Tag Archives: aging

Dr. Weil’s Anti-Inflammatory Food Pyramid

Imagine this for a food pyramid – topped off by dark chocolate and red wine, dairy nowhere to be seen, and fruits/vegetables as the foundation.

 

(drweil.com)

 

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The oldest age people can reach is 114…so far

A puzzling part to the equation has emerged. While humans are in fact living longer lives on average, the oldest age that the oldest people reach seems to be stubbornly and oddly precisely cemented right at 114.

A person born in the US at the turn of the 20th century could expect to live 49.2 years. Their ancestor born in 2003 could reasonably expect to see their 77th birthday. But while average lifespans continue to lengthen, the oldest of the old appear to be encountering a rather powerful limiting factor.

In 1990 there were 3,000 people 100 or older, the oldest of them being 114. Twenty years later the number of people aged 100 and over had grown to around 44,000, but the oldest was still 114.

Longevity researcher Aubrey de Grey, author of “Ending Aging,” was asked about this:

“Time and time again over the decades past demographers have been brutally misled by short-term phenomena, by statistics gathered only over a few years. Blips happen for all manner of impenetrable reasons. In this case we’re talking about people born in a small segment of time, around 1900, and most of them born in particular countries and going through certain types of life they might not have gone through had they been born 20 years previously or 20 years later.”

via Don Burke / Singularity Hub

Killing It in Prime Time: An Interview With Jane Fonda

Jane Fonda as Barbarella

You can call Jane Fonda many things, but boring, she is not.

From her role as sci-fi sex goddess, Barbarella (which I’ve never seen, but only know about through photos) in the 1960s, to the controversial Vietnam political advocate in the 1970s, to the queen of workout video in the 80s (my mom had these – as a little kid, I loved dressing up in the leotards, sweatbands and leg-warmers and dancing along) to the consummate companion of Ted Turner in the 90s – her life has been one of constant evolution.

Now as author and spokesperson for people living out the “third acts” of their lives (which she calls “Prime Time“), it was inspiring to watch her recently on Charlie Rose, talking about life as a stair-cased ascension, instead of a curved archway that peaks at middle-age, then declines. In our youth-obsessed culture, she is an example that life doesn’t end at 40. In fact, she says she really didn’t start to ‘get life’ until she hit 59 (she’s 73), which for her has meant battling depression, becoming present in her children’s lives, and creating an intimate relationship with a man (which she never achieved in her previous 3 marriages), to name a few.

Her ability to find closure in areas of her life that have plagued her seems especially key to the constant elevation and improvement she describes. When discussing her relationship with her father, she articulated what so many people fear:

“Watching him die taught me that I wasn’t afraid of death. What I’m really scared of is getting to the end of life with a lot of regrets when it’s too late to do anything about it.”

And it reminded me of the Dylan Thomas poem that is a call to arms for individuals of any age:

Do not go gentle into that good night,

Old age should burn and rave at close of day;

Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Though wise men at their end know dark is right,

Because their words had forked no lightning they

Do not go gentle into that good night.

Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright

Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,

Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,

And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,

Do not go gentle into that good night.

Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight

Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay, 

Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

And you, my father, there on the sad height,

Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray.

Do not go gentle into that good night.

Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

"It's never too late to improve our health. There's a lot you can do"

“Take a proactive approach to active aging,” she recommended, noting there are simple preventive ways to slow down the progression of chronic health conditions, which in turn will allow people to lead more independent lives and lean less on informal caregivers.

I found a great article on aging called, The self-reliant senior. Among the many points it covers the most important are that depression is a rising problem for those that are aging, and 80% have a chronic health issue.

This is definitely a part of the aging process but there are things that can be done. Quality of life improvements that help not only the parent but the child/caregiver.

Here they are from the We Care – Get Going group of Canada:

Some of the simple things Canadians can do, the booklet points out, include:

  • Get eating. As we age, our bodies change and so should our nutrition. Eat wisely. Plan and prepare healthy meals.
  • Get active. Walking, stretching and keeping your muscles in good condition can help you maintain your independence.
  • Get involved. Give back to the community by volunteering -it’s good for you, those you help, and the community around you.
  • Get happy. Depression and loneliness can be triggered by the death of a partner or close friend, physical illnesses and operations, and even certain medications. That’s why staying socially connected is so important to healthy, active aging.
photo by Jon Rawlinson

“It’s never too late to improve our health. There’s a lot you can do”

“Take a proactive approach to active aging,” she recommended, noting there are simple preventive ways to slow down the progression of chronic health conditions, which in turn will allow people to lead more independent lives and lean less on informal caregivers.

I found a great article on aging called, The self-reliant senior. Among the many points it covers the most important are that depression is a rising problem for those that are aging, and 80% have a chronic health issue.

This is definitely a part of the aging process but there are things that can be done. Quality of life improvements that help not only the parent but the child/caregiver.

Here they are from the We Care – Get Going group of Canada:

Some of the simple things Canadians can do, the booklet points out, include:

  • Get eating. As we age, our bodies change and so should our nutrition. Eat wisely. Plan and prepare healthy meals.
  • Get active. Walking, stretching and keeping your muscles in good condition can help you maintain your independence.
  • Get involved. Give back to the community by volunteering -it’s good for you, those you help, and the community around you.
  • Get happy. Depression and loneliness can be triggered by the death of a partner or close friend, physical illnesses and operations, and even certain medications. That’s why staying socially connected is so important to healthy, active aging.
photo by Jon Rawlinson