“Reversing the Aging Process is Possible by
Lengthening Your Telomeres”
Aging, the process of growing older, is one that none of us can avoid.
Our heart health, digestive system and cognitive functions begin to slow down, our bones and muscles begin to shrink and our skin begins to thin and lose elasticity.
Where looking in the mirror becomes interesting!!!
To a certain extent, we can delay the symptoms of aging by adapting our lifestyles.
For example we may take regular exercise, eat healthily, take vitamin supplements, manage stress, get enough sleep, drink alcohol in moderation and stop smoking.
We can also delay the external signs of aging by dying our hair, using facial rejuvenation methods and by using exercise to tone our bodies. 
But the fact is, the DNA in our cells are aging, and this is a much bigger challenge.
Most scientists agree that aging is the result of accumulating damage to the molecules that make up our DNA- that is the proteins, lipids and nucleic acids. This occurs due to depletion of our telomeres. 
It has been demonstrated that DNA damage at telomeres can occur as a consequence of genotoxic and oxidative stress. [2a]
(In genetics, genotoxicity describes the property of chemical agents that damages the genetic information within a cell causing mutations, which may lead to cancer.)
And the best part is by using anti-oxidants or substances that produce anti-oxidants can positively influence your telomeres.
So what are Telomeres?
Definition of a telomere: the segment of DNA that occurs at the ends of chromosomes, which protects the end of the chromosome from deterioration.
Inside the nucleus of a cell, we have chromosomes, which are twisted double-stranded molecules of DNA.
Our genes, which are responsible for all our characteristics, that make who we are, what we looklike are arranged along these strands.
At the ends of the chromosomes are caps of repetitive DNA called telomeres.
These have the function of protecting our DNA molecules and hence our genetic data, making it possible for cells to divide.
However, each time a cell divides, the telomeres get shorter.
When they get too short, DNA molecules start to get damaged, the cell can no longer divide and eventually dies.
Cellular communication also breaks down, known as Redox signalling.
It is this shortening process and the consequent death of cells that causes the deterioration of our organs and the decline in health associated with aging. 
The natural enzyme found in our bodies that duplicates DNA and helps maintain telomere length is called telomerase.
However this is found in very low concentrations in most healthy body cells and so offers little defense against aging. 
The link between telomeres and aging has been studied for decades, as well as the association between telomeres and early death.
In a recent study, even after accounting for a host of lifestyle factors, shorter-than-average telomere length did seem to be associated with a boost in mortality risk. 
In another study stimulating telomerase is thought to:
- support immune health
- Assist in decreasing psychological distress
- Promote overall heart health(6a)
It is now clear to telomere researchers that telomere lengthening is the key to adding on years to our lives.
The question is, how to lengthen telomeres.
How Do We Lengthen Our Telomeres?
- Reduce Stress A number of studies have linked stress with shorter telomeres. Recent research suggests chronic stress damage starts before we’re even conceived and cuts into our very cells. It is thought to be the third largest factor affecting telomere length after aging and genetics. Exercising regularly, getting enough sleep and relaxing activities, such as yoga and meditation, are all helpful in relieving stress. Clearing the mind has been shown to prevent telomere shortening.  Rhodiola and Withania are great herbs for reducing stress.
- Healthy Diet It has been shown that eating foods high in vitamins and antioxidants, such as vitamins A and C found in berries, oily fish and citrus fruit. may protect cells and their telomeres from damage and hence delay aging.Taking Vitamin C: Recent studies now show this antioxidant can slow telomere shortening by over 50%. (7a) I recommend 4000 mg per day split into two doses. Especially taken with Lemon or Lime juice.Taking multivitamin supplements has been shown to actually lengthen telemeres. Lowering your Homocysteine levels: because high homocysteine also triples the speed at which your telomeres shorten.(8a)Here’s what I use with my patients (amounts are daily) to lower homocysteine: Vitamin B12 – 500 mcg. Folic acid – 800 mcg.Take Vitamin D …. if it’s low. Telomerase activity skyrocketed by 19.2% when patients took Vitamin D. (8b)N-Acetyl-Cysteine (NAC): This amino acid is also a powerful antioxidant and it makes Glutathione. Glutathione is the most needed anti-oxidant in the body. Without enough Glutathione your body can’t detoxify properly. Studies also show NAC protects your telomeres from oxidative damage. (8c)Take Tumeric Daily . . . . turmeric extracts can actually enhance telomerase activity. (8d)And these are just a few of the herbs and vitamins I use regularly within the clinic.
I personally take “Increase my Telomere’s Herbs” Daily with my ASEA product that can increase anti-oxidants like Gluathione, SOD and catalase by a whooping 500%.Regular Exercise Research has shown that people who exercise are more likely to have longer telomeres than those that do no exercise at all. Also, the more they exercise, the longer the telomeres. These findings seem to be more evident in middle-age people, so no excuses, whatever your age, get yourself to the gym! 
- Telomerase enzyme anti-aging supplements If telomerase enzyme levels are high, the telomere is maintained and cells can be copied completely, rather than degrading over time. Telomerase Supplements, that dissolve under the tongue and gain direct access into the bloodstream, are now available.  But they are usually very expensive.
- “Scientists find a way to increase length of human telomeres”  The research team, led by John Ramunas, PhD, and Eduard Yakubov, PhD, publish their findings in The FASEB Journal. This amazing team of scientists have found a way of introducing telomerase enzyme into all the cells of the human body and increasing telomere length by 10% after only three applications. Although research is ongoing, this is a major break-through and could turn back the clock for many of us, as well as treating conditions of aging, such as diabetes, cancer and heart disease.
All is not lost as far as aging is concerned, so do not rush off to your doctor or cosmetic surgeon just yet!
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Until next time,
Yours in Health
Disclaimer: The information provided does not take into account individual needs of any particular person. When providing this information it is intended as a sharing of knowledge and information from the research. The information provided should not be construed as personal medical advice or instruction and is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice. We encourage you to make your own health care decisions based upon your research and in partnership with a qualified health care professional.
6a] Ornish, Dean, et al, “Increased Telomerase Activity and Comprehensive Lifestyle Changes: a Pilot Study,” Lancet Oncol 2008; 9: 1048–57
7a] Furumoto K, et al. Age-dependent telomere shortening is slowed down by enrichment of intracellular vitamin C via suppression of oxidative stress., Life Sciences 63(11):935-48, 1998.
8a] Richards J, et al. Homocysteine levels and leukocyte telomere length. Atherosclerosis. 2008 Feb 14.
8b] Zhu H, Guo D, Li K, Pedersen-White J, Stallmann-Jorgensen I, Huang Y, Parikh S, Liu K, Dong Y. “Increased telomerase activity and vitamin D supplementation …” Int J Obes. 2012;36(6):805-9.
8c] Ludlow A, Spangenburg E, Chin E, Cheng W, Roth S. “Telomeres Shorten in Response to Oxidative Stress in Mouse Skeletal Muscle Fibers.” J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2014;69(7):821-30.
8d] Taka T, Changtam C, Thaichana P, Kaewtunjai N, Suksamrarn A, Lee TR, Tuntiwechapikul W. “Curcuminoid derivatives enhance telomerase activity in an in vitro TRAP assay,” Bioorg Med Chem Lett. 2014 Nov 15;24(22):5242-6.