10 Jul Study show signs of aging appear from mid 20’s
Reported in an ABC Science article this week, a recent study published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Science indicated that our bodies can begin to show the signs of aging much earlier than previously thought.
An international team of scientists studied a group of 954 people born in New Zealand until they were 38 years old. And while most 25 year olds are not thinking about how to banish fine lines or get rid of wrinkles, the research showed that their bodies are already showing signs of ageing in many ways.
Using 18 biological measurements, researchers calculated the biological age for each participant, with some 38 year olds registering as under 30, while others appeared to be almost 60 years old. Although most participants were aging at the rate of one biological year per chronological year (or less), others aged as quickly as three biological years for every one chronological year.
In the group that aged faster, scientists found signs of deterioration at age 26; with further investigations showing that those who aged quicker internally – as measured by data on the subjects’ kidney, liver and lung function, as well as dental health, blood vessels in the eyes and metabolism/ immune system function – consistently rated as looking older than their true age.
The researchers believe the study could lay the foundation for further work that could help people find out how fast they are ageing in their 20s, the causes of premature aging – and help delay or prevent age related disease.
Professor of psychology and neuroscience at Duke University and senior author, Terrie Moffitt said previous studies have shown that genetics account for 20% of aging; the other 80% being attributed to health, environment and behaviours.
“That gives us some hope that medicine might be able to slow ageing and give people more healthy active years,” Professor Moffitt said.
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