When we are asked about our age, we give it in years. But, turns out that what we should do is determine our biological age, meaning figure out how old are bodies are. Interestingly, it is not the same age we are! Our bodies have two different ages: chronological and biological. The first one refers to how long we have been alive, while the latter refers to how old our bodies appear to be.
There are a couple of ways that scientists can determine one`s biological age. One way is determining the length of a person`s telomeres, the protective ends of chromosomes. Telomeres keep the chromosome ends from degenerating or merging with a neighboring chromosome, influencing how quickly cells age and die.
As explained by Dr. Terry Grossman, founder and medical director of the Grossman Wellness Center in Denver, “Every time that a cell divides, a telomere bead falls off from the end of the chromosome. It appears there is a direct correlation between telomere length and biological age. The longer you live, in other words, the greater your chronological age, the shorter the total length of your telomeres.”
But, this is not the only way you can determine how old your body is. There is far easier and simpler way to find your biological age, and you can do it at home.
Test Your Biological Age
Stand with the feet together and bend at the hips to see how far you can reach down with the hands. Allow a slight bend in case keeping the legs straight feels uncomfortable. Remember how far you got.
If you could…
Touch the floor with your hands while keeping the legs straight, the muscles are fully relaxed and the body is as flexible as an average 20-25-year-old person.
Touch the floor with your fingertips, with straight legs or with a slight bend in the knees. If you don’t feel any discomfort, the muscle flexibility is as good as in average 35-38 years old person.
Touch your toes or just your feet with bent knees or straight legs. If you only manage to reach this far, your muscles are tense, and you feel discomfort, your muscle flexibility resembles to that of a person who is 38-50 years old.
You can’t touch your feet, and if you were to try you would be really bending the knees. If trying to stretch farther makes the muscles hurt and you need to stand up immediately, your muscles have the flexibility of someone who is over 50.
The good news is that your body`s flexibility depends on you. With a regular stretching routine you can boost your flexibility and turn the clock back on your muscles. When it comes to the telomeres, studies show that a healthy lifestyle, involving regular exercise and healthy diet, maintain telomere length.