5 Tips for a Growth Mindset in Your 40s and Beyond
By Vanessa Camozzi on July 11, 2023
Our biological age refers to how old our cells really are and therefore, our real age. However, your chronological age is the number of years you've been alive. But your biological age is how old your body seems, based on a number of factors.
It's been said that biological age may serve as an indicator of an individual's general health status, remaining healthy life span, and active life expectancy. Biological age may help in identifying individuals at risk for age-related disorders, serving as a measure of relative fitness, and predicting disability in later life and mortality independent of chronological age.
Have you ever wondered why some people age naturally well and can look sometimes even better as the years pass, while others— well don't. And if we're are being totally honest they can physically look even a lot older in some cases?
Before you read further, take a quick look in the mirror and be honest with yourself, how old do look? How do you think you've aged over the years? Do you think you are aging well, and feeling your best? Are you full of vibrancy and energy? Or do you think you could look and feel a lot healthier?
Did you watch that Red Table Talk where 52-year-old actor Will Smith’s telomeres are tested and it’s revealed that his biological age is actually 35? Smith is clearly gettin’ jiggy with it and it shows in his telomeres.
If you answered the latter, we will take you through some actionable steps of things you can do right now to slow down your body’s biological age. It’s not all left to genetics—in fact, there are many things you can do to control and slow down the aging process.
In fact, studies show that aging can be influenced and even manipulated by external factors. Epigenetics is the idea that outside factors, like the environment, might affect how our genes express themselves. And what’s so interesting about the epigenetic processes is that they have the potential to be reversed.
Kelly Rippa is 49 years-old but her biological age is an astounding 35! Admittedly, she puts tons of hard work into her super strict diet and workout regime, but imagine if we even put in just half of the work she does? Let’s go over what telomeres are exactly and the differences between biological age vs. chronological age.
So what is a telomere? According to Tasciences, a telomere (tel-uh-meer) from the Greek telos (end) and meros (part) is a compound structure at the end of a chromosome.
Telomeres apparently are the caps at the end of each strand of DNA that protect our chromosomes, like the plastic tips at the end of shoelaces. Without the coating, shoelaces become frayed until they can no longer do their job, just as without telomeres, DNA strands become damaged and our cells can’t do their job.
Scientists view telomere length as a reliable marker of your biological age (as opposed to your age by years otherwise called chronological age.) So the long and short of it all, is that you don’t want short telomeres because that means you are aging faster. Environmental and lifestyle factors influence telomere metabolism and their effects on health and longevity. Accumulating evidence points to telomeres and mitochondria as the main factors in cellular aging control that consequently dictate the aging process at the organismal level.
Here are several things that can shorten your telomeres:
Biological age is a measurement that, instead of tracking years, looks at chemical marks on DNA that shows how our biological systems are actually aging.
And there is no lying about your biological age because it literally is a part of your DNA and tracks how old your body seems based on different factors, including how your chromosomes have changed over time.
Your chronological age is the number of years you’ve been alive. (It’s also referred to as your physiological age) and takes your chronological age into factor, but is very much influenced by your lifestyle, which includes diet, exercise, stress levels, smoking, sleep hygiene, and more your biological age is how old your body seems, based on a number of factors, including how your chromosomes have changed over time.
There are many ways to improve our chances of keeping our biological age younger than our chronological age. So many are common sense things we already know. If you’ve heard it once, you’ve heard it a thousand times, diet and exercise are two clear important factors to determine your biological age. The healthier and cleaner your diet is, and the more you exercise, the better your biological age will be and the longer your telomere's will be.
1.-Meditate- You don’t need to be the Dolly Llama living in the Tibet mountainside meditating hours a day. Just try a few times a week to begin with. Read our meditation guide here on how to get started with a meditation habit for beginners.
2.-Daily Movement -Move every single damn day. Walk, ride a bike, do yoga, it doesn’t have to be crazy intense exercise but staying sedentary is one of the worst things you can do to your body, mind, and soul, and age.
3.-Eat Healthy Fats: Your diet is so important to your biological age. Some of the best sources of these fatty acids include avocados, olive oil, nuts, seeds, and fatty fish.
4.-According to this study, higher intakes of fresh fruits, vegetables, legumes, fish, poultry, and whole grains lower are markers of inflammation, it can be concluded that antioxidant-rich food may have a positive influence on telomere length. Indeed, the consumption of seeds, nuts, legumes, seaweeds, and coffee was associated with longer telomeres.
5.-In addition, dietary fiber intake, specifically from cereals and whole grains, has a positive effect on telomere length in women. Add lots of healthy fats and vegetables to your diet like salmon, tuna, and tilapia. Healthy fats come in different forms of foods like avocado, cheese, dark chocolate, nuts, and chia seeds are all examples of healthy fats. Of course, remember portion is key!! Make a list out of healthy fats you’re going to eat for the entire week.
6.-Don't Smoke- This one is major. Every time you light up you are filling your body with unwanted chemicals and toxins. Smoking is so bad for your health, your skin, and your teeth. You will not reverse your biological age if you’re a smoker, like at all. Don't smoke.
7.-Get Good Sleep: At least 7 hours at night. Good sleeping is the key to staying healthy.
Challenge yourself to a Twenty Day Telomere challenge by doing the above listed seven steps for 20 days in a row. Grab your journal write down and record what you did every day. Take notes after the twenty days on how you feel. Do you look better? Snap a few pics and ask your closest friends or family if they see any difference. But remember it's all about how you feel!
Take this test to calculate your "real age" Thomas Perls, MD, associate professor at Boston University School of Medicine and creator of the Living to 100 Life Expectancy Calculator, helped create this quiz that reveals your body's "true age"—which isn't always the same as the number of birthdays you've celebrated. T
Our editor took the test and was 3 1/2 years younger than what she celebrates each year, so healthy habits count but of course there is always room for improvement. Did you know that smokers, on average, live 8 to 10 years less than non-smokers?
You can also purchase this kit to find out your biological age. Here's how the Glycanage Test team says it works and why.
"Aging, whilst a natural process, is the accumulation of damage in your body over time, caused by a long term over-activation of the immune system. Discovering your biological age will provide you with the confidence that your current lifestyle is optimal, or empower you to make changes if there could be room for improvement."
Plans are fully tailored to your preferred approach, with either our guided subscription plans which include multiple tests and support from specialists, or if you prefer, you can simply purchase a one-off test if you’re on your own journey already. They send you your test-kit, with everything you need and provide free sample return postage for UK, USA & Canada.
Index, is a revolutionary at-home test developed by Elysium Health, that tracks how fast you’ve been aging using the latest generation technology in the science of epigenetics. With the Elysium Biological Age Test you can find out your Cumulative Rate of Aging, the pace at which your body has aged for every year you’ve been alive
as well as Science-backed lifestyle recommendations you can use to adopt healthier habits
*Pricing for basic subscribers starts at $299.
So what's your biological age? Leave us a comment below!