A New Approach to Longevity
By Steve Richfield
WARNING:Everyone who has "scanned" rather than carefully reading this article has completely misunderstood what it says. Hence, if you donít have the time to carefully read this article, then stop reading now.
I have had a health and longevity hobby since 2001, initiated by my own health needs. I work on one or two people each year who have some sort of "incurable" age-related illness, and invest the effort needed to understand what is happening well enough to engineer a true cure, usually requiring no further treatment. I was my own first major project. I am excited about a number of successes detailed below, along with some informative failures. I have identified a single factor in most of my case studies that made a big improvement when corrected, and which could underlie many if not most age-related illnesses.
Note that Aubrey de Grey is a British biomedical gerontologist, who has identified seven types of age related tissue damage that need to be repaired. He has been interviewed in CBS 60 Minutes, Free Talk Live, and the BBC. The New York Times, Fortune Magazine, and Popular Science have published interviews with him. See my analysis of Aubrey de Greyís seven issues of aging in light of my discovery about halfway through this article.
Unfortunately, this is not a simple thing to understand, so I will first explain some basics in no particular order before putting the pieces together.
Some Freshman Chemistry
Solubility, the ability of a liquid to dissolve a solid (or gas or other liquid) is a strong function of temperature. The higher the temperature is, the more that can be dissolved into a given quantity of liquid (except for a few anomalous substances). This is a crucial capacity for our blood, urine, bile, and other liquids, for the more that can be dissolved, the more these liquids can do for our bodies. Also, if temperatures should drop significantly, then less can be dissolved, thereby impairing operation and potentially resulting in dangerous solid deposits, like fat deposits on artery walls, kidney stones, gall stones, etc.
Dan previously had a quadruple bypass operation, but it was clogging up with blood fats, and when I met him he had been given ~6 weeks left to live. Dan was a Baptist minister who had fought a pitched battle with his heart, and had the long chest scars to prove it. Dan was too weak to work and was about to lose the battle. Danís out of control diabetes precluded further operations. Dan was preparing to meet his maker. I reset his 97.something=~36.4oC daytime temperature back to 98.6oF=37oC, and had him run it up past 100oF=37.8oC in hot showers each morning. Danís clogged heart quickly cleared out and Dan was soon back to work as an outside electrician. Dan is now still alive, 6 years later, and supplements his income with Friday and Saturday night gigs as a musician. See more about Dan later in this article.
Some Theory of Cooking
Everyone is familiar with the "browning reaction" Ė the way food browns when you cook it. More scientifically known as the "Maillard reaction", this is the process whereby sugar molecules chemically bond to proteins and DNA, and is also known as glycation. Like all chemical reactions, these reactions proceed at a rate that is dependent on temperature and the concentration of the molecules involved, so that sweeter things cook faster. Given an opportunity to develop, these bonds become what are known as Advanced Glycation Endproducts (A.G.E.s), or more commonly as crosslinks. Crosslinks make the affected tissue inflexible. The same thing happens in people as they age, resulting in hardened arteries that become inflexible and unable to even out the pressure pulses from our hearts. In a very real sense we are constantly cooking ever so slowly for our entire lives, but because our temperature is so low it takes a century or so just to reach "rare".
The progression of this phenomenon is highly dependent on blood sugar concentration, so this phenomenon is sometimes referred to as diabetic glycation, because only diabetics develop serious symptoms before dying of something else. Carnosine is often given as a supplement to inhibit glycation.
Some Evolutionary Biochemistry
In the continuing battle between pathogens and immune systems, pathogens have developed ever more complex ways of fooling immune systems, while immune systems have developed ever more complex ways of differentiating between self and pathogens/tumors. Given ~200 million years to refine this competition, both immune systems and pathogens/tumors absolutely must have developed the most complex chemical reactions possible in their continuing competition to kill each other.
What limits the ultimate complexity of chemical reactions? Temperature range. As reactions become more complex, they operate over an ever more narrow temperature range, so that at the maximum possible complexity, they barely operate at a specific temperature, and not at all at other temperatures. Given that there are several reactions involved in these complex processes, this would seem to impose a complex temperature control requirement. A body would have to switch between temperatures needed by the immune system, while avoiding intermediate temperatures that might be more useful to pathogens/tumors.
Given this situation, it should come as no surprise that nearly everyone with any sort of autoimmune condition also has a restricted range of body temperatures, typically never exceeding 98.2oF=36.8oC.
As I have been unraveling this puzzle, I have a varying shortlist of questions that I ask every medical doctor I encounter. These questions usually take the form of "Approximately how many xxx patients do you have?" and "Do any of then have yyy". Some of these questions uncover the fact that there are zero or nearly zero patients with certain combinations of common conditions and common symptoms (or lack thereof). One example is the near absence of patients with age-related disease and normal 98.6oF=37oC temperatures. Another is the near absence of patients with chronic autoimmune conditions and normal daytime body temperatures.
Note that there are common poisons that can cause almost any condition, such as dioxin causing cancer or a black mold infestation causing COPD (See Tedís story later on in this article). Hence, there will be rare exceptions to almost any "perfect" rule.
Some Adaptive Control System Theory
Go into a nuclear plant, oil refinery, or any other complex control facility and you will probably see red tags hanging from some of the controls. If you read one of these red tags, it will explain that when the control was operated in a particular circumstance something went wrong. Some of these red tags indicate real breakdowns in the machinery, while others represent superstitious learning, meaning that the observed problem was an unrelated coincidence. Of course, no one knows for sure which red tags were from superstitious learning. As red tags accumulate, engineers must carefully distort the operation of the plant to avoid red tagged operation, thereby causing even more red tags to accumulate due to the unusual operating conditions. Eventually, SO many red tags accumulate that it becomes impossible to continue operation without endangering the plant by violating the red tags. Then the plant must be shut down for engineers to remove the red tags and repair the real malfunctions.
Sometime in the second half-century of peopleís lives, both normal and backup modes of operation becomes impossible due to superstitious metabolic red tagging. This results in a cascading series of attempts to operate under increasingly bizarre conditions, like at 94oF=~34oC temperatures. One night their temperature may drop so low to avoid red tagged operation that they become unable to generate enough heat to keep from continuing to get even colder, and they simply die in their sleep, with no organic malfunction prior to death.
Our temperature control system routinely maintains our temperature with an accuracy that is probably beyond the capabilities of modern science to recreate in a machine, which works despite sudden changes in ambient temperature, insulation, etc. Just look at how poorly the cruise control in your car works and marvel how much better our own regulatory systems work. My mental model for the operation of peopleís central metabolic control system is a "virtual" control systems engineer, who keeps good notes, affixes red tags as needed, performs experiments, etc., just like a real college trained control systems engineer would. I must somehow convince this virtual control systems engineer to remove or downgrade existing red tags in a complex real-life competition as subtle as any chess match, with someoneís life going to the winner.
Our central metabolic control system probably controls hundreds of parameters, including such disparate things as fat burning, mineral stores, hormones, metabolism, temperature, immune system operation, reparative mechanisms, etc. I am focusing on temperature regulation in this article for several reasons:
The special significance of various daytime body temperatures is discussed in this article. Note that they generally span the range from 97.4oF=36.3oC to 98.6oF=37oC, or only a 1.2oF=0.7oC range. This is only ~3% of the temperature difference from a typical 70oF=21.1oC ambient. Hence, other things being equal, this would only make a 3% difference in metabolism, and have a similarly small impact on direct temperature-related aging effects. Hence, any direct physics-of-aging effects would be too small to measure. However, this tiny temperature shift causes many systems to work radically differently, among other things resulting in a major reduction in the levels of thermogenic adrenal hormones that are needed to function at what should be sleeping temperatures. The reduction in metabolism then results in reduced metabolic damage.
Small changes in temperature would certainly make an effective low-bandwidth way to broadcast something throughout our bodies. What would be communicated? It appears that many systems respond to temperature, especially cognition and digestion, as our temperature typically hangs around 97.4oF=36.3oC when we sleep, and jumps up to 98.6oF=37oC when we are awake.
When I first realized that temperature cycling might be important, I purchased dozens of inexpensive thermometers and handed them out to all of the really healthy people I encountered, to determine what "normal" is, and if there even was a "normal". I had them read their temperature then, and where possible, I had them keep notes as to what their temperature was at other times. One particular pattern, the one I call "normal" in this article, emerged among nearly all of them. Note that about half of the patients who go to a doctor have other temperatures and patterns, but these people have not been selected as being the pictures of ideal health Ė quite the contrary, they are sick enough to be seen by a doctor.
It could be important to shut digestion down at night to avoid having to brave lions, tigers, and bears in the dark just to defecate. We have now seen from direct observation that wakefulness is being communicated.
Some Needs for Occasional Brief Hyperthermia
We NEED to have our temperatures go quite high every year or so for the following important reasons:
It seems pretty obvious that the usual practice of working to reduce fevers could be likely misdirected, as having fevers may add decades to our lives.
With my first illness after correcting my daytime body temperature, my temperature barely went up past 100oF=37.8oC. However, by taking hot showers when my fevers were at their maximum, I have been able to push my maximum fever temperatures up ever higher with each illness, so that my present maximum fever temperature as of this writing is 103.8oF=39.9oC.
Note that some supplements like Coenzyme Q-10 may negate some of the beneficial effects of fevers by strengthening weak or cancerous cells enough to survive fevers.
All medical doctors are told in medical school that normal body temperature can be just about anything between 96oF=35.6oC and 100oF=37.8oC, and advised not to concern themselves with variations within this range. There have been some poorly designed and implemented drug company financed studies that have attempted to debunk various body temperature theories, e.g. Mackowiak, et al. JAMA 1992;268:1578-1580. All of these have hinged on the invalid assumption that there is (or is not) a single correct body temperature. However, my own research clearly shows that there are several closely-spaced correct temperatures that your body routinely switches between according to a complex algorithm, a complex situation not considered by any of the previous observations, studies, or experiments.
Note that having low daytime body temperature does NOT mean that you feel cold. Quite the contrary, people having low daytime body temperature are typically the ones who go around wearing short sleeved shirts while the rest of us are wearing jackets. One sad repeating story that has emerged over the years is of hikers who died of hypothermia, and who were found nearly naked in the snow. Feeling completely comfortable only means that your body temperature is equal to your set point temperature, whatever it might be at that moment, and nothing more. This is because your conscious mind is part of your overall temperature control system, and you are made to feel warm or cool as needed for you to take appropriate action to control your heat loss. No action is needed when your temperature is at the desired set point, so you will feel neither warm nor cool at that temperature.
Further, note that low body temperature does NOT mean low metabolism, as most people actually raise their metabolism when their body temperature drops because they must "run on adrenaline" just to stay awake, and adrenaline is very thermogenic. Elevated adrenal demands cause adrenal fatigue in many people with low daytime body temperatures, making adrenal fatigue the most common symptom of low daytime body temperature.
Satisfying Many Requirements
The above considerations impose complex requirements on our temperature control system. The system must jump between certain specific temperatures to make our immune systems work properly, to do this on a schedule to communicate wakefulness, and to sometimes go quite high. We have evolved a complex automated control system to satisfy these many requirements UNTIL red tagging interferes with it. It probably only takes one really badly placed red tag to start the long slow dying process.
Different Strategies can satisfy the Requirements
One strategy that certainly works, parts of which were described in books by Dr. Broda Barnes and Dr. Denis Wilson and I observed in healthy people, is to sleep at around 97.4oF=36.2oC, pop up to 98.6oF=37oC during the day, and sometimes go way up to ~104oF=40oC. However, that certainly is not the only good strategy, and may not even be the best long-term strategy.
The primary short-term problem with not staying at 98.6oF=37oC during the day is that large amounts of adrenaline are needed to be active. Low temperature is essentially a sleeping condition, and intelligence is much improved at the 98.6oF=37oC temperatures. However, laboratory mice and "couch potatoes", people who just lay around during the day and who do not need their best mental faculties, can exist under semi-sleeping conditions without actually being asleep.
A person could operate at peak for just a short period each day, during which time they could solve their complex problems and engage in any strenuous activities, and then drop back to a lower temperature while they lay around for the remainder of the day. I have seen this in a number of elderly people. Unfortunately, without careful attention this may lead to continuously low temperatures.
It would also seem important to periodically run a high fever, even in the absence of infection. However, I have not seen this actually happening in the absence of immunological challenges, though this could underlie some idiopathic fevers.
What is So Special About 98.6oF=37oC?
With careful observation, you can feel your body switching things on and off, e.g. your hands getting warm and cold, cycling between feeling warm and cool, etc. This is true for all set points, except for the one at 98.6oF=37oC, where things are proportionally controlled to be much more stable. However, as any control systems engineer well knows, proportional control becomes unstable and goes into oscillation if any significant part of it hits a limit. This means that nearly all subsystems must be somewhere within their normal operating range, and not hitting any high or low limits. Our metabolic control system quickly recognizes unstable conditions and abandons operation at 98.6oF=37oC. Hence, if you are able to operate at 98.6oF=37oC for any significant length of time, then just about everything must be working right.
Unfortunately, failing to operate at this temperature does not provide many clues as to the reason for the failure, though my understandings of several peopleís problems gives us some approximate probabilities. Around half of the people with low daytime body temperature seem to have simple superstitious learning and can be reset without addressing any organic malfunctions. About a quarter have some thyroid-related issue that can be seen on one of the common thyroid tests. The remaining quarter are each unique and interesting, like people who do not want to dress adequately warm for fashion reasons, people who are unable to sense their own body temperatures, people with various serious dietary malfunctions (e.g. vegetarians who are not taking needed supplements), etc.
Another important parameter is toughness, the ability to survive and thrive under widely varying conditions. Our metabolic control system seeks to avoid operating modes that have not been used for a long time, so we tend to lose toughness over time and with it the ability to survive various disasters. It would seem important to periodically run our metabolic system to various extremes just to keep the ability to utilize extreme modes of operation as needed. This is certainly the exact opposite of the environments that laboratory animals experience, and tends to be the opposite of the environments of many people in our "modern" society.
An Automotive Analogy
Suppose your car is running badly, perhaps it is smoking, has little power, and is getting poor gasoline mileage, so you take your car to your mechanic to be repaired. Your mechanic is NOT going to dive right in with his test equipment to identify exactly why your car is having these problems. Instead, he is going to first run various diagnostics to identify which of the many pollution and other control components has failed, and correct them. Then, if your car is still not running properly, he will work to identify the failure. Even where the problem is not a pollution control component, it is necessary to set these right to avoid attempting to debug multiple simultaneous failures, which is usually impractical if not completely impossible.
Similarly with people, it is much easier to first restore the various parameters controlled by their central metabolic control system and then work on whatever is left, than it would be to attempt to figure the problem out in the presence of multiple simultaneous failures. The results are also better.
Ted had COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease). Ted was on oxygen, large doses of Prednisone to impede his immune system from further attacking his lungs, and was making weekly visits to the emergency room literally within minutes of death. I explained that his response to Prednisone showed that he clearly had an autoimmune problem, which is almost always associated with restricted body temperature. His low daytime body temperature turned out to be really easy to correct, requiring only a hot shower and strong coffee in the mornings. This greatly improved his condition, but he still needed oxygen and sometimes some Prednisone. He invited me to his home so that I could carefully inspect how he lived. As I was reading labels in his cupboards and searching his refrigerator, I gradually started to wheeze. I quickly switched my search to environmental factors, and soon found black mold patches behind some curtains and under some carpets. Fixing this required many repairs, but with the help of his friends the mold was eliminated and Ted made a full recovery. Note that if Tedís temperature had remained low, he would probably have been hypersensitive to mold and remained sick, despite the cleanup.
A Different View of Aubrey de Greyís Seven Aging Mechanisms
Aubrey de Grey has proposed seven issues that must be overcome to "cure" aging. I have my own list that includes non-cancer mutation-causing factors like cosmic ray damage and telomer shortening, but that is not the subject of this article. Abnormal regulation of body temperature clearly plays a MAJOR, though sometimes indirect, role in EVERY ONE of the mechanisms listed by Aubrey de Grey. Therefore, it would seem that the first obvious step to extend life span and advance Aubrey de Greyís agenda would be to close on body temperature and other central regulation issues, and then see what remains once this has been accomplished.
Examining each of his seven issues:
Cancers start every month or so of our lives, and our immune systems can eliminate up to about 1oz=~30grams of cancer tissue at a time, so they are routinely killed off before we ever even notice them. The problem occurs when our immune systemís ability to distinguish good tissue from cancerous tissue becomes compromised. It appears that nearly all cancers start when people have continuously low body temperatures, and that some immune systems then wake up to fight the cancer and run high fevers that are sometimes too late to kill the evolving cancer, while others stay "asleep". Hence, it is rare to find a cancer patient with a normal daytime temperature of 98.6oF=37oC, but rather they all have either higher or lower daytime temperatures. Correcting daytime body temperature may not completely prevent and/or cure all cancers, but doing so should certainly eliminate the vast majority of them before they can get a good start.
Note that this area is not well enough understood to make definitive conclusions. We can make new mitochondria, badly mutated mitochondria may not be replicated, and some of the chemistry is sufficiently complex that it would be temperature sensitive, and possibly be destroyed by fevers. Consider the following speculation. All of the elements are apparently in place to use temperature cycling to help cull out defective mitochondria and replace them with better copies, much as is done with cancer cells. Indeed, when we learn more, we may learn that some cancers involve mutated mitochondria gone berserk, and that fevers cure these cancers by destroying the berserk mitochondria.
Note that certainly not all neurodegenerative diseases are from intracellular junk, as MS and others clearly have autoimmune origins. This is certainly not fundamental, as not everyone gets any of these conditions. Further, all of these conditions have been highly associated with low daytime body temperatures. Unfortunately, with no funding, it has not yet been possible to investigate the underlying mechanisms. Intracellular junk may result from wrong-temperature metabolism. Removing intracellular junk might be a function of a healthy immune system, and/or it might be soluble at elevated temperatures (see #4 below).
Much of this junk is deposited because the fluids that hold it simply cannot dissolve all that is present. People whose temperature is stuck low, peak out about 5oF=~3oC lower, which not only maps to a tremendous difference in solubility, but also means that many things like fats that would become liquid at higher temperatures remain permanently solid and become permanently deposited.
Most of the loss of critical cells comes as a result of autoimmune destruction. This results from the loss of the immune systemís ability to distinguish healthy cells from unhealthy cells. That ability is greatly impaired when the temperature range is restricted.
Note that there are many very different conditions that present as type 2 diabetes. This list includes such disparate causes as high vegetable oil intake, high fructose intake, autoimmune disease, and stress response. Indeed, type 2 diabetes was probably important to ancient humans for survival, as fructose intake probably triggered them to quickly fatten up for winter.
The immune system should kill mutated cells, including senescent cells. When things are not working right, as when the temperature range is restricted, it may fail to recognize these mutated cells as such, and therefore fail to kill them.
This is primarily a diabetic issue, and autoimmune diabetes is certainly one of the common results of low daytime body temperature.
Danís out-of-control Type 2 diabetes, while on three different diabetic medications, went into complete remission within days once his daytime body temperature was reset to clear his clogged heart. Two weeks later, with no medications or special diet, Dan had an A1C test performed, which came back completely normal, as though he had never had diabetes.
A Different View of Why We Die
Now, nearly everyone who dies before the age of 100 dies of one of the following three results of low daytime body temperature:
Why Laboratory Mice can be a Poor Model for Aging Research
Mus Musculus lab mice live ~4 years in the wild, but until recently they lived only ~2 years in the laboratory. However, given all that anti-aging science can provide, they can live up to ~4 years in the laboratory. There is a clear message here. The "poor" living conditions experienced in the wild may actually promote longevity! This comes as no surprise to me, because with no shortage of building materials, mice can live underground at very low metabolic levels. They must be as tough as possible, must periodically have their temperatures peak as they fight off infections, must remain fit to evade predators, etc.
However, various laboratory experiments would seem to contradict this view, as in the laboratory, mice having higher body temperatures live shorter lives. In each of these experiments, there is at least one factor that corrupts the results. Some of these factors include:
Past experiments have generally been to test what I call "decapitated body models". In these, the body, absent a brain for control, is considered as a complete mechanism, with each thing causing the next via some proposed chemical pathway. No consideration is given to the existence of the central metabolic control system, which is controlling everything via nerves and hormones coming from the brain. With the central metabolic control system making decisions to survive as well as possible in a VERY distorted situation from that encountered in the wild, metabolic control decisions are being made that completely corrupt any conclusions made using decapitated body models. Decapitated body models also provide easy targets for regulatory interference and should be carefully avoided by anyone practicing in this area.
Dr. Denis Wilson pioneered the concept of resetting daytime body temperature. Dr. Wilson offered a decapitated body model of temperature resetting based on reverse T3 (a thyroid hormone) diversion. While his methods were sometimes successful, he nonetheless had his medical license suspended in 1991 due to flaws in his model.
I suspect that an effort to raise mice under conditions approximating living in the wild, with some effort to improve diet and safety, would produce better results and exceed the 4-year "limit". I suspect that they NEED an underground habitat, cold winters, hot summers, a diet that varies during the year, something to chase them once in a while, a mate, etc. I suspect that people would also live longer if our lives were more like those of our hunter gatherer ancestors absent starvation, tuberculosis and other communicable diseases, frequent major injuries, etc.
You May Have Restricted Body Temperatures!
I am a past President of the Smart Life Forum (SLF), a health study and research group based in Palo Alto. I have conducted some informal surveys of the members. About ľ of the general population has their temperature stuck low and ~Ĺ of those who go to a medical doctor have their temperature stuck low. However ~90% of SLF members have their temperatures stuck low. One SLF member, a geriatric physician, says that ALL of his patients have low daytime body temperatures. People with health challenges can become VERY interested in health.
Before I reset my temperature, if I missed a couple days of supplements, I did not feel nearly as good. Now with my temperature corrected, my many supplements do not do anything for me that I can feel; yet I feel MUCH better than before I reset my temperature.
If supplements help you, then you must be right on the edge of good health, so you should understand the precipice on which you are perched before you fall off of it and get REALLY sick.
Restricted body temperatures are usually the result of metabolic control accidents. Such accidents tend to accumulate with age and they are accelerated by any age-related decline. It appears that many people do well until something drops their temperature, whereupon they soon get sick and die. Other people can live their lives at reduced body temperature without dying while young, as I did for half a century. Restricted body temperatures open you up for a variety of cellular accidents which may or may not occur anytime soon, but which, given enough time, absolutely WILL occur. Further, if your temperature suddenly drops in older age, your body is NOT prepared to operate this way, so you WILL die fairly quickly.
How Metabolic Control System Problems have been Corrected
Changing metabolic control strategies has a number of pitfalls, especially if you grew up with metabolic control malfunctions as I did. Strange things can and do happen when you suddenly throw your body into a new mode of operation that it has never before experienced. It is important to fully understand these pitfalls and how to deal with them before charging in, lest you make things MUCH worse.
Dr. Denis Wilsonís methods were flawed and his success rate was low, and many of his "successes" were immediately thrown into severe adrenal fatigue. Dr. Bruce Rind, a Washington DC endocrinologist, soon started helping these people, but this sort of adrenal fatigue was a new phenomenon with different underlying mechanisms, so he had limited success. I then developed a new approach based on temporarily reducing metabolic demand by overdressing and increasing potential adrenal output with pregnenalone. This has worked quite well for dozens of people.
This article explains general principles but makes no attempt to teach specific techniques or explain hazards in detail. This having been said, all understood failures have been from various forms of apparent red tagging, where beneficial modes of operation have been excluded. So far, only the following three approaches to removing red tags in people have been proposed:
Yvonne had a 5-year history of inflamed joints and nasal allergies. A single 400mg dose of non-prescription NSAID Naproxen Sodium (Aleve) not only brought immediate and complete relief, but the relief lasted for weeks despite the 15-hour half-life of the drug. A second dose taken 3 weeks later eliminated some slight residual symptoms.
Not surprisingly, most people have to be pretty sick to have the motivation needed to reliably succeed with more drastic methods.
The first successful use of the change-or-die method was by Eleanor, then a 16-year-old morbidly obese girl who would gladly have done ANYTHING, regardless of discomfort, including risking death, to look good for the boys.
My longtime friend, Dr. Stephen Zang, had many of the same health problems that I did. Dr. Zang was content to utilize conventional medical methods until he developed leukemia and was given one year left to live, whereupon we had an afternoon-long meeting to consider resetting his temperature. Together we concluded that if he were to reset his daytime body temperature, he had ~1/6 chance of being immediately killed by a supercharged immune system, a ~1/3 chance of being made briefly sicker until the reset was reversed, and ~50:50 chance of permanently curing his leukemia. Dr. Zang just could not bring himself to do anything with a Russian Rouletteís chance of immediately killing himself, so he died, as predicted, one year later.
Note that while you are learning about your central metabolic control system as you are attempting to correct it, your central metabolic control system is simultaneously learning what your methods and limitations are in stressing it. Hence, failure is NOT an option, because the next time would only be more difficult, given the education in evading your efforts that you have given your central metabolic control system. This literally boils down to having to succeed on the first attempt, or accepting that you will probably eventually die due to your failure. Unlike other forms of medical treatment, this is NOT something that you can expect to do repetitively.
When I ask people how they feel once they have corrected their daytime body temperature, they usually reply something like "It was like waking up". Most people have absolutely no idea how impaired their thinking is at sleeping temperatures until they come out of it. No careful measurements have yet been made, but guesses are that this provides ~20 additional IQ points.
I often play games on my computer while I am waiting for it to do various things. I have found that at 97.4oF=36.4oC that I hardly ever win a game of Solitaire. At 98.0oF=36.7oC I stop missing so many good plays and quickly recognize losing games and abandon them, so that I soon win a game. However, I cannot beat the Minesweeper game at the Expert level, as I often make fatal mistakes. At 98.6oF=37oC I stop making fatal mistakes and easily beat the Minesweeper game at the Expert level.
Noticing a Drop in Temperature
Usually there is some causative event when your body temperature drops. Some common events include:
What does it feel like when your body temperature drops? You will notice that you have brain fog, seemingly like a persistent hangover, but usually without physical symptoms like headache. This feeling will gradually subside over several weeks. You will probably notice some minor mental impairment, poor memory, difficulty solving complex problems, depression, etc. You may dismiss these feelings to just minor symptoms of aging, but that simple mistake will probably cost you your life.
Observing Your Own Temperature
This sounds trivial, but there are a number of common pitfalls to avoid.
Guess your temperature before you take it a dozen or more times a day. Notice physiological clues like brain fog, energy, feeling warm or cold, etc. and then reflect on the likely sources of error in your guesses each time. In a couple weeks or so you will become able to guess your temperature within ~+/-0.2oF=+/-0.1oC. This skill is needed to successfully reset your temperature, because you must immediately recognize when your temperature drops and quickly take corrective action. Otherwise, you will dump your adrenal reserves in just a half-hour or so, making same day temperature correction impossible. No one who has learned to do this has had any remaining doubts regarding the really major effects of small changes in body temperature.
Note that ~10% of the people with restricted temperatures are completely unable to notice ANY temperature related effects, and attempts to reset several of these people have been completely unsuccessful.
Diagnosing Body Temperature Range Restrictions
A thermometer may tell you that your body temperature is not what it should be. However, it does not tell you whether the discrepancy is because of some metabolic inability to operate at the correct temperature (e.g. from hypothyroidism), or the discrepancy is because of unwillingness in your central metabolic control system to push your temperature to an optimal value (e.g. from central hypothermia). Fortunately, there is a simple test to answer this question.
Just climb into a long hot shower with your thermometer in your mouth, and answer two questions:
Everyone asks about the use of saunas and hot tubs. No, they do NOT work for this particular test, because showers run hot water on one side of you while leaving the other side to be evaporatively cooled. Your body can easily heat up or not, by simply switching around your peripheral circulation. Part of this test is seeing what your body decides to do.
When I first took the shower test, I could not push my temperature above 98.0oF=36.7oC, making me one of the most difficult of the hard cases to correct.
Kim had severe hypothyroidism. On a scale where the normal range goes up to 5.5, Kimís TSH was 280. However, thyroid medicines made her sick, so she asked me to help her reset her temperature without medicating her hypothyroidism, even though conventional medical wisdom was that normal temperature is impossible while severely hypothyroid. Kim successfully restored her daytime body temperature to 98.6oF=37oC, which eliminated all of her hypothyroid symptoms except for her edema. With her temperature cycling normally, she was then able to tolerate thyroid medicines, which eliminated her remaining edema and brought her TSH down to normal. Kimís experiences seem to finally resolve the question of whether "hypothyroid symptoms" are from the hypothyroidism itself (conventional medical wisdom) or from the usually accompanying low daytime body temperature as Dr. Denis Wilson first theorized.
Where Medical Doctors Fit In
The last century has seen the field of medicine refining its boundaries. Once medical doctors were the only ones who dealt with peopleís health, but that has since changed so much that more than half of peopleís health expenditures now go to various forms of "alternative" health care. Medical doctors now generally confine themselves to conditions that are likely to involve some sort of prescription medicine or surgical procedure.
This transition really started with the advent of optical and chiropractic care. Chiropractic care was initially rejected by medical professionals because of the obvious failure of the subluxation explanation for relatively minor problems, much as Dr. Denis Wilsonís flawed reverse T3 explanation was rejected. However, chiropractic care quickly progressed and transitioned to better concepts like hypomobility, but was never reconsidered by the medical mainstream. Now, thousands of chiropractors bring pain relief to millions of patients, where medical doctors are unable to help with medicines. Indeed, pain relieving medicines actually make these problems worse, because without the pain, the patients just push themselves harder and injure themselves even more, until the pain is just as bad as before their medication, except that when the medicine wears off, they are MUCH worse off. Eventually they become habituated to their pain medication and suffer greatly.
Following optical and chiropractic care, many forms of naturopathic and alternative health care have emerged. Many of these have now reached mainstream status, complete with university departments, governmental certification and health insurance coverage. Now, it appears that central metabolic control system correction will have to make this same decades long journey to mainstream status. Until then, millions of people will doubtless die of autoimmune, circulatory, and other age related afflictions.
In officially denying the effects of small changes in body temperature and other centrally controlled metabolic parameters, it appears that the entire medical community has effectively opted out of treating central metabolic control disorders, leaving these problems to be treated by others with more appropriate skills. It seems easier to teach an engineer the basics of endocrinology than it is to teach adaptive control system theory, system dynamics, repair theory, neural networks, and other related engineering disciplines to an endocrinologist. Hence, I expect to see future practitioners come from engineering backgrounds rather than from medical backgrounds.
What isnít presently known is the level of risk in these procedures. In nearly every case, the risk of not treating far exceeds the risk of treating. However, since these methods all involve stressing a personís metabolic control system beyond its ability to maintain its present regulation strategy, there definitely is some risk to life in forcing sudden changes in regulation strategy. Medical doctors are well trained to handle such emergencies. It would seem like a good idea to have some sort of emergency personnel available should something go dreadfully wrong, even though things almost always proceed smoothly.
Dr. Denis Wilsonís problems in 1991 with the Florida State Board of Medical Quality Assurance started when a woman who was NOT his patient followed his methodology, went into cardiac arrest, and died. This is the only known death from temperature resetting, but now doctors have a list of "donít treat" conditions that include everything that was possibly wrong with this lady.
Of course, people who have these various "donít treat" conditions (including my own former atrial fibrillation) need help just as much or more than other people who do not have these conditions. Rather than simply not treating those with elevated risk factors, it would seem best to correct nearly everyoneís problems, and just deal with any rare complications that might develop. This would seem to suggest an alliance between practitioners as the best possible approach, with an engineer to design and execute the various corrections, and a medical doctor with a crash cart to stand by just in case things should get out of control. This is similar to the way that many experimental operations are performed at university hospitals, as most medical researchers are not medical doctors, but rather their credentials are in the specific disciplines needed, e.g. biology, engineering, etc.
I previously worked at the University of Washington Department of Neurological Surgery as a computer expert, mostly programming computers to capture transitory neurological events. At that time, their main research focus was in developing new operations to correct focal epilepsy. There were only three medical doctors in the entire department, as most of the researchers, including my boss Dr. William Calvin, had only non-medical credentials. The medical doctors handled the scalpels, but others told them where to cut.
Note that numerous recent studies have shown that conventional medical approaches, when applied to central metabolic control problems, usually do little to extend life, and often shorten life. Central metabolic control systems routinely increase the stress response and/or metabolism to deal with the various blood pressure, blood sugar, cholesterol, and TSH lowering allopathic medications. While these allopathic medications may indeed address a dangerous risk factor, stress and metabolism responses to these medications accelerate overall aging. Therefore, those patients who do not actually die of the treated risk factors will most certainly die a little sooner of something else. Metabolic parameter affecting allopathic medications should only be used when a risk factor is SO high that the patient will probably die in connection with that specific risk factor (e.g. a patient with high blood pressure who has an aneurysm). Even then, allopathic medications should only be used after attempts to first correct these risk factors in the central metabolic control system have previously failed, or in critical situations to buy some time to perform a correction.
Where allopathic medications are necessary and appropriate for a serious problem, they nonetheless present an additional hazard when resetting metabolic parameters. Hence, it is usually best to first wean off of them. If weaning is not practical, continuously adjusting dosage to regulate symptoms to a constant level seems to work best.
Dan had a crisis shortly following his reset, as he was still taking his 3 diabetic medications, yet his diabetes had been inadvertently cured. Dan ate lots of sweets as he rapidly tapered off his medications. A less observant person could easily have died under similar circumstances.
A new and ethically questionable practice among some physicians is prescribing thyroid and human growth hormones in what is coming to be known as "squaring the curve". Instead of letting people slowly grow older and infirm, they in effect borrow from the future to support the present by increasing the "burn rate". These people feel better and have more energy, but look like "The Picture of Dorian Gray" (by Oscar Wilde, and made into a 1945 mixed B&W and color movie) as they quickly age beyond their years.
Whereís the proof, the double-blind studies, the articles published in respected medical journals, etc?
Some procedures like setting bones, draining abscesses, and stitching up lacerations simply restores the patient to an as-near-original condition as possible and puts them onto a path to complete recovery. There are no double-blind studies for any of these procedures. The procedures described herein only restore people to a healthy condition and do NOT involve foreign substances, altering physiology in an unnatural way, etc. Hence, there is absolutely no reason to subject these procedures to the same sort of examination that drugs are subjected to.
It is easy to double-blind study drugs, as it isnít at all obvious what is in a pill. However, this is impossible when procedures are performed on conscious patients, especially when the patient must interact, because nothing is hidden. Hence, evaluating efficacy must rely on other methods.
Various drug companies now own all medical journals major medically-related web sites. This has resulted in the nearly complete suppression of articles about non-drug therapies. Even people with new surgical techniques have great difficulty getting published, because there is always some sort of drug alternative to surgery.
The real question that should be asked is why not put metabolic parameters like temperature back where they belong? Where is the risk?
Now, almost everyone who dies of "natural causes" does so with crazy metabolic parameters, apparently due to cascading "red tagging" by their central metabolic control system. Often, parameters like blood pressure and blood sugar rise in unison to increase metabolic output as these problems develop. These are all easily corrected conditions, which can often be permanently corrected by a single day of central metabolic control system treatment.
How much will routinely correcting central metabolic red tagging affect human life span? I do not know, but my "gut feeling" is that the number is ~20-30 years. It certainly will not affect things like cosmic ray damage or telomer shortening, but right now, nearly everyone dies in connection with some obvious central metabolic control system malfunction. This may or may not affect the maximum life span of 122 years, but it should almost eliminate the present situation of people dying of "natural causes" before the age of 100.
As you were reading this paper, approximately one person died every second in connection with easily correctable metabolic control system malfunctions. This is clearly the greatest single-cause carnage in the history of the entire human race, yet barely a handful of people fully understands what is happening.
Aubrey de Grey was clearly right. The present causes of age-related death are quite curable. Now that anyone can easily observe progressive temperature drop with a simple thermometer, showing that metabolic red tagging is at the very heart of present age related death, we can easily see how to cure most cases.
Only after red tag removal is widely practiced can we determine the next challenges in life extension.