As a society, we’re on the cusp of significant scientific discoveries concerning longevity. Indeed, some major discoveries into the nature of aging already exist. And although the Fountain of Youth has not yet been discovered, we’re getting close. Real close.
In 2015, Joon Yun, a doctor and investor, offered the Palo Alto Longevity Prize to any scientist who could “hack the code of life” and find a way to halt aging. That one-million-dollar award motivated a bevy of scientists to create an outpouring of research into longevity enhancement that continues to this day.
Some of the results of that research led to the creation of an overabundance of ‘longevity cocktails’, drinks or powders that consist of just about every supplement known to stall the aging process, regardless whether the subjects were yeast, flies, worms, or rats. Still, all showed tremendous promise for humans but it’s safe to say more longitudinal studies are still needed.
We’ll take a look at a few of these supplements as well as others that may already sound familiar. They may soon appear in some form on your pharmacy shelves!
1. C60 – This is a fullerene molecule (carbon) that when dissolved in olive oil at specific dosages, caused rats to live longer than they had in any other study even though the rats were middle aged when the study began. Furthermore, none of the rats got cancer. It easily crosses the blood brain barrier and concentrates itself in the mitochondria where it detoxifies the bi-products from the cell’s metabolism. It’s a bit of a cellular garbage collector, which is a good thing because cellular garbage ages us. It’s not been tested on humans yet but its potential for human consumption is already clear.
2. Curcumin – This is the compound found in turmeric that is known to be a powerful anti-oxidant as well as an anti-inflammatory agent. Many already use curcumin as a supplement for these purposes, but when given to flies, it increased their median lifespan by 25.8%! Unfortunately, many forms of curcumin are not bioavailable and do not reach the brain. It is therefore suggested that you grate fresh turmeric root into your meals and beverages unless you know for certain the supplements you purchase are truly bioavailable. Its life extension capabilities are attributed to its ability to decrease the expression of age-related genes.
3. Oxaloacetate – One of the many causes of aging is the accumulation of glutamate which can cause serious brain damage after a concussion or stroke in addition to other neurological disorders. Studies show that taking oxaloacetate can lower blood glutamate levels by 40%. And when given to rats, had a 237% increase in brain tumor survival rates! This supplement addresses a number of issues associated with aging but because it is not available from a dietary source, it must be taken in supplement form. The therapeutic dose for oxaloacetate is still a source of scientific debate.
4. N-acetylcysteine (NAC) – This is a powerful antioxidant and was found to extend the life of flies by 26.6% and extended the life of worms by 30.5%. Other than its potential for increasing longevity, it generates resistance to environmental stressors which are known to age cells. This supplement is already readily available to the public.