5 Tips To Do Now For Longevity
By: Michael Roizen, MD • Posted on August 19, 2022
Over the last 170 years, life expectancy at birth for women in the USA has increased from 42 to 80 years in a relatively straight line of about a 2.5 year gain every ten years. The gain in life expectancy initially was due to improvements in sanitation and infant health, and later in management of chronic diseases like high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes.
We are likely to get a 30-year exponential jump in the next decade, so you’re about to be able to live longer and younger than ever before! Based on exponential progress in 14 areas of research in mechanism of aging, each of which has already proven to change aging in at least 2 animal species, there is at least an 80% probability that in the next decade, a breakthrough will allow you to function as a 40-year-old at a calendar age of 90 years old — I call this the Great Age Reboot (GAR).
You may be asking, what does this look like? What should you do to prepare to be younger? After all, who wants to live longer if it just means living older?
But hear me out: you won’t just be living longer. You have the opportunity to live these years disease free, with more vitality, higher function, and the ability to do more. You don’t have to wait for the GAR to occur. By making right choices to slow down the aging process, it is possible now…to be physiologically 40 at calendar age 60.
How moving your muscles can improve your genes
The Human Genome Project and subsequent research has taught us that many of your actions change the epigenetic switches and can turn your genes “on” or “off” ---to produce their protein or not. For example:
- When you stress your muscles, they turn on a gene that produces the small protein Irisin
- Irisin goes to the brain and causes increases in Brain Derived Neurotrophic Growth Factor (BDNF)
- BDNF Increases your hippocampal size and memory functioning
That type of research progress leads to ways that you can change how your genes function so you can take advantage of the GAR.
5 tips for gene longevity
- Change your attitude. You are a genetic engineer for your body. Your actions like stressing a muscle and turning on the gene that makes Irisin are thought to control whether 80 percent of your genes are on and producing proteins - or off.
- Only eat food you love and that loves your body back. Food is like marriage - a relationship. You wouldn’t marry someone who was trying to kill you every day, so you shouldn’t eat food that is trying to kill you.
- Choose your team for trust, honesty, knowledge and curiosity to assess your body and brain. I wouldn’t do a colonoscopy on myself. Health is a team sport - it is very hard to do by yourself.
- Add speed to your body and brain. Both speed of processing brain games and stressing your muscles by pushing for speed reduce body and brain aging.
- Manage stress and include cultivating your posse and purpose. Stress is the greatest ager, and, for most of us, posse and purpose are best at reducing the aging that stress causes.
Be Strong, Be Healthy, Be in Charge!
-Michael F. Roizen, MD Professor, Staff Physician, and Cleveland Clinic’s Chief Wellness Officer, Emeritus; author of Four #1 New York Times Bestsellers
About Michael Roizen, MD
Michael F. Roizen, MD, is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Williams College and Alpha Omega Alpha graduate of the University of California, San Francisco, School of Medicine who is passionate about helping people choose to live younger and healthier.
He performed his residency in internal medicine at Harvard's Beth Israel Hospital and completed Public Health Service at the National Institutes of Health in the laboratory of Irv Kopin and Nobel Prize winner Julius Axelrod. He is certified by both the American Boards of Internal Medicine and of Anesthesiology.
In 2007, Dr. Roizen was named Chief Wellness Officer at Cleveland Clinic, the first such position in a major healthcare institution in the United States. Dr. Roizen also served as founding Chair of the Wellness Institute at Cleveland Clinic from 2007 to 2017.
Dr. Roizen still practices internal medicine, using the RealAge metric to motivate his patients. He routinely takes patients at the Cleveland Clinic Wellness who are in the midst of struggling with tobacco, heart, diabetic or arthritic problems and coaches them with simple (but persistent) lifestyle changes to be able to live, feel, look and be years younger. He really enjoys getting them to throw away their medications when they no longer need them, but teaches the role of food and other simple steps in reversing disease processes. Cleveland Clinic Wellness aims to elevate preventive care and wellness as a core brand of Cleveland Clinic and a core value we teach our patients and employees.
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