Genes and Its Role in Determining Longevity

Our genes determine our physique, like eye color, height, coordination, hair and so much more. Genes are very powerful. As a matter of fact, they also control the maximum life span of an organism. A dog has a span of 10 to 15 years; giant sequoia can live up to 2000 years and us, well, we have 115 to 125 years. For more info, visit

These are estimated life spans however is not really important to most people. What really matters is your health span. Health span unlike life span is scaled on how long a person is healthy and his ability to enjoy life. It really doesn’t matter if you reach 125 if you are already a vegetable at the age of 60.

Research studies show that our cellular functions decline as we age. As we grow older, our cells will not be able to maintain the normal processes such as regeneration and reproduction and this can cause a lot of problems in our body. Studies also show that our mitochondria, a cell organelle that enables us to convert fatty acids to fuel that we can use for energy becomes dysfunctional as we age.

Aging, like death, is inevitable. We are all going there. But there are ways to help us extend our health span, and enjoy life a little longer. Vitamin C is a potent antioxidant that can effectively delay mitochondrial degeneration. Citrus foods such as oranges, pineapples and grapefruits are considered as a great source of vitamin C. Studies also show that lipoic acid, a substance commonly found in green leaft vegetables is also a great way to delay mitochondrial degeneration. It is a strong antioxidant that is more potent than Vitamin C. Organ meats, broccoli and spinach is a good source of lipoic acid. Though you can get these vitamins and minerals from natural sources, sometimes what you get from your diet alone is not enough. Vitamin supplementation is a great way to get these precious antioxidants.

Another great way to increase our life span and health span is through exercise. Regular workout routines can save you from hundreds of lifestyle diseases. Say, if your family is predisposed to heart attack or other cardio vascular diseases, you can improve your chances of surviving or avoiding these ailments through exercise. Studies show that people that walk at least 15 minutes a day have a lower risk of developing lifestyle diseases later on in life.

Our genes may predispose us to certain diseases but that does not mean that you can’t do anything about it. By simply watching what you eat and by staying fit through regular exercise, there is a great chance that you can live longer and happier. Knowing your health weaknesses is also a great way to avoid diseases that can shorten your health span and life span. Having regular checkups can lead to early detection and prevention of these diseases. Understanding your health and knowing what to do can go a long way. Take care of yourself and live a happy and prosperous life.