UBC promises to go beyond eating well and exercising in healthy aging lecture series

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What steps can people take now to ensure that their lives are as long, happy and healthy as possible?

That’s the question a new lecture series from the University of British Columbia’s Healthy Aging Program hopes to answer.

Current program chair Michael Kobor says they still don’t know all the answers, but they know where some of the secrets lie. Good nutrition and exercise are obvious, but less studied areas are also important.

“There are also psychosocial aspects, such as belonging and having a purpose in life,” says Kobor.

A leading expert in epigenetics, Kobor has devoted years of study to examining the impact of individuals’ behavior and environment on their genes. These changes could alter the way people’s bodies interpret their own DNA, potentially affecting long-term health and disease.

Kobor will not be speaking during the series, but he will help set up his lineup.

The first conference is scheduled for Monday (Jan. 23), with a discussion of the potential benefits of everyday stressors. David Almeida is a professor of human development and family studies and a faculty member of the Center for Healthy Aging at Pennsylvania State University. It tries to demystify the idea that no stress is better than some.

His research, the National Studies of Daily Experiences, found that in a group of 2,804 adults, those who reported no stress over an eight-day period were more likely to be older, male, less educated, and low-income, compared to those who reported stressors. Almeida’s research also showed that people who suffered from daily stressors also reported more positive events in their daily lives.

On February 27, Catrine Tudor-Locke will take the stage to discuss how daily physical activity can be reinvented with modern technologies.

The two speakers will discuss some of the nine lifestyle habits that have been identified as common factors in the world’s five ‘blue zones’ – the communities with the highest life expectancy. This is an area of ​​research that has intrigued Kobor. He says he would like to determine whether “micro blue zones” may exist in parts of British Columbia

The nine factors associated with longevity are: natural movements, purposefulness, mechanisms for coping with stress, eating up to 80% saturated, consuming more vegetable protein than meat protein, drinking wine every day, feeling of belonging, putting loved ones first, and being born into a group with healthy behaviors.

The speaker series will take a break in March and return in April. Kobor says they strive to eliminate all misinformation and misleading marketing online to give people the knowledge they really need to live a long and happy life.

“We welcome feedback from the community at large on what might be useful and what might be missing from this kind of soup of information that exists.”

Each lecture can be attended online or in person at Vancouver General Hospital. More information can be found at healthyaging.med.ubc.ca.


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Health and WellnessSeniorsUBC

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