Changing diet and lifestyle will reduce our biological age by three years in eight weeks, a new study has found.
Researchers from the Helfgott Research Institute found that a healthy diet and active lifestyle can balance DNA methylation, which in turn, will rapidly reduce our biological age, and therefore help us to live longer.
DNA methylation is a term used to describe the damage and loss of function to our cells, tissues and organs.
The study analysed 43 healthy adult males between the ages of 50 and 72, and the eight-week programme included guidance on diet, sleep, exercise and relaxation.
Participants were also given probiotics and phytonutrient supplements.
Results showed that there was a significant reduction of biological age of more than three years.
Study leader Kara Fitzgerald said that the researchers were intrigued by the significant positive effect specific nutrients and food had on DNA methylation.
"What is extremely exciting is that food and lifestyle practices, including specific nutrients and food compounds known to selectively alter DNA methylation, are able to have such an impact on those DNA methylation patterns we know predict ageing and age-related disease," she explained.
"I believe that this, together with new possibilities for us all to measure and track our DNA methylation age, will provide significant new opportunities for both scientists and consumers," she added.
Co-author Moshe Szyf applauded the "unique" study, and hopes that it will prompt further studies into DNA methylation.
"This study provides the first insight into the possibility of using natural alterations to target epigenetic processes and improve our well being and perhaps even longevity and lifespan," Szyf stated.