Health Advice



More RealAge data -- what's making you age prematurely?

By Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D. on

In "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button," Brad Pitt's character is born old -- with arthritis, cataracts and osteoporosis -- and becomes younger as the years pass, dying as an infant who'd lived for eight decades. Not the scenario researchers were contemplating when they looked at data from the Netherlands Study of Depression and Anxiety to determine what biological factors can give you a prematurely older RealAge.

They examined the influence of telomere length (the caps on the ends of chromosomes that shorten with age or environmental assault); epigenetics (that's the switching on or off of genes in response to internal and external factors); gene levels; and changes in proteins and metabolites (chemicals produced in your body from food).

Their findings:

-- Being male, having a high body mass index, smoking and having metabolic syndrome (a combo of elevated blood pressure, glucose and triglyceride levels, a large waist size, plus low HDL cholesterol) fueled the most extreme biological aging -- the oldest RealAge.

-- Premature biological aging was directly correlated to diagnosable conditions. Obesity was associated with the most biological risk factors for advanced aging. But individually, heart, digestive and endocrine diseases, like atherosclerosis, irritable bowel and diabetes, were also notable signs of advanced aging, as was depression.

The good news: You can reverse premature biological aging and achieve a younger RealAge. First, take a look at Dr. Mike's book "The Real Age Makeover." Then, to achieve a younger RealAge, check out Dr. Mike's book "What to Eat When" and in October, "The Great Age Reboot."



Mehmet Oz, M.D. is host of "The Dr. Oz Show," and Mike Roizen, M.D. is Chief Wellness Officer Emeritus at Cleveland Clinic. To live your healthiest, tune into "The Dr. Oz Show" or visit

(c)2021 Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D.

Distributed by King Features Syndicate, Inc.

(c) 2021 Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D. Distributed by King Features Syndicate, Inc.



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