The Case for Delaying Aging

By Isagenix Nutritional Sciences

Since the beginning of the 20th century, human life expectancy has steadily increased by more than 30 years, and is expected—if we can sustain current trends—to increase even more in the 21st century.

Now more than ever before, biogerontologists are advising that life expectancy is not fixed but “plastic,” and predicting that nutritional and medical advances could help keep people healthy and alive well past their 100th birthdays.

Recently, however, a few scientists have called for stepping up medical research and focusing more on late-life aging-intervention therapy, which they say is needed to avert what they have predicted will become a “global aging crisis.”

They point out that the crisis will be a result of the “baby boomer generation” – those born during the Post-World War II baby boom – in the developed world reaching retirement age. The drastic rise in the amounts of elderly will lead to more suffering from major age-related, chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease, Alzheimer’s and cancer.


In a commentary from the July issue of Science Translational Medicine, the biogerontologists write, ”the social and medical costs of the biological aging process are high and will rise rapidly in coming decades, creating an enormous challenge to societies worldwide.”

Aging has a “causal—rather than a casual—relationship” with age-related, chronic diseases, write the scientists. Therapies should be directed at slowing or reversing aging damage, which is defined as a “progressive lifelong accumulation of deleterious changes in the structure of the body at the molecular, cellular, and tissue levels.”

Late-life Aging Intervention Roadmap

Currently only 0.1 percent (about $10 million) of the National Institutes of Health’s $28 billion budget has been allocated for biological aging research, of which only a few hundred thousand is directed toward research into late-life aging intervention. 

More funding and an intense agenda in the roadmap for aging research is needed, write the scientists, who present a broad plan for averting the aging crisis that encompasses three late-life, aging intervention strategies:

  • Reduce exposure to environmental toxins and ameliorate other risk factors through improved public health.
  • Slow down damage to metabolic pathways, which contributes to age-related changes.
  • Develop a more broadly conceived regenerative medicine to embrace the repair, removal, or replacement of existing damage or its decoupling from its pathological sequelae [intervening in progression of disease].

“To realize any chance of success,” according to the scientists, “the drive to tackle biological aging head-on must begin now.”

Although research into late-life aging-intervention therapies is still in its infancy, there are several lifestyle strategies that can be adopted currently for slowing aging, such as avoiding smoking, exercising regularly, and eating a nutritious diet.   

Source: Rae MJ, Butler RN, Campisi J, de Grey ADNJ, Finch CE, Gough M, Martin GM, Vijg J, Perrott KM, Logan BJ, The demographic and biomedical case for late-life interventions in aging. Sci. Transl. Med. 2, 40cm21 (2010).