Loose Women: Dr Hilary discusses how to live longer
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When it comes to trying to live longer, many of us are aware of the importance of diet and exercise. This is because they influence what is known as your metabolic age – or biological age. And this doesn’t always match how many years you have been alive.
Scientist and founder of Cignpost Diagnostics, Professor Denis Kinane, spoke with Express.co.uk to explain more.
What is your metabolic age?
“Your biological age is very different from your chronological age,” Professor Kinane said.
“Chronological age refers to the actual amount of time a person has been alive.
“Whereas, biological age, also referred to as physiological or metabolic age, takes many lifestyle factors into consideration, including diet, exercise and sleeping habits, to name a few.
“Discovering your biological age will provide you with confidence that your current lifestyle is optimal, or inspire you to make changes if there could be potential for improvement.
“Ageing is a natural part of life, and although you can’t control your chronological age, you can control biological age through healthy lifestyle choices.”
Your metabolic, or biological age, can be calculated by comparing your basal metabolic rate (BMR) to the average BMR for people of your chronological age.
BMR is the number of calories your body needs daily to function.
Although there are online calculators to work out your BMR, the most common formula to use at home is:
- Men: 10 x weight (kg) + 6.25 x height (cm) – 5 x age (years) + 5
- Women: 10 x weight (kg) + 6.25 x height (cm) – 5 x age (years) – 161.
However, it is worth noting that like body mass index, this calculation is just a guide.
The best way to reduce your metabolic age is to live a healthy lifestyle.
Professor Kinane recommended four ways to do this.
Monitor your calorie intake
He said: “Monitoring your calorie intake is one of the most widely proven ways to reduce metabolic age to ensure you’re leading a healthy lifestyle.
“Studies have shown that overconsumption, especially in processed foods, can lead to high-blood pressure and inflammation, which are linked to chronic and age-related diseases.”
Consume a balanced diet
“Following a balanced diet is by far the healthiest approach to eating, and its benefits reach much further than weight loss,” he said.
“It has been found to improve heart health, lower cholesterol, and boost the immune system, to name a few, all of which help to slow metabolic ageing.”
Move more to live longer
Professor Kinane commented: “Increased exercise will build healthy muscle tissue and boost blood flow, which in turn improves your cardiovascular system, nutrition processes and metabolic age.”
Get adequate sleep
He added: “Although people differ in the length of sleep that they need, it is generally agreed to be between seven and nine hours.
“Getting an adequate amount of sleep every night slows the onset of physical ageing, improves mental health, and reduces the risk for disease.”
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