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Is Smart Aging the Best Way to Boost Longevity

Scientists describe aging as a decline in natural physical or cognitive function, or resilience. It is this decline that leads to increased susceptibility to disease and death.

But to us, aging is simply the process of growing old. Stereotypes, social norms and expectations influence our perceptions. The biggest problem we have is that we are not sure we can control our health outcomes as we age.

We do not want to age without health. Hearing loss, cataracts, joint pain, arthritis, heart disease, diabetes, depression and dementia scare us. Injuries and loss of mobility are lurking. Infirmities of old age and the potential for the loss of independence send a shiver.

Too often, we do not understand until we get there. Only as we move into our fifties, do we start to confront our mortality.

The fact is, we are part of the baby boomer demographic, currently increasing every year. According to US Census, 10,000 baby boomers are retiring every day and, by 2030 all baby boomers will be 65 or older. Even in 2020, that’s an estimated 73 million or 22% of the population. It now approximates the millennial demographic.

A shrinking younger generation to care for family members or generate taxes for the healthcare system is emerging. Increasing healthcare costs as a proportion of GDP concern us. Is our prospect for long, healthy life in jeopardy?

We are also being told that, in the future, there will simply not be enough long-term care facilities to accommodate all patients requiring care!

By contrast….

Stanford Professor Stuart Kim thinks that the first person to reach an age of 200 years has been born. Some will tend to think of children and grandchildren in this category. However, committed boomers accept the challenge: ‘Game On’.

As boomers, we are bringing sophisticated tech skills with us into aging. The desire to live long and live well inspires us to seek technology solutions to hack our health. Technology is allowing us to disrupt aging.

To optimise health, fitness and cognitive ability as well as boosting longevity, we need to become Smart Agers. It’s about taking control of our destiny, increasing knowledge and tech skills to navigate the years ahead.

How can tech improve aging

From simple hacks for health to full-on biohacking, we are tracking diverse biometric data. The medical fraternity doesn’t have sole domain over our data anymore. Smart Agers are tracking their data in a quest to reduce biological age.

More and more of us are taking advice and changing habits. Harvard Medical School tells us diet, exercise, appropriate body weight, moderate exercise and being non-smokers are the basics to a longer life.

Many of us are investing significant time and money into knowledge, apps, wearables and supplements to help bodies and brains thrive. Mastering longevity is the game.

Activity trackers for fitness, calories hydration abound. It’s a short move from there to more sophisticated technology.

For committed trackers, heart rate variability (HRV) monitoring is the new kid on the block and come in several different forms. Usually, chest straps, finger sensors or wrist devices are used to measure HRV. However, accuracy of HRV measurements via wrist devices have been questioned.

I have used EliteHRV monitor and app for over two years with an 800+ day streak of five-minute morning measurements. My data matches averages for the 30-39 year demographic.

We know that technology can disrupt sleep. However, technology can also enhance sleep. Devices to track sleep (SleepWatch) or an app with bedtime stories for adults to help you fall asleep (Calm app) are booming. I kid you not!

Coronavirus is not only driving the home office but also investments in home gym equipment.  Fitness equipment is playing a more important part in our lockdown lives. One of the big players in the field is technology-driven Peloton with a range of products and services. It appears to be a significant initial outlay and ongoing monthly subscription cost. However, compared with gym memberships for a family, it is an attractive option.

What about smart bathroom scales? Instead of ruining your morning with a step on the scales, Qardio smart bathroom scales simply send the data to your app for you to look at later. Genius!

Smart aging is a process. Smart ageing takes patience. Smart aging really works

Smart Aging Bathroom Scales Tech

Who’d have thought of putting sensors into clothing? Well, check out Under Armour smart sneakers, Sensoria smart socks for $199,  even smart yoga gear for capturing body motion. What will they think of next?

Gut Biome must have fruit and veg for smart aging

Inside Tracker by Segterra analyses a blood test to determine optimum dietary recommendations. Viome will give you precise food and supplement recommendations based on your gut microbiome.

Biohacking to push the boundaries

Then, for dedicated smart agers, there’s the whole new world of biohacking. Defined as DIY biology, it covers a broad range of activities. Using this DIY science, the biohacker seeks to manipulate brain and body to optimise performance.

Dave Asprey explains ‘the art and science of changing the environment around you and inside you so that you have full control over your biology.’ His stated goal is to live to at least 180 years old.

The biohacker may use traditional Vipassana meditation or seriously smart supplements or ‘nootropics’. Even stem cell injections feature in the crusade to cure ailments to feel better, live longer and push the boundaries of what’s possible.

A quantified self uses technology to track and share their biohacking experiments. These empirical studies (N=1) collect and analyse personal data. Like the biohacker, superior physical, mental and emotional performance is the holy grail.

Widespread adoption of wearables and the internet of things (IoT) makes self-tracking accessible to a broader population.

Conclusion

Like all self-improvement technology, gamification is a crucial element. In a review of health apps in the 2014 Apple App Store, more than 100 apps showed a positive correlation between gamification elements used and high user ratings.

The game right now, should you choose to play, is to lower your biological age in comparison to your chronological age.

Technology empowers us to reinvent our aging self. We can disrupt aging, take control of our longevity and enjoy age-defying energy levels.

As I tell my 88-year-old, independent living Dad, it’s about making every day count! Playing golf three times a week, he’s giving it his best shot.

What are YOU going to do with that extra 30+ years we are being promised?

At Futurepace Tech, we research, test and write about Smart Aging.

Click Here to join our growing band of Smart Agers, looking to use technology to improve longevity and make every damn day count!

Is Smart Aging the Best Way to Boost Longevity

Is Smart Aging the Best Way to Boost Longevity

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We recommend CorSense and Elite HRV app for monitoring your daily HRV

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Frank Paice
Frank Paice
Admin
3 months ago

this is great information

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