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According to US government research, social isolation is a predictor of declining mental function in older age. Experts believe this may be down to not using a wide variety of communication skills. Research shows that people who are part of a group — whether it's a church or a book club — are healthier than solitary people when they are older, and that the wider the range of relationships family, friends, work and so on a person has, the less cognitive decline they will experience with aging.
So, as well as tackling the crossword puzzle on your lonesome, make time in your life for shared activities — and ensure you spend time with as wide a range of people as possible. Many of the depressing changes once attributed to chronological aging — such as fat gain, loss of muscle, and poor posture — are now believed to be due to plain old inactivity. For example, a Fels Longitudinal Study — which investigated aging, body composition and lifestyle — found that women who do vigorous physical activity such as running, cycling or swimming several times a week weigh up to If you are more concerned about your heart health than your dress size, though, then doing less intense activities such as walking will help to protect your vital organ.
Maintaining as active a lifestyle as you can is good advice for anyone trying to hold back the years. Oily fish such as salmon, mackerel, herring and tuna are the best source of omega-3 essential fatty acids, which have been found to protect against cardiovascular disease particularly in combination with statins , type II diabetes and rheumatoid arthritis. Also, Omega-3 is believed to help the skin stay elastic and hydrated, which means wrinkles are less likely to appear — and which is why salmon is the base of the famous anti-aging Perricone Plan.
Research by Rush University in Chicago in found that eating oily fish can slow the mental decline associated with aging. The results showed that eating oily fish at least once a week can slow the rate of cognitive decline by 10 to 13 per cent per year. According to studies at the Human Nutrition Research Centre on Aging at Tufts University in Boston, antioxidant-rich foods may slow aging processes in the body and brain.
STAY YOUNG WITH MAISIE PETERS
Researchers found that foods such as blueberries and spinach could increase the antioxidant power of human blood by 10 to 25 per cent — so try eating more of these. The antioxidant vitamins A, C and E play a major role in protecting the body against free radicals, so aim not only to get your five-a-day, but also ensure that you take in a wide variety of fruit and veg, especially those of strong color. Vitamin A in particular helps to keep the skin strong and healthy, which we get in our diet from foods rich in beta-carotene.
Carrots are the obvious choice — but sweet potato, swede, pumpkin and melon are also good sources. Sex enhances emotional intimacy, relaxes us, decreases stress, and makes us feel great. For example, athletes who were still competing in sport in their sixties had sex lives comparable to those 20 years younger.
Also, in his book Real Age, Michael Roizen reported that women who are unsatisfied with the quality or quantity of their sexual relationships have a life expectancy half a year less than is average for their age, while women who are satisfied with both the quality and quantity have a life expectancy one and a half years longer than average. For men, having fewer than five orgasms a year shortens life expectancy by two and a half years, while a man having more than orgasms a year will add three years to his life expectancy.
Louis put 25 volunteers aged 41 to 65 on a daily intake of between and calories for over six years. Heart function, blood pressure and inflammatory markers were compared against 25 control subjects, who had a calorie intake of between to calories — which is typical of the normal Western diet.
I graduated at 60 with a degree in Holistic Health. Now, when many of my peers are looking at retirement, I am using my new skills and building my own company.
And it shows: I am 62 but I get pegged for being in my 40s all the time. I play on the toys at the park. I make and eat the cookies. I paint, color, and play make-believe with my kid. I also exercise at least three times a week and have done several plus-mile rides, including biking from Seattle to Portland. I also just bought a kayak plus I garden to grow some of my own food. Some people may think that sounds extreme, but I love it and I feel decades younger than I am.
Sound daunting? To prepare, I listen to a lot of music beforehand and do research into the artist, style of music, and history. Nothing makes me feel young like rocking out to live music. I also love to motivate others of all ages to have a champion mindset. Also playing cards with my girlfriends, dying bright blue streaks in my white hair, and hanging out with my grandkids helps me feel young. It became a real turning point for me. I have continued my exercise routine and feel better and stronger now in my 40s than I ever did, even as a year-old!
Stay Young by Graveyard Club | Free Listening on SoundCloud
Exercise really is the fountain of youth. And a German study showed that, when subscribers fell and remained on the floor for longer than five minutes, they failed to use their devices to summon help eighty-three per cent of the time. The AgeLab has rediscovered the eternal truth that identity matters to us far more than utility.
The most effective way of comforting the aged, the researchers there find, is through a kind of comical convergence of products designed by and supposedly for impatient millennials, which secretly better suit the needs of irascible boomers. The best hearing aids look the most like earbuds. Such unexpected convergences have happened in the past.
Retirement villages came to be centered on golf courses, Coughlin maintains, not because oldsters necessarily like golf but because they like using golf carts. The golf comes with them. TaskRabbit and Uber and Rent the Runway—services that provide immediate help for specific problems—are especially valuable for an aging population. Older women in particular are saved from microdeficiencies in their diet. So, while the millennials want them for convenience, the boomers want them for care for their parents, or themselves. He also hates the misallocation of resources based on mere myths.
What kind of physical exercise can help you stay young?
The fact of the matter is that less than ten per cent of the elderly go into nursing homes or assisted living. Not when the model is a two-story house with a bedroom and the bathroom upstairs. Little tasks become sources of high friction. What we need is not to put off death a little longer but to write a new narrative of aging as it could be. Aging has no point; it is the infuriating absence of a point. Having reproduced ourselves externally, we fall down on replicating ourselves internally. The processes of cellular replication that allow us to be boats rebuilt even as they cross the ocean cease acting efficiently, because they have no evolutionary reward for acting efficiently.
They are like code monkeys in a failing tech business: they can mess up everything, absent-mindedly forget to code for the color of our hair or the elasticity of our skin, and no penalty is exacted for the failure. That, at least, is the classic explanation of why we age, proposed by the British Nobel laureate Peter Medawar, in the nineteen-fifties. Once we have passed reproductive age, the genes can get sloppy about copying, allowing mutations to accumulate, because natural selection no longer cares. And so things fall apart. The second law of thermodynamics gets us all in the end.
And yet some trees go on for centuries, collecting rings, growing older without really aging. Some species—though those are often hard-to-track creatures, like Arctic sharks—may live for centuries.
Even if aging at some speed is ultimately inevitable, what happens when we age is far from self-evident. Human beings are outliers: we live much longer than other creatures of our size, defying the general truth that smaller animals live shorter lives than bigger ones. Those extra thirty years of life, though won by advances in medicine and public health, are winnable because, given a little chance, we just go on.
The big question of human aging then becomes not why we fall apart but why nature lets us hold together for so long. Old folks are repositories of extended cultural memory: it would seem to be advantageous to have a few senior citizens around who know what to do, so to speak, when winter comes.
People might not have a death sentence in their genes. And so elsewhere in Cambridge, notably in certain genetic labs at Harvard, the chairs and seals and exaptated services of the AgeLab are regarded as mere Band-Aids on the problem to be solved. Here, there are whispers of undying yeast, tales of eternally young mice, rumors of rejuvenated dogs, and scientists who stubbornly insist that age is an illness to be treated like any other. Clear those off, he says, and the younger you, still intact in the information layer, jumps out—just as the younger Beatles jump out from a restored and remastered CD.
When a telephone switchboard was our most impressive knowledge-bearing mechanism, people thought that the brain was like one; when Xerox copies, growing less legible as generation passed to generation, were familiar to everyone, the image of a cell ceasing to replicate itself effectively in that manner was self-evident. One of his standard jokes is that the fifth floor of his lab is off limits to visitors, because that is where the mammoths and the Neanderthals live. He is also among a group of engineer-entrepreneurs who are trying not to make better products for aging people but to make fewer aging people to sell products to.
Perhaps aging is not a condition to be managed but a mistake to be fixed. Sinclair, for one, has successfully extended the life of yeast, and says that he is moving on to human trials. In mice studies, genetic modifications that cause the rodents to make greater amounts of a single protein, sirtuin 6, have resulted in longer life spans although some scientists think that the intervention merely helped male mice to live as long as female mice.
Church and Noah Davidsohn, a former postdoc in his lab, have engaged in a secretive but much talked-about venture to make old dogs new. They have conducted gene therapy on beagles with the Tufts veterinary school, and are currently advertising for Cavalier King Charles spaniels, which are highly prone to an incurable age-related heart condition, mitral-valve disease; almost all of them develop it by the age of ten.