The message to stop smoking issued by public health officials has been nothing less than paramount, repetitive and consistent in the last several decades. What about soft drinks? Daily consumption of just a half-liter of soda is linked with 4.6 years of additional biological aging, effects comparable to that of smoking, finds a new study.
The study found that drinking soft drinks is associated with cell aging, suggesting sugar-sweetened soda consumption might promote disease independently from its role in obesity. (more…)
Stress, inflammation, and lack of sleep shorten your telomeres—which can shorten your life.
Three protectors help you overcome the effects.
You probably already know that inflammation, stress, and lack of sleep aren’t good for you. You may not know, however, that these things have a huge impact on your cells.
More specifically, they all affect the length of your telomeres—which can actually affect the length of your life.
What are Telomeres?
Scientific studies have suggested that a mind that is present and in the moment indicates well-being, whereas shifting our energy to the past or future can lead to unhappiness. Now, a preliminary UCSF study shows a link between mind wandering and aging, by looking at a biological measure of longevity within our DNA.
In the study, telomere length, an emerging biomarker for cellular and general bodily aging, was assessed in association with the tendency to be present in the moment versus the tendency to mind wander, in research on 239 healthy, midlife women ranging in age from 50 to 65 years.
Being present in the moment was defined as an inclination to be focused on current tasks, while mind wandering was defined as the inclination to have thoughts about things other than the present or being elsewhere. (more…)
Many factors are known to contribute to human lifespan. Many natural health followers carefully control their diet to include organic choices of fruits and vegetables in their natural, uncooked state, while remaining physically active and maintaining body weight within a healthy range. (more…)
Anemia is one of the most common clinical problems seen in the elderly. There is a progressive decrease in bone marrow reserve with age and a decrease in hormonal response to hematologic stress. Anemia has been found to increase the risk of non-vertebral fractures. One major factor that is often overlooked that may contribute to the presence of anemia in the older population is nutritional status. While rarely encountered in affluent elderly communities, in lower socioeconomic circumstances where other dietary deficiencies are found, anemia is a much more frequent occurrence. The principle reason for inadequate nutrition status in the elderly is poor dentition.
A telomere is a region of repetitive DNA at the end of a chromosome, which protects the end of the chromosome from deterioration. Telomeres are extensions of the linear, double-stranded DNA molecules of which chromosomes are composed, and are found at each end of both of the chromosomal strands. Thus, one chromosome will have four telomeric tips. In humans, the forty-six chromosomes are tipped with ninety-two telomeric ends. Shorter (systemic) telomere length has been suggested as an independent risk factor for cardiovascular disease. The origin of this association is unclear and several models have been proposed, particularly attributing the biomarker value to a genetic predisposition in subjects with shorter telomeres, to an effect of inflammation and oxidative stress or to a combination of both.
A recent study published in JAMA researched the relationship between telomere length and clinical outcomes in severe aplastic anemia. The study involved 183 patients with severe aplastic anemia who had been treated at the National Institutes of Health from 2000 to 2008. The results were measured by hematologic response, relapse, clonal evolution and survival. Researchers found hematologic response and telomere length were not related. Telomere length was associated with relapse, clonal evolution and mortality by using a multivariate analysis. The authors concluded by stating “In a cohort of patients with severe aplastic anemia receiving immunosuppressive therapy, telomere length was unrelated to response but was associated with risk of relapse, clonal evolution, and overall survival.”1
1Scheinberg P, Cooper JN, Sloand EM, et al. Association of telomere length of peripheral blood leukocytes with hematopoietic relapse, malignant transformation, and survival in severe aplastic anemia. JAMA. 2010;304(12):1358-64
The Nobel Prize for Medicine (2009) was awarded to E. H. Blackburn, C. W. Greider, and J. W. Szostak for scientific research on telomeres and their controlling enzyme, telomerase. Research into the biological significance of telomeres and telomerase has proceeded at a frenetic pace over the past couple of decades. This area of science remains embryonic, but it holds the promise of providing new frontiers and foundations for understanding the emergence of chronic disease, cancer, and aging. The purpose of this article is to highlight concepts that are most relevant to the introduction of a natural clinical protocol to support the structure and function of telomeres. (more…)