The key to slow down cellular aging is exercise.
It appears that aging in cells can be slowed down by exercise. A new Preventive Medicine study found that the biological aging markers in people who exercised regularly seemed nine years younger than the biological aging markers in people who lived sedentary lifestyles.
Almost 6,000 adults were involved in a multi-year Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) survey, in which researchers examined participants’ telomeres. The information collected included the type of physical activities participants had done in the previous month and the vigor with which those events were done. The researchers also measured the length of telomeres from DNA samples that participants provided.
Telomeres refer to the protein caps found on the tips of human chromosomes, and they serve as markers for overall health and aging. A tiny piece of a telomere is lost whenever a cell replicates, which results in the telomere becoming shorter as a person ages. However, according to experts at Brigham Young University, the rate of telomere shrinkage varies from one person to another.
People who have shorter telomeres tend to die sooner and are more likely to suffer human chronic diseases. While it may not be a perfect biological aging index, telomere length is relatively reliable.
Researchers found that the telomeres in people who engaged in the most exercise were considerably longer than the telomeres in people with sedentary lifestyles. That was after the researchers adjusted for obesity, smoking, gender, alcohol use, and race among other factors. There were 140 fewer DNA base pairs at the tips of the telomeres of the most sedentary people. This difference accounts for approximately nine years of aging in cells, according to experts.
Participants in the study had to engage in the equivalent of at least 30 to 40 minutes of daily jogging for five days in a week for the researchers to consider them top-level exercisers. Therefore, high-level exercises affect the aging process, bio-hacking experts note. With the right combination of bio-hacking and exercise, people can get impressive results from their bodies and achieve optimal cellular health.
Scientists have come a long way in their understanding of how nutrients work and how genes in the human body are affected by natural compounds. As a result, these innovations had led to the creation of data-driven solutions and products the not only improve cognitive health but also help our bodies to age healthily.
Granted, those who did not do as much exercise also appeared to enjoy the benefits of slowed aging but, for them, the beneficial effects were diminished. People who engaged in highly active physical activity had telomeres that indicated roughly seven fewer years of cellular aging, compared to those that did moderate exercise.
The difference in benefits reaped from high and moderate exercise levels was significant. Moderate exercise is certainly beneficial and offers value, but a real difference is made when people pushed themselves to engage in physical activity of a higher level. Those considered the highest-level exercisers did 150- to 200-minutes of working out weekly, or did exercises of light/moderate intensity for more extended periods. Furthermore, a current study even suggests that the risk of chronic disease can be further reduced by increasing exercise, to a certain point.
The link between biological aging and exercise is evident, and experts believe that the length of telomeres might have an impact on oxidative stress and inflammation, both of which are relieved by exercise over time. Even though longer telomeres don’t necessarily guarantee longevity, the likelihood that they do is substantial, and, for that reason, experts believe that exercise plays a significant role in living a long, healthy life.