Telomeres are all over the news these days. Those pesky little caps of DNA on our chromosomes shorten as we age and research shows that some cancers, osteoarthritis and osteoporosis, depression, diabetes, obesity and heart disease are all more likely to arise in people with shorter telomeres. So it is fair to say that longer telomeres equal longevity.
Ten of 35 patients followed a plant-based diet which was also low in fat and refined carbohydrates, while also exercising moderately, practicing yoga and meditation, and belonging to a weekly support group. The telomeres of these participants lengthened by 10 percent, while the control group who made no changes found their telomeres shortened by three percent. Within the change group it was found that the more heartily they engaged in the program the more their telomeres grew.
You can read more about telomeres and Clifford Saron’s research in my new book, Better Brain Better Life: Tips and Tales from the Tantalizing World of Brain Science.
Two articles on telomeres you might enjoy include one in The Globe and Mail, and another in Maclean’s magazine.