As Norbert Juma observes for Everyday Power, “Eyes are the windows to the soul. They don’t lie. They show the truth, no matter what face you put on. Just like body language, our eyes say more than we ever could with words.” Today, we look at (pun intended 🙂 ) our eyes as a window to our age.
New Technology Shows Our Eyes as a Window to Our Age
Recently, researchers from Boston University College of Engineering and School of Public Health, Boston Children’s Hospital, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, and the University of Washington, Seattle published an important article on this topic.
Click the image to access that article. Then read the highlights below. And watch the video clip.
People often say that eyes are windows to the soul. It appears they may also be windows to human aging.
All people age, but individuals age at different rates, some faster and others slower. Yet, we know of no universally accepted measure of biological aging. Numerous aging-related metrics have been proposed and tested. But no marker to date identifies aging. And no noninvasive method accurately measures and tracks biological aging in individuals. In what we believe to be the first study of its kind, our researchers discovered that a specialized eye scanner accurately measures signals from proteins in lens of the eye. To detect and track biological aging in living humans.
The lens contains proteins that accumulate aging-related changes throughout life. These lens proteins provide a permanent record of each person’s life history of aging. Our eye scanner decodes this record of how a person is aging at the molecular level.
For me, this is really a two-part question. At age 70, I feel great both psychologically and mentally. I perceive myself as much younger than I am. On the other, how I feel physically is another story. The key for me is not to let my physical ailments overpower my psychological wellbeing.So, how old do YOU feel?
“By 2050, the percentage of the elderly is expected to double globally compared to today. As people live longer and an ever-higher percentage of the population is beyond their retirement years. Thisaccording tothe World Health Organization. Meanwhile, conventional measures of longevity don’t reflect the quality of extended time on this Earth.”
“A new study looked at aging, health, and mortality by analyzing at what age people in a country actually feel like 65-year-olds, as defined by experiencing the health problems of the average 65-year old globally. The study considered 92 diseases and conditions in 195 countries and territories. The results are a window into both longevity and health status, revealing how well people age, or how poorly, theresearchersreport in the journal Lancet Public Health.”
“The findings ‘show that increased life expectancy at older ages can either be an opportunity or a threat to the overall welfare of populations, depending on the aging-related health problems the population experiences regardless of chronological age.’ said Dr. Angela Y. Chang, lead author of the study from the Center for Health Trends and Forecasts at the University of Washington.”
In this study, the United States did not fare so well. For the top 10 countries cited in the chart below, people were all in their mid-70s before feeling 65. The U.S. ranked 54 at 68.5. Certainly, that is food for thought.