7 Best Ways To Slow Aging

7 BEST WAYS TO SLOW AGING

I’m sure you see many products and services touting the 7 best ways to slow aging, not to mention anti aging secrets, ways to have firmer skin, more energy, or better workouts. Let’s back it up and take a look at what makes us age. Why do we age? Science has the answer! I’m going to share that with you!

why do we age _Louie knows
Why do we age? Louie researched. Read on to find out why and what to do about it!

WHY DO WE AGE?

Why do we age?

This is one of those questions that seems easy to answer, like ‘why is the sky blue?’ Okay, that is an easy one too, but we need to have the science facts in order to answer the blue sky question and also ‘what makes us age.’ Right? Right!

Anti aging secrets _DNA TELOMERES
DNA molecule
THE ANSWER WHY WE AGE IS IN OUR DNA
DNA are long strands of genes
Proteins attach themselves to these strands & coil them
The coils are our chromosomes
So, each chromosome in our body is made up of DNA
The codes (genes) in our DNA predict things like our eye color or our preference to cilantro.
For more on the science behind acquired taste, I have a great post here!
DNA carries the hereditary instructions for the biological development of all cellular forms of life
And for many viruses. (ugh)
DNA also determines how old we actually are. Meaning, how old we look.
I knew this would get your attention!!
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TELOMERES ARE THE KEY

Hang on. There is a little more science we have to make sense of here! 

How do telomeres affect aging? And what are telomeres, anyway?

How do telomeres affect aging?
Telomeres (green) are at the ends of our chromosomes (pink and green)
Telomeres are at the end of a DNA segment
The green part of the chromosome above. (remember a chromosome is made up of DNA)
Telomeres are repeated segments that trigger the enzymes that encode DNA.
Telomeres say, ‘that’s the end, okay stop.’
Sure, it's more complex than this but you get the idea.
More details on telemeres and replication here
In 1983 Barbara McClintock won a Nobel Prize for her work w/ telomeres.
McClintock Nobel Prize details
McClintock observed that without the ends of telomeres, DNA would become sticky.
She determined that telomeres maintain the structure & stability of DNA.
The 2006 Nobel Prize went to
Elizabeth Blackburn, Carol Greider, and Jack Szostak for discovering...
2006 Nobel Prize
...how chromosomes are protected by telomeres and the enzyme telomerase
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Without telomeres, our DNA would mutate.

We would develop more cancers.

TELOMERE BASE PAIRS
Base pairs for telomeres. (yes, scientists have figured this out)

HOW DO TELOMERES AFFECT AGING?

Now that we know what telomeres are and what they do, here’s a not so fun fact.

Telomeres shorten. 

 

how do telomeres affect aging
Telomeres shorten
Telomeres shorten because the fact is that DNA replication can't happen at the end of our chromosomes.
When Telomeres become too short the ends of the DNA are not transcribed (copied)
This means that our DNA doesn’t produce the right proteins.
This causes degradation of our cells.
With that, comes a greater potential for
CANCERS, AGING, INHERITED DISEASES
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HAYFLICK LIMIT

When the telomeres become too short, the cell actually goes kamikaze and triggers a self- destruct program.

This is called the Hayflick limit or Hayflick phenomenon. (# of times a cell will divide b4 cell division ceases)

This kills the cell. (apoptosis

Hayflick limit too short telomeres
Maybe these cells need Tom Cruise
What is the ultimate Hayflick limit?
If we max out and maintain our telomere length
When all of the cells created in the human body before birth
(and all of the cells these cells produce)...
...Are multiplied by the average time it takes for cells to reach the end of their lives
Scientists have calculated this # is 120 years.
LOUIE IS FAR CUTER
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A FEW CAUSES OF SHORT TELOMERES

SHORT VERSUS LONG TELOMERES

Kidding aside, scientists are busy studying telomeres & the beneficial effects of potentially reversing their shortening as people age.

ABNORMAL DNA
Many diseases and cancers are related to too short telomeres.
Emphyzema, many cancers, idiopathic fibromas
Many genetic syndromes are associated w/ short telomeres, such as dyskeratosis conjuncta.
poor kids.
Stem cell maintenance in organs such as
BONE MARROW, LUNGS, SKIN
Fertility is affected by short telomeres as well.
Such a fun fact.
OK, I’ll stop naming random diseases. You get the idea.
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TELOMERASE = AN IMPORTANT ENZYME

An enzyme telomerase prevents telomeres from losing too many bases!
As a cell repeatedly divides, telomerase becomes less able to keep up with the number of bases that need adding
BASES GOING BYE BYE
Telomerase adds the TTAGGG repeat back to the ends of chromosomes.
Longer telomere length increases pulmonary function
This decreases blood pressure.
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New therapies targeting telomerase expressing cells are under development!

ANTI AGING SECRETS

While the scientists are hard at work, what can we do to keep our telomeres longer?

Here are two sure fire ways to increase telomere length.

 (The hyperbaric oxygen chamber didn’t do much for Michael Jackson. Admittedly, there were other variables at play.)

 

A 23K hyperbaric oxygen chamber and endurance training may not be in everyone’s wheel house. Let’s dig deeper. 

INFLAMMATION IS THE ACTUAL NEMESIS OF TELOMERES

Inflammation is like a cannonball! The cannonball hits the gates of the city and smashes them. The citizens need to repair the walls. To do this, they must use more raw materials.

Likewise, our cells need to repair themselves. What are their materials?

Inflammation wastes cell divisions
The citizens have work to do!
Telomere length is directly affected by inflammation.
Inflammmation & telomeres
An increase in inflammation in our bodies damages our cells
Our bodies then need to make new cells, right? Right!
As you now know, we have a limited number of times our cells can divide.
Each time, our telomeres shorten.
Twin study of astronauts, one who stayed on earth and one who went into orbit for a year...
Showed telomere lengthening in space.
A large decrease in inflammatory cells occurred as well.
The telomeres of the space astronaut shortened when he returned.
As did his inflammatory cells.
Twin study & telomeres
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Twin Study of Astronauts Telomeres
Twin Study of Astronauts Telomeres

Elon Musk would certainly be cheering right now. Does this mean we should all go to Mars?

This is about as feasible as everyone sleeping in hyperbaric oxygen chambers.

Mars make sense of science
MARS! Let's use our miles!

What we need to do is quit wasting our cell divisions!

CYTOKINE STORM LIFE THREATENING
Wasting our cells is a waste!

WHAT MAKES US AGE?

States that are associated with inflammation need to work hard to replace cells. This has a direct effect on telomere length & therefore aging.

AKA ‘pro-inflammatory states.’

A FEW PRO INFLAMMATORY STATES....
'pro' makes is sound so nice but it isn't.
OBESITY
PHYSICAL INACTIVITY
CARDIOVASCULAR DISEASE
DIABETES
CHRONIC KIDNEY DISEASE
RHEUMATOID ARTHRITIS
RA has a decreased life expectancy of 5-10 years.
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So what do us regular people do to preserve our telomeres?

We try to decrease extraneous cytokines!

What the heck are those?

CYTOKINES & INFLAMMATION

Cytokines are inflammatory proteins. They have multiple– & at times– unrelated functions that depend on their target cell & presence or absence other cytokines.

How’s that for vague?!

Cytokine Storm_how do telomeres affect aging
Cytokines
Cytokines act as chemical messengers.
A little less vague!
Nearly every organ of the body contains cells with cytokine receptors.
Cytokines are influencers!
GROUP CHAT
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My point is that cytokines have it going on. They are small, mighty powerhouses. We need them! However,  they can overreact and think all sorts of foreign elements are invaders. 

They are overprotective. If I were a protein, I’d probably be a cytokine.

Human Cytokines
This is a lot of material to potentially memorize!

THE KEY TO SLOW AGING IS TO DECREASE EXTRANEOUS CYTOKINE ACTIVITY

How can we decrease the amount of inflammation in people who don’t train for iron man competitions or have hyperbaric oxygen chambers or live in space or look like Tom Cruise to increase life span?

I’ve got the 7 best ways to slow aging below.

Most  of them are doable!

Fantasy league early days
For sure!

7 BEST WAYS TO SLOW AGING

1. ANTI-INFLAMMATORY DIET

–The foods below decrease cytokines in our bodies

ANTI-INFLAMMATORY FOODS INCLUDE
GRAPES, CELERY, BLUEBERRIES, GARLIC, OLIVE OIL, TEA
More on tea here
MORE FOODS W/ OMEGA-3 FATTY ACIDS include
SALMON, TUNA, TOFU, WALNUTS, FLAX SEEDS, SOYBEANS
SOME SPICES HAVE ANTI-INFLAMMATORY EFFECTS
GINGER, ROSEMARY, TURMERIC
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2.FISH OIL

Louie takes fish oil w/ PB on the side
A RECENT STUDY SHOWED A MARKED DECREASE IN INFLAMMATION IN MICE TAKING DHA ENRICHED FISH OIL
FISH OIL ALSO REDUCED WEIGHT GAIN!
shown in several studies! (w/o the PB)
WHY NOT TAKE FISH OIL?
More on Fish Oil
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3.LIMIT PROCESSED MEATS

In a large study, consumption of processed meat was associated with shorter telomeres.
PROCESSED MEATS INCREASE INFLAMMATION
Click Here
Surprisingly, this finding was not found in diets incorporating non processed red meat.
Cardiovascular disease is another story. We are only discussing telomeres here!
Click Here
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4.AVOID WHITE FOODS

-These foods increase inflammation, alas.

The first thing you're going to say is, 'do you eat yogurt?'
Yes, I eat white, plain yogurt
PLAIN YOGURT AND BLUEBERRIES
Next you're going to say 'some fish is white!'
And what about egg whites!?
OKAY, THERE ARE EXCEPTIONS TO THE WHITE FOOD RULE
What I mean is...WHITE BREAD, PASTA, WHITE SUGAR, WHITE FLOUR
And I hate to add this one, but white rice, too.
CONTAINS SEVERAL WHITE FOODS, baked together!, w/ more white on the side. (It was delicious)
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5. MANAGE STRESS

-To read more about how to manage stress, I have an excellent post here!

CHRONIC STRESS LEADS TO INFLAMATION
It also inhibits neurogenesis (creation of new nerve cells) Double bad!
Study on neurogenesis
Incorporate activities into your week, such as...
YOGA
This is not me. I know, you're surprised but no.
BIOFEEDBACK
GUIDED IMAGERY
MEDITATION
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6.EXERCISE REGULARLY

-So what if endurance training isn’t for you. Just do something. 

Yes, this guy does a lot of somethings.
Daydreaming about exercising the second he gets out of the car
I do this ...the daydreaming part
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7. LOSE WEIGHT

-You knew this was coming. Enough said.

7 BEST WAYS TO SLOW AGING

So, take your fish oil (Louie recommends w/ PB), don’t eat white foods too often, drink in moderation, and don’t hang around toxic waste sites! 

You’ll not only look younger, your telomeres will stay long! That means you’ll stick around longer, too.

Guided imagery to manage stress 7 best ways to slow aging
Enjoy the beauty!

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Riana.AngCanning
June 9, 2021 1:09 pm

So interesting to learn more about the science behind aging! Will definitely want to incorporate more anti-inflammatory foods in my diet as I continue to age.

aami06
aami06
June 9, 2021 1:30 pm

It make sense that we need to take care of ourselves from the inside out. The science also makes tons of sense when you explain it. Thanks. I’m going to pick up some fish oil this week, too.

aami06
aami06
Reply to  Susan Berk Koch
June 11, 2021 6:52 am

I’ll take Louie’s lead. With peanut butter!

Unwanted Life
June 9, 2021 2:35 pm

I had heard about this before, but I didn’t know they had a name, telomere. But I still don’t get what causes the shortening, have I somehow missed that due to my dyslexia? How come the ends of our chromosomes are degrading?

Melissa Kacar
Melissa Kacar
June 9, 2021 3:14 pm

All of these tips are so helpful! Thank you for sharing so much information about the science behind why we age and what we can do to slow the process! 🙂

Fransic verso
June 9, 2021 5:36 pm

Very interesting information! Great to know more about aging and why it happens. Thank you for sharing!!

Charity
Charity
June 9, 2021 6:08 pm

This is such great information! I am always looking for ways to slow down the aging process. Thanks so much for sharing!

Kelly Diane
June 10, 2021 12:38 am

I found it fascinating to read about the science behind aging. You’ve mentioned so many helpful tips within this post too.

Carolyn Holton
Carolyn Holton
June 10, 2021 9:12 am

Thanks for the post. I will incorporate more of these foods into my diet, and cut back on alcohol, although I do enjoy an good martini!

Headphonesthoughts
June 10, 2021 9:39 am

I am all for anti aging tips. I currently workout and do a lot of skincare to help with anti aging also when I go out I try to always wear sunscreen. It was great to read about the science of aging.

Lisa's Notebook
June 10, 2021 10:17 am

I always love your posts, Sue, they are SO in depth! I do take a fish oils supplement every day and have done for years. I also try and cut out as much sugar and processed food as possible but exercise is such a chore, I hate it! 🙂

Elle
Elle
June 10, 2021 1:11 pm

All these tips are really helpful. Thank you for sharing Xo

Elle – ellegracedeveson.com

“Strong women don’t have attitudes. They have standards.”
“Strong women don’t have attitudes. They have standards.”
June 10, 2021 1:59 pm

I absolutely love blogs like this where I get to learn something new after reading. This was well written and researched. It’s very important have a self care

Charley
Charley
June 10, 2021 2:48 pm

Wow, this was so informative – thank you so much for sharing! I’d never heard of a lot of the science behind ageing; your tips are super helpful! My parents always swear by fish pil supplements – maybe I should start taking them!

Corinne
June 10, 2021 3:37 pm

I love this post! At first I thought it would be more about looking older so was so happy to see its more about how our bodies age. I need to get some fish oil!

Corinne x

Eva Apelqvist
Eva Apelqvist
June 11, 2021 6:30 am

I always feel like your blogs are the best ever, but this one truly is. You are a science writing genius.

I'm All Booked Up YA
June 11, 2021 9:03 am

This is really interesting. We had no idea about the science of the aging process.

Jordanne || Ofaglasgowgirl
June 11, 2021 1:59 pm

I’ve never really thought about the aging process in this much depth before. Ita really interesting learning the science of it. I never realised it would be a kamikaze effect so that was interesting to learn. Thank you for sharing so much information and tips on how to slow the process, my gran swears by fish oil, takes a pill every morning!

Sarah Coliins
Sarah Coliins
Reply to  Susan Berk Koch
June 12, 2021 6:45 am

Such as interesting post, thank you for explaining the science and of course the advice – I love that I’ve walked away with a few facts 🙂

The busy shelf
The busy shelf
June 12, 2021 6:38 am

I loved that you also included the podcast in here. I much prefer audio material 🙂 Also, I highly, highly appreciate the time you put into explaining everything from a scientific point of view. I find it so important to actually understand the processes that are behind what we see, from how we lose/gain weight, skin elasticity, aging… it also makes you less gullible in face of all the marketing going on today. So thank you for this post!

Rayo
June 12, 2021 6:56 am

Wow, this is so informative. Even as I know how aging occurs, I learned something new in this post. Very interesting post.

Jenni @ I on Image
June 21, 2021 4:00 am

Very interesting read Sue! I already eat quite healthy but sticking to it is easier when I know why I am actually doing it. Keep up the good work!

Amy Laundrie
June 22, 2021 1:52 pm

Ha! I give my dog half of a Glucosamine/Chondroitin but I’ll have to ask my vet about Fish oil. She’s showing her age lately.
I appreciate the tips, Sue. I feel younger already.

Sandra Ans
June 28, 2021 3:46 am

Wonderful post! Here I want to add one more thing: ”We are what we eat”! I am around my 30-ties and I believe it’s the best time to start thinking about aging process and how maximaly avoid it and live healthier. But after reading your mega interesting post I can say one – I am on the right way! 🙂 I just need to start drinking fish oil!

Jenny in Neverland
June 29, 2021 4:42 am

Wow, I never learnt about any of this in science! Whilst some of this definitely went over my head a bit, it was super interesting. And those are some great tips to slow aging too!

Isa A
Isa A
July 26, 2021 3:09 pm

Ok. I suck at technology and gadgets, but bioscience I know. No other reason to leave long comments at yours. Though last one didn’t reach. Great and fun post. Also was relatable to my content so enjoyed it a lot! Telemetry was really good jnfo. Great one as always. Xx
Isa A. Blogger
https://bit.ly/39f9FN0

Dr. Yarish
March 18, 2022 8:33 am

It was so intersting to read! Thank you for raising such an important subject.

DSP
DSP
September 6, 2022 2:33 am

Regular moderate exercise can also make a difference in the fight against aging. Such a thing as swimming is suitable even for people with sore joints or injuries. And generally, swimming is one of the most effective options, as it benefits not only physical but also mental health. And swimming in salt water also improves the skin. Moreover, salt water is not necessarily water in the sea but saltwater pools.

Susan Berk Koch author

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