What is the cause of insulin resistance in the elderly?

Tom Matthews tmatth at netcom.ca
Mon Mar 16 02:18:51 EST 1998

Hang-Jun Jang wrote:
> Tom Matthews wrote:
>      Furthermore, most of the things that we currently now call
>      causes (such as plasma glucose glycation
>      products) are derivatives more fundamentally caused by
>      something else.
> This viewpoint is also right, but in the case of advanced glycation
> end products, the cause is apparently plasma glucose. Insulin
> resistance augments the bad effects of AGE products.

But this doesn't refute my point. The real question is what causes
insulin resistance and leads to higher blood glucose with age. The
answer to that is one of the more "fundamental" causes that I am talking

In addition, we can simply remove all plasma glucose. We currently have
mechanisms for removing/repairing/undoing glycation. What is the level
of blood glucose for which those mechanisms can keep up and why do those
mechanisms decline with age.

>      It is highly unlikely that any of the fundamental causes of
>      aging are
>      "everyday ones".
> This opinion can be true and can be false. Fundamental causes sound
> like mechanisms of diseses' process or pathogenesis. The meanings of
> causes or etiologies are different from those of mechanisms or
> pathogenesis. I mean a cause is  a  'TRIGGERING' factor. I sometimes
> think over the relation between genes and environments. Genes determin
> some predispositions to a certain disease. Most of doctors agree that
> many causes of diseases are environment factors arised from life
> style. Eating is a very important component of life style. Everyday
> ones are things we have to do everyday to survive.

However, except for calorie restriction, none of those "everyday ones"
have been shown to consistently increase the fundamental rate of aging,
ie. to increase the maximum lifespan of a species.

> We have to pay more
> attention to the effect of calorie restriction on longevity. Every
> mouse eats food that is 'everyday one' and if some parameters of
> everyday ones, such as amount of food, are modified, their longevity
> is significantly changed. It is,therefore, likely that everyday ones
> can be very importan or fundamental causes of aging process.

I disagree. For individual health and living up to the maximum species
lifespan, I agree that "everyday" lifestyle variables are important.
However, there is no evidence that they will effect maximum species
lifespan which is what a fundamental modification of the causes of aging
would do.

Tom Matthews
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