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Old 10-01-2008, 11:42 AM   #129
Garrett Smith
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Craig,
Interesting studies. As with anything, I'm sure that FFM has a point of diminishing returns in terms of longevity at both ends of the spectrum.

One more on this general topic of FM and FFM, before I go on a slight tangent, this one on somatotype:

Somatotype and longevity of former university athletes and nonathletes.
Quote:
A longitudinal study was conducted on 398 athletes and 369 nonathletes who were born before 1920 and attended Michigan State University. The subjects were compared to determine if intercollegiate athletic competition accounts for significant variation in longevity when considered with somatotype. Because some of the subjects were still alive at the time of the study, the BMDP Statistical Software was used to do a survival analysis with covariates. Preliminary comparisons considered the differences in somatotype between athletes and nonathletes. Two sample t-tests indicated that athletes were more mesomorphic and less ectomorphic (p less than .05) than nonathletes. When comparing the relationship between somatotype and longevity, the pooled data of athletes and nonathletes indicated that endomorphs were shorter lived than the other three comparison groups. When only the athletes were considered, similar results were found. However, the nonathlete group exhibited differences only between the mesomorphic and endomorphic groups. The endomorphs were shorter lived. Longevity was examined by using the Cox proportional hazards regression method with somatotype and athlete/nonathlete status as covariates. Somatotype, by itself, was found to be significantly related to longevity, (p less than .001). Athletic status was not significantly related to longevity, either by itself or when entered into the model with somatotype.
Searching through Pubmed, I came across the precocity-longevity hypothesis, which I found interesting. Basically, testing an observation that those who achieve highly earlier in life tend to pass on earlier as well. Late achievers can now have something to feel good about (me being one of them!):

Younger achievement age predicts shorter life for governors: testing the precocity-longevity hypothesis with artifact controls.
Quote:
McCann's precocity-longevity hypothesis suggests that the prerequisites, concomitants, and consequences of early peaks in career achievement may foster the conditions for premature death. In the present test of the precocity-longevity hypothesis, it was predicted that state governors elected at younger ages live shorter lives. Two competing explanatory frameworks, the life expectancy artifact and the selection bias artifact, also were tested. In a sample of 1,672 male governors, the precocity-longevity prediction was supported, and it was demonstrated with correlation, regression, and subsample construction strategies that the life expectancy and selection bias artifacts were not sufficient to account or the significant positive correlation between election age and death age. The positive correlation also was maintained when year of birth, years of service, span of service, and state of election were statistically controlled.
Achievement age-death age correlations alone cannot provide unequivocal support for the precocity-longevity hypothesis.
Quote:
This study is a further exploration (see S. J. H. McCann, 2001) of the capacity of the selection bias and life expectancy artifacts to produce correlations between peak achievement ages and death ages that could be mistakenly construed as support for the precocity-longevity hypothesis that those who reach career pinnacles earlier tend to have shorter lives. For 1,672 governors, 10 fake achievement age variables and 10 fake death age variables were randomly generated. Fake achievement age variables were correlated with real death age; fake death age variables were correlated with real achievement age. However, the real age correlations were much larger than the fake age correlations, and when the 2 artifacts were controlled through a subsample strategy, only real age correlations were significant. Overall, the results support the precocity-longevity hypothesis.
Precocity predicts shorter life for major league baseball players: confirmation of McCann's precocity-longevity hypothesis.
Quote:
We tested McCann's precocity-longevity hypothesis, which proposes that early career achievement is related to premature death, for Major League baseball players (N = 3,760). Age at debut was the definition for precocity. We controlled for possible artifacts of life expectancy selection, the "healthy worker" effect, player position, and body-mass index. Statistically significant Pearson correlations occurred between precocity and longevity, and remained significant when adjusted for artifacts. In a hierarchical multiple regression, every year a baseball player debuted before the average age of 23.6 years was associated with life span being shortened by 0.24 years. The results support the hypothesis that earlier achievement is associated with earlier death.
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