What are telomeres?
Have you ever wondered how old your BODY thinks you are? We may be one age but our DNA thinks we are a total different. Well luckily with the latest science, we are able to test the length of our telomeres, which tells us our DNA’s age.
What are telemores? They’re the small, protective coverings on the ends of each DNA strand. These protective coverings are mainly just repeating genes that tend to be longer when individuals are younger. So, one can assume that as one ages, telomeres shorten and become more ragged. Both the National Institute of Health or Harvard have conducted extensive research on the indication of telomeres and our health, and luckily with the TeloYears Test you can now find out the length of your telomeres from home (and I’ll share mine below!)
While aging is a natural occurrence, recent telomere research has shown that daily habits, like eating and exercising, directly impact the length of one’s telomeres. By eating healthier, exercising more, and spending time outside, a person is able to lengthen or deter the deterioration of their telomeres.
Why measure the length of your telomeres?
- Telomere length has been associated with increased risks of cancer, type 2 diabetes, Alzheimer, Parkison’s and more
- You can change the length of your telomeres by making diet and lifestyle changes
When an individual has longer telomeres, they are better able to fight off chronic diseases, like cancer, and protect themselves from other conditions. With this knowledge, it is mindblowing that our medical system does not regularly test telomeres–like they do blood pressure, weight, and various cancers. Nevertheless, this is why I chose to take the TeloYears test, which tests my blood to determine the age of my DNA.
Before I share my results, here is a list of preventative measures you can take to lengthen your own telomere length!
Eat Right for Your Dosha
Ayurvedic principles suggest a person to eat the right food for their own Doshic constitution, in order to balance the Doshas within one’s body. While there are numerous benefits for doing so, like an increase in energy levels and weight stability, it can help lengthen telomeres as well! By feeding your body organic, alkaline-forming foods, like leafy greens and nuts, you are providing the essential nutrients and minerals that the body needs to protect itself from various diseases.
Spending Time Outside
We all know the health benefits of getting some sun, but did you know that there are equal benefits to standing outside–barefoot? Yes, I know that may sound odd, but it is true! The practice of grounding oneself to the earth’s surface, by walking barefoot or sitting directly on the ground, is known as “Earthing”. This practice has been proven to transfer the energy from earth’s surface to the body and helps rebalance negative ions in the body. The balancing of negative ions and the neutralization of free radicals helps one reduce inflammation, improve sleep, and increases pain management. With all of this, the body is able to better protect itself from the diseases listed above by sustaining “younger” or longer telomeres.
Eating a Fresh and Local Diet
Like I continually say in my upcoming book, Eat Feel Fresh: A Contemporary Plant-Based Ayurvedic Cookbook, it is so important to buy fresh, local, and organic produce. By doing so, you can ensure that you will not receive the normal side effects of factory farming, like antibiotic-pumping and hormonal usage. When you buy locally, you are also reducing the amount of food miles involved and the time between picking and consumption, which helps in knowing that majority of the nutrients are still intact. Eating a local and fresh diet is so important to the length of your telomeres because it increases the amount of nutrients and minerals going into your body. In addition you can support locally owned farms and help the environment while doing so!
Breathing is vital to our overall health. Pranayama, the Sanskrit word meaning “extension of the prana or breath”, is a practice that teaches one how to focus on their breath in a variety of ways. Throughout our busy days, it is difficult to find a time to just breathe, yet studies have shown that breathing can drastically impact our health. Pranayama has shown to be beneficial in treating a range of stress disorders, help in steadying the mind, and can help in lowering blood pressure. As Pranayama helps with a number of issues, we can assume that by ameliorating the problem of said issues, the longevity of our telomeres will be greatly sustained. So, next time you are scrolling on your phone at the office, try a quick breathing exercise instead–your telomeres will greatly appreciate it!
Include Spices in Your Diet
In traditional Western diet, there are not a lot of healing spices, like turmeric and ginger, used in cooking. Yet, there are endless healing properties encompassed in these spices! Turmeric, for example, contains curcumin, which helps with inflammatory issues. Whether it means eating more golden mylk or adding turmeric to your curry, adding turmeric to your diet is a great idea. Similar to turmeric, ginger has amazing anti-inflammatory properties and has been known to treat nausea. Many people even use ginger in place of aspirin! Increasing the amount of spices in your daily routine will help in the reduction of work that your body (including your telomeres) does in protecting itself from disease. I drink Goldyn Glow Golden Mylk “Calm” formula with ashwaghanda every night! Use code “sahara” for 20% off.
The TeloYears Test
The TeloYears Test provides actionable DNA results based on telomere length. Telomere length is scientifically associated with longevity and general health. The results? Your biological age versus your chronological age. While your chronological age (based on your birthday) is stagnant, your biological age can change based on lifestyle changes. TeloYears provides you a detailed guide to change your telomere length if you are unhappy with your results.
The way the test works is you have to prick yourself with their little needle (which I made SUCH a big deal about and procrastinated for WEEKS but actually was SO not painful) and leave a drop of blood on a tab. You ship it over to the labs and within 3 weeks I received my results.
My Teloyears Results
Dun dun dun.. And now the moment of truth. Is my plant-based Ayurvedic diet working? Am I really practicing what I preach? Well the length of my telomeres is about to tell me the truth.
I am 27 and a half years old (in human years..) Yet my BODY thinks I’m only 24! YES! My Teloyears test showed that my DNA thinks that I’m younger than I am and at a young age, every year makes a major difference!
Seeing these results reaffirmed the fact that my plant-based Ayurvedic lifestyle is indeed reducing the onset of aging, allowing me to live a longer and more fruitful life! I share my recipes with you in my latest book, Eat Feel Fresh: A Plant-Based Ayurvedic Cookbook, which is available for pre-order now here.
By pre-ordering the book, you will receive a signed bookplate from me, as well as 10 bonus recipes not available in the book!
I know that this way of living will also slow down your aging so you can live a longer and happier life. The proof is in the telomeres!
Advanced Ancestry Test
Teloyears also offers an advanced ancestry test, which you can use the same blood sample as your telomere test! I just received my book (takes about 4-6 weeks) and found out I’m
- 40% Indian
- 33% Middle Eastern
- 19% Italian (what?!)
- and 8% Central Asian!
I always thought I was just Persian because my parents ware from Iran but turns out most of my Persian ancestry is originally from Northern India! Makes sense why I’m so drawn to Ayurveda/ look so Indian! The ancestors always work through us!
I will do another blog post that dives in deeper to the advanced ancestry test so be sure to subscribe to my email list on iamsahararose.com to receive it!
To learn YOUR telomere age, click here to order you TeloYears kit! You can take the test at home in just five minutes and mail it into the lab with prepaid shipping to get your results back in no time!
Use code sahara10 for $10 off your order for both the TeloYears + the Advanced Ancestry Test!
Use code sahara10 for $10 off either order
Share your results with me on Instagram @iamsahararose!
Disclosure: I took the TeloYears test based on my own research and I was not paid to participate in the test. However, I may receive some form of commission from those who purchase the product.