Albumin: some questions

I was pleased on Friday to be able to go at 8am to a local pregnancy clinic and they could take a sample that is sent to a local lab which enabled me to have a same day blood test. Because so many things metabolise in a blood sample the shorter the period between the sample being taken and the test peformed the better save that also the temperature matters and if the blood is warmer it will give different results to if it is cooler.

Albumin, however, came back really high at 47.9. The prior week was 41.2.

Albumin is an interesting biomarker because it is very commonly associated with improved health and appears in pretty all of the biomarker based mortality clocks.

I think myself it is not necessarily the cause of improved health, but symptomatic of systems working. In fact, however, Albumin follows a u shaped curve where an increase in albumin towards 50 is good for health, but if it goes up from there and towards 60 then it is symptomatic of some issue or other.

Now this could be a test artefact and I won’t know until next week what the situation is. Test artefacts, however, do tend to be really silly like 10 or 100, not just 6.7 more points. I have had albumin at 48 previously, but more recently it had dropped down in some tests to as low as 38. I was not particularly worried about this as I have been holding back on food a bit and that is supposed to keep albumin low.

However, I wonder otherwise what may have caused this and I wonder what other people’s experience is with albumin (which clearly is something to want to be at the top end of the 40s or in the very low 50s.)

Unusual things this week are:

  1. The blood sample was taken at 8am normally samples are taken after 11 or around 1pm.
  2. The sample was tested the same day, but I don’t think albumin metabolises. It might, however.
  3. I took 6mg Rapamycin on Tuesday morning (I normally go at least 4 weeks between Rapa doses)
  4. I fasted on Tuesday and Thursday, this would, however, be expected to push Albumin down.
  5. I took 10g D-Ribose on Monday afternoon. D-Ribose increases glycated haemoglobin and my HbA1c was indeed up at about 4.8%. I was wondering what D-Ribose would do as it increases atp levels. I think taking it chronically is not a good idea, but it may be quite helpful on a intermittent basis if there are mitochondrial efficiency issues.
  6. I had not drunk alcohol on the Monday through to Thursday night.

Does any one have any thoughts as to what might have caused a swing in Albumin?

@John_Hemming FWIW, my albumin fell from 49 to 44 in the last 7 weeks. Changes included: morning to afternoon testing (so longer fast & more water consumption), addition of 3 weeks of metformin, 6mg rapa/wk (approx 5 and then 8 days post dosing for blood draw). Many other markers changed as well, and albumin seems to be a fundamental health marker so it’s hard for me to know what to make of it. My biological age increased 3 years on Levine & lowered 1 year on Go figure…

I am not fond of albumin as a marker because mine varies too much from test to test.
There are just too many factors that can affect the test. I can find no correlation between my albumin test results and what I am doing health-wise.
What am I to think?

You’re doing way better than I am John. Mine goes from 4.1-4.6 (which I assume is 41 - 46 using your units). What am I doing wrong? I eat lots of animal protein.

I cannot say you are doing anything wrong. Mine goes all over the place. What I want to do is to understand how to drive the biomarkers in any particular direction.

Lustgarten says it goes up with alpha and beta carotine and is inversely associated with vitamin K. Could be my problem since I take a crapload of K for my atherosclerosis:

Lustgarten is brilliant, but I don’t think this is his best work.


One of the reasons albumin is a good marker for longevity is because it’s an inverse acute phase reactant. This means it’s a proxy for inflammation with high albumin levels indicating low inflammation. Levels of albumin may therefore drop when you suffer from inflammation such as when you get sick. I’m not sure how much the decline would be in case of a cold or flu, if it’s significant or not, I haven’t looked into it, but this is definitely something people should take into account and be aware of when interpreting albumin levels.


These are one person’s correlations from dietary intake. There are way too many confounding factors here to conclude that carotenes or vitamin K are actually influencing albumin levels. There are lots of other things that might explain the association. I find it unlikely that carotenes will increase albumin levels and even more unlikely that vitamin K supplements will decrease albumin levels.

If Mike were to take supplemental carotenes or vitamin K and test albumin levels before or after, while keeping the diet constant, and were to see consistent changes in albumin while doing so, then we’re talking about some more reliable clues.


It is quite difficult to work these things out because there are so many factors. Last week’s test was 45 as opposed to 47.9. Clearly on a higher trend, but difficult to work out the cause.

I cannot complain, however, I have some interesting experiments planned for September, but as for now I am beating time because I am away from my usual base most of the time (which in itself is a useful experiment because what I am not doing).

That’s why I said it’s not his best work. He tries to draw conclusions from his own diet and markers (n=1), and puts a lot of effort into it therefore it is meaningful to him…

He did great work on the NAD issue. Niacin raises NAD better than NR or NMN.

I thought the oral microbiome work he did using Bristle was really good too. This is important for heart disease, which matters to me.

Also I learned a lot from his book. Studies that had been out for years and he put them all together and really showed how the microbial burden has a big influence on longevity. It looks to me like it’s the deciding factor.


Hi John

Hope you’re well.

I use InsideTracker to monitor various biomarkers. As per the below, my Albumin is on the low side (I’m 44) according to the apps InnerAge test.

When my Albumin jumped to 4.5, I was consuming daily Whey protein shakes. I do work out 6 days a week (mix of strength, cardio, HIT).

I haven’t been consuming Whey for nearly a year now and my Albumin seems to be dropping. Maybe I’ll introduce this again after my next blood draw.


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