Well, PSYCH, it still can be.
BUT what if you drink some classy and sophisticated red wine? You’ll look like these very fine individuals.
And even better, researchers at Harvard Medical School say it’s not too bad. In fact, it may help us fight against anti-aging. Keep Calm and Drink On? (But actually…)*
Or we can simply eat the skin of grapes, some peanuts, and delicious berries. What do these all have in common? They all taste pretty damn delicious and possess a compound called resveratrol, a magical compound that has been found to fight against diseases of aging. It is a literal switch that turns on a protein that increases the longevity in animals, like us!
This isn’t magic – it’s science. According to Harvard Medical School, the science of aging has focused on sirtuins, genes which are thought to prevent or inhibit diseases that are related to us getting wrinkly (but wiser, obviously). Resveratrol increases the activity of SIRT1, a sirtuin. By doing so, it’s fueling our mitochondria, the major power house of our cells. They are responsible, as you’ve probably learned sometime in your high school career, for creating ATP, the energy currency our body is constantly using. As we age, these lil’ mitochondria start to lose a bit of their gusto. That’s pretty bad; if they are getting weaker, we’re not creating enough energy, the basis of much of what we do, from the molecular level to the macroscopic. So, by giving our mitochondria an extended life, we are getting an extended life. In fact, this drug resveratrol has extended the lifespans of mice, nematode worms, flies, and bees. Humans next!
What’s in the future? Researchers are looking to engineer something better than resveratrol, something more precise and efficient in what resveratrol magically does.
Do you think this type of research is necessary? In our sustainability deliberation, we discussed the issue of overpopulation. Is living longer necessary? Won’t our resources run out and our earth suffer? Do we have a moral obligation to be a little less selfish and know when to go when the time is right? And moreover, will we want to live longer once we are physically capable? Life is beautiful because it is transient, a blink of an eye in the grand scheme of things. Knowing we are so fragile lets us see the beauty around us.
Not that I don’t think this research is fascinating and has great applications, but it’s an issue I think is worth pondering over.
*The author of this blog does not promote nor encourage drinking in any way. She just thinks she’s witty and shit.