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Aging and Longevity News - 2012


Guinness Says Japan’s Jiroemon Kimura is Oldest Man Who Ever Lived at 115 Years, 253 Days

The oldest person ever to have lived is Jeanne Calment (France) who lived to 122 years and 164 days

Dec. 28, 2012 - Guinness World Records announced yesterday that Jiroemon Kiumua of Japan is now the Oldest Man Ever – as well as the Oldest Living Man and the Oldest Living Person – at the age of 115 years, 253 days. Read more...

Controlling BubR1 Regulator Provides Opportunity to Extend Healthy Life Span: Mayo Clinic Study

Only 33% of mice with high levels of BubR1 developed lung and skin tumors compared to 100% of the control group

Dec. 17, 2012 - The aging process is characterized by high rates of whole-chromosome losses and gains in various organs, including heart, muscle, kidney and eye, according to new work by Mayo Clinic researchers. Reducing these rates slows age-related tissue deterioration and promotes a healthier life span, they found in a study of mouse models. Read more...

Exercise & Fitness for Senior Citizens

Mental Abilities in Older People Retained and Even Improved by Aerobic Exercise

Task switching, selective attention, working memory and more benefit from aerobic exercise

Dec. 13, 2012 – New research has found that older people can retain and even improve certain mental abilities through aerobic exercise, including mental tasks associated with driving. Particular aspects of cognitive function such as task switching, selective attention and working memory among others, all appear to benefit from aerobic exercise. Read more...

Aging News & Information

Unique Joint Replacement Promo Features Olympic Coach, Others Writing Letters to Younger Selves

Legendary Coach Mike Krzyzewski teams with author Ellyn Spragins to release "Had I Known Then," A collection of letters from former joint pain sufferers to their younger selves

Dec. 7, 2012 – In a unique way to encourage those with joint pain to consider joint replacement, an orthopedics company has published an online booklet that features a U.S. Olympics coach and several others who regret not having their painful joints replaced earlier. Senior citizens and baby boomers, the most likely to have debilitating osteoarthritis, often delay hip or knee replacement surgery for years due to fear, misinformation or a lack of awareness about treatment options. Read more, see video...

Assumption that Senior Citizens Do Not Sleep Well Appears to be Myth

Most seniors have sleep habits very similar to those of young adults, study finds

Nov. 19, 2012 – Senior citizens often complain of sleeping difficulties. So much so that most assume there is a connection between old age and sleeping problems. It is not so, says a new study. Most people aged 65 and older report sleeping at least 7.5 hours per night, and between the hours of 11 p.m. and 7:30 a.m. as they should. Read more...

Inpatient Sleeping Drug Quadrupled Fall Risk; May Boost Risk of Unexpected Sex?

Advancing age causes fall risk to rise rapidly but this drug increases risk more than aging

Nov. 19, 2012 - A drug commonly prescribed to help patients sleep in hospitals has been associated with an increased risk of falls, according to a study published in the Journal of Hospital Medicine. The Food and Drug Administration warns, too, you may even have unplanned sex after taking zolpidem (see box below). Read more...

Elderly Go From Capable Consumer to ‘Old Person’ with Help of Boomer Children

Almost every stereotype we associate with being elderly is something negative, from being ‘crotchety’ and unwilling to change to being forgetful

Nov. 12, 2012 -Many baby boomers, just a short time away from becoming senior citizens, really want to improve the way people view aging. Too often, however, they reinforce negative stereotypes of old age when interacting with their own parents, coloring the way those seniors experience their twilight years. Read more...

If You Look Old, You May Be: Signs of Aging Can Predict Your Heart Disease Risk

Receding hairline, baldness, earlobe crease, yellow fatty deposits on the eyelids - signs of aging associated with increased risk of heart disease - see link to video in story

Nov. 8, 2012 - If you look old, your heart may feel old. In a new study, those who had three to four aging signs — receding hairline at the temples, baldness at the head’s crown, earlobe crease, or yellow fatty deposits around the eyelid (xanthelasmata) — had a 57 percent increased risk for heart attack and a 39 percent increased risk for heart disease . Read more, see video...

No Surprise Senior Citizens Most Likely to Be Affiliated with Religion: Pew Research

Pew Research Center finds Americans trending away from organized religion – 1 in 5 have no religious affiliation

Oct. 12, 2012 – Seldom do you see a poll that does not find senior citizens at one extreme or the other. This time it is a measurement of Americans who do not identify with any religion. It is a growing trend – to be religiously unaffiliated – according to Pew Research Center. But, seniors are not joining in – they are far less likely to be “unaffiliated” than any other age group. Read more...

Features for Senior Citizens

New Drug Treatment May Help Elderly with Wet AMD Keep Driving Longer

Small, limited Hopkins study used ranibizumab but did not directly assess driving safety or skills

Oct. 2, 2012 - Results of a new study indicate that monthly injections of ranibizumab (Lucentis) can improve eye chart test results required for a driver's license, build driver confidence and keep the elderly with the wet form of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) driving longer. Read more...

Senior Citizen Politics

Entitlement Program Changes, More Saving, Longer Work Life Likely as Population Ages

National Research Council looks at demands of aging nation - ‘Although 65 has conventionally been considered a normal retirement age, it is an increasingly obsolete threshold for defining old age and for setting benefits for the elderly’

Sept. 26, 2012 - The unprecedented demographic shift in which people over age 65 make up an increasingly large percentage of the U.S. population is not a temporary phenomenon associated with the aging of the baby boom generation, but a pervasive trend that is here to stay, says a report from the National Research Council. This increasing domination will have broad economic consequences for the country, particularly for federal programs that support the elderly, and its long-term effects on all generations will be mediated by how - and how quickly - the nation responds. Read more...

Health & Medicine for Senior Citizens

Sleep Apnea Linked with Increased Risk of Cancer Death, Growing Links to Cancers

Several new studies find links between this chronic breathing problem during sleep and cancer – sleep apnea risk highest in older people

Sept. 4, 2012 – Three new studies indicate a link between sleep apnea, a common disorder in which you have one or more pauses in breathing or shallow breaths while you sleep, and cancer. The risk of this condition increases with age. A key study that finds an association between sleep apnea and increased cancer deaths will be presented today. Read more...

Senior Citizen Longevity & Statistics

Starving Yourself to Death Does Not Lead to Longer Life, But Maybe Some Benefits

New NIA study of monkeys shoots down long-held theory that severe calorie restriction increasess longevity

Aug. 31, 2012 – An old joke among seniors has been, “If you want to live a long life, you have to starve yourself to death.” It was based on a long-held theory that severe diet restriction extended life – most of this testing had been on rodents. That theory just got deflated by a new study from scientists at the National Institute on Aging who say this drastic diet does not add years to your life. Read more...


Life is Good for Most Seniors, Finds Poll of Americans Sixty-Plus

Aug. 20, 2012 – Older Americans are enjoying their golden years, in stark contrast with a more somber national mood. Whether they move to "active adult" communities... or grow old in the homes where they raised their children, they say they are pretty darn content. USA TODAY partnered with UnitedHealthcare and the National Council on Aging to gauge the attitudes of 2,250 Americans age 60 and above. Read more at USA  TODAY… and more at NCOA


Why are Elderly Duped? Researchers Claim Brains Damaged or Deteriorated

They report they’ve pinpointed the precise location in the human brain where problem for seniors is causes

By Richard C. Lewis, University of Iowa

Aug. 16, 2012 - Everyone knows the adage: “If something sounds too good to be true, then it probably is.” So, why, then, do some people fall for scams and why are older folks especially prone to being duped? Read more...

Health & Medicine for Senior Citizens

Senior Citizens, Boomers Destined for Cataracts if They Live Long Enough

Cataracts may cause colors to appear faded or yellowish, vision to be blurred, cloudy. See video...

Professionals urged seniors to take action during Cataract Awareness Month - New study finds risk of hip fractures significantly reduced in Medicare patients who had cataract surgery

Aug. 14, 2012 - Over half of all Americans will develop cataracts by the age of 70 and those who do not surely will if they live long enough. But poor vision doesn't have to be an inevitable fact of aging, say medical professionals promoting Cataract Awareness Month in August. Read more, see video...

Senior Medicare Patients Lower Risk of Hip Fracture with Cataract Surgery

Cataracts most common cause of fractures due to visual impairment; cataracts cause 49% of neck fractures related to poor vision - Video features cataract surgery on 95-year-old retired professor, Melvin Seeman

July 31, 2012 - Medicare patients 65 years and older - senior citizens - who underwent cataract surgery had a lower odds of hip fracture one year after the procedure, when compared with patients with cataract who did not have cataract surgery, according to a study in the August issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA). Read more, see video...

Scientists Find Genetic Clues to Why Immune System Gets Weaker with Age

Understanding how to maintain strong, healthy immune systems could help many live longer, healthier lives

July 11, 2012 – A team of U.S. scientists say they have discovered important insights that explain why our ability to ward off infection declines with age. They identified genes responsible for this decline by examining fruit flies – a model organism often used to study human biology – at different stages of their lives. Read more...

Senior Citizen Longevity & Statistics

Senior Citizens to Exceed Children in Most of World and U.S. by 2050

Census Bureau estimates show seniors in U.S. increasing by 104% from 2012 to 2050

June 28, 2012 - The world's inhabitants in 2012 are an older mix of people than was the case a decade ago, driven by declining fertility and increasing life expectancy. According to new U.S. Census Bureau population projections, by midcentury most world regions, and the United States, will resemble Europe, which in 2005 became the first major world region where the population 65 and older outnumbered those younger than 15. Read more...

U.S. Losing Ground in Longevity Race; Poor Live Five Years Less Than Affluent

Longevity flattening out in U.S. despite heavy healthcare spending; falling behind others due to shorter lifespan for poorest citizens

By Amy Hodges, Rice University

June 21, 2012 - Despite modest gains in lifespan over the past century, the United States still trails many of the world’s countries when it comes to life expectancy, and its poorest citizens live approximately five years less than more affluent persons, according to a new study from Rice University and the University Colorado at Boulder. Read more...

Senior Citizen Longevity & Statistics

Those Long Telomeres Inherited from an Older Father Give You Longevity

Short telomeres a cause of ill health that occurs with aging — long telomeres promote slower aging

June 13, 2012 - Senior citizens – most of them, anyway - are fond of trying to find reasons they are going to live longer. Well, here is a new one for you to contemplate. Researchers say that if your father conceived you late in life, you probably inherited some life-extending benefits – long telomeres. Read more...

Senior Citizen Longevity & Statistics

Centenarians Match Boomers in Daily Exercise; Favorites are Walking, Muscle Building

100 year olds eat and sleep better than baby boomers; consider social connections a key to quality life

June 12, 2012 - Most centenarians say they exercise almost every day. Walking is their favorite physical activity but exercises to build muscle is almost as popular among those 100 years old and older, reports the UnitedHealthcare’s seventh annual 100@100 survey. This year baby boomers were also surveyed for comparison and there were surprises. Read more, link to video interview...

Eating Disorders, Weight Concerns are Common in Older Women, Even Elderly

Study focused on women over 50 but problems also found in women over 75: weight or shape negatively impact their life

June 10, 2012 - Eating disorders are commonly seen as an issue faced by teenagers and young women, but a new study reveals that age is no barrier to disordered eating. In women aged 50 and over, 3.5% report binge eating, nearly 8% report purging, and more than 70% are trying to lose weight. Read more...

Senior Citizen Longevity & Statistics

Survey Finds 16% of Americans - Mostly Women - Providing Eldercare in 2011

Among findings by Bureau of Labor – oldest spend most time on leisure or sports and religion; least on education

July 9, 2012 - In 2011, 16 percent of the U.S. civilian non-institutional population age 15 and over were eldercare providers, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports. This and other information about eldercare providers and the time they spent providing care were collected for the first time in the 2011 American Time Use Survey (ATUS). Read more...

Naked Mole Rat May Hold Secret to Long Life: Lives 10 Times Longer Than Others

Unusually high levels of NRG-1 protein may explain naked rat's 30-year life span - see video about naked mole rat below story

July 2, 2012 - Compared to the average three year life span of a common rat, the 10 to 30 year life of the naked mole rat, a subterranean rodent native to East Africa, is impressive. Now, researchers in Israel and the United States are working to uncover the secret to the small mammal's long - and active - lifespan. Read more, see video...

Older Americans Optimistic About Aging Finds Study for New Aging Site

New initiative, Get Old, to amplify the aging dialogue across generations

June 20, 2012 – Interesting new research on how older Americans feel about aging was released this week as part of the introduction of a new initiative named, “Get Old.” The drug company Pfizer created Get Old, a multi-year initiative supported by nearly a dozen advocacy organizations, to enhance communications about aging in America. Read more...

The Answer Not Always on the ‘Tip of the Tongue’ for Most Senior Citizens

Majority report this problem but older adults sometimes outperform young adults at things like remembering appointments

June 15, 2012 - Has your memory failed you today, such as struggling to recall a word that's "on the tip of your tongue?" If so, you're not alone. New University of Michigan research indicates that "tip-of-the-tongue" errors happen often to adults ages 65-92. In a study of 105 healthy, highly-educated older adults, 61 percent reported this memory mishap. Read more...

Senior Citizen Longevity & Statistics

Those Long Telomeres Inherited from an Older Father Give You Longevity

Short telomeres a cause of ill health that occurs with aging — long telomeres promote slower aging

June 13, 2012 - Senior citizens – most of them, anyway - are fond of trying to find reasons they are going to live longer. Well, here is a new one for you to contemplate. Researchers say that if your father conceived you late in life, you probably inherited some life-extending benefits – long telomeres. Read more...

Aging News & Information

Older People Sleeping Less Than Six Hours See Stroke Risk Increase

Second study finds some with sleep problems are just afraid of the dark; both studies presented today at SLEEP 2012

June 11, 2012 – Older people who regularly sleep less than six hours a night significantly increase their risk of stroke symptoms, according to new research. The three-year study involved 5,666 adults of normal weight with a low risk of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). Read more...

Cutting Calories Adds Years to Life by Helping Heart Adapt to Challenges

People of any age who practice calorie restriction  have hearts that look and function like they are years younger

By Jim Dryden

June 6, 2012 - People who restrict their caloric intake in an effort to live longer have hearts that function more like those in people who are 20 years younger. Read more...

Old People Smell Different But Not as Bad as Younger People, Study Finds

We can determine a person’s age by how they smell and the elderly smell forms the base

May 31, 2012 - Old people smell different but, contrary to popular belief, the so-called 'old-person smell' is less intense and less unpleasant than body odors of middle-aged and young individuals, according to a study published yesterday in the open access journal PLoS Read more...

Senior Citizen Longevity & Statistics

Increasing Numbers of U.S. Seniors Face Threat of Hunger Finds 10-Year Study

Majority of older Americans facing hunger have incomes above the poverty line and are white

May 14, 2012 – The threat of hunger for U.S. seniors increased by 78 percent from 2001 to 2010 and it is still on the increase, finds a new study. In 2010, the last year in the research, 14.8 percent of seniors – one in seven – faced the threat of hunger. This translates into 8.3 million older Americans. Read more...

Decision for Senior Citizen to Stop Driving Impacts Mental State, Well-Being

‘Aging is a process where so many things are lost. Part of what seniors try to hold onto is their independence.’

May 1, 2012 - If a senior citizen’s driving raises concerns, approach the matter compassionately to preserve the person’s dignity and keep them and others safe, recommends a geriatric specialist with the Harris County (Tx) Hospital District. The decision to end driving for a senior can significantly impact an individual’s quality of life, affecting the person’s mental state and overall well-being. Read more...

Older Adults Maintain Youthful Brains by Staying Mentally, Socially Stimulated

Engagement is the secret to a brain that appears younger than its years

April 28, 2012 - Aging may seem unavoidable, but that's not necessarily so when it comes to the brain. It is what you do in old age that matters most when it comes to maintaining a youthful brain, now what you did earlier in life, according to new research. Read more...

Falls Too Often Fatal for Senior Citizens; Tips Offered to Prevent Falls

Falling is the leading cause of injury-related deaths among older Americans.

April 27, 2012 - For senior citizens - those 65 and older - falling can too often be fatal. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that falls are the leading cause of injury-related deaths among this age group, and some 40 percent of seniors fall at least once each year. Read more...

Senior Citizen Longevity & Statistics

Girls Born in 2009 Face Shorter Lives Than Their Mothers, Blacks Increase Longevity Most

New study of longevity looks at U.S. counties, geographic influence; finds wide variance in how long people will live in certain counties

April 20, 2012 - Nationwide, women’s lifespans are improving at a much slower pace than men, and in hundreds of counties women are living shorter lives today than they did two decades ago, according to new county-by-county estimates of life expectancy released yesterday by the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME). Read more...

Medicare News

Say What? Most Insurance Covers Little of the Cost of Hearing Aids

Medicare generally doesn't pay anything, though hearing loss is a common concern among senior citizens - Medicare does cover surgery to install a cochlear implant

By Michelle Andrews, Kaiser Health News

April 10, 2012 - Only a quarter of the 35 million U.S. adults who could benefit from hearing aids actually get them, and one of the main reasons is money. A hearing aid typically costs a few thousand dollars, sometimes much more, and most insurance plans don’t cover that. Medicare generally doesn't pay anything, though hearing loss is a common concern among its beneficiaries. Faced with a hefty expense, many people decide that hearing what’s going on around them is a luxury they can’t afford. Read more...

Senior Citizen Longevity & Statistics

Life Expectancy May Be Driving All of Your Major Decisions

When you marry, when you divorce, how long you stay in school could be motivated by how long you expect to live

April 9, 2012 - Major decisions in life, such as marriage, divorce, abortion, having a child and seeking a university education, may be subconsciously influenced by how long people believe they will live, according to a Queen’s University study. Read more...

Alzheimer's, Dementia & Mental Health

Age-Related Memory Loss Restored in Fruit Flies by Neuron Stimulation 

Intermediate-term memory is lost due to age-related impairment of the function of certain neurons; Scripps scientists found that stimulating these neurons can reverse these memory defects

April 3, 2012 – Researchers at the Jupiter, Florida campus of The Scripps Research Institute have discovered that the loss of memory that comes with aging is not necessarily a permanent thing. They have demonstrated the ability to restore those evaporated memories by stimulating key neurons – at least in fruit flies. Read more, animation on brain basics...

Senior Citizen Longevity & Statistics

Census Bureau Opens Website for Release of 1940 Census Data

1940 Census Release Is 'Super Bowl For Genealogists' says NPR’s ‘All Things Considered’

Audio for this story from All Things Considered will be available at approx. 7:00 p.m. ET, March 30, 2012

Video below about 1940 Census

By NPR Staff

March 30, 2012 - A sort of national treasure is scheduled to be revealed Monday: In April 1940, 120,000 census takers spread out across America to take an inventory of its residents. Now that the legally mandated 72 years have passed, we finally get to see the names, addresses, jobs and salaries of all the people who were counted. Read more, watch video...

Health & Medicine for Senior Citizens

Antioxidants Used as Anti-Aging Treatment May Also Kill Cancer Cells; Be Better Than Chemo

Three antioxidants - resveratrol, genistein and baicalein - are used or studied as anti-aging treatments and to treat heart disease, type 2 diabetes, osteopenia and osteoporosis and chronic hepatitis; resveratrol found in red wine is in 44 clinical trials as potential treatment for even Alzheimer’s disease

March 20, 2012 - Antioxidants have long been thought to have anti-aging properties, primarily by protecting a person's genetic material from damaging chemicals. The story, however, now appears to be much more complicated. Read more

Senior Citizen Longevity & Statistics

Marriage a Powerful Drug for Surviving Heart Surgery, But Supply Dwindling

Strong protective effect of marriage continues for up to five years following coronary artery bypass surgery; boomers should worry

March 6, 2012 – Prior research has shown married people tend to live longer. A new study, however, focused on just the survival rate after heart surgery, and it found married adults – men and women - are three times more likely to survive the three months following the surgery. Read more..

Stress in Older Adults Who Sleep Poorly May Lead to Poor Health, Death Risk

Stress led to significantly larger increases of inflammation marker associated with poor health and death

March 1, 2012 - Older adults who sleep poorly have an altered immune system response to stress that may increase risk for mental and physical health problems, according to a study led by a University of Rochester Medical Center researcher. Read more...

Women Expecting Stressful Events See Cellular Aging Accelerate

Short telomeres in cellular aging associated with risk for chronic diseases - see second report below on several UCSF studies of stress damage on telomeres and repair by exercise

Feb. 27, 2012 - The ability to anticipate future events allows us to plan and exert control over our lives, but it may also contribute to stress-related increased risk for the diseases of aging, according to a study by UCSF researchers. Read more...

Nursing Home Dementia Patients Three Times as Likely to Fall if on Antidepressants

Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) appear to cause risk to rise with higher doses

Jan. 19, 2012 - Nursing home residents with dementia who use average doses of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) are three times more likely to have an injurious fall than similar people who don’t use these drugs. Read more...

Age 45 is the New 60, At Least Where It Concerns the Beginning of Mental Decline

New study disrupts assumption that cognitive decline begins about age 60, finds it is more like age 45 to 49

Jan. 9, 2012 - Baby boomers and younger adults in their 40s may have been waiting until they hit their 60s to start worrying about how to prevent mental decline. But, new research says that may be a little late. Their research shows cognitive decline beginning about age 45 and continuing with age. Read more...

Senior Citizens are Happier Than Younger Adults but Why is Not Clear

Psychologist call for more rigorous research to understand why elderly Americans are so happy

Jan. 9, 2012 - Older people tend to be happier. But why? Two psychologist explore the theories of what makes senior citizens so happy and conclude that existing research does not provide an adequate answer. In a new article in Perspectives on Psychological Science they call for more rigorous research. Read more...

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