Health care today is reactive, retrospective, bureaucratic and expensive. This is a care, not health care. However, this is destined to change. Scientists who are seriously engaged with issues of aging, life extension and health, working to change the whole system, which holds $ 3 trillion. Let us see what is aging and how evolving technologies and initiatives will work to combat the nine vices of human health.
Why the healthcare system is not working
The healthcare system in the world — we will not take individual countries is broken and not working. Here’s why:
- Doctors spend $ 210 billion per year on procedures that are not based on the needs of patients and fear of responsibility.
- Americans on average spend 8915 dollars on health care — more than in any other country on Earth.
- Medications, prescription are in the US, about 50% more expensive than in other industrialized countries.
- At current figures, by 2025 nearly 25% of US GDP is spent on health care.
- 12 years and $ 359 million, on average, required to bring a new medicine from the laboratory to the patient.
- Only 5 out of 5000 of these new drugs are tested on humans. Of these, only 1 in 5 is approved for human use.
We live in the healthiest time in human history
With all this, if you compare with other periods of human existence, nothing to complain about. But the problems concern the whole world, not individual countries, but considerable progress has been made.
- The countries with the lowest life expectancy still have a higher expectation of life expectancy than countries with the highest expectation in 1800.
- In 1841 5-year-old had an expected life of 55 years. Today 5-year-old can expect to live 82 years is 27 years.
- The lifespan of people increases. In 1845, a newborn could expect to live to 40 years. But at the age of 70 it was possible to live only until age 79. Today people of all ages can expect to live 81 to 86 years.
- 100 years ago 1 out of 3 children died before reaching 5 years of age. In 2015, the infant mortality rate fell to 4.3%.
- Cancer mortality over the past 25 years has fallen by 27%.
Nine mechanisms of aging
Life expectancy, health and ageing are closely linked.
Having the best health care, we can better treat some of the major causes of death affecting the duration of our lives.
Learning how to treat the disease, we inevitably understand better what primarily causes these diseases, and it is directly related to why we age.
Below you will find nine distinctive signs of aging.
Genomic instability. As we aging, the environment and normal cellular processes cause damage to our genes. Flying at high altitude, for example, expose us to the effects of high radiation or free radicals. These injuries are compounded for life and are known to accelerate aging.
The depletion of telomeres. Each DNA strand in the body (known as chromosome) closed telomeres. These short DNA fragments, repeated thousands of times, designed to protect a larger portion of the chromosome. Telomeres shorten as our DNA replicates; when the telomeres reach a certain critical length, the cell stops dividing, leading to increased morbidity.
Epigenetic changes. Over time, environmental factors are changing the processes of gene expression, that is, how read certain DNA sequence and is implemented by a set of instructions.
Loss proteostasis. Over time, the various proteins in our body cease to develop and function as they should, which leads to various diseases, from cancer to neurological disorders.
Unregulated perception of nutrients. The level of nutrients in the body can affect different metabolic pathways. Among the affected parts of these pathways are proteins, such as IGF-1, mTOR, AMPK and sirtuins as well. Changing levels of these proteins affect the life expectancy.
Mitochondrial dysfunction. The mitochondria (our cellular power plants) lose their performance. Performance degradation leads to excessive fatigue and other symptoms of chronic diseases associated with aging.
Cellular senescence. With age, cells stop dividing and can’t be removed from the body. They accumulate and lead to severe inflammation.
Depletion of stem cells. With age, our supply of stem cells starts to decrease 100 to 10, 000 times in different tissues and organs. In addition, stem cells undergo genetic mutations that reduce their quality and efficiency when you upgrade and restore the body.
Altered intercellular communication. The communication mechanisms that use our cells, violated the aging of cells, reducing the ability to exchange information between them.
What conclusions can we draw?
Over the past 200 years we have seen many medical technologies that contribute to the massive increase in life expectancy.
Exponential technologies like artificial intelligence, 3D printing and sensors, as well as huge advances in genomics, stem cell research, chemistry and many other areas, begin to address the fundamental problems of why we age.
Just think what we could achieve with a healthy 30-50 years or even more? Tell us about it in our chat in Telegram.