Old Men

How will we celebrate 200?

Old Men

Free radicals are the true aging culprits. By taking care of their health, men can make the most of the biological package they've been given.

Close your eyes and ask yourself: how old do I feel? Many of us feel older than we should, but that might change in the not-too-distant future.

Science may soon become advanced enough to help us make living through two centuries a reality, along with, of course, our sincere efforts to follow some proven age-defying habits.

Women outlive men, and it’s high time we put our competitive nature to the test to see if we can catch up. The iconic male, however, pumps iron, eats his Wheaties, wishes TV technology would spew real blood when wrestling matches air, and considers beer a staple of his diet.

It may be due to this evolutionary testosterone dominance that we don’t make time to care for ourselves enough to see the doctor for the necessary annual physical. I wonder if we’re up to the task. But, if we want to live a very long time, we must do our part.

What is Aging?

Biologically, aging is the accumulation of random damage to the building blocks of life–especially to our DNA and to certain proteins, carbohydrates, and fats that reside in our organs and tissues. Damage begins early in life and eventually, with old age, exceeds the body’s self-repair capabilities.

Later comes the characteristic manifestations of aging:

  • Loss of muscle and bone mass
  • Decline in reaction time
  • Compromised hearing and vision
  • Greying of hair
  • Reduced elasticity of the skin

Many of us judge the degree and speed of the aging process by this skin-wrinkling effect. Although it is, in fact, one of the most observable consequences of the aging process, it has little to do with our expiry date.

Wrinkling may be, however, what motivates a guy in midlife to consider the cherry red convertible sports car. It is unquestionably what sells topical cremes loaded with miracle antiaging effects that are supposed to make you look 20 years old again.

Radical Damage

Free radicals are the true aging culprits. But they do most of their damage from the inside out. Free radicals come from such things as stress, a poor diet, toxins, lack of exercise, and pollution, and are the very reason you should take your daily vitamins and antioxidants. If you want a chance to blow out 200 candles, you’ll need to practise effective ways to neutralize these elusive free radicals.

Age-related conditions such as heart disease, Alzheimer’s, and cancer share a common relationship to free-radical accumulation over time. Disease seems an inevitable part of the aging process, but it doesn’t have to be. Science may someday cure these leading killers in the aged, but free radicals will always exist.

It is an inescapable biological reality that once the engine of life switches on, the body begins to sow the seeds of its own destruction according to Olshansky, Hayflick, and Carnes in Scientific American 2004.

You may not be destined to blow out 200 birthday candles, but you can certainly do your part to get the most out of the biological package you’ve been given.

Do Your Part

  1. Stop smoking.
  2. Drink one glass of red wine daily.
  3. Brush and floss your teeth daily.
  4. Lose the fat and add muscle mass.
  5. Eat slightly less than your caloric daily requirements.
  6. Ensure that your diet is full of foods that are nutrient dense.
  7. Practise optimism and daily positive visualization about future events.
  8. Find ways to de-stress, such as deep breathing techniques.
  9. Consider an attitude overhaul if necessary.
  10. Neutralize free radicals by supplementing with essential fatty acids (2 g twice daily) and the following antioxidants:
  • High-potency multivitamin
  • R+ alpha lipoic acid (200 mg)
  • Coenzyme Q10 (100 mg)
  • Selenium (200 mcg)

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