What Exactly Is Aging?

Aging begins microscopically, inside dividing cells. Eventually, the result is more gray hair and fewer boners. How does that work — and is there any way to stop it?

By Jordan Burchette

Why Do We Get Old

5 WAYS SLOW AGING
#1. Donate Blood
Scientists believe that one of the reasons women live longer than men is the fact that they menstruate. The blood lost is thought to flush harmful metals and minerals — chiefly iron. It’s associated with stuff like cancer and type II diabetes. Donating blood every few months is believed to accomplish the same thing and offers the added benefit of sloughing off all those harmful metals onto others!

#2. Eat Fewer Calories
It’s speculated that consuming lower-energy foods while maintaining the same level of vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients rewires metabolism, protects against atherosclerosis, preserves memory, and decreases fatness. That means eating lots of vegetables, fruits, and high-fiber grains and legumes. The connection between a calorie-restricted diet and increased longevity isn’t understood, and possible side effects include decreased energy, hunger-induced depression and anxiety, and diminished sex drive. But think of all the additional years you’ll have to experience those terrible things!

#3. Drink Red Wine
Among a number of “mimetics” being developed to mimic the effect of a calorie-restricted diet is resveratrol, an antioxidant concentrated naturally in grapes, but most notably in the dry red wines they yield. The free-radical theory of aging states that cells degrade over time due to oxidative damage wrought by chemically reactive atoms and molecules kicking around the body. Antioxidants like resveratrol are believed to inhibit that oxidation, and pair nicely with beef and lamb.

#4. Be an Old Dad
If you want to ensure longevity for your descendents (hey, it’s not all about you) don’t be in such a hurry to have ’em. Studies gathered by the Center of Human Development and Aging at New Jersey Medical School suggest that older fathers produce offspring with longer chromosomal telomeres, presumably giving their cells longer life spans in which to replicate. Meanwhile, women who have kids after, like, 24 are 10 times more likely to birth mutants. It’s like nature is telling us to bang 20-year-olds! Plus, you have a much better chance of dying of old age before you see your shitty kid grow up to be a total disappointment.

#5. Be Japanese
The world leader in cartoon mollusk porn is also home to people with the longest life expectancy. Hypothesized factors include maniacally meticulous hygiene, a robust public health care system, and a healthy national diet. (We still think it’s the octoporn.) Of course, if we really do discover a means by which to halt aging, the world’s population will reach such unsustainable mass that nature will develop all-new ways to kill us down anyway. So … maybe forget we said anything.

TAGS: aging, getting old