Longevity & Anti-Aging

The notion of longevity should not be one of nursing homes and decay. In the modern age we understand so much more about what promotes vibrant living well into our 90’s. Longevity involves engaging proven strategies that truly slow the rate of aging and promote youthful vigor, excellent cognition and joyous living right up to the end. The only variable that determines your outcome is YOU. You impact your genes and their expression based on your daily decisions. Decide NOW what kind of life you expect and then build it. There are no limits other than the ones you place on you.

This discussion promises to be one of strangest but most rewarding on this entire site. Why? Doctors are not taught a single thing about HEALTH. It’s actually funny that we call it “health care” when all we are taught to do is put people on drugs to control symptoms (not causes) of disease. It is in fact “disease care”. This has value but let’s be honest and call it what it is. We are taught nothing about food, sleep, stress, exercise, detoxification, and other essential topics that are in fact the very cause of our diseases. Diabetes and heart disease are the #1 killers of American’s and these are disease brought on by lifestyle, not genetics. Diabetes is NOT a genetic disease. 95% of type 1 diabetics are born from 2 normal healthy parents. Integrative physicians and practitioners engage lifestyle as the first ingredient to understanding why you don't feel well and work to truly restore health as this is the only way to actually get you healthy.

The U.S. represents a mere 5% of the world population yet we consume 50% of the drugs made globally. If drugs made us healthy then we would be the healthiest population on the planet. In fact, we are among some of the most ill people on the planet with >70% (and rising) of us being overweight and wading into insulin resistance and diabetes. Life expectancy is one measure of a nations general health and Americans don’t even come close to being in the top 10. Americans rank 30th in the world for longevity. We die early from heart disease, cancer and obesity related issues. In fact the 4th leading cause of death in America is the “appropriate” use of prescription medications. Not drug abuse, simply drug overuse. I’m talking about prescription drugs, given to you by your doctor, not recreational negligence.

Let’s leave that somber note in the rear-view mirror and journey forward to understand what amazing things lie in front of us. The decision that you desire a long and fruitful life loaded with vibrant living is well within your grasp if you choose it. We understand so much about how our bodies age and researchers are studying aging as a disease rather than a mere consequence of life. When we explore what happens at a cellular level to lead a cell to act “old” we are empowered with understanding for the simple things we can do to coax it in another direction. Longevity is not about living in a nursing home to the ripe old age of 90. The notion of true longevity embodies the belief that we are out dancing and sharing fun activities with friends into our 90’s and beyond. Some scientists think we will actually see a person live to 150 years of age in our lifetime. That may not be your target but please cast aside old notions of what old age looks like and invite a vision of vital, youthful, freedom into your 90’s and realize you will meet and play with your great, great grandchildren. Or at least kick the butt of folks 20 years your junior in athletic events you enter in your 70’s. You decide what you want but take the driver’s seat and start designing it now. The great enjoyment does not typically happen by accident. Yes, there is some genetic lottery in play but we will focus on the elements under our control to increase the odds strongly in our favor.

Author David Sinclair’s book “Lifespan” was released in 2019 and for many it was the first introduction to the idea that there is real science behind this idea of aging. Elizabeth Blackburn won a Nobel prize in 2009 for her research on telomeres and wrote the book “The Telomere Effect”. Dr. Bredesen offered a book in 2017 exploring ideas for reducing or reversing Alzheimers. These and other papers share many common threads which is that your daily decisions on food, exercise, sleep and stress determine your outcome more strongly than your genetics. We will explore this work and lay out ideas in logical fashion to demystify this complex science into simple steps you can engage now. 

There are some notable natural products and yes even drugs such as Metformin that can be safely and effectively used to enhance your outcome. We will explore the strengths and weaknesses of these things so that you can make an informed decision.


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