I first heard the word ‘heavy water’ in a black and white TV episode of Twelve O’Clock High. The British-based America B-17 bombers were targeting a heavy water manufacturing plant in Nazi Germany where experiments with nuclear reactors were being undertaken.

The term heavy water recently popped up again but this time in relation to research into human rejuvenation … and potentially the antidote to the aging process.

Much of our aging is caused by oxidative attack by free radicals in the body where they attack vulnerable carbon-hydrogen bonds in a protein. We all knew that didn’t we? Classic examples of the effects of this degradation can be seen in a range of old age diseases such as: Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s cancer and diabetes.

But “heavy” up your covalent bonds in your molecules — the things that get trashed by free radicals — then we have changed the playing field. Gotcha you free radical bastards!

Chemically, water is H2O and heavy water is D20; D being deuterium and an isotope of hydrogen with an atomic mass of 2 instead of 1.  Allegedly tasting just like water only slightly sweet, the stuff looks like it could be the business in the fountain of youth stakes!

Already the Methuselah Foundation in Virginia USA has picked up on it and awarded it the Methuselah Mouse Prize, a prize “designed to hasten the research into effective life extension interventions by awarding monetary prizes to researchers who stretch the lifespan of mice to unprecedented lengths”.

Mickey Mouse has obviously been guzzling the stuff for decades.

Meanwhile, on your corner-store domestic front, the Johann Wolfgang Goethe University in Frankfurt Germany has found traces of hormone mimicking pollutants akin to estrogen (female sex hormones) in PET bottles (polyethylene terephthalate). There is further concern that perhaps there may also be specific inherent plasticisers that not only mimic estrogen but block androgens (male sex hormones like testosterone).

Hells bells, I just worried that the fizz and proprietary gunge in those PET bottles merely rotted your teeth and added to your calorie intake and susceptibility to obesity. Who’d have thought I was dicing with a potential hormonal cocktail that could … well … get my tits in a twist …!

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