The secret to a long life might be in one’s diet, according to a team of scientists. The latter added that the combination of healthy eating habits, exercising and regular consumption of beneficial drugs like statins allows for the process of cell division to go on smoothly that ultimately lead to a longer life span.
Come what may, we cannot achieve an eternal life in this world, but, this doesn’t stop some of us from hoping to have one! Or, at least, striving to live as long as one can. According to a team of scientists, this is possible if people are ready to lead a healthy lifestyle; if we are just to eat right, exercise, and coupling these with certain drugs like statins, we could be living till the age of 120.
Members of the Longevity Science Panel forecast that the average span could increase from 80 to 84, with the healthiest of the people living until the age of 120, adding that ageing is a “biologically complex” process. When the health experts investigated the biology of the process that bring us from babies to old people, they found that lifestyle and diet play a huge role in extending or reducing life span.
One of the aspects characterised by ageing is cell division that goes ‘wrong’. Several billions of instances of cell division occur during a lifetime, ultimately leading to errors that infiltrate the system – the errors might be random, and also, the cause of bad habits like smoking, over-eating and drinking which all trigger mutations. On top of the errors that creep in, the DNA grows ‘weary’ with time, whereby its protective caps known as telomeres become shorter and shorter, till cells can no more divide. When this happens, the body can no longer repair damage, leading to wrinkles and other features of ageing. This process can however, and fortunately, be delayed – the right diet together with exercises and drugs might very well do the trick.
Experiments have shown that the Mediterranean diet decreases the occurrence of diseases related to ageing. Exercising also has beneficial effects on the body. Furthermore, drugs like statins decrease the cholesterol level, thereby protecting the heart.
One of the authors stated that: “Ageing occurs because the mechanisms which keep us in good health fail over time. After a variable number of divisions, cells will stop dividing and start to do bad stuff. So, in effect, all age related diseases are being driven by a few mechanisms which if you could control them, could be the difference between somebody hobbling down the street, or jogging past you.”