Apples a day keeps the teacher away is a grade school ditty our first grade class sang occasionally. And indeed, we sometimes brought in apples and placed it on teachers desk. Fast forward to today, we seniors still love apples, but some of us have trouble biting into them.
But, fellow seniors, do not be put off and continue making them a part of your diet.
Apples: The Anti-Aging Food
The key factor in the aging process is cell function decline. As we get older, our cells lose their ability to divide and get younger.
When a cell can no longer divide, it releases inflammatory signals that triggers the immune system to get rid of it.
When we are young, our bodies can easily remove aging cells, but as we grow older, our systems are less able to do so. Thus, old-damaged cells accumulate, inflammation increases, and tissues break up.
Mayo Clinic scientists noted that senolytics — which are molecules that target and destroy old cells, can thus slow down the aging process. That leads to a longer life span and better health.
As aging cells trigger inflammation and cell death, the researchers tested 10 flavonoids that contain antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties in aging mice.
They found that the most effective anti-inflammatory compound was fisetin, which naturally occurs in apples.
Apples: Anti-Aging Study Results
Mice with fisetin, showed reduced the levels of aging cells and low levels of inflammation. Life span was increased as improved health.
In conjunction with researchers from the University of Minnesota, Mayo Clinic scientists used a technique called mass cytometry to tag specific molecules and track their activity.
In this way, they were able to pinpoint fisetin as an effective anti-oxidant that can slow the aging process. Additional research is currently underway to find the most effective dosages.