Slowly but surely, scientists are increasingly starting to focus on the influence of nutrition on cancer. Mounting evidence supports the notion that a diet high in healthy fats and low in net carbohydrates (total carbs minus fiber, i.e. non-fiber carbs) may significantly lower your risk by improving mitochondrial and metabolic function.
Fermented foods are also gaining recognition as an important anti-cancer adjunct. The beneficial bacteria found in fermented foods have been shown particularly effective for suppressing colon cancer, but may also inhibit cancer of the breast, liver, small intestine and other organs.
For example, butyrate, a short-chain fatty acid created when microbes ferment dietary fiber in your gut, have been shown to induce programmed cell death of colon cancer cells, and cultured milk products may reduce your risk of bladder cancer about 29 percent.
Cultured Raw Milk Does Your Body Good. In the case of cultured probiotics in cultured milk products, and these beneficial bacteria have been shown to induce changes reflecting an increase in carbohydrate metabolism. (source)
How to Become a ’Superager’
The New York Times
by Lisa Feldman Barrett
Think about the people in your life who are 65 or older. Some of them are experiencing the usual mental difficulties of old age, like forgetfulness or a dwindling attention span. Yet others somehow manage to remain mentally sharp. My father-in-law, a retired doctor, is 83 and he still edits books and runs several medical websites.
Why do some older people remain mentally nimble while others decline? “Superagers” (a term coined by the neurologist Marsel Mesulam) are those whose memory and attention isn’t merely above average for their age, but is actually on par with healthy, active 25-year-olds. My colleagues and I at Massachusetts General Hospital recently studied superagers to understand what made them tick.
Our lab used functional magnetic resonance imaging to scan and compare the brains of 17 superagers with those of other people of similar age. We succeeded in identifying a set of brain regions that distinguished the two groups. These regions were thinner for regular agers, a result of age-related atrophy, but in superagers they were indistinguishable from those of young adults, seemingly untouched by the ravages of time.
What are these crucial brain regions? If you asked most scientists to guess, they might nominate regions that are thought of as “cognitive” or dedicated to thinking, such as the lateral prefrontal cortex. However, that’s not what we found. Nearly all the action was in “emotional” regions, such as the midcingulate cortex and the anterior insula.
May lab was not surprised by this discovery, because we’ve seen modern neuroscience debunk the notion that there is a distinction between “cognitive” and “emotional” brain regions. (source)