Stress & Aging. How Too Much Accelerates Your Body-Clock:
The Fountain Of Youth is an old but seductive myth.
In fact, the idea is one of the main focuses of this site; because finding it is the journey we’re all really on.
How do we fix our problems and live for as long as possible, through improved and advanced science?
Because Aging is The King of all health problems.
And as-such, will probably be the last one to get solved, if at-all.
And to that end, researchers in Poland & UNSW just found a big piece of the puzzle…
Our Long & Crazy History Of Fighting Father-Time:
So over the millennia, scientists, amateur-chemists, & civilians have all tried various tricks to avoid the ravages of time.
A few of these include:
3) Transfusions of Young Blood, and other Vampirism
4) Crazy Diets
6) Gene Therapy
7) Custom Laboratory Compounds
8) Repurposed Prescription Meds
10) Various Forms of Frankenstein-Electricity
11) Superfoods and Crazy Nutrition
But The Short Answer for the current work is that more than anything else they looked at, the cellular-effects of Stress seem to cause damage that ultimately-impacts what we call “Aging“.
Read on to find out the details…
Cleanup Is A Serious Consideration:
In the fight against aging, we face a whole host of enemies.
These can include:
1) Buildup of Intra-Cellular Junk
2) Toxic Effects Of Bad Nutrtion
3) Damage to Cells & DNA
4) Environmental Toxin Impacts
5) Biochemical & Hormonal Imbalances
6) Collateral-Damage From Being Overweight & Obese
8) Buildup of Ferritin
9) Accumulation of Zombie-Cells
And any of these can damage cells in many parts of our bodies.
Especially to the point where it seems we need a better cleanup-routine
Luckily, Science seems to have found an answer in a few boutique-compounds,
And also the recently-popular diet practice of Intermittent-Fasting.
Researchers Find The Most Important Site Of Damage:
It turns-out that the university researchers themselves have the idea of cleanup on their minds, too.
Because way back in the post that referred to the Scientific American Frontiers program,
We heard about a strange protective-structure in our cells called, Telomeres.
And the current researchers find themselves exploring it in a different way than that show did.
Their work discusses how when a cell wants to grow through duplication,
It makes a copy of itself, but in the process loses a part of this protection.
Because of that, a given cell can only “grow” through copying so many times.
No more protective end-cap on the DNA, and the cell is supposed to die.
-But sometimes becomes a “Zombie Cell”.
The chief compound in the body that can slow this reaction and replenish the caps is an enzyme; called Telomerase.
Stress Speeds Aging, Destroys Your Body’s Own Fountain Of Youth:
Under the right conditions, the loss of end-caps in the copy process can go slowly,
Especially, if you have a good supply of that recharging enzyme.
But what if the case were opposite?
That’s what they found Stress does to you.
The chemicals in your body that increase under the conditions of Stress do something very similar.
And they end-up taking so much of the protective end-caps off your DNA, that the cells can’t replicate that many times.
It’s as-if they aged so much for each copy, they died in their infancy.
Or even-worse, created a lot more Zombie-Cells in a very short period of time.
All this adds up to your Actual age being older than your Chronological age could be.
More Than 100 Studies Show It’s The Worst Thing For A Living Being:
After analysing almost 110 studies on Telomeres vs. negative inputs of various types,
Chatelain & Drobniak even came up with a hierarchy of toxicity.
Here are some of the factors they measured for many different types of vertebrate animals, including the standard variety.
1) Pathogen Infection
2) Competition for Food, Territory, Shelter, & Resources
3) Reproductive Efforts, Conflicts, Dating, & Mating
4) Exaggerated Activity Levels of Other Types
5) Bad Nutrition
6) Urban Living
But more toxic than even those was Stress.
It was directly-correlated to a faster protection-cap decrease.
And those end-caps are perfect-targets for the Free-Radicals (or ROS) of what’s called “Oxidative Stress”.
In-short anything that creates it, is very likely to shorten your life through eventual accumulated damage to cells, systems, pathways, signaling chemicals, and eventually organs.
Here Are A Few Health-Problems Associated With Those Harmful Biochemicals:
And to reiterate the point we put on it before,
Here is a list of a few of the negative health-effects linked to Stress:
4) All-Type Cardiovascular Disease
5) Hardening of the Arteries
6) Whole-body Inflammation
6a) Including Inflammation Of The Brain
7) Immune System Malfunction
8) Depression & Anxiety
9) Obesity due to “Stress Eating”
10) Arthritis & Joint-Deterioration
12) Alzheimer’s Disease
13) Accelerated Aging
14) Early Death
So What Can You Do About It?:
Unfortunately, since they don’t all get into cells the way we might like,
Many antioxidants don’t always deliver.
Although Dr. Neal Barnard would have a few ideas about which ones can, like Blueberries, Mixed-Nuts, Leafy-Greens, Red Wine, and even Dark Chocolate.
Also note, that taking stronger supplement-level antioxidants can come with its own risks,
Because it Is possible to get too many of them and end up with Cancer as a result.
So try to stay away from the biochemistry-roulette of the supplement world unless your doctor approves exactly what you’re about to do.
And even they may just recommend you get your vitamins & minerals from food anyway, because they’re much-safer that way.
Here Are A Few Informal Ideas On How To Reduce It:
With a few of those qualifications out of the way, here are a few ideas that may help to reduce the stress you have:
1) Cardiovascular Exercise
2) Mindfulness Meditation
3) Integrating a Long Walk into the day
4) Taking the stairs at work instead of the elevator
5) Avoiding Inflammatory Foods like Sugar, Corn-Oil, Canola Oil, Deep-Fried Foods, and Ultra-Processed Foods
5a) Get The Best-Quality Anti-Stress Nutrition you can
6) Forest Bathing
7) Deep Breathing even without Meditation
8) Automatic Writing of Worries for 5 minutes non-stop (and then deleting the document and sometimes shredding or burning a printout of it afterward.)
9) Connecting with Friends & (if non-problematic) Family
10) Enforcing perfect Sleep-habits & quality
11) Reasonable amounts of mild stress-relieving Vitamins & Supplements like
11a) Vitamin D
11b) Vitamin B
11c) Fish Oil
11d) Resveratrol from Red Wine
12) Reducing Caffeine Intake, or Eliminating it for a certain timeframe
13) Watch a Show or Movie that you find really Funny
14) Practice Assertiveness or even take a class
16) The Danish practice of Hygge (pr. ho-gah)
(putting yourself in a situation with surroundings that give you the “warm fuzzy” feeling, like your favorite movie, weekend break destination, restaurant, etc.)
17) Spending Quality Time With A Pet
18) Talk Therapy
19) Temporarily Lower The Bar On Your Self-Expectations
20) Listing What’s Stressing You & Considering Life-Changes To Eliminate As Many Sources As Reasonable
21) Perhaps Going Into Recovery Mode if the stress is a big shock, like a Cortisol dump.
The Perfect Pill May Not Exist. -YET!…:
So unfortunately No, we do not have a perfect anti-stress, anti-oxidant pill that everyone can take at a safe-dosage right now.
YES! Science absolutely-will come up with one as time goes by!
If they can clean up cellular-garbage from the western diet with a boutique-compound called DPDMP,
Then they can come up with that anti-stress pill.
It might even have a sister-compound to clean up all the Zombie-Cells that are putting out all kinds of non-stress-generated Free-Radicals also.
But at-least detectives like Chatelain & Drobniak are tracking-down the big targets we need to focus on,
To eliminate early aging from things like Stress, before Science does discover The Fountain Of Youth and put that in a pill for us, too!