What Are Telomeres And Why Are They Important?

What Are Telomeres And Why Are They Important?

We all wish we could stay young and healthy forever.  But for some reason, life works in a way that doesn’t care much for what we want.  Although there may not be some fountain of youth that could solve our aging problem, there may be a way to at least slow down the process.what are telomeres and why are they important

When we go to our physicians to get our yearly physicals, we usually check to make sure things like blood pressure and cholesterol levels are normal.  

But we never think to check how we are doing at a cellular level. Without trying to sound all scientific, if you’re looking to improve your overall wellness, than monitoring your cells is important.

In this article, I will share with you what are telomeres and why they are important to your overall wellness.  I think that with a little more education about how cells in our body work, more people will take a more proactive approach to monitoring them.  

You never know, it could be the motivation you need to take control of your health going forward.

What Are Telomeres?

If you could imagine the plastic part at the end of your shoelaces, that’s how most would describe telomeres. They are considered protective caps that help protect your chromosomes from being damaged or frayed as telomere chromosomeyou age.

Telomeres are usually considered their longest when we are first born, but as we age, they tend to shorten.

Those who have longer telomeres tend to be more youthful and have greater protection from aging.  So it’s safe to say that many would consider telomeres a key driver to how we age over time.

But why are they important?

Why Telomeres are Important

We all know that the cells in our body are necessary for us to live a healthy and normal life. When cells are damaged, that makes the body more prone to issues such as disease.  For our body to heal and function properly, cells must divide to replace old worn out cells.

Telomeres are there to serve as protection for our DNA during this division process.  If your telomere gets too short, this can leave the body prone to sickness and disease.  Because we all know that as we age, the health deteriorates and leaves the body vulnerable.

This is why it is so important to know where you stand when it comes to your cellular age. When it comes to your health, you should have as much data as possible available to know where you stand.  Then based on the data given, you can take active measures to help improve the way you age on a cellular level.

What You Can Do To Lengthen Your Telomeres

We all know that being healthy has a lot to do with proper diet and regular exercise.  But for some reason, this is not motivation enough to take control of one’s health.  Studies have shown that there are ways to increase two people joggingthe length of your telomeres.  Some of the ways are:

  1. Stress Management.
  2. Being Active
  3. Maintaining Healthy Diet.
  4. Vitamin D

These are just some of the ways to improve the length of your telomeres, but there are many others.  It is recommended that you get checked out for the health of your telomeres every 6 to 12 months.  The same way we get work done for our physicals every year, we should also be taking a more proactive approach when it comes to our cells. But how do we go about getting checked?

More Reading: What Causes Telomeres To Lengthen?

So How Well Are You Aging?

There are a few companies out there that provide tests for people to take to see how long their telomeres are. But one company that I would recommend is TeloYears.   They make it very simple for you to test yourself within the comfort of your own home.  

When you create an account to order your test kit, they provide you with all the necessary equipment.  You are even given a pre-paid package to send your sample back to them.  

If you are really interested in learning what your age is at a cellular level, I would definitely recommend giving them a try.  You can read my review about them here.

6 thoughts on “What Are Telomeres And Why Are They Important?

  1. hi Ralph,
    I just visited your site while surfing the internet.
    I often feel tired after doing work, and this may be because of shortening of my telomeres.
    I think I should get my telomeres checked and also increase my physical activities to lengthen my telomeres again.I would like to know how much is the cost incurred for checking telomeres, is it affordable for everyone.

    • Hi Amit!  You should definitely get it checked if you feel that way just to make sure.  The kit costs $89 plus shipping which is about $7.  I think it’s important for all of us to know where we stand when it comes to our cellular age.

  2. Wow I had never hear of Telomeres before. I simply didn’t know that they ever existed or how important they are. What you said made perfect sense to me. I can see how the shorter they are, then the less healthy we are and therefore more vulnerable to diseases of the body. I did like your suggestion to control stress management, being active, healthy diet and more vitamin D. Vitamin D is tough at the minute because its winter here in my part of the world and getting outside when it’s raining is hard. What would you suggest instead?

    • If getting sun is an issue as it is for many people, you can try vitamin D supplements.  It’s amazing how insufficient we are when it comes to getting vitamin D.  Good thing for us is there are supplements out there to get the job done.  Thanks for your comment.

  3. Hi Ralph,
    I’m curious: what effect do you feel that oxidative stress has on telomeres? A popular theory is that if you protect them from oxidation via antioxidants, you can-to a degree-prevent them from shortening. Some may even be able to rebuild some of their DNA. Do you think antioxidants play a role? Do you think that telomeres/DNA can be repaired?
    Thanks.

    • Hey Paul!  Studies have shown that stress can be a factor in the health of telomeres, so trying to reduce stress as much as possible is key.  When it comes to antioxidants, I do believe that a diet high in antioxidant foods like berries can help slow down aging and prevent or even repair cell damage.  So yes I do think antioxidants play an important role in the health of telomeres/DNA.

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