Why We Aren’t Anti-Aging, We Are Pro-Healthy Aging – mindbodygreen.com

For the first time, we are starting to see research that targets aging as a health condition in and of itself. Finding ways to regulate those "longevity gene" pathways referenced by Lipman above (specifically the mTOR, AMPK, and sirtuins) is central to scientists' work in identifying lifestyle habits, nutritional compounds, and future drugs that could slow and even treat (yes, treat) aging.*

As Sinclair views it, aging is most definitely a disease, and the FDA classifying it as such will help the field move forward even faster, allowing for more research and development of drugs to target processes thatlead to age-related disease. "The definition of a disease is that over time you lose function, you become decrepit, disabled, and eventually, if it's a bad disease, you die from it," says Sinclair. "That sounds a lot like aging, right? If you go to the medical dictionary, the only difference between aging and a disease is that a disease affects less than half the populationand that 50% cutoff is completely arbitrary."

How likely is that to happen? In 2018, the World Health Organization classified aging as a disease and added it to the International Classifications of Diseases system. And right now, scientists at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine are examining the anti-aging effects of metformin in the Targeting Aging With Metformin (TAME) study. If researchers can show significant benefits of metformin in delaying problems such as cancer, dementia, stroke, and heart attacks, the FDA may consider classifying aging as a treatable condition.

But why study metformin? This widely prescribed diabetes drug, derived from compounds in the French lilac plant, has been noted for its benefits beyond diabetesand Sinclair predicts it will be the first drug prescribed specifically to treat aging. Turns out, "metformin had a protective effect against cancer, heart disease, and frailty in patients taking the drug for long-term diabetes treatment," says Sinclair. "Which sounds a lot like a molecule that can slow aging." Animal studies have also confirmed that metformin can improve life span, and, more importantly, health span in mice. And, in a first-of-its-kind study in humans published in September 2019, researchers were actually able to take 2.5 years off participants' biological clock using a combination of metformin, dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), and growth hormone.

Experts believe metformin may activate similar pathways as caloric restriction to stimulate autophagyor cellular cleaning. This cellular upkeep is believed to be a key factor in extending health span. "It's a relatively safe AMPK pathway activator, and that's thought to mimic the effects of fasting and exercising," says Sinclair, who takes metformin daily as part of his healthy aging regimen.

Excerpt from:

Why We Aren't Anti-Aging, We Are Pro-Healthy Aging - mindbodygreen.com

Related Post