What is Aging?Aging, then, is the impact of time on our bodies. This happens on multiple levels:
- Cellular Aging: Cells age based on the number of times they have replicated. A cell can replicate around 50 times before the genetic material is no longer able to be copied accurately (because of the shortening of telomeres). The more damage to your cells (through free radicals and other factors), the more your cells need to replicate.
- Hormonal Aging: Without a doubt, hormones play a big factor in aging, especially in childhood growth and adolescent maturity. Hormone levels change through life, leading to menopause and other age-related changes.
- Accumulated Damage: Toxins, the UV radiation from sunlight, harmful foods, pollution and other toxins all take their toll on our bodies. Over time, these toxins can lead to tissue damage and the body "falls behind" in maintaining and repairing your cells, tissues and organs.
- Metabolic Aging: As you go through your day, your cells are turning food into energy, which produces by products that can be harmful. This process of metabolizing and creating energy results in damage to your body over time. Some believe that slowing the metabolic process (through practices such as calorie restriction) may slow aging in humans.
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