Longevity. We all want it, except why does aging have go along with it? As we age we increase our risk for developing conditions like heart problems, cardiovascular disease, and stroke; type 2 diabetes; high blood pressure, cholesterol, and triglycerides; obesity; osteoporosis; and cancer. Not to mention frailty, balance problems, osteoarthritis, erectile dysfunction, cognitive decline, dementia, loss of fertility, and insomnia. The rate of brain diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s and mood problems like depression and anxiety may also rise with age. For women, the transition into menopause can bring symptoms like hot flashes, mood swings, weight gain, hair loss, and changes in sex drive.

Luckily, geriatric medicine has made a lot of progress in understanding the aging process. Even more, researchers continue to develop new tools to treat diseases – and to prevent them from occurring in the first place. While there is an undeniable genetic component in the risk of developing disease, there is also much you can do, through the lifestyle choices you make every day, to reduce your risk. Eating a healthy diet, not smoking, drinking modest amounts of alcohol, and exercising regularly actually work to keep you feeling younger longer, and more and more evidence shows just how they work, on a molecular level. Here you’ll find basic information along with the latest developments and cutting edge research on aging, illness, and prevention.

Aging Basics

Add Life to Your Years: Exercise is the key to remaining youthful and independent. Even those with physical problems can benefit greatly from a modest program of physical activity. In fact, exercise is the treatment of choice for certain diseases. >

Redefining Health: What Does It Mean to be Healthy, and How Do We Get There?: What does it mean to be healthy? Most of us can list the things we should do or eat to live a long life. But Health psycholgists Howard S. Friedman, PhD and Leslie R. Martin, PhD have found that longevity is promoted best by a cluster of behaviors, many of which run counter to conventional wisdom. For example, working hard, even when stressed, tends to promote health, rather than erode it. >

Aging News

Short Bouts of Exercise Boost Brain Health: Short bursts of activity can help memory, for people with — and without — memory problems.

Living as Long as Olympians: Olympians do seem to live longer, but their advantage is surprisingly easy for us mere mortals to equal.

Confused about Omega-3s? Just Eat Fish: To eat omega-3s or not to eat them, that is the question.

Digoxin Raises Death Rate for Some Heart Patients: For patients with the heart arrhythmia, atrial fibrillation, one heart drug is the opposite of a lifesaver.p>

Healthy Aging

Nature Ignites a Creative Spark :
Spending time in nature spurs creativity. Who wouldn’t want that?

Too Much Sitting, Too Little Walking:
Sitting too much and moving too little can shorten life. They are also easy to remedy.

How Many Years Does Exercise Actually Add?:
We’ve known for ages that exercise adds years to your life – now we know how many.

Eye Drops to Prevent Cataracts:
Eye drops to prevent cataracts? They work in rats, at least.

Cholesterol: New Discoveries Overturn Old Assumptions:
Recent discoveries about cholesterol overturn old assumptions and may lead to new treatments.

Mentally and Physically Fit:
A Mediterranean diet and moderate exercise help presesrve cognitive functioning and may ward off Alzheimer’s disease.

100 Years Plus:
Who are the oldest of the old, and what can these centenarians tell us about longevity and aging?

Why Tai Chi Makes Sense for the Elderly:
Seniors need to be careful that strength training doesn't also stiffen arteries. Tai Chi can help.


Would You Want to See Your Doctor’s Notes?:
What happens when patients have full access to their medical records? The OpenNotes study finds out.

Finding the Best Hospital:
The best medical care may be closer than you think.

Medical Costs Often Exceed Assets :
About 25% of all seniors spend more than the total value of all their assets on out-of-pocket medical expenses. When will this change?

A New “Polypill Could Save Thousands:
Combining four medications into one pill to reduce heart disease could work wonders for the aging at-risk population.

Determining Breast Cancer Risk:
Most breast cancer patients do not have a family history.

Why Is Patient-Doctor Communication So Difficult?:
Discussing medical issues with your doctor is much easier said than done. How to do it better.

Brain and Mind

Brisk Walking Good for the Brain:
Walking improves blood flow to the brain in seniors. Can it help with cognitive decline?

Xanax, Valium Linked to Dementia.:
When elderly people take benzodiazepines such as Ativan, Valium and Xanax, their risk of dementia goes up 50%.

Ibuprofen and Parkinson’s:
Can the NSAID drug reduce your risk of PD?

Mindfulness Relieves Loneliness:
A simple program of mindfulness mediation reduced lonely feelings, and had the added benefits if improving inflammation.

Mediterranean Diet Helps the Aging Brain:
This heart-healthy diet of nuts, omega-3s and phytochemicals has also been shown to stave off cognitive decline.

Computer Time Could Protect the Brain (But Don’t Forget to Exercise):
Computer time along with physical activity may prevent cognitive decline.