Aging is inevitable, and it includes the aches that start to nag us, the gray hairs that start popping up, and the smile lines from years of good times. Even though these visible signs of aging may be giveaways to the decades of memories under our belts, is there any way we can try to hold onto our youth a little younger, both in the ways we look and in the ways we feel?
While there’s no surefire scientific way to “slow” aging just yet, there are definitely efforts we can make to keep us feeling young on the inside and looking a little more youthful on the outside, too.
Let’s dive in.
Is it possible to slow the appearance of aging?
While we are a long ways away from truly understanding ways in which we can slow biological aging, there are things that you can do to reduce the sensation and appearance of aging.
The more conventional thoughts about aging such as reduced physical capabilities, wrinkles, and decreased cognitive capacity can be impacted by things you have control over.
Below are some ways you can stave off the effects of aging both appearance-wise and in how you feel.
Topical skin care
The skin is one of the most outwardly apparent signs of aging and is one of the easiest to support.
Topical skin care includes the application of moisturizers, lotions, creams, and serums to boost skin hydration and to protect the skin from the environment. While this is the main goal of topical skin care, infusing these creams and serums with the right anti-aging nutrients can help support good skin health.
MitoQ day serum is an example of a powerful serum that offers hydrating hyaluronic acid in addition to MitoQ (a more ideal form of mitochondria supporting CoQ10), Mediatone™ (a brightener and balancer), and active Vitamin C to help support your skin's appearance and glow.
Implementing a good skin care routine early on can ensure that your skin looks glowing and radiant well into your later years.
Regular exercise is not only good for your current health, but it can also improve your health in the future.
In fact, one study found that elite athletes lived longer than their non-active siblings. Whether or not this was due to a generally healthier lifestyle of the athlete is unknown but it does provide a convincing argument to stay active.
While getting regular exercise may seem daunting later in life due to decreased energy levels, you may want to look to CoQ10 supplements to help restore the levels of the vital antioxidants in the power centers of the cell known as the mitochondria.
MitoQ offers a highly bioavailable form of CoQ10 that easily makes its way to the mitochondrial membrane where it can help revitalize mitochondria that are lacking in their CoQ10 levels to help your body produce the energy it needs.
Healthy food choices
Another great way to help you age gracefully is to make healthy food choices. Eating a mainly vegetable based whole food diet is a great place to start.
By eating healthy and giving your body the nutrients it deserves, you can ensure that your body is running at its best efficiency.
Is it possible to slow biological aging?
When people think about whether or not it is possible to slow down the aging process, they may be tempted to jump to an answer of yes because of increasing life expectancy experienced in the modern era.
While living longer is great, it does not necessarily mean that the aging process is being slowed down. In fact, the majority of improvements to life expectancy owe its thanks to improved medications and treatments of diseases that would typically lead to an early departure.
A good example of this is the invention of penicillin by Alexander Flemming. Before the development of antibiotics, the average life expectancy was around 47 years of age. After the introduction of antibiotics and the antibiotic era, life expectancy shot up to 70 years of age. This drastic improvement in life expectancy is not a result of antibiotics slowing aging, but rather treating an issue that commonly had dire consequences.
As of 2018, the estimated life expectancy in the United States is 78 years of age. The leading causes of death in the elderly are now chronic conditions caused by the environment like cardiovascular disease and cancer.
Slowing the biological process of aging is the next step needed to continue the upward trajectory of life expectancy.
Below is a look at some of the common ways in which researchers are trying to slow the biological aging process.
When you think of aging you most likely think of gaining wrinkles here and there and maybe having less energy. While these are hallmarks of aging, a more ominous part of the aging process is the shortening of our DNA.
Within all plants and animals, there is DNA, which is essentially the directions of how to make each part that ultimately makes up your body. The directions on how to make every protein and cell and mitochondria within your body is stored within the DNA and makes it a vital component of eukaryotic cell life.
One drawback that plants and animals have is that these DNA strands are linear. Due to their linear shape and the way DNA is replicated, DNA naturally shortens with each round of replication. Imagine you have instructions for how to build a house and every time you build a house you tear one page out of the instruction book.
To combat this the body has what is known as telomeres, which are long stretches of DNA that do not code for anything. You can think of telomeres as a series of blank pages at the end of the instructions. The telomere provides a cushion where replication can occur without impacting the main DNA code. Additionally, an enzyme called telomerase is able to rebuild these telomeres.
The shortening of telomeres is thought to be a key player in the process of biological aging and if these sections of DNA could somehow be protected through greater telomerase activity or other means, it is thought that it could potentially decrease the process of aging.
On the topic of DNA, another hallmark biological component of aging is the acquisition of DNA mutations. Mutations within our DNA happen all the time. UV radiation from the sun, reactive oxygen species, free radicals, and even simple mistakes in our own cellular machinery can cause DNA mutations.
Within the body there are a number of different mechanisms to repair DNA mutations but even then some slip through the cracks.
As you age more and more of these mutations slip through the cracks and become a part of your DNA. As mutation accumulation increases with age, so does your risk for cancer. There are a series of figurative cellular emergency buttons within the genetic code that can prevent a cancerous cell from forming and spreading. As we age and accumulate more and more mutations, the likelihood of one of these mutations to disable the emergency mechanism increases. In fact people born with predisposition to cancer are born with some of these genetic emergency buttons already disabled.
Mutation is simply an unavoidable aspect of life as the numbers are just not in our favor. Even if you douse yourself in sunscreen, ate all the right foods, and stayed away from any and all radiation, it is likely that mutation would still occur.
With approximately 37.2 trillion cells within the human body and each cell constantly maintaining and replicating DNA it is not unimaginable for at least one of those cells to make a mistake that leads to mutation.
To slow biological aging there would need to be an advancement in the repair process of DNA in some capacity. Gene therapy poses a potential promise in this area but as of now, there is no true cure to mutation and its effects on biological aging.
In closing, we are still far away from effectively slowing biological aging. With so many factors influencing the way in which we age it is difficult to pinpoint one fix all cure for slowing the aging process.
The most you can do at the moment to ensure you are living the healthiest life possible and reducing your exposure to external stressors.