Sure, there’s plenty of anecdotal evidence supporting the notion that exercise keeps us youthful. But did you know numerous studies have shown that exercising literally keeps us young at the cellular level? It does so by reducing the loss of something called telomeres, which are part of our DNA.
Think of your DNA strands like a shoelace (on your favorite fitness shoes!) and your telomeres like the plastic caps at each end. Telomeres keep our DNA from biologically aging much like the caps keep our shoelace from fraying. Everyone’s telomeres shorten as they age. However, those who exercise regularly significantly reduce telomere loss, and this slows down the aging process.
Longer telomeres keep us young inside and out. The typical signs of aging – decreasing eyesight; increasing waistline, aches, pains, gray hair, wrinkles; higher incidence of heart attack, stroke, diabetes, osteoporosis, arthritis, cancer, dementia – are all counteracted. So, happily, the Fountain of Youth does exist, and it’s readily available to us all: exercise! Read on for more details . . .
Lisa Fleming is a professional Health Coach who is certified by the American Council on Exercise (ACE). She is the author of "Exercising Mom." She lives in Virginia with her husband and three children.