Although ibuprofen (a.k.a. Motrin I.B. and Advil) has long been approved for widespread public usage, it may hold some secrets to better health yet. Move over, aspirin: according to researchers, new evidence suggests that routine ibuprofen consumption could lengthen your life by more than a decade. Yes, please.
The research team, led by a Texas A&M biochemist and the CEO of an anti-aging institute, decided to investigate if ibuprofen's anti-inflammatory properties might be of greater value than just blocking your body's pain response on isolated occasions. It all started with baker's yeast, which apparently helps scientists to understand the aging process (go figure). Ibuprofen-treated yeast lived longer! Then, so did ibuprofen-treated worms and flies, who also "appeared healthier."
If ibuprofen turns out to have similar effects on humans, that would amount to a 15 percent increase in longevity — amounting to more than 10 years for humans with fairly long expected lifespans already. Obviously, extensive further research is required. But, considering the ready availability of ibuprofen and its negligible cost, this it potentially fantastic news for anyone who'd rather not die any sooner than absolutely necessary (so like, all of us).
Of course, no drug comes without its risks, including ibuprofen. Some research has linked non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like ibuprofen with heart attack and stroke, but that risk is probably limited to people who use ibuprofen in large doses and/or on an ongoing basis. And athletes in particular face heightened risk of intestinal damage due to ibuprofen usage, because exercise can weaken the intestines (and they're already the most likely place for ibuprofen-related damage to occur).
If you are going to purchase ibuprofen, either for possibly life-lengthening purposes or ordinary ones, don't be a sucker: go for the generic ibuprofen instead of brand name. Research suggests that pharmacists very often choose the generic version of over-the-counter drugs, and that non-pharmacists tend to buy brand name just because they aren't sure which brand of pill contains which active ingredients. Since pharmacists are the experts on this, you and your wallet would do well to follow their lead.
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