Category Archives: Exercise

How Many Steps Per Day Is Associated With Reduced Risk Of Death For All Causes?

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Paper referenced in the video:

How many steps a day to reduce the risk of all-cause mortality? A dose–response meta-analysis https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/34808011/

Which Gut Bacteria Are Associated With Poor Health, And How Can We Limit Them?

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Papers referenced in the video:

Human microbiome: an academic update on human body site specific surveillance and its possible role https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32524…

Taxonomic signatures of cause-specific mortality risk in human gut microbiome https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33976…

The Role of Short-Chain Fatty Acids From Gut Microbiota in Gut-Brain Communication https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32082…

Inhibiting antibiotic-resistant Enterobacteriaceae by microbiota-mediated intracellular acidification https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30563…

Short chain fatty acids in human large intestine, portal, hepatic and venous blood https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/3678950/

Age-Associated Changes in Gut Microbiota and Dietary Components Related with the Immune System in Adulthood and Old Age: A Cross-Sectional Study https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31370…

The microbiome of professional athletes differs from that of more sedentary subjects in composition and particularly at the functional metabolic level https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28360…

Exercise Alters Gut Microbiota Composition and Function in Lean and Obese Humans https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29166..

Quantifying Biological Age: Blood Test #5 in 2020

My latest blood test results are in-how’s my biological age?

In the video I discuss my dietary approach prior to my latest blood test, the blood test results, and my plan to improve them with diet going forward.

The Impact Of The Microbiome On Lifespan

Germ-free mice (animals don’t have a microbiome) live longer than microbiome-containing mice, but it’s impractical for people to live in a bubble for their entire lifespan. As a more practical approach, which microbiome-derived factors impact lifespan, and can they be modified?

Dietary supplementation with acarbose increases lifespan, and one reason for that may involve reduced circulating levels of glucose, but the other side of that story involves increased gut bacterial production of short chain fatty acids (SCFAs). Whether acarbose will increase lifespan in people is unknown, and with the goal of increasing lifespan, are there other ways to increase SCFAs?

Is Weight Loss Driving Improvements For Resting Heart Rate And Heart Rate Variability?

Consistent exercise training would seem like the obvious choice to reduce resting heart rate (RHR) and to increase heart rate variability (HRV). Are there other factors that can impact these variables? Body weight and daily calorie intake may affect RHR and HRV, and in the video I present 700+ days of data for these correlations.

Resting Heart Rate, Heart Rate Variability: December 2019 Update

In earlier posts, I reported year-over-year improvements for my resting heart rate (RHR), from 51.5 (bpm) when I first started tracking in August 2018 to 48 bpm in November 2019 (https://michaellustgarten.wordpress.com/2019/12/05/resting-heart-rate-heart-rate-variability-still-making-progress/). Did my year-over-year RHR improvement continue in December 2019?

As shown below, in December 2018, my average RHR was 49.5 bpm. In December 2019, it was 47.5! These data are significantly different (p=6.5E-05):

rhr dec 2019

While RHR is one metric of cardiovascular health, heart rate variability (HRV) is another. With a stronger heart, the expectation would be a lower RHR, but a higher HRV. December 2019 was my best month ever for HRV, with an average HRV value of 86.3!

hrv 12 2019

Also note that December 2019’s HRV value is significantly different when compared with December 2018 (p=1.6E-11).

How am I able to continuously improve my RHR, and recently, my HRV? I average 15-20 miles of walking per week, and 3-4 days/week of structured exercise (1 hr/session), including a combination of weights, core, and stretching. My average HR during my structured workouts had been ~105 bpm prior to the past few months, but in November and December 2019 I made more of an effort to minimize rest periods, and included higher reps to keep my exercise HR as high as possible. My goal is to get my RHR to 40 bpm, which is associated with maximally reduced risk of death for all causes (https://michaellustgarten.wordpress.com/2019/02/02/resting-heart-rate-whats-optimal/). Stay tuned for more RHR and HRV data next month!

If you’re interested, please have a look at my book!

Epigenetic Aging: Inflammation, Exercise, Smoking

Besides diet (https://michaellustgarten.wordpress.com/2019/12/07/slowing-epigenetic-aging-with-diet/), are there other factors that may impact epigenetic aging? First, let’s have a look at clinically relevant variables, including inflammation, the lipid profile, kidney function, blood pressure, and body size/dimensions (Liu et al. 2019):

EA crp.png

One of the strongest correlations for the clinical variables with epigenetic aging (AgeAccelGrim) is found for C-reactive protein (CRP), with higher CRP being associated with an older epigenetic age. This data supports the hypothesis that CRP levels as low as possible may be representative of biological youth, which I’ve previously written about (https://michaellustgarten.wordpress.com/2019/10/19/optimizing-biological-age-crp/). Similarly, higher values for insulin, glucose, triglycerides, systolic blood pressure, BMI, and the waist/hip ratio were correlated with an older epigenetic age, whereas higher HDL was correlated with a younger epigenetic age. Significant correlations were not identified for total or LDL cholesterol, creatinine, or diastolic blood pressure.

Investigating further, the strongest correlation for epigenetic aging was found for smoking, as current smokers had an older epigenetic age. In contrast, those who exercised, drank alcohol, and that had higher levels of education and income had younger epigenetic ages (Liu et al. 2019):

exerc ea

 

References

Lu AT, Quach A, Wilson JG, Reiner AP, Aviv A, Raj K, Hou L, Baccarelli AA, Li Y, Stewart JD, Whitsel EA, Assimes TL, Ferrucci L, Horvath S. DNA methylation GrimAge strongly predicts lifespan and healthspan. Aging (Albany NY). 2019 Jan 21;11(2):303-327. doi: 10.18632/aging.101684.

If you’re interested, please have a look at my book!

Resting Heart Rate, Heart Rate Variability: Still Making Progress?

Although many of my posts aimed at improving health and longevity are focused on diet, in this post I’ll show data that demonstrates that I’ve been able to steadily improve my cardiovascualr fitness. In earlier posts I reported that a resting heart rate (RHR) of 40 beats per minute (bpm) was associated with lowest risk for all-cause mortality (https://michaellustgarten.wordpress.com/2019/02/02/resting-heart-rate-whats-optimal/), and I noted my own RHR progress in a year-over-year update, from values of 51.5 – 52.7 bpm in August – Sept 2018 to 49.3 – 48.7 bpm during the same months in 2019 (see https://michaellustgarten.wordpress.com/2019/10/08/resting-heart-rate-year-over-year-update/). Have I continued to make progress?

Shown below are 2 more months of RHR data, from August – November 2018, and the data for those months in 2019:
rhr 4 moFrom August – November 2018, I reduced my RHR from ~52 to 50 bpm, whereas in 2019, I made smaller progress, but the trend is still downward, from 49 to 48 bpm. The 2018 data is significantly different from the 2019 data, as assessed by single-factor ANOVA (p = 8E-14).

Adding strength to these findings is that my heart rate variability (HRV), as a second index of cardiovascular health, has increased during the same period:

hrv2Note that from August – November 2018, my average daily HRV value never topped 48, whereas during the same 4 months in 2019, it was never lower than 52.1, with my best ever HRV values found in November. The 2018 is significantly different when compared with 2019, again based on single-factor ANOVA (p = 5.2E-13).

How am I improving my cardiovascular fitness? That’s a topic for another post, but note that my strength is still pretty good, as evidenced by my 12 pull-ups in the video below!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dLktQvFz70Q

If you’re interested, have a look at my book!