Longevity Will it Last?
Posted November 27, 2011 in Uncategorized
Human Life expectancy has nearly doubled over the past 100 years, and the maximum human life span has also increased dramatically. Even more incredibly, centenarians are now the fastest growing segment of the U.S. population, increasing from only 3700 in 1940 to over 60,000 today. This is due largely to modern scientific and medical innovations, in addition to other changes in the way we live our life. Many diseases and environmental factors that used to cut our lives short are no longer as much of an issue. We have antibiotics for infection, sterilization, pasteurization, surgery, immunization, and countless other innovations that weren’t available in the recent past. If trends are any indication the human life span and life expectancy will continue to increase as our scientific and medical technology evolves. Science is divided on the question of whether it is possible to significantly increase human longevity, or if there are hard and fast biological markers that put a cap on how long we can possibly live, and we have already reached the plateau.
This also raises the question that even if we can extend our life span, what will happen to the quality of life as we grow older and older as a people? Skeptics argue that if human beings really were supposed to live to an average of 100 years, then there would not be such a universal decline in all human biological systems by age 80. It is now possible to keep someone who is brain dead or in a coma alive with life support and machines to keep them functioning. If growing to a superhuman age is going to bring with it significant increases in age related decline and pathology, then what is the point? For the science of anti-aging to be useful to us, it must necessarily delay age related changes and the degradation of the quality of life.
Current research is providing evidence that by developing deeper understanding of how the aging process works, we can dramatically slow down the aging process, and potentially stop and even reverse biological aging. Research into the relationship between longevity and telomere length, oxidative stress, caloric restriction, and gene expression have produced some remarkable findings. For instance, studies on rats have shown dramatic increase in lifespan for rats who were given an extremely low calorie diet. The idea of gene manipulation opens a whole new world of possibility. Even if humans as the are are designed with a genetic time limit, gene manipulation has the potential to alter those very genes. Maybe the key to longevity is to simply change the expression of the genes that cause our systems to deteriorate with age and us to die.
While the jury is still out on the fate of human longevity as a whole, there are many simple lifestyle changes and scientific innovations currently available that are known to increase our projected life expectancy and lower our mortality rates. Stopping smoking, eating healthy, getting enough sleep, reducing stress, and limiting television exposure can all add years to your life. Rejuvalife Vitality Institute offers a comprehensive, medically supervised age management program, using bioidentical hormones to restore a youthful hormonal balance. This combined with proper nutrition, fitness and lifestyle management can significantly improve your life expectancy. We can’t change the genetics that were given to us, but we have a say in the quality of life that we live and how we take care of the body that we have.