* This is pharmacological in the sense that the nutrient is used in the fashion of a drug rather than a nutritional supplement, and where its specific supplementation has a more powerful effect. For example, the taking of heroic quantities of vitamin C (up to 50 grams when used pharmacologically) for its antibacterial and/or anti-viral activity is not the same effect as would be anticipated from the eating of an orange with its relatively small vitamin C content, or even of supplementing a few grams in order to enhance immune function. Nor would the taking of arginine in large doses for its anticipated effect on the pituitary gland be the same as the effect from eating a protein food of which arginine is a natural constituent.
- Surgery to pituitary gland
- Removal of testes in males
- Immunological intervention strategies
- Altered exercise patterns
- Methods for altering core temperature
Which of these methods is natural?
All of the first list might be considered as natural inasmuch as changing dietary patterns seems to be a process many people adopt for a variety of reasons. To many people dieting in the hope of increasing the length of their life might be considered just as suitable and natural an objective as slimming or weight training.
Results to date favour using dietary restriction methods (method 4) for this has produced some truly remarkable life extension results. Method 2 has also had its successes.
Readers familiar with the traditional methods used in naturopathic medicine (in Britain, America and Germany) will not be surprised to discover that many of the benefits which have been ascribed to periodic detoxification diets, fasting methods and nutritional approaches to health, are closely related to the findings of half a century or more of animal experimentation involving dietary restriction, periodic fasting and related methods, leading as they do to a longer, healthier life.
None of the second list is really natural, with the exception perhaps of some of the ways in which method 3 on that list is employed (this being the most successful and widely employed method in this category).
All of the third list fail the test for naturalness (these being relatively unsuccessful and certainly not suitable for selfapplication). While both the approaches in the last list are natural, only method 2 has had notable success.
The most successful options
As suggested above, far and away the most successful method of increasing the life span of a wide range of animals (including mammals) has been the use of dietary modification in which adequate nutritional supply of essential vitamins and minerals etc. is ensured while a reduction in calorie intake is introduced. This approach has been described as 'undernutrition without malnutrition'. I describe in subsequent chapters the fascinating research conducted into this. Research which has shown amazing increases in normal, active, life span of up to 300 per cent in some species, accompanied by a dramatic reduction in the diseases usually associated with ageing, such as cancer and autoimmune disease (with the frequent observation of the healing of these diseases in animals already affected).
I shall explain the ways and means of translating and applying these concepts to the human condition, as well as a number of other interesting life extension possibilities which have emerged from research, such as nutritional stimulation of growth hormone production from the pituitary gland, the use of antioxidant nutrients and methods for lowering core temperature levels.