In Italy between 2001 and 2011, their number has increased by 138%, from 6,313 to 15,080 individuals, of which 83,7% are women. Also increased the average life expectancy of the Italians, who for men has increased by 2.4 years – amounting to 79.4 years – and for women 1.7 years – reaching 84 ½ years.
Among the elements that help you live longer, there is certainly the food.
Many studies have confirmed that the Mediterranean diet is one of the factors which guarantees a longer life: fish, fruit and vegetables, pasta and olive oil. The Mediterranean diet manages to preserve the DNA from the mistakes related to aging and is therefore an “elixir of longevity”, as for example, we know that not only protects against cardiovascular disease but also cancer, diabetes and other diseases.
You have to add to a recent study on cognitive abilities given by lutein and zeaxanthin contained in eggs. A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition highlights the cognitive, memory and verbal fluency of the elderly related to the levels of zeaxanthin in their brain. Not only that, the verbal fluency is also influenced by the concentrations of lutein, which are also associated with the ability to retrieve memories and which are significantly reduced in those who suffer from mild cognitive decline.
The optimal concentration was 12 mg per day of lutein.
The mind and the body of ninety today, work better than it was ten years ago. But the question is: with survival is also increasing physical and mental frailty, increasing more and more social and personal costs? Those born in 1915 had not only one-third more likely to reach 95 years compared to the 1905 cohort, but they also performed better in the tests.
The best performance of the 1915 cohort suggest that changes in factors such as nutrition, the burden of infectious diseases, the work environment, the intellectual stimulation and the general conditions of life play an important role in the improvement of the physical and cognitive.
The genes of the hundred years people involved in aging are about 150 and put them all together ensure longevity with a mathematical certainty of 77%. But now we know what and how many are genetic variants that allow people to meet and exceed the threshold of hundred years. The new model of simultaneous analysis of changes in the DNA, published in Science, has been developed by an expert in biostatistics Paola Sebastiani and Thomas Perls, a geriatrician at Boston University, in collaboration with Annibale Puca of the Institute of Biomedical Technologies of the CNR (ITB-CNR).
The study, which opens the way towards personalized genomics was conducted by analysing the genetic variation of about a thousand American individuals between 95 and 119 years.
Surely epigenetic factors have influenced considerably the elderly today: it will be the same for future centenarians?