More evidence that moderate alcohol consumption helps extend life:

A total of 31 studies met the eligibility criteria. In response to moderate alcohol consumption, low density lipoprotein cholesterol decreased by 0.08 mmol/l (P = 0.05), and high density lipoprotein cholesterol increased by 0.08 mmol/l (P < 0.00001), whereas total cholesterol and triglyceride remained the same. Moreover, interleukin 6 decreased by 0.43 pg/ml (P = 0.03), whereas C‑reactive protein and tumor necrosis factor a remained the same. Several hemostatic factors and adiponectin were modestly affected by alcohol consumption.

Conclusion: Moderate alcohol consumption is causally related to lower risk of atherosclerosis through changes in lipid profiles and inflammation.

The evidence that statins help extend life — for most of us — remains under duress, however:

Questions about the evidence base for statins continue to emerge from many quarters: how strong is the evidence, how large is the benefit for individuals at lowest risk of heart disease, how well did the trials record common minor side-effects, how representative were the trials of women and the elderly, what was the effect of active run-in periods and composite endpoints, how does taking a statin affect a person’s diet and exercise patterns, why is there a discrepancy between the real-life experience of muscle pain and what was reported in the trials, why have the data for harms not yet been given the same levels of scrutiny as the data for benefits, and is cholesterol a reliable surrogate endpoint to guide prevention of cardiovascular disease?

If you are prescribed statins, challenge your doctor, assess the side effects. Oh, and consider instead major lifestyle changes — if you can stick with them.

AJA Cortes offers supplement recommendations to support your efforts to get fit, lean, and muscular.

I take creatine. Here’s what Cortes says about creatine: “I recommend people take creatine 365 days a year. Its as close to a “miracle” supplement as one can get. It has a positive effect on so many aspects of performance, it would be foolish not to utilize it. Plus it’s absurdly cheap.”

The Pioppi diet looks promising — for its obviousness.

(The diet) takes its name from a small Italian village where the locals not only tend to live longer – the average man has a lifespan of 89; many live to 100 – but do so without contracting the chronic diseases of ageing, such as type-2 diabetes and dementia, that the rest of the world accepts as inevitable.

It’s like the Mediterranean diet, but with a greater emphasis on good sleep, daily movement and social interaction, and a more extreme reduction in sugar and flour.

Certainly, these recommendations won’t hurt. Likely, they will help prolong your life.

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