IN MY DECEMBER COLUMN I INTRODUCED a new reason for avoiding non-thinking, overindulgent eating. That new reason is saving your telomeres. Telomeres are relatively newly discovered protective caps at the ends of our chromosomes, quite similar to the plastic caps at the end of a shoelace. Basically, as you grow older each time the cell divides, the telomere becomesshorter and life ends when it is gone.
Protecting the telomere from undo damage can not only extend life and youthful appearance, but help to avoid many common diseases. The way to do this was my concluding sentence of the last column—stay as close to nature as possible. This means eating natural, organic foods and avoiding anything that you can eat straight from a box.
Nature definitely does not include smoking, processed foods and trans-fats. Another villain is genetically altered foods. Recently it has been proven that excessive stress over long periods can do serious damage as well.
The good news is that it looks like science is on the verge of reversing the shortening of your telomeres and therefore extending your life expectancy. An enzyme called telomerase can increase the length of the telomere, essentially reversing the aging process.
In 2011, Dr Ronald DePinho, professor of genetics from Harvard Medical School, shocked the world by taking elderly mice (the equivalent of humans in their 80’s) and returning them to youthful form, including the ability to reproduce. They regained their vision and grew back a normal, youthful brain.
One of the leaders in what it takes to reverse aging, and is involved in making supplements available, is Dr. Al Sears of Royal Palm Beach, FL. He has published extensively on this subject and his work is available online. Although reversing the aging process has yet to be fully accomplished, the reports of patients that have been following his regime are incredible and it appears that a virtual fountain of youth is on its way. The important thing is that we are now aware of what it takes to prevent accelerating the aging process and how to slow it down drastically.
The key factors that accelerate the aging process are: excessive stress; a poor diet high in processed foods, dairy, empty calories (sugar, junk food and alcohol); and trans-fats. There are many supplements that can be taken to stimulate your body’s production of telomerase. One of those is TA-65, an extract of the Chinese herb astragalus. This extract is available on the internet at $219.00 for a one month’s supply. Since the discovery of TA-65, many other far less expensive supplements have been proven to help, including Resveratrol, Green Tee extract (EGCG), N-Acetyl-Cysteine, Vitamin D3 and Vitamin E.
The discovery of the impact of the telomere and telomerase should be taken very seriously. There is no wonder why diabetes, breast cancer, heart disease and arthritis are epidemic in our society. Why bother cooking breakfast for your kids when you can open a box of ready-made cereal (or better yet, they can) and they can enjoy all that sugar and processed grains, not to mention the fact that they lose a chance to eat with you and relieve stress by talking their plans for the day? For dinner, grab something from a box and nuke it so that you don’t have to take the time to share your love through cooking nutritiously, and then why not turn on the TV so that you can avoid conversation?
We evolved without these modern “conveniences” and distractions and it’s time to get back to a more natural lifestyle. That path has been scientifically proven to extend your life. I can’t over emphasize the most important factors that would already have you looking and feeling younger: an all-natural diet without drug, tobacco or alcohol abuse; sensible stress relief; proper exercise and plenty of laughter and love.
Include a commitment to follow the above guidelines in a New Year’s resolution and you could have a vital, active and meaningful life for you and your loved ones in 2013 and beyond.
Robert Brown, DDS has a TMJ and sleep apnea practice in Danville and thoroughly enjoys discussing holistic medicine. You can contact him at 925-837-8048, at firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit his web site at www.aodtc.com.