sets the security standards that must be followed and includes the use of enhanced pat downs and imaging technology, if installed at the airport."
Private contractors may, however, be more careful about the professionalism and courtesy of their employees, compared to TSA. According to Larry Dale, "research shows that using a private security screening company would be more efficient and more enjoyable to the public."
The other glaring issue posed by the TSA scanners has to do with your health and their use of controversial backscatter technology, which projects an X-ray beam onto your body.
As WeWontFly.com stated:
"Backscatter X-ray uses ionizing radiation, a known cumulative health hazard, to produce images of passengers' bodies. Children, pregnant women, the elderly, and those with defective DNA repair mechanisms are considered to be especially susceptible to the type of DNA damage caused by ionizing radiation. Also at high risk are those who have had, or currently have, skin cancer.
Ionizing radiation's effects are cumulative, meaning that each time you are exposed you are adding to your risk of developing cancer. Since the dosage of radiation from the backscatter X-ray machines is absorbed almost entirely by the skin and tissue directly under the skin, averaging the dose over the whole body gives an inaccurate picture of the actual harm."
Scientists from the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) sent a letter to the White House Office of Science and Technology echoing the concern that radiation from the scanners could damage skin and underlying tissue, potentially leading to skin cancer.
The White House Office responded that the technology had been tested extensively for safety, but the scientists noted numerous flaws in the response and are currently preparing a rebuttal.
Because the radiation beam from the scanners concentrates on your skin, researchers believe the dose may be up to 20 times higher than is being estimated.
As Mail Online reported, Dr. David Brenner, head of Columbia University's center for radiological research, also noted that about one in 20 people, including children and people with gene mutations, may be at increased risk as they are less able to repair the DNA damage caused by the x-ray scan.
Even the U.S. Airline Pilots Association (USAPA) recognized the potential risks, especially from frequent exposure. As CNN reported, Capt. Mike Cleary, president of the USAPA wrote:
"Based on currently available medical information, USAPA has determined that frequent exposure to TSA-operated scanner devices may subject pilots to significant health risks."
Some of the TSA's full-body scanners subject your body to small doses of ionizing radiation.
Ionizing radiation creates charged ions by displacing electrons in atoms, even without heat. Examples are radiation emitted from radioactive substances in rocks and soil, cosmic rays of the sun, and radiation from man-made technology such as x-ray machines, power stations, and nuclear reactors.
A host of epidemiological studies have strongly suggested that x-rays and other ionizing radiation are a cause of most types of human cancer. X-rays may even be responsible for most of the deaths from cancer and ischemic heart disease, according to John Gofman, MD, PhD, a professor at U. C. Berkeley and one of the leading experts in the world.
Ionizing radiation is a uniquely potent mutagen due to its ability to wreak havoc upon your cells and their genetic code.
Your cells are unable to repair the very complex genetic damage done by x-rays. Some of the mutated cells die, but others do not, and the cells that go on living have a proliferative advantage -- giving rise to the most aggressive cancers.
Unlike some other mutagens, x-rays have access to the genetic molecules of every one of your internal organs, if the organ is within range of the x-ray beam. Even a single high-speed, high-energy electron, set into motion by an x-ray photon, can bounce around and cause you irreparable damage.
That is why there is no safe dose of x-rays.
Further, the effects of radiation are cumulative, which means that every time you walk through an airport scanner, you're adding to your dose. If you fly frequently or you're exposed to other forms of radiation through CT scans, mammograms and other medical procedures, you could easily be on radiation overload.
It is important to place this radiation exposure risk in its proper perspective.
Let's look at the reported numbers.
Screening at an airport x-ray scanner produces .02 microsieverts of radiation. But REMEMBER you are only getting them because you are going on a flight. Nearly everyone forgets that when you fly there is also ionizing radiation exposure. In fact on a typical transcontinental flight at 30,000 feet you will be exposed to 20 microsieverts of radiation.
That is one THOUSAND times the dose you receive from the scanner.
So if you are willing to accept the risk of air travel radiation how could you possibly justify concern about these scanners?
However, having said that this past year I became aware that the way to reduce your air travel radiation by 99 percent is to fly at night. Just as it is impossible to get a suntan at night, you will avoid virtually all of the radiation when you fly at night.
That is why I nearly fly exclusively at night now, or as far away from noon as practically possible.
I also take 2 mg of astaxanthin every day, which is believed to radically limit damage from ionizing radiation.
But please understand the main point of this article: the REAL health danger is from CT scans, which is FIFTY THOUSAND times the radiation dose of one of these scans. You would have to have one scan every day for 136 years to equal the radiation of one CT scan.
The issue of whether or not the alternative – being groped and potentially humiliated during an 'enhanced' pat-down – is warranted, or even legal, is another issue altogether…
Please understand that this calculation and risk proposal is based on the reported radiation levels. If we are being lied to then all bets are off and we need to reanalyze, but if the numbers are accurate you would have to have to have 100 scans to equal the radiation exposure of one daytime flight.
That said, "the radiation dose is likely the least of the problems with airport screening," according to Dr. Jane M. Orient, M.D. In her article for the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS), she details what the medical community considers to be the REAL health hazard of full-body scanners, namely the use of low-energy backscatter technology.
Dr. Orient explains:
"They use an ingenious low-energy backscatter technique, which is apparently wonderful for identifying explosives in cargo. Since the radiation doesn't penetrate far, it wouldn't affect an unborn baby. But it does concentrate the dose in the skin.
Some scientists warn that this effect has not been properly studied, and one nuclear medicine expert told me that he is going to opt out of the scan. I think this much is clear: if you had a deadly disease, and the scanner were an FDA-regulated device that might save your life, your doctor wouldn't be allowed to use it, because of inadequate study."
Likewise, two scientists who recently spoke with CNN point out the potential for backscatter technology to cause fatal skin cancer. CNN reports:
"The risk of harmful radiation exposure from backscatter scans is very small, according to David Brenner, director of the Center for Radiological Research at Columbia University and a professor of radiation biophysics.
But he said he is concerned about how widely the scanners will be used.
"If you think of the entire population of, shall we say a billion people per year going through these scanners, it's very likely that some number of those will develop cancer from the radiation from these scanners," Brenner said.
Skin cancer would likely be the primary concern, he said. Each time the same person receives a backscatter scan, the small risk associated with the low dose of radiation is multiplied by the number of exposures.
... The TSA says each backscatter scan emits radiation equivalent to just two minutes of cosmic radiation at altitude.
Peter Rez, a professor of physics at Arizona State University, disagrees. Rez has independently calculated the radiation doses of backscatter scanners using the images produced by the machines.
"I came to the conclusion that although low, the dose was higher than they said," he said.
Based on his analysis, Rez estimates each scan produces radiation equivalent to 10 to 20 minutes of flight.
... The probability of dying from radiation from a body scanner and that of being killed in a terror attack are roughly the same, he said. About one in 30 million.
"They're both incredibly unlikely events. These are still a factor of 10 lower than the probability of dying in any one year from being struck by lightning in the United States."
As in so many other instances, our legal and civil rights system is being willfully manipulated and trampled for the sake of private and corporate profits.
In this case, the former homeland security chief and co-author of the PATRIOT act, Michael Chertoff, is now the primary promoter of full-body scanners, and is a paid consultant for the companies that sell them!
"… if your doctor had an ownership interest in the scanner, he might go to federal prison for referring you for a scan. These anti-kickback laws, however, do not apply to the influential government cronies who stand to make a fortune from the scanners."
It's just the latest in a very long line of blatant conflicts of interest and corporate agendas that have, and continue to, erode our personal freedoms in the name of "security."
As for the level of health hazard, I sincerely believe the most significant risk you have when flying is due to ionizing radiation but NOT from these scanners; it is from actually flying at 35,000 feet. We were never meant to be living this high above the ground
So what can you do?
The simplest solution is to fly at night or at least avoid flying from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., with noon being the worst. If you fly at night you can reduce your radiation risk by 99 percent because nearly all of the radiation from the sun is being blocked by the earth.
If you are unable to fly at night for whatever reason the next best solution I have found is to use the most potent lipid-soluble free radical antioxidant I know of, which has been shown to virtually eliminate the risk of cataracts and age-related macular degeneration. It also helps prevent sunburn.
And just what antioxidant would that be?
It is astaxanthin, which is carotenoid extracted from a marine algae. The typical dose is 2 mg, but the key is that it needs to be taken for about three weeks before your radiation exposure.
This is not only helpful for exposure to high-altitude radiation but any radiation from the airport scanner or even CT scans, which are 10,000 times stronger.
If you opt for the pat-down, keep hygiene in mind.
Dr. Orient also brought this issue up in her AAPS article:
"… what about the transmission of scabies, crab lice, bedbug larvae, and all manner of germs by TSA gropers? Do they change gloves and wash their hands between subjects, as hospital personnel must do?"
According to eye-witnesses, TSA agents do not routinely change gloves between each passenger… So, the obvious remedy would be to insist the agent puts on a fresh pair of gloves before touching you and your child.
As for the humiliation factor that these enhanced TSA security checks present, I would encourage you to contact your local government officials and state representatives, or join the "We Won't Fly" campaign.
The campaign site also lists 24 additional ways you can make your voice heard on this issue.
Realizing it is impossible to perfectly cook a whole turkey, Chef Grant Achatz has come up to resolve this problem by first dismantling the bird and boiling it in a freezer bags with butter and herbs.
He also shows us how to make a great stuffing.
Jerry Brown addresses a small group of volunteers at his campaign headquarters in Oakland's Jack London Square on Saturday morning, October 30, three days before the election.
Jerry has a simple but obvious solution for California's failing economy and high unemployment rate, which is "we're gonna build stuff!"
On Tuesday, October 26, the two main candidates for Governor of California, Jerry Brown and Meg Whitman, sat down with the current Governor, Arnold Schwarzenegger, for a public conversation about the future of the state at the Women's Conference held in the Long Beach Convention Center.
Moderated by NBC's Matt Lauer, the conversation steered toward addressing the negative campaign adverstisements that have come out of both camps, especially as the election draws closer. Lauer asked both candidates if they would mutually pledge to only run positive ads for the rest of the campaign. Brown immediately agreed, but Whitman refused.
It was a telling moment in this dramatic race:
This video speaks for itself. End of Story. End of Whitman.
It wasn't a total, 100% slam dunk the other night when Jerry Brown tangled with Meg Whitman at the California Gubernatorial Election Debate. But Jerry won and most of the people watching agree.
In my opinion, this is the moment when Jerry carried the day:
(The following letter is from Dr. William Andrews, the founder of Sierra Sciences, a company that has been searching for telomerase activators and which has actually found 858 of them so far. This is an amazing company, completely serious and really on to something. An investment in them could pay off in a huge way. Please respond to Dr. Andrews if you are interested, and otherwise pass his letter on to someone else who might be. Thanks--David Bunnell.)
I am writing you because Sierra Sciences has suffered a sudden and unexpected loss of funding. We need $200,000 per month to keep the company operating until mid-2011, when we expect to become self-sufficient with revenue from product sales.
Sierra Sciences is poised to make world-altering breakthroughs in anti-aging medicine. It is no exaggeration to say that we are on the brink of actually curing the disease we call aging! Unfortunately, our current investors were both hit hard by the financial crisis. They can no longer maintain the funding that drives Sierra Sciences’ research.
Looking ahead, Sierra Sciences’ management realizes that in the current economic climate we will have to generate our funding ourselves. To this end, we have formed an alliance with a well-known and very successful manufacturer and retailer of natural products. They will be marketing our discoveries as anti-aging nutraceuticals. This alliance is expected to bring us enough revenue to support further nutraceutical research by mid-2011, and to support pharmaceutical research by mid-2012.
Yesterday, Sierra Sciences’ two investors informed me that they will soon cease all funding of the company. Without interim funding, we will lose not only our opportunity to profit from the nutraceutical market, but also our opportunity to develop our pharmaceutical discoveries into a cure for aging. This would be a tragedy for humanity, as well as a missed opportunity to create a multi-billion dollar industry.
The bottom line is that Sierra Sciences needs $200,000 per month as soon as possible. We will need this interim funding for 6-12 months, at which time we expect to become self-sufficient from nutraceutical sales. This investment would buy the investor significant ownership of the company.
My current investors have also mentioned that they would consider selling some or all of their equity stake in Sierra Sciences. They are still very interested in curing aging and still strongly believe in Sierra Sciences’ path. Together, they have invested just over $20 million and own a controlling interest in the company. They would welcome a conversation on this subject.
Please contact me if you would like to learn more about our situation. All my contact information is included with my signature below. Under my signature are links to various documents that go into more detail about the background of the science and Sierra Sciences’ progress towards a cure for aging.
William H. Andrews, Ph.D.
President & CEO
Sierra Sciences, LLC
“Cure Aging or Die Trying”
ph: 775-856-9500, ext. 108
cell and text: 775-530-1516
Where’s Bill? http://www.sierrasci.
I support Jerry Brown for Governor of California because he is a problem-solver, and not an ideologue like Meg Whitman. Jerry has an amazing ability to "think-outside-the-box," and come up with creative ways of turning negatives into positives. One example is climate change which he sees as a huge opportunity for creating new technologies and new jobs.
Whitman, on the other hand, wants to suspend California's Climate Law--and she stands firmly with Big Oil on this horrible idea, not with the people. Her idea is to cut the number of state employees by 40,000 jobs, reduce taxes on her wealthy friends, and set up an unconstitutional State grand jury, run out of the Governor's office, to go after "fraud"--i.e., political enemies.
Jerry Brown was a great governor, it's time to bring him back. Let's not put our future in the hands of a person who never bothered to vote and only wants to be Governor of California as a stepping stone to the White House.
Scientists at a "longevity conference" I attended recently kept saying their goal was to "cure aging" by the year 2024. I remember thinking that this seemed rather ambitious and unrealistic and wondered what the rush was all about. Thanks to the following cartoon by Zach Weiner, I now fully understand (this is so true):
Target, you know, the nice people who sell all kinds of crap at low prices which they offset by paying their employees low wages, gave $150,000 to the anti-worker, anti-gay candidate for Governor of Minnesota. Thanks to the Roberts' Supreme Court, corporations can give unlimited money to candidates because in the eyes of the law, a corporation is a "person" just like you and me.
This video and the boycott Target movement is sending a message to corporate America that you can't manipulate the political system without facing some serious consequences. Enjoy:
Initially called "The Facebook," Facebook was a site for Harvard students to connect with one another. Some say it was the only way founder Mark Zuckerberg and his nerdy friends could hope to get a date. Whatever, today, though it's been profitable for less than one year, its valuation is roughly $20 Billion. Is it worth this much? Take a look at this chart, then decide for yourself:
Except for the antenna issues, I can say I actually hate my iPhone 3 for all the same reasons people hate their iPhone 4. What I love about being an experience techie type is I no longer buy shit when it first comes out!
By Carlos Miller
In front of a cable/satellite news team with cameras rolling, a Miami-Dade Metrorail security guard ripped my video camera from my hand, knocking it to the ground, before pocketing it and refusing to return it.
The guard then began pushing me aggressively after I had pulled out my iPhone to continue recording – all while telling me to stop pushing him.
He then struck my hand again in an attempt to snatch the iPhone.
I struck him back, busting his lip.
It was the second time within a month that I had a confrontation with security guards over videography at the Douglas Road Metrorail Station. The first time resulted in a captain from 50 State, the security company that contracts with Miami-Dade County, to “permanently ban” me from the Metrorail.
However, I was never served an official notice. And I did not commit a crime to merit being banned from a public-funded facility in the first place.
After Thursday’s confrontation, paramedics were called to treat the security guard. Cops were called to decide whether I needed to be arrested on battery charges. Or trespassing charges.
Or illegal videography charges, which do not exist but might as well considering how they reacted to me Thursday morning.
The entire incident will be broadcast in an upcoming documentary segment on HDNet TV World Report, the network owned by Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban – the same network that hired Dan Rather when CBS terminated his contracted after 44 years.
The news crew was in town to interview me about Photography is Not a Crime for an in-depth segment on photographers’ rights that will be aired in about three weeks.
Before the incident, I was talking to correspondent Greg Dobbs – who has one hell of a bio – about how I was permanently banned from the Metrorail last month with Stretch Ledford, who is in Europe or else he would have been with us.
We walked through the parking lot of the Douglas Road Metrorail Station and purchased tickets. Dobbs and I then walked inside through the turnstile with me holding up my Canon TX1. The rest of the news crew remained outside.
Within seconds, I was accosted by the female security guard as well as the male security guard wearing a black beret and a single latex glove who knocked the camera from my hand.
I demanded my camera but he refused to give it back.
Then I remembered I had my iPhone, so I started shooting video with that, which prompted the female security to get in my face.
She even lifted her fist up a couple of times as if she was going to strike me.
I kept trying to walk away from her while holding up my camera, which is why the video is so shaky.
The male guard then came after me and I also tried walking away from him while videotaping.
But when he struck me, I struck back instinctively.
He then pulled out a metal baton and came after me with it.
I stepped outside the station and he sat down to tend to his lip.
Miami-Dade detectives who arrived on the scene were considering charging me with battery until they saw the footage shot by the news crew.
After two hours of talking to cops, my camera was returned to me, minus a battery that somehow got lost.
The initial footage of the first assault was not on the memory card, so I suspected they had deleted it. But then when I tried to recover it with recovery software after I had gotten home, I could not find it either. So maybe I had just forgot to hit record.
Thankfully, the news crew did not do the same.
I also realize that I must learn how to hold the iPhone horizontally if I’m going to shoot video, which I rarely do because I always have my TX1 on me. But it did serve as a nice back-up.
After the morning excitement, we had lunch and went to my place where
we continued the interview in front of my computer. They then drove up
Palm Beach to interview Tasha Ford about the story I broke on PINAC last year.
And later in the week, they will fly up to Washington DC to continue interviewing people engaged in the struggle for photographers’ rights.
OK, the quote in my headline isn't an actual quote, so sue me! Meg Whitman's ads are such incredible distortions, a new low in political advertising. Factcheck.org and media outlets throughout California have pointed out the falsehoods in her advertising, yet, she stands steadfast behind every single lie she is spending millions of dollars to broadcast. Watch this:
If this pisses you off, and you want to do something about it, click here: Jerry Brown.
Just in case you think Apple rules the universe because they sell a ton of little cute gadget thingies, think again. When it comes to REAL Computers, Microsoft is still in the driver's seat.
Coming out in October, The Social Network, a movie about the founding of Facebook is going to be a huge hit. I'm reading the book upon which it is based, "The Accidental Billionaires" by Ben Merzrich and enjoying it immensely.
It's not exactly a history book, rather a blend of fiction and fact, which is probably why it is so much fun to read. As Merzich confesses in the Introduction, "I do employ the technique of re-created dialogue."
Reportedly, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg and the members of his inner circle already hate the movie even though they haven't seen it. According to Kara Swisher of All Things Digital, "Zuck" is dreading its release because of "inaccuracies" in the book it is based on.
Can't say I blame him, but what the hell, as the trailer says, "You don't get to 500 Million Friends without making a few Enemies."
Note to author Merzich: ALL BILLIONAIRES ARE ACCIDENTAL.
Meg Whitman should watch these videos. Jerry Brown was never the free-spending liberal she portrays in her completely misleading and inaccurate advertising. He was noted for his "small is beautiful" philosophy, fiscal conservatism, and entrepreneurial imagination. When local governments were going broke because of Proposition 13, Jerry bailed them out using the accumulated surplus he had build up at the state level.
His record as Governor of California is outstanding. There's never been a governor like him and we could use another dose.
There is no "embedded code" for these YouTube videos, but here's the link.
Robots have been with us for several decades, but lately robot technology has accelerated to the point where sooner than you might think there will be human-like robots among us. This remarkable video from Honda will give you a good idea about where we are headed:
To understand why Andrews should be taken seriously, you first need to know a few basics about telomeres. Once considered nothing more than a relatively long strand of "junk" DNA at both ends of every chromosome in the human body, we now know telomeres are vitally important. When chromosomes divide and multiply, instead of losing DNA that matters, chromosomes only lose some of the telomere's DNA.
With each and every replication of our DNA, part of the telomere sequence is chopped off. This is how nature protects the DNA in a chromosome. Today, scientists can measure the age of cells by the length of the telomere--the cells in infants have long telomeres, the cells in adults have shorter telomeres. When telomeres become too short (less than 5,000 "base pairs") cells can no longer divide. Then one of two things happens; the cell either enters a state of paralysis called "senescence" or it simple commits suicide (apoptosis) and dies.Thus, telomeres are the biological clocks of aging. Because they get shorter and shorter as cells divide, people cannot live beyond a theoretical limit of 125 years. No matter how well you take care of yourself, what you eat, how great your genes are, or how lucky you may be--it is thought impossible to live longer. Indeed, the longest "confirmed" human life span in history belongs to a woman named Jeanne Calment (pictured here) who died on August 4, 1997, at the age of 122 years, 164 days.
What came first, Dr. Andrews, your interest in telomeres or your interest in anti-aging?
I can remember when I was around 10 years old, my father, who realized I was very interested in science, said, "when you grown up why don't you become a doctor and cure aging?" He used to tell me all the time he doesn't understand why "no one has cured aging yet" and you know, I automatically thought of aging as a disease. (Bill is pictured here with his dad, Ralph, who is 83)
I became obsessed with this idea of curing aging and all through high school, college, graduate school everyone knew that that was my mission in life. It was only after I got into anti-aging research that I found out the whole idea of aging as a disease is a concept that very few people understand.You had quite a career going at the biotechnology company, Geron Corporation. You were one of the inventors of the year and you had quite a lot of patents. So why did you leave and start Sierra Sciences?
I was afraid I would wake up 20 years from now and nobody did this. I went to Geron because their mission was to find a way to turn on telomerase to expand lifespan. After we cloned the telomerase gene, we did 2 experiments. We put it into normal cells and showed it could stop the aging process but we also took the anti-sense of telomerase and showed it could kill cancer cells, very quickly.
So Geron, even though their name comes from the word "gerontology" chose to go after cancer because the investors realized, and they were correct in this, there was a quicker return on investments doing cancer research.
I was a little stunned by, a little upset about it. I'm very interested in cancer research but it seemed like enough people were already doing cancer research and not enough people focused on aging. So I left and created Sierra Sciences to continue the work on telomere biology and telomerase to control the aging process.
My big fear was, if I didn't, as I said before, I'd wake up 20 years from now and find out that nobody even tried.What lead you to believe telomeres are the key to all this? Some people say, 'sure, they are biomarkers of aging, but they probably don't cause aging.'
As long as I've been interested in aging I've been wondering why would environmental effects cause aging? I'm sure they do play a role in aging but if they were the only thing or the main thing causing aging we would see people in different environments aging at different rates. This told me there is some kind of clock ticking inside of our cells and what was that, what possible clock do we have and what kind of clock could explain why cats have a maximum lifespan very different from humans?
I was baffled by this for many years. I started attending anti-aging conferences, always keeping an eye out for something that could be this clock.
And then, about 15 years ago, I listened to Calvin Harley, the Chief Scientific Officer of Geron Corporation speak at a conference in Tahoe City at the Granlibakken Resort. He started explaining how telomeres shorten when cells divide and how there was a correlation between the telomere length and the age of a person.
I found myself sitting there nodding my head, thinking "this is it. This guy has figured it out." Of course, other people working with Cal figured it out too including Nobel Prize winners Elizabeth Blackburn and Carol Greider, but then it was all new to me.
I made an effort to meet Calvin as he was walking off the stage after his talk and simply said to him, "Calvin, I want to work with you. This is what I want to do."
Two weeks later I was working at Geron Corporation on this mission.
Amazing, and you've been at it ever since.
Yes, indeed I have, and to get back to answering your question, why do I believe telomeres are the key to aging. At that time it was the only explanation that I could come up with. I just knew this was it, but of course since then there has been an overwhelming amount of research showing that telomeres play a role in aging. And ever since we lengthened telomeres by putting telomerase into cells, that's been the real coup de grâce. We proved that by lengthening telomeres, we can actually make cells younger.
There is some concern that in lengthening telomeres you might also cause people to get cancer. Or suppose somebody already has cancerous cells, wouldn't you be inducing the telomeres of the cancer cells to grow as well as the normal cells?
That's a very good question. Nobody has shown today whether telomerase increases or decreases the risk of cancer. I think there is overwhelming data showing it is actually going to decrease the risk of cancer. There are still people who believe the opposite, for legitimate reasons, but I think they are getting fewer and fewer.
But you didn't say, "Will telomerase cause cancer," you said, "Will longer telomeres cause cancer," and I don't think most people believe that. I believe if you make telomeres long that will decrease the risk of cancer and just about everything else, everything bad for you.
Short telomeres are bad. Short telomeres will cause cancer, so keeping the telomeres long will prevent that cell from becoming a cancer. It is well known that a cell requires 8-to-10 mutations before it can become a cancer. I believe that most of those mutation are induced by short telomeres. So keeping telomeres long is a way to prevent cancer, and it can also help fight the cancer.
Another thing some people are saying is that moles and polyps increase the risk of cancer. They are precancerous but when you look at the size of a polyp or mole you can estimate it to be approximately 10-to-the-7th cells (107) . It takes about 30 cells divisions to make cells this big. So, if you have a single cell that has lost growth control but still is not yet a cancer, the telomeres will get really short because of all the cell division.
The reason moles and polyps are precancerous is because of their short telomeres. By turning on telomerase, you can lengthen those telomeres and therefore decrease the odds that they are going to cause the other mutations that cause cancer. By having a telomerase inducer, moles and polyps can grow and keep their telomeres long.There are studies that show telomeres in polyps and moles are long but someone as experiences as me in measuring telomere length knows it is very difficult to do this accurately. A lot of time in these papers I believe people really didn't have a good way of measuring telomere length. And the same thing goes true for measuring telomerase activity. Now then if a mole or polyp already has telomerase activity then an inducers is not going to effect that cell in any way.
I believe a telomerase inducer will help you fight cancer. If you already have a cancer, taking a telomerase inducer it's is not going to help your cancer cells stay immortal, but it will boost your immune system. When the telomeres in immune cells get really short they loose the ability to fight. But if you take a telomerase inducer, you can keep the telomeres in your immune cells long and maintain the ability of your immune cells to fight the cancer.
The immune sytem is actually pretty effective at
fighting cancers. This is one of the reasons cancers are a lot more
prevalent in the elderly because older people have shorter telomeres in
their immune cells.
(editor's note: New study published in JAMA validates some of the points Dr. Andrews makes above concerning telomere length and cancer. Click here to see the JAMA article.)At Sierra Sciences you've screened hundred of thousands of compounds looking for telomerase inducers, and you've found quite a few of them. But you haven't yet found one that is powerful enough to induce immortality and achieve what you are really looking for. What happens next if you find the compound that will cause cells to actually become immortal?
Years ago people were telling us it is impossible to find a telomerase inducer and I think that is part of the reason we have no competition. Nobody else has decided to make the effort to look for a telomerase inducer.
We found our first drug to induce telomerses 2 1/2 years ago and we sent it to all the people who had told us it was impossible and had them test it. Sure enough, they all came back and said "Wow, it works!" They didn't understand why it works but it does work.
Since then we have gotten up to 39 different families of drugs or chemicals that induce telomerase and we're up to about 12% of what we need, or think we need, to make human cells immortal. And actually that is pretty high because we think it won't be too much harder, using structure activity material relationship activities and learning the mechanisms of action of these drugs, to figure out ways to make these chemicals more potent. But at that point we then have to go through FDA trials and that is going to require up to 12 years to get something to the market.
We think we can get this into the pet market earlier.
Oh really, amazing.Our colleagues at the University of Texas at Southwestern and the University of Edinburgh have found cats, dogs and horses all age by telomere shortening, even though mice don't and other rodents don't. We think we can sell our telomerase inducers to the cat, dog and horse markets. Many of the owners will buy a lot of it to extend the lifespan and the healthspan of their pets. Unfortunately the people who love their mice and their rabbits won't benefit because these animals age by different mechanisms.
We also see earlier opportunities in the stem cell market. Recently, we coauthored a paper with Mike West at BioTime Corporation showing that induced pluripotent stem cells have shorter telomeres than you would like. So, let's say you want to take cells from an elderly person and induce them to become pluripotent stem cells and then put them back into a person. Well, they are not going be as effective because the telomeres in older stem cells are short. So, I think a telomerase inducers is going to be very, very useful for that whole market.
And there's a few other research markets where telomerase inducers will be useful, but even more exciting is the possibility of fighting life threatening diseases, some of which could be FDA fast tracked. For sure, this would include progeria, a disease where kids age very rapidly age and die before they are 20. Our company is very interested in that disease even though we don't see it ever making us any money. I can tell you every employee here would feel great self-satisfaction knowing we'd come up with a way of helping these kids even though there is only 15 in the world at any one time. Helping them to live a normal life would be wonderful.There's also the immune systems of AIDS patents. When a person first gets infected with the AIDS virus the immune systems puts up a pretty big fight. Ultimately though it is unsuccessfully because of the fact the AIDS virus is pretty much inside the immune cells. So in this effort to fight off the virus the telomeres of the immune cells get really short. This is why back in the early 80's when AIDS was first discovered doctors were surprise to find these AIDS patents had no T cells. It's because the telomeres got short and essentially the immune cells died of old age.
So there is a lot more to your efforts than just the single goal of immortality?
The goal is not to just make us older, the goal is to make us healthier. When I'm 140 years old, I want to look and feel like a 24 year old. The goal is not to extend lifespan, the goal is to extend healthspan.
I keep a list of all the different diseases related to telomere shortening and this list has gotten to way over 100 different diseases that humans suffer from that are controlled by telomere length. That includes cardiovascular disease, cancer, which we just discussed, macular degeneration, osteoarthritis, osteoporosis, and some more recent data is showing a big correlation between Alzheimer's disease and telomere length. Keeping telomeres long could prevent Alzheimer's or could stop the progression of Alzheimer's if a person is diagnosed with it.
Even if telomeres didn't have anything to do with lifespan people would live longer because the number one cause of death is heart disease and cancer. If we can decrease that significantly we are going to increase the average lifespan and healthspan of humans.
When you are a centenarian, you obviously plan to be different from today's centenarians. You say you want to run a 7-minute mile when you are 130 years old.
an ultramarathon runner. I've been running ultramarathons since 1986
and almost all ultramarathon runners have their biography written to a
website, run110.com. If you read my
bio, which has been there unchanged since 1997, it says my ultimate goal is to run the
Western States 100 mile race when I'm 100 years old and I plan on have
my father, who will be 125 at the time, crew for me. (link to Bill's bio)
That was my first bold statement. And yes, my most recent bold statement is I'm going to feel like we succeeded in what we are doing when I run a 7-minute mile when I'm 130 years old or when somebody else does before me.
Is there an existing record for 100-year-olds running the mile or a marathon?I know there have been 90-year-olds who have run a marathon, but I don't think there is a record for the marathon at 100. But I think it will happen before I get a shot at it because there are number of older athletes doing supper well running ultramarathans and marathons.
That's a very tough thing to do. I am very eager to live forever and I have to really exercise a lot of discipline in order to do that. I sacrifice my social life but I feel that what I lose in a social life right now I'm going to make up 10 fold more after I have a cure for aging and figure out a way to extend my lifespan.
I think when you are 130 and can run the mile in 7 minutes, you'll have a lot of friends and fans. Can you imagine? (laughter).
I can imagine. As I said, I'm eager to live forever and I know I'm
never going to live forever, I'm going to die early, if I don't keep
fit and stay in shape. There is a lot of supporting data that has come
out in just the last couple years showing that good health, physical
and mental health help keep your telomeres long.
Put differently, being unhealthy both physically and mentally accelerates telomere shortening by creating stress inducing free radicals. Free radicals actually clip DNA telomeres making them shorter and also causing tissue damage thereby inducing cell division to repair that damage. Whenever you induce cell division you get telomere shortening.
Studies have been published in two major publications in the last
year showing endurance athletes have longer
telomeres than people who aren't as athletic or who are
sedentary. Obesity has been shown to affect telomere length and lack of omega-3
fatty acids and vitamin D have been shown to affect telomere length.
Everytime I hear or read about something new I include that in my regimen. I exercise, try not to get obese, and take my omega-3 and vitamin D.
But then on the mental side it has been shown that people who have a lot of mental stress have shorter telomeres. Elizabether Blackburn has published some great papers finding people who are caregivers for Alzheimer's patients have shorter telomeres because they are clearly under a lot of stress. So meditation might be something that can prevent telomere shortening.
Even pessimism, people who are pessimistic have been shown to have shorter telomeres. If you ask a person a question like do you think you will live to be 100 and they say "no" they probably won't because thier telomeres are going to be shorter. But if they answer "yes" the probably will because their telomeres are going to be longer.
So, I try to be very opltimistic, not pessimistic. I try to cause everybody else to have stress, not me.
Do you meditate and if so, how often?
Yeah, I meditate ... I've gone to meditation people and they tell me I already meditate.
From the running?Well, running and I learned a long, long time ago, maybe when I was back in high school, I just go into a self meditation type mode and it helps a lot. Every time I get on an airplane as soon as I'm sitting in the plane, everything is ready and the plane starts to move, I always fall asleep and I usually sleep through the whole flight.
What's more important, diet or exercise?Clearly exercise. I'm trying to figure out if there is a diet that could keep your cardiovascular system strong without exercise. However, I think you cannot separate one from another because if you ate at Burger King three meals a day and ran 10 miles a day you are still going to get cardiovascular disease and die.
Nobody has ever asked me that question. One thing I will mention is antioxidants clearly prevent telomere damage. A lot of fruits, particularly blueberries, contain a lot of antioxidants.Is there anything else you'd like to include in this inteview?
Just that bad things happen when telomeres get short and so, let's keep them long.
Paul Reubens (Pee-wee Herman) was a genius at visualizing labor saving applications for ordinary household devices. He would have been a great App designer for the iPhone and the iPad. The good news is, Pee-wee is back. Back from nearly two decades of banishment for you know what....
Pee-wee and his gang will be on Broadway this fall. Click here for tickets, and enjoy the following YouTube video:
1. Your kitchen sink: With more
dirt than a typical bathroom, and over 500,000 bacteria per square inch
in the drain, your kitchen sink basin and faucet are teeming with germs.
2. Airplane bathrooms: Never mind the fecal bacteria that’s commonly found on door handles and faucets, the worst part is the tornado of germy particles that’s spewed into the air when you flush the toilet.
3. Wet laundry (even after it’s been washed): A dirty pair of underwear contains about a gram of fecal matter, and this gets spread around the entire load of laundry very quickly. It’s not until you dry the clothes that the germs are destroyed.
4. Drinking fountains: All public drinking fountains are loaded with germs, but those in schools -- which contained anywhere from 62,000 to 2.7 million bacteria per square inch of the spigot -- were the worst.
5. Shopping cart handles: While you’re innocently shopping for groceries, your hands are grasping a handle covered in saliva, bacteria and fecal matter from dozens of people.
6. ATM buttons: Think about how often these buttons are touched everyday. Now think about how often they’re cleaned. This explains why one study found an average of over 1,200 bacteria on the average ATM key.
7. Your handbag: Women, your purse is likely overrun with thousands, and even millions, of bugs like salmonella, E. coli, staph bacteria and more. Makes you think twice about putting your handbag on the floor, and then plopping it down onto your kitchen counter, doesn’t it?
8. Playgrounds: Your typical children’s playground is covered in bodily fluids like blood, mucus, saliva and urine.
9. Mats and machines at health clubs: Yoga mat? Elliptical machine? Think bacteria factory. Such mats and cardio machines have been found to contain antibiotic-resistant staph bacteria and more.
10. Your bathtub: Bathtubs contain more than 100,000 bacteria per square inch, some of which you have just washed off your own body.
11. Your office phone: Phones get coated with germs from your mouth and hands, to the tune of over 25,000 germs per square inch.
12. Hotel-room remote control: This little remote has been used by hundreds of other people, and likely wasn’t thoroughly disinfected in between.
The one time I interviewed Meg Whitman she was in her cubicle (yes, cubicle) at EBay surrounded by what she called her advisers, about 150 different versions of Mr. Potato Head. She had just arrived at EBay from Hasbro where she managed the Mr. Potato Head brand, she explained.
Meg was really accessible back then, and foolish me, I thought she was a lot of fun. She took EBay from fledgling star-up status and turned it into a global empire and along the way she made a shit-load of money for herself. She had no interest in politics, never bothered to vote, and if she had a political opinion, she kept it to herself.
Forced into early retirement when many of her initiatives at EBay began to unravel, including the acquisitions of Skype and StumbleUpon, Meg looked around for something to do. It had to be something that suitably reflected her status in the business press as one of the "world's most powerful women." Woe is us, she decided being governor of California would be just the ticket.
Meg could learn the ropes by simply campaigning, avoid revealing her political ignorance by simply not talking to the press, and use her vast resources to their best advantage by hiring the best PR flaks and advertising gurus money could buy. And she wouldn't even have to bother with fund-raising because she has plenty of her own dough.
The video posted here depicts Meg as an Avatar (which she just might be after-all). I think it tells us most of what we need to know about her as a politician:
If you can read this chart without getting angry you must work for a drug company or hold a massive amount of stock in one. It is outrageous and much worse than I could have imagined. Why do you let ourselves get ripped-off like this?Source: Online Colleges and Universities
Watching this clip from Steve Job's appearance at the "All Things Digital" conference somehow made me think of the frustration President Obama is facing from British Petroleum! Of course, spilled oil is a bit more serious than dropped phone calls--but the feeling of helplessness must be about the same.