AGEs Accelerate Aging
It is interesting how we all are opposed to aging. In our search for getting rid of fine wrinkle lines, easing our arthritis pains, wanting to feel and look younger, have we thought much about what is making us age instead of thinking about treatments we can use to ward off aging? Of course, we are all going to age, whether we like it or not, BUT is there something we can do to slow down aging or prevent some of the deleterious effects associated with accelerated aging? That is the one thing I don’t want accelerated for my life! I love speed, but not when it comes to this subject!
AGEs, advanced glycation end products, or glycotoxins, lead to advanced or accelerated aging. AGEs present a “cute” acronym because of how intimately connected to AGING they are. Simply put, AGEs accelerate aging. The more AGEs you have, the faster you will age. AGEs are made inside the body (endogenous) and are also accumulated from outside the body (endogenous). Interestingly, I believe we have control over both endogenous and exogenous AGEs. One simple fact about inside-the-body AGEs is that they form in the presence of prolonged elevated blood sugar. AGEs are formed when glucose binds to amino acids and lipids in the body. Outside-the-body AGEs are found in many animal products that are high in protein and fat and can be increased through various cooking methods. Dry cooking methods such as grilling, toasting, broiling, roasting, and browning of animal products seems to be a sure bet to increasing your dietary AGEs often by 10-fold compared to heating of fruits and vegetables! The browning reaction, called the Mallaird reaction, results in AGE production. Look at the toast above. Do you think it is higher in AGEs than a regular slice of bread? Right! More browned » more AGEs.
AGEs are very damaging chemicals. AGEs cause oxidative damage and in turn oxidative damage also increases formation of more AGEs presenting our body with a vicious cycle that is difficult to beat. Abundance of AGEs leads to increased inflammation, kidney damage, Alzheimer’s, Diabetes, and many other chronic illnesses. When AGEs are in excess, that is, our body isn’t clearing them fast enough, they linger in our blood for a long time and begin to cause damage, many times to blood vessels, causing stiffening and damage and eventually leading to cardiovascular disease, our Nation’s number one fatal illness. AGEs cause a host of problems in the kidneys and have a direct correlation with the development of diabetes. The good news is there is something you can do about it.