When we think of age, we typically think of chronological age, i.e. age based on one’s birthday. But possible a better indication of your healthy longevity might be your epigenetic age. What’s epigenetic age? It’s the biological age of one’s cells, tissues and organ systems. And a groundbreaking new study reveals that accelerated biological aging of the body (in particular, accelerated epigenetic aging) is associated with lower odds of living to the age of 90 and also being physically mobile and healthy mental function.
The study, which included more than 1,800 older female participants, was led by Herbert Wertheim School of Public Health and Human Longevity Science at University of California San Diego. Published in the online edition of JAMA Network Open, the study suggests that the acceleration of epigentic age could be a biomarker for healthy longevity.
As noted in ucsdnews.ucsd.edu, measuring how quickly we are aging epigenetically could potentially provide a prediction as to how long we will live, along with a forecast of our physical mobility and mental function. Calculating whether one’s epigenetic age is accelerated involves one’s biological age being greater than your age based on your date of birth. Consider that accelerated epigenetic aging is associated with a higher risk of cancer, cardiovascular disease, Parkinson’s disease, and other diseases.
For more about how this study was conducted and to learn more about why understanding health spans on a population scale is important, read more at ucsdnews.ucsd.edu.