Humans boast a longer average life expectancy today than we did a century ago. 100 years ago, the average life expectancy was 32 –– now it’s 73!
Scientists have researched life-prolonging habits and medicine for centuries. However, now there exists a growing focus on one’s quality of life over the number of years.
A longer lifespan means more time to contract a variety of illnesses, particularly those that affect cognition and mental acuity. Luckily, studies show there are steps one can take to mitigate the onset of age-related diseases like Alzheimer’s and certain cancers.
Scientists studying reverse aging and the range of age-related issues do so by analyzing “epigenetic age”. We all know that healthy living correlates with improved quality of life and lifespan extension. There now exists a scientific basis to the idea that healthy nutrition and an optimal lifestyle can reverse epigenetic age –– and thereby slow the aging process.
What is an Epigenetic Age & What Are Epigenetic Clocks?
Epigenetic age is a useful biomarker based on DNA methylation patterns. Typically, your epigenetic age may strongly correlate to your chronological or biological age.
However, biological, chronological and epigenetic age aren’t interchangeable.
This is because your chronological age will refer to how much time has passed since you were born (and is based on your birth date). Biological age then refers to the true age of your cells, organs, and tissues (and is based on biochemistry). Meanwhile, epigenetic age refers to how much your body –– and specifically your genes –– have aged after experiencing positive or negative environmental stress.
For example, The Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities Study demonstrated that cardiovascular disease risk factors such as smoking seemed to accelerate one’s epigenetic age. Conversely, mild environmental stress like healthy exercise may help preserve the integrity (or “youth”) of your healthy genes.
Essentially, this means that though we can’t turn back the clock, lifestyle and dietary habits may be able to influence — and potentially even reverse — our epigenetic age. This, in turn, could potentially increase our actual lifespan.
In this way, an epigenetic clock is a useful tool because it can be used to calculate your epigenetic age. If this age is dramatically older than your biological age it may signal a higher mortality risk. Today, many use epigenetic clocks to estimate the effects of aging on their body so they can flag whether their greater lifestyle, environment, or behavior might set them up for danger down the line. An epigenetic clock can also signal whether smart nutrition and a healthy lifestyle is benefiting your long term health.
Can Cellular Aging Be Reversed?
While there is no definitive evidence that cellular aging can be reversed entirely, a person’s epigenetic clock is highly dynamic. It can be affected not only by choices pertaining to diet and exercise but also by specific events and experiences.
For example, recent aging science demonstrates that PTSD in adults is correlated to an acceleration in epigenetic age. In contrast, excessive infant distress is associated with a delayed, underdeveloped epigenetic age.
Cultivating optimal diet and exercise habits is well known to be beneficial to overall health. There is evidence that a plant-based diet, daily exercise, and intermittent fasting are all effective ways to slow the effects of aging on a cellular level.
What Works on the Cellular Level to Slow Down Aging?
The journey to health and longevity looks different for everyone. While there are many optimal nutrition and wellness routines, we’ve identified some of the most simple and effective for you. Here are five habits you can incorporate into your daily or weekly routine that are scientifically proven to slow or reverse epigenetic aging.
Daily exercise is a great habit. At a minimum, 30 minutes of exercise per day –– at 60%-80% intensity –– has been correlated with an extended lifespan. One study demonstrates that even something as simple as taking a brisk daily walk can add years to your life expectancy. Even a limited exercise regimen can strengthen muscle and bone, improve cognition and mood, and help with weight control.
A healthy diet is crucial to any effort to reverse epigenetic aging or extend your lifespan. Don’t worry, you don’t need to go vegan to see marked improvements in your overall health and cognitive function. The “Mediterranean diet” — plant-based and rich in whole grains, fruits, vegetables, olive oil and fish — is highly correlated with longer life expectancy. It’s also associated with reduction in the risk of cognitive impairment associated with Alzheimer’s disease.
You may also be aware of the keto diet’s growing popularity over the past several years. This is in part due to longevity research which demonstrates that a sustained keto diet has lifespan extending qualities. In fact, the keto diet may play a vital role in reducing amyloid plaques — the hallmarks of Alzheimer’s disease. Studies show the keto diet can actually help reverse these plaques’ neurotoxicity, resulting in stronger, longer-lasting memory functions.
A sustained keto diet also encourages the body to produce and utilize ketones, which are created by the liver from stored fat. Ketones are one of the most efficient, clean, and powerful sources of fuel that a body can utilize, and they have a variety of beneficial properties. For example, ketones reduce oxidative stress and provide restorative energy to aging cells.
That said, anyone who has tried the keto diet for any amount of time knows that maintaining the state in which your body produces these ketones (i.e. ketosis) can be challenging. Drinks like Kenetik offer you a simple solution. Kenetik is packed full of plant-based ketones. Kenetik is an easy, affordable, and delicious way to sustain your body while it’s in ketosis. Plus, it’s keto and fasting-friendly, as well as soy, dairy, and gluten-free. Ketones are clean brain fuel, and support optimal cognitive and physical performance.
Fasting is often a component of keto (and other) diets. Controlled intermittent fasting coupled with the restriction of carbohydrates is designed to lower glycemic cycling and ensure that your body is generating and relying on ketones as much as possible. In fact today, one study has even found that the caloric restriction allowed by intermittent fasting can modify the epigenetic marks commonly associated with aging.
Rest is important! Getting an average of eight uninterrupted hours of sleep per night is optimal for most adults, though some individuals may need more or fewer hours.
Sleep is always crucial, but days off and quality hours of sleep are especially vital for athletes and those with rigorous workout schedules. Remember to stagger your exercise routine to account for the downtime required to repair and build up muscles.
Cold and Heat Exposure
Who would have thought that limited exposure to cold could actually have positive metabolic effects? But it’s true! Temporary reduction of core body temperature for 10-15 minutes per day can activate brown fat in the body. This brown fat has positive metabolic benefits which are correlated to anti-aging effects.
Meanwhile, sauna bathing can reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. For those of you without access to a public sauna or hot tub, a hot bath can mimic these effects as well.
So explore all of these tips and techniques today to help push yourself towards a healthier lifestyle. No matter where you decide to start, couple your favorite tips with a bottle of Kenetik. With one sip you can instantly access the power of exogenous ketones and step closer to improving your overall cognitive clarity, athletic performance, and brain power.