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Old 09-29-2008, 09:54 AM   #121
Garrett Smith
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Longevity, mortality and body weight
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The purpose of this study was to analyze the relation of total body weight to longevity and mortality. The MEDLINE database was searched for data that allow analysis of the relationship between absolute body weight and longevity or mortality. Additional data were used involving US veterans and baseball players. Trend lines of age at death versus body weight are presented. Findings show absolute body size is negatively related to longevity and life expectancy and positively to mortality. Trend lines show an average age at death versus weight slope of −0.4 years/kg. We also found that gender differences in longevity may be due to differences in body size. Animal research is consistent with the findings presented. Biological mechanisms are also presented to explain why increased body mass may reduce longevity. Life expectancy has increased dramatically through improved public health measures and medical care and reduced malnutrition. However, overnourishment and increased body size have promoted an epidemic of chronic disease and reduced our potential longevity. In addition, both excess lean body mass and fat mass may promote chronic disease.
In peaceful times, if one wants to live longer, maintaining the lowest body mass that is functional is conducive to longevity.
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Old 09-29-2008, 11:05 AM   #122
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I found this part interesting...

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In addition, both excess lean body mass and fat mass may promote chronic disease.
The correlation between fat mass and chronic disease is no surprise, but I would be curious to hear what is the mechanism that causes excess lean body mass to be a factor in the development of disease. Is it just the caloric overload often necessary to maintain higher body weight?

Garrett, do you happen to have the whole study?
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Old 09-29-2008, 11:36 AM   #123
Craig Loizides
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Leanness trumps calories?
http://www.cbass.com/LeannessCancer.htm


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In addition, both excess lean body mass and fat mass may promote chronic disease.
I found this interesting too. I remember reading an article once that said lean body mass is one of the best predictors of longevity. I think it said that whether looking at age or disease, death occurs when lean mass drops to about 60% of normal.
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Old 09-29-2008, 11:40 AM   #124
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Robert,
I don't have the whole thing, I could see about getting it though.

The higher LBM, to me, simply means that more calories would have to be consumed for even minimum maintenance, which means more oxidation and metabolic byproducts for the organs to deal with.

Any fat or muscle that is not directly related to "survival" (whatever that means for the individual at the time, be it for warmth or strength or speed or whatever) will be detrimental to longevity in the long term. It makes sense to me.

As we live so much longer than our prime fertile years these days, the very muscle that may help us in mating (appearance or the ability to "out-compete") has a cost on the amount of years we live.
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Old 09-29-2008, 11:49 AM   #125
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Another one:

Body composition, body fat distribution, and resting metabolic rate in healthy centenarians.(full text of article available for download, see right side of screen)

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Our study investigated body composition and body fat distribution in healthy centenarians. Body composition, body fat distribution, and resting metabolic rate (RMR) were studied in 40 adult subjects aged < 50 y, 35 aged subjects > 75 y, and 15 healthy centenarians aged > 100 y. Body composition was determined by bioimpedance analysis, body fat distribution was calculated as waist-hip ratio (WHR), and RMR was calculated by using the Arciero-Poehlman formula. Healthy centenarians had a cognitive impairment and degree of disability greater than aged subjects. Despite such differences, fat-free mass (FFM) and RMR were not different in centenarians compared with aged subjects but were lower than in adult subjects. In contrast, healthy centenarians had a WHR lower than that of aged subjects but not different from that of the adult subjects. After the level of physical activity and degree of disability were adjusted for, FFM (44 +/- 2.7 and 40 +/- 1.1 kg; P < 0.05) and RMR (6757 +/- 761 and 5891 +/- 723 kJ/24 h; P < 0.05) were significantly higher in healthy centenarians than in aged subjects, respectively. Independent of age, sex, body weight, degree of disability, level of physical activity, and fasting plasma triiodothyronine, there was a strong correlation between RMR and FFM (r = 0.50, P < 0.05) in healthy centenarians. In conclusion, healthy centenarians had a lower FFM and higher body fat content than aged subjects. Level of physical activity and degree of disability seem to be the major determinants for explaining such differences.
Interesting...even with the poor body comp measurement methods...
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Old 09-30-2008, 05:30 AM   #126
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Originally Posted by Thomas Bailly View Post
I wonder, how heavy are Okinawains?

any of you have any science on this topic?
I couldn't find any info on the average weight of an Okinawan but those that took part in the Okinawa Centenarian Study had average BMI's of 18 - 22 and were described as being lean fit and healthy.

www.okicent.org
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Old 09-30-2008, 07:40 PM   #127
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Anecdotal information. When I was on Okinawa (1989-1991) I didn't see any really fat locals, but this may be changing. I also didn't see any really skinny ones. 5' 6" and 150 # seemed typical for a a male. They did seem to be more active, on average, than Americans.
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Old 10-01-2008, 07:46 AM   #128
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I found these 3 studies relating BMI, body fat, and fat free mass to mortality.

http://www.nature.com/oby/journal/v1...y2004131a.html
http://www.nature.com/ijo/journal/v2.../0801082a.html
http://www.nature.com/ijo/journal/v2.../0801925a.html

They show that BMI vs mortality is a U-shaped curve. Mortality increases with increasing body fat and decreases increasing fat-free mass.

Two of the studies showed mortality decreases continuously with increasing fat free mass. One showed a reverse J-curve where mortality decreased to a point and then started to increase or level off. There's probably a point where you have too much fat-free mass but it's not something most people have to ever worry about.
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Old 10-01-2008, 11:42 AM   #129
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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.
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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.
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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.
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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.
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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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Old 10-01-2008, 01:35 PM   #130
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Originally Posted by Garrett Smith View Post
Longevity, mortality and body weight

In peaceful times, if one wants to live longer, maintaining the lowest body mass that is functional is conducive to longevity.
Very interesting read. Makes me think about a biological set point for weight. Im certain nature has an intended set point for all body types and any manipulation of that throws the spectrum off.
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