Supplementing with vitamins and minerals can help slash your risk of every major chronic and degenerative disease.
Sounds pretty great, right? But wait! There’s more…
New research reveals that certain vitamins and minerals can help you slow down biological aging.
Now we’re talking!
To promote a longer life with excellent health, let’s look at some of the surprising specifics of this research, including a sharp focus on the nutrients that are like a real “Fountain of Youth.”
Biomarkers tell the cautionary tale
To understand this new breakthrough, it’s important to first understand a little about metabolites and their usefulness.
Metabolites are the compounds produced by cells when your metabolism converts nutrients into energy. These compounds include proteins, carbohydrates, sugars, vitamins, and minerals.
The new investigation comes from Japanese researchers who are discovering that metabolites provide invaluable information about how diet and other factors contribute to aging.
In Dr. Marc Micozzi’s Insider’s Ultimate Guide to Outsmarting “Old Age,” he shines a spotlight on the most miraculous results from this landmark study. When the researchers analyzed blood samples of older and younger people, they found 14 metabolites that may be related to specific aspects of the aging process.
Dr. Micozzi notes that seven of the metabolites were higher in the older individuals, and all seven happen to be biomarkers of reduced liver and kidney functions. Meanwhile, the other seven metabolites all decreased in the older group, and each of these are related to antioxidant and muscle activity.
As Dr. Micozzi points out, “This means we may finally know some cellular reasons for why we lose strength and become more susceptible to chronic health problems as the calendar pages turn.”
Fortunately, there are some specific steps — backed by scientific research — that we can take to protect ourselves from these cellular changes.
As the researchers state, their findings show that older adults should consume more antioxidants and exercise their muscles.
There’s no surprise there. But Dr. Micozzi cites a few more uncommon strategies you can take to put the brakes on aging.
The genetic secret to a long life
Dr. Micozzi cites several major anti-aging developments from an important study out of South Korea.
In this trial, Korean researchers followed nearly 2,000 middle-aged and older adults for a decade. Their analysis showed delayed biological aging among participants who had the highest intake of two vitamins and one mineral: vitamin C, folate (vitamin B9), and potassium.
Dr. Micozzi notes one highly significant discovery from the study: The researchers found that the three specific nutrients influenced the length of cell telomeres — a compound directly linked to longevity.
Telomeres are “caps” at each end of your DNA strands that protect your chromosomes — kind of like the plastic tips at the end of your shoelaces.
But the thing is, when new cells are formed from older copies of themselves, the telomeres at the end of your DNA strands don’t also copy themselves. In fact, they get shorter each time a cell copies itself. So when your telomeres become too short, your old cells can’t be replaced, and either die or stop functioning properly.
“Theoretically,” Dr. Micozzi explains, “we should be replacing old cells with new cells indefinitely. But that process is limited by telomeres, which get shorter as we get older — eventually leading to aging.
“So, in essence, the longer your telomeres, the longer your life.”
Three longevity essentials
The findings from the South Korean study also confirm the Japanese conclusion that eating plenty of fruits and vegetables creates a big impact on your chances of healthy longevity. And the more of the three key nutrients you consume, the greater your chances of protecting your telomeres and living your happy, healthy life.
Here are Dr. Micozzi’s specific notes on all three:
- Vitamin C is abundant in many fruits, and also bell peppers, leafy greens, broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, tomatoes, and sweet and white potatoes.Micozzi also recommends taking 250 mg of vitamin C twice a day.
- Potassium is found in bananas, citrus fruit, leafy greens, carrots, and potatoes, as well as meat and seafood.One note of caution: Many blood pressure medications such as diuretics cause the kidneys to lose potassium. So if you are taking these drugs, Dr. Micozzi recommends supplementing with 90 mg of potassium per day. And, of course, consider ways to lower your blood pressure naturally.
- Folate is hard to get from a plant-based diet alone, although some is found in leafy greens, asparagus, fruits, nuts, and legumes. A better source is dairy products, poultry, meat, eggs, and seafood—which is why a balanced diet with a full range of healthy foods is key.
You can also supplement with a high-quality vitamin B complex that contains 200 mcg of folate. Studies show older adults can also almost always benefit from 100 mcg of selenium, and 200 IU of vitamin E.
The importance of these three nutrients is undeniable. And now, with their role in longevity revealed, they’re nothing less than essential for your everyday regimen!
In Dr. Marc Micozzi’s Insider’s Ultimate Guide to Outsmarting “Old Age,” he dives deeper into his analysis of these and other nutrients he believes are indispensable for healthy aging. In addition, he outlines easy, step-by-step of exercises that are proven to add years to your lifespan while cutting heart attack risk in half.
“Individual variability in human blood metabolites identifies age-related differences” PNAS 2016; 113(16): 4252-4259. doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1603023113