New medical research revealed that stress causes the body to age. Fortunately, it only takes days to recover.
The research found that a person’s biological age increases rapidly in response to various forms of stress, such as surgery, serious illness and childbirth, according to scientists at the American Duke University School of Medicine.
“This finding of flexible and fluctuating lifespan challenges the long-held notion of a one-way upward trajectory of biological age over the course of life,” says study co-first author Dr James White.
He also notes that previous reports hint at short-term fluctuations in biological lifespan, but the reversibility and etiology of these changes remains an unexplored area of science.
People can be biologically older or younger than their chronological age would suggest. Moreover, factors such as disease, drug treatment, and lifestyle changes can all influence biological aging, according to mounting evidence from animal models and human studies.
Mysteries facing scientists
Professor Vadim Gladyshev, co-lead author of the study, says: “Despite the widespread recognition that biological age is at least somewhat malleable, the extent to which biological age undergoes reversible changes throughout life and the events that lead to such changes remains unclear. well-known and intoxicating mysteries unknown to scientists.
Stress accelerates the aging of the immune system, which increases the risk of cancer and heart disease
How does biological age increase?
The researchers used DNA to measure changes in biological age in humans and mice in response to various stressful stimuli. The results revealed that biological age may increase over relatively short periods of time in response to stress, but trends return to their original level after stress recovery.
Short-term changes in biological age also occurred during major surgery, pregnancy, and severe COVID-19 in humans or mice. However, the increase in biological age reversed and returned to baseline in the days following these events.
stress and death
“The findings suggest that severe stress increases mortality, at least in part, by increasing biological age.” She suggested that reducing biological age and the ability to recover from stress may be critical factors for successful aging and longevity.
“Finally, biological age may be a useful factor in assessing and mitigating physiological stress,” adds Professor Gladyshev.
The study also reveals a new layer of aging dynamics that must be taken into account in future studies. Dr. White concludes that a key area for further research is understanding how transient increases in biological lifespan, or successful recovery from such increases, may contribute to accelerated aging over the course of a lifetime.