When it comes to your body, there may be a number of things that you would want to change, but, not all of these things are yours to control. You will have heard of the importance of exercise, eating well and cutting out the smoking to help reduce the impact of aging, but when it comes to certain areas, this may not help.
While there are many areas that will start to travel downwards as you get older, the breasts are often the first to make the journey. Although this is the thing that most women will be dreading, new research shows that it may not be yours to control.
Research at the University of California has developed a revolutionary new way to measure how quickly tissue in the human body. They focused on certain naturally occurring chemicals such as methylation, to try and create a biological ‘clock’ that can help them.
They took 8,000 samples and checked the levels of methylation as well as 353 markers, to see which areas of the body aged the quickest.
The results of this experiment were mostly as expected, most of the tissue tested aged at a similar rate to the person’s actual age. However, there were certain areas that showed an increase in age compared to the body’s actual age.
One of the areas in question, was breast tissue, this was shown to age two or three years more than the rest of the body. If the woman suffered from breast cancer, then the tissue around the tumour was an average or 12 years older than the rest of the body.
The researchers think that this is why age is such a factor in the risk of cancers especially breast cancer. This is the most intriguing discovery that they found.
Hope for the future
This new research does have hopes for the future. Part of the research also looked in to the use of stem cells as a way to reset this biological ‘clock’. It is thought that adult cells can be reprogrammed to become pluripotent stem cells, These cells continue to divide indefinitely, and may reset this body clock to zero.
This is of course very early days in terms of research, and more is to be done on the use of these cells on the ageing process and if the same occurs in mice. But, if it has the results that are expected, it will mean that they are a step closer to understanding the ageing process and maybe a little closer to reversing it.
All this new research may not help those of you who are already suffering from the effects of gravity, but it shows that women are not just imagining this phenomenon. So the next time that someone starts to complain that they are getting saggy breasts, you can comfort them with the fact that it isn’t any fault of theirs.