Following ‘Life’s Essential 8’ Could Slow Aging By 6 Years!


ORLANDO, Fla. (Ivanhoe Newswire) — Exercising and eating right are key factors in staying healthy. But the American Heart Association says it doesn’t stop there. It says following certain lifestyle habits can not only improve your overall health, but also slow your body’s aging by years.

Tom LaRocca, PhD, Integrative Physiologist at University of Colorado Boulder says, “People are certainly interested in anything that can help you age more successfully.”

As people get older, some worry about how their outward appearance is changing. But doctors say thinking about what’s happening on the inside is crucial.

LaRocca, PhD, says “Most of your physiological functions, the things that your body does, start to decline around age 30 or so.”

A study by the American Heart Association identified eight essential lifestyle habits people should follow to maintain good health. First on the list …

Daniel H. Craighead, PhD, Integrative Physiologist at University of Colorado Boulder says, “Eating a generally healthy diet. So, lots of fruits and vegetables.”

Next, getting enough exercise and staying active.

Craighead, PhD says, “You don’t have to be some sort of super athlete. Getting out and moving every day. A 30-minute walk has pretty tremendous health benefits.”

Rounding out the essential eight list: get a healthy amount of sleep, which is seven to nine hours for adults … don’t smoke … maintain a healthy weight … control cholesterol … manage blood sugar … and keep your blood pressure within a healthy range. The American Heart Association says people who follow all eight have higher cardiovascular health. And that, in turn, decreases a person’s biological age by up to six years. Meaning, their body is aging slower than their actual age.

Craighead, PhD says “So, the best thing is if you’re not physically active, to start. And if you are physically active, never stop.”

The American Heart Association says on the flip side … people with low cardiovascular health tend to have a higher biological age.

Contributors to this news report include: Lindsay Dailey, Producer; Roque Correa, Editor.



REPORT #3170

BACKGROUND: Making healthy choices can lead to a healthy lifestyle which in turn can help you live a longer and happier life. There are important steps to take to ensure a healthy lifestyle. Being physically active a few days a week for 30 minutes each time will get your blood pumping and make your heart stronger. Eating a well-balanced diet with lots of fruits, vegetables, and grains will help moderate sugar and fat. Avoiding smoking and heavy drinking will lower the risk for certain diseases. Staying out of the sun between the vital hours of 10:00am to 3:00pm when the sun’s rays are the strongest will lower the risk of skin cancers. Also, brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing daily is important to your health and ensuring a healthier lifestyle.


AGING AND WHAT TO EXPECT: Aging not only causes gray hair and wrinkles, but it also affects our teeth, heart, sexual drive, among many other things. The heart tends to start working harder pumping blood through the blood vessels and arteries which then causes the heart muscles to work harder to adjust. This, in turn, can increase the risk of high blood pressure and other cardiovascular diseases. As we age, our bones tend to shrink and weaken making them more prone to fractures. Muscles also lose strength and flexibility affecting coordination and balance. Our brain changes as we age resulting in minor effects on memory and thinking skills. Our eyes also age causing difficulty focusing or becoming more sensitive to light. With age, our skin thins and becomes less elastic causing us to bruise easier. Decreased production of natural oils might make the skin drier, and wrinkles, age spots, and small growths called skin tags become more prevalent.       


NEW STUDY TO SLOW AGING: A new study out of Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine will explore the relationship between chronological age and biological age across different organ systems and confirm interventions that may reverse or slow down the processes of aging. “Knowledge gained from this research may allow scientists to develop methods to slow the process of aging and push back the onset of aging-related disease, hopefully extending the healthspan,” said Dr. Douglas Vaughan, director of the Potocsnak Longevity Institute. The research includes various systems in the body including cardiovascular, respiratory, neurocognitive, metabolic, and musculoskeletal. The team plans to enroll a diverse group representing individuals of all ages, ethnicities, and socioeconomic backgrounds to form a picture of how aging affects all members of the population.


* For More Information, Contact:                         Lisa Marshall, Strategic Relations and Communications

University of Colorado Boulder


Free weekly e-mail on Medical Breakthroughs from Ivanhoe. To sign up: