longevity-nootropics-bodybuildingI am in the middle of doing research on peptides used for healing a physical injury and the best solution is usually found within a community dedicated to that topic or related field, and nearly every category has one. There is usually a specific website, forum, facebook group, etc that contains the “best” or at least the “most cutting edge” research. When I think of nootropics and supplements I generally use the site Longecity.org due to its active and source-citing crowd of people interested in longevity and safe enhancement. While I can also find some information there when it comes to substances that physically modify your body, the more experimental and “cutting edge” research on healing a physical injury is actually found in the bodybuilding forums where people are looking to repair training injuries.

The bodybuilding forums house some of the most experimental people on the open internet, those who will knowingly take substances with adverse effects, usually to increase muscle mass, and are willing to share it back with the forum. While there is a lot more conjecture on a bodybuilding forum, there is a certain methodology and corpus of best practices that become accepted by the community. In bodybuilding they will take substances that they know will alter their hormones in a negative way, but have a plan to do “post-cycle therapy (PCT)” to reverse the damage when their “cycle” is over. In the longevity community, something with a high-risk of negative side-effects would not fly with most people, except, those who are already older or who are in rapid decline. In the nootropics community those substances without track records of safety and more known methods of action, are not seen as desirable due to the increased risks. They err on the side of protection and long-term sustainability that the longevists also appreciate.

There is an equation that all three groups seem to use to evaluate interventions that weights the (1) risk of the intervention with the (2) expected effect on increasing or decreasing lifespan along with (3) the magnitude/speed of the change.

Most longevists would not take a chance on a risky substance unless the chance of a potential increase in lifespan was dramatic. They avoid anything with a potentially negative effect on their lifespan, whereas many bodybuilders wouldn’t think twice about increasing their chance of mortality as long as it had a moderate effect on their chances of winning the next competition. And while nootropics users also care about the effectiveness of increasing performance, it is within the scope of safety and long-term viability that they make a decision. They share with the longevists a desire for protection, that bodybuilders are willing to discard.

There are similar mentalities among all the groups though, for example, where nootropics users look for substances to increase nerve growth factors, bodybuilders look to increase insulin-like growth factors and longevists want to keep insulin-like growth factors down.

All of these groups evaluate the pros and cons with differing perspectives are willing to experiment on themselves and as a community in a way that no scientist is able to get approval for. In this way, longevists, nootropicists, and bodybuilders are pushing the boundaries of science forward by taking it into their own hands. There are likely some downsides, but the results for science and improvements in people’s lives, whether in their lifespan, brains or bodies appear to be outweighing the risks. So as I go look for that healing peptide, I will make sure to head to the appropriate forum.