What Causes the Symptoms of Aging

Dr. Purushothaman
September 9, 2013

What causes us to age? What causes wrinkles, gray hair, loss of libido, weight gain, and other signs of aging?

If Ponce de Leon had succeeded in his self-commissioned voyage of discovering the “fountain of youth” this piece wouldn’t have been necessary.

Also, if there was somehow a drug that one can take to completely eradicate all forms and signs of aging, what a wonderful world that would be, right?

Well, it is time to stop dreaming and wishing and wondering. Aging is inevitable and nothing has been found that can completely stop or reverse the process.

I am often asked – what causes us to age. You see, age sneaks up on all of us slowly and wrinkles are one of the most visible signs. The skin is the largest external organ which, like us, goes through many different phrases. Women tend to have wrinkles faster than men- due to the various hormonal changes they experience – from puberty, through pregnancy and ending with menopause.

Skin wrinkle is due to aging caused by decrease in sebum oil production, loss of elasticity, and a reduction in the rejuvenation process. How fast and to what extent the skin ages depends on – you guessed it – your age, genetics and lifestyle.

Change in hair color from black or any other color to grey is another obvious sign of aging. The hair color is caused by a pigment known as melanin, produced by hair follicles. With aging, the follicles produce less melanin.

When does this start? Often in the 30s, although it varies widely.

Generally, graying of the hair is genetically determined. Grey hair tends to occur earlier in Caucasians and later in Asian races.

For those who think they can stop gray hair with nutritional supplements, vitamins and other products, they are dead wrong.

Another sign of aging is weight gain. A man who is 40 is most often fatter than a 20 year old man. Also, a lady of 40 is much bigger than a lady of 20. This shows that when we grow old, we begin to gain more and more weight.

Why do people gain weight as they age? The answer is simple.

Metabolism, you know it, changes with age. As you age, some of your muscle mass is replaced with fat.

So, generally, there combinations of factors that make us age. All these factors impact the various body systems including the cardiovascular system, musculoskeletal system, immune system and respirtaory system. Each system reacts to its own physiological make up.

Hence the environment that we live in combined with the way we treat these systems will have a direct impact on an individual’s response to the process of aging.

However, no matter whom you are- whether rich, poor, celebrity, etc- we will all go through the aging process. What you have to do is – take the bulls by the horns. Be prepared for the aging process and take it gracefully.

Instead of living in fear all the rest of your life because of aging, you need to face it. Get all the advice and guide you can about how to succeed in the battle against the aging process.

Treat your body well so that it will serve you well during your old age. In other words, live so well that you will die as young as you possibly can.


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