In thinking about this my first question that came up, “Can this be reversed?” We all want to feel like we are in control and want to slow our biological age. A study published in Cell Metabolism has found that biological age increases with stress, but returns to baseline following recovery from stress.

When we experience stress, inflammation and damage to DNA in cells all accelerate the aging process. Those who are able to avoid stress benefit from a lower risk of developing cardiovascular disease,, immune dysfunction, metabolic disorders, as well as other age-related conditions. Obviously we want to incorporate stress-free practices into our lifestyle! The following all help with reducing stress:

  1. Eating that healthy diet
  2. Moving our bodies (walking, swimming, gardening, etc)
  3. Living mindfully (staying in the present)
  4. Getting a good night’s sleep.
  5. Research shows your body releases endorphins during positive social contact, similar to the physical response after a hard workout, which gives a boost of happiness, while reducing stress. That’s why people who feel more connected to others have lower levels of anxiety and depression.

Remember the conversation about telomeres? (go here for that post) Research suggests that chronic stress can accelerate this process, and that shorter telomeres may be linked to disease and mortality. 

According to Dr. Tunc Tiryaki, renowned Plastic Surgeon, “Our bodies have the ability to repair and recover from damage caused by stress, so it makes sense that this recovery process can also restore our biological age.”

So even if the candles on our birthday cake keep growing, (our chronological age) focusing on those healthy habits listed above, we can slow that biological age.

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