Eternal youth could be one step closer following the successful transformation of old human cells into young ones. After its discovery in the 1980s, telomerase gained a reputation as a fountain of youth.
Chromosomes have caps of repetitive DNA called telomeres at their ends. Every time cells divide, their telomeres shorten, which eventually prompts them to stop dividing and die.
Telomerase prevents this decline in some kinds of cells, including stem cells, by lengthening telomeres, and the hope was that activating the enzyme could slow cellular ageing. Telomerase is an enzyme counteracting the telomere shrinking process and uniquely holds the key to delaying or even reversing the cellular aging process. Telomerase offsets cellular aging by lengthening the telomeres, adding back lost DNA repeats to add time onto the molecular clock countdown, effectively extending the lifespan of the cell. Understanding the regulation and limitation of the telomerase enzyme holds the promise of reversing telomere shortening and cellular aging with the potential to extend human lifespan and improve the health and wellness of elderly individuals.
People who do moderate aerobic exercise – about three times a week for 45 minutes – have telomeres pretty much as long as marathon runners. Mixing things up seems to be good too. One study showed the more different kinds of exercise people did, the longer their telomeres.
The two researchers, Nobel Prize winner Elizabeth Blackburn PhD, and University of California San Francisco health psychologist Elissa Epel PhD, who wrote the New York Times bestseller, describe how telomeres can be impacted:
“The foods you eat, your response to emotional challenges, the amount of exercise you get, whether you were exposed to childhood stress, even the level of trust and safety in your neighborhood—all of these factors and more appear to influence your telomeres and can prevent premature aging at the cellular level.”
When telomeres are lengthened, we have healthy cell renewal and better overall health. Genetics do play a role in the length and degradation of our telomeres, but the good news is that there is a lot we can do to positively affect them. The best way to slow down the shortening of your telomeres, and potentially lengthen them, is through a healthy lifestyle, for example: healthy nutrition, antioxidants, Vitamins A, D and K, adequate sleep, meditation, yoga, weight training and high intensity interval training; even laughing can help keep your telomeres lengthened and healthy.
How Does Interval Training Keep Us Young?
When you exercise at higher intensity levels such as in interval training (HIIT) and weight training, you stimulate fast twitch muscle fibers type IIa and IIb. Fast twitch fibers do not get recruited during steady state aerobic training like jogging or cycling. These are the muscle fibers that help you build strength, power and shape your body. More recovery is needed with higher intensity exercise. Exercise does cause a short stress response but it also induces autophagy, the body’s process of cleaning up damaged cells, so as we recover from intense exercise, healthy cell renewal is promoted.
Foods high in vitamins are believed to protect cells and their telomeres from oxidative damage. A diet high in antioxidant foods, like berries and artichokes, can slow down aging and help prevent or reduce cell damage.
In one study of more than 2,000 women, those with higher vitamin D levels were found to have fewer aging-related changes in their DNA, as well as lowered inflammatory responses. Women with higher levels of vitamin D are more likely to have longer telomeres, and vice versa. This means that people with higher levels of vitamin D may actually age more slowly than people with lower levels of vitamin D.
Astaxanthin has emerged as one of the most potent and beneficial antioxidants currently known, with potent anti-inflammatory and DNA-protective capabilities. Research has even shown that it can protect against DNA damage induced by gamma radiation. It has a number of unique features that make it stand out from the crowd.
According to Dr. William Harris, an expert on omega-3 fats, those who have an omega-3 index of less than four percent age much faster than those with indexes above eight percent. Therefore, your omega-3 index may also be an effective marker of your rate of aging. According to Dr. Harris’ research, omega-3 fats appear to play a role in activating telomerase, which, again, has been shown to be able to actually reverse telomere shortening.
Folate is a B vitamin that’s required for DNA synthesis, repair, and metabolism within the cell. Folate is also imperative to maintain low levels of homocysteine. High levels of homocysteine can cause inflammation and damage our artery linings, which promotes heart disease. Many studies, including one published in 2016 in Clinical Nutrition Research, have linked folate, B12 and high homocysteine with shorter telomere length. Good sources of folate are broccoli, asparagus, Brussels sprouts, lentils and beans (soy, pinto, black, navy and kidney), as well as fortified cereal and whole grain products.
Nature’s sweetest, most nutrient-rich finger foods are the perfect way to take in antioxidants that fight cell-damaging free radicals. Research shows that those with higher levels of antioxidants such as Vitamin C, E and selenium tend to have longer telomeres. Fruits and vegetables are the best sources of antioxidants, which is why a plant-based diet is highly recommended. So don’t stop at berries when seeking anti-oxidizing effects: carrots, sweet potatoes and yams, winter squash and green leafy vegetables are packed with them. Tomatoes, citrus, cantaloupe and potatoes with skins provide plenty of Vitamin C. Soy, nuts, and seeds offer Vitamin E and whole grains provide selenium.
Studies have shown that longer telomeres are associated with high antioxidant and Polyphenol intake so think wheatgrass, barleygrass, chlorella, turmeric, hemp protein, astaxanthin, co-enzyme Q10, green tea or organic cacao.
Green tea: a 2010 study of elderly Chinese subjects found that increased green tea intake may be associated with a potential increase in lifespan through regulating telomere length. In this report, published in the British Journal of Nutrition, a total of 976 men and 1,030 women aged 65 and older were initially assessed in 2006. In addition to questions regarding lifestyle habits and diet, the blood of these research volunteers was tested for telomere length. Following measurements of the average difference in telomere length between those who consumed the highest amount of green tea and those who consumed the lowest, the researchers determined a potential lifespan difference of five years between these two groups. The results of this study mainly favoured the telomeres of men, with less significant results being found in the female tea drinkers.
Astragalus membranaceus, commonly called Huang Qi in Mandarin, is an age old herb that the ancient Chinese used to put a spring in their step and boost resistance to illness. This is the herb that TA65 was isolated from, and every year something new comes out about the power of this plant. With its sweet taste and relatively mild overall flavour, it blends easily into soups and teas. Though the level of TA65 in a preventive daily dose of 10 grams of Astragalus is likely pretty small, it still works well in the prevention of a list of diseases. If combined with the previously mentioned diet/supplements, regular tea consumption, and meditation, Astragalus could go a long way to boost your lifespan and resistance to disease.
- telomeres are segments of DNA at the end of our chromosomes, preventing them from fraying or tangling with one another. When that happens, it can cause genetic information to get mixed up or destroyed, leading to cell malfunction, increasing the risk of disease or even shortening lifespans;
- telomerase is an enzyme that lengthens telomeres and keeps them from wearing out too fast or too early;
- regularly engaging in intense exercise, like HIIT workouts, can keep telomeres long and happy;
- foods high in vitamins are believed to protect cells and their telomeres from oxidative damage.
I am happy and eager to assist you on your path to lengthen your telomeres witch increase your energy, vitality, tonus, and keeps you young. I’m looking forward to hearing from you!
You may also be interested in: https://www.wellness-coach.ro/en/best-ways-to-increase-your-glutathione-level/