Chronological Age vs. Biological Age
Chronological age is calculated based upon the number of years that have passed since the date of your birth. However, the number of years you have lived has little to do with your biological age. Depending on how well your cells function, biological age is determined by examining how your DNA reacts to the everyday choices that you make like nutrition, stress and exercise. While chronological aging is measured by the passage of time, and occurs at a constant rate, biological aging can speed up or slow down depending on various factors. Since biological age is the top predictor of nearly all age-related diseases, it is an important element of health to consider.
How Is Biological Age Determined
Biological age can be easily determined through an advanced DNA diagnostic tool called TruAge. This test provides an estimation of the speed at which we age. Given that diseases like Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and cancer have much to do with a person’s age, determining the pace at which you are aging can help predict your risk of developing age-related diseases. Armed with this knowledge, you can take steps to prevent disease. At RevitaLife, we offer several diagnostic tools in addition to TruAge that help us craft personalized health optimization plans unique to each of our patients.
How Does the TruAge Test Work
The innovative TruAge test examines how DNA methylation takes place and can help to predict various diseases. DNA methylation is an epigenetic mechanism that regulates gene expression and tissue differentiation. In essence, it causes activation or repression of genes in a context-dependent matter. For example, your reactivity of methylation to stress reveals how you are aging in a measurable way. The TruAge test also gives an accurate estimation of telomere length based on methylation. Telomeres are repeating sequences of nucleotide base-pairs at the very end of all your chromosomes. They act as end-caps to protect genetic information, and they shorten each time a cell divides. Once a cell’s telomeres reach their shortest length, the cell stops replicating. Cell replication is necessary for healing and growing, so this process of telomere shortening and halting is widely accepted to be one of several factors causing tissues to age.
Why Are Telomeres Important to Examine
What happens to your cells at the end of their lifespan, and how quickly they arrive at that end, is an important indicator of the aging process and a predictor of many diseases. People with significantly shorter telomeres are three times more likely to die from heart disease and eight times more likely to die from an infectious disease. Therefore, tracking the rate of telomere shortening is important to determine the overall progression of health and aging. The TruAge test provides an insight into the average telomere length (measured with methylation), telomere age and telomere state compared to the average population.
How to Achieve Healthy Aging
At RevitaLife, we reject the widely accepted notion that aging is painful or unpleasant. Rather, we embrace it as a normal part of living that should not be treated as an illness. Healthy aging is absolutely possible, and we can help. Depending on your unique health status and diagnostic testing results, we outline a plan for better health that may involve various lifestyle changes. These may include certain exercise recommendations, being mindful of your body shape and how it distributes fat, consuming foods with low glycemic index values and monitoring the nutrients in the foods you eat. However, your own commitment to healthy aging is as important as the personalized plan we design for you. If you are ready to take control of your body’s natural aging process and make more informed lifestyle choices, schedule an appointment with us where you can learn more about biological aging. Call us at 850.436.4444.