Age isn’t just a number | Science News

Support Science Journalism

Science News is a nonprofit.

Support us by subscribing now.


News

Age isn’t just a number

People grow old at different rates, and one clue why may be in their blood

By
7:00am, July 7, 2015
Aging

FOR THE AGES  Peoples’ chronological ages may not match the state of their bodies. New research suggest some people age faster than others. Some factors that contribute to aging may be in the blood.

Some people age faster than others, a long-term study of New Zealanders reveals. But there’s good news for the rapid agers: Studies in mice indicate there may be ways to slow the aging rate.

Like a class reunion photo, a physiological snapshot of 954 people born in Dunedin, New Zealand, in 1972 and 1973 shows that time has been kinder to some people. The calendar indicated all those people were 38 years old, but their biological ages ranged from 28 to 61, researchers report July 6 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Biological age is based on how healthy a person is compared with the average health of a large number of people of various ages. Biologically older participants were weaker, less coordinated, had lower IQs and felt and looked older than their biologically younger counterparts. 

The researchers tracked 18 different health measures over time.

This article is only available to Science News subscribers. Already a subscriber? Log in now.
Or subscribe today for full access.

Get Science News headlines by e-mail.

More from Science News

From the Nature Index Paid Content