Failing to maintain a healthy weight means the likelihood of a plethora of serious health problems, from high cholesterol, to diabetes, to orthopedic issues. It is clear that with weight management, much more is at stake than appearances. With so much on the line, it is vitally important to try and maintain a healthy weight over the course of a lifetime, rather than sporadically. As it turns out, maintaining longer telomeres may be a powerful strategy for maintaining a healthy weight.
Telomeres are the protective end-caps of chromosomes which shorten with unhealthy habits. When telomeres reach a critical point called the Hayflick Limit, the cell ceases to divide, and eventually dies. Naturally, this has huge health consequences, and eventually causes human death. It is vitally important to maintain telomeres as a strategy to improve upon overall health, and telomeres have even been said to be a measure of cellular ageing.
One study concluded that it is quite likely that shorter telomeres lead to an increased risk for high body fat, which can cause the health issues listed above. Thus, people looking to lose weight should consider maintaining telomere length as a part of their overall healthy weight strategy. And what lengthens telomeres? Interestingly enough, the same lifestyle choices that help combat obesity.
For one, aerobic exercise has been strongly correlated with longer telomeres; running, for an example, means a sizeable increase in telomere length.
Diets low in sugar content, such as the Mediterranean diet, are also shown to correlate strongly with long telomeres. Sugars are a leading cause of obesity, as suggested by the countless papers in the second source listed below.
So it is safe to say that a lifestyle including both exercise and a healthy diet will likely lead to longer telomeres, which is one powerful way to ward off obesity.
If you are looking for a way to quantify your health and make informed lifestyle decisions, Titanovo is offering a telomere testing kit which is available on Indiegogo!