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Anti Aging

Anti aging and the fountain of youth. If Ponce de Leon were alive today, continuing his quest for the fountain of youth, he would no longer need to cross the seas to distant lands, he would be much wiser to be charting a course inside his own body.

Two thought-provoking research studies relating to human longevity published in the journals Science and Cell, would be very helpful to him in plotting this course.

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Staying Young

These two studies report that each time a cell becomes so damaged that it is forced to replace itself it sheds a tiny snippet of DNA known as a telomere. Telomeres serve as protective caps on the ends of our chromosomes.

After many decades of (anti aging) cell replacement, these telomeres become truncated or frayed. It is this fraying that eventually makes it impossible for the cells to repair themselves by replacement. This phenomenon initially causes failing health, eventually leading to cell death, and cumulatively, our own eventual death.

Formulate diet for anti aging

As we formulate a diet, nutrition and exercise strategy that allows us to live the longest and healthiest lives we possibly can, probably the wisest course to follow is one that takes new information, like the two studies cited above, and combines this new information with older information that has withstood the test of time.

For example, consider that a telomere snippet is stressed only when a cell completely replaces itself. When a cell is nutritionally sound enough to successfully repair cumulative cell damage thereby eliminating the necessity for complete cell replacement, or when the total amount of cell damage is minimized by a successful anti aging damage prevention strategy, the need for total cell replacement becomes significantly less. Both of these nutritional anti aging strategies improve health and longevity by reducing stress on the telomere snippets.

Recent research in antiaging has shown us that there are two main reasons why most cells are forced to completely replace themselves;

1) when cellular wear and tear is unable to be repaired over time due to nutritional deficiencies at the cellular level, and

2) free radical damage to the cell that is so great that total replacement of the cell becomes unavoidable.

Fortunately for us, we can form an antiaging strategy to defend our cells against nutritional deficiency by improving our diets, and against free radical damage by consuming nutrients called antioxidants or "free radical scavengers or neutralizers".

These have the ability to donate an electron to a damaging free radical, thereby minimizing damage to our delicate intracellular structures.

Food sources that are particularly high in antioxidants include red grapes, red and yellow onions, cauliflower, broccoli and cabbage, garlic, green leafy vegetables, citrus fruits, carrots, and sweet potatoes.

But because the typical North American diet contains far too few nutrients and antioxidants, my patients who enjoy the best health have found that, in addition to a healthy diet and plenty of good exercise, they benefit significantly from nutritional and antioxidant supplementation.

Extensive research has shown that a good antioxidant supplement complex will include such antioxidants as Alpha Lipoic Acid, Glutathione, N-Acetyl Cysteine, Lycopene, Grapeseed extract and Bilberry.

And, at a minimum, we can all benefit from a good multiple vitamin complex that should include vitamins A, C, D and E, Beta-Carotene, B1, B2 and B6 along with Folic Acid, and the minerals Chromium, Zinc, Manganese, Copper and Selenium. Also, women over 36 and men over 50 will find that they can benefit from Calcium and Magnesium supplementation.

This new telomere research gives us yet another reason why it's so important to provide our cells with adequate nutrients and antioxidants so that we can enjoy optimal health and longevity through cellular repair whenever possible, rather than through cellular replacement.

In our efforts to realize long and healthy lives, doesn't it just make sense to carefully provide our bodies with the proper diet, exercise and supplementary nutrition that releases our body's innate healing intelligence and leads us down the pathway of natural healing and longevity?

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