Longevity Is NOT In Your Genes, It's In Your Choices Of Lifestyle And People

haidut

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Yet another big hit against the genetic explanation. Not only is longevity not due to genes but it can also be largely controlled by whom you associate with.

Estimates of the Heritability of Human Longevity Are Substantially Inflated due to Assortative Mating
The Key to a Long Life Has Little to Do With ‘Good Genes’

"...“The true heritability of human longevity for that cohort is likely no more than seven percent,” says Ruby. Previous estimates for how much genes explain variations in lifespan have ranged from around 15 to 30 percent. So what did Ruby uncover that previous studies had missed? Just how often amorous humans go against the old adage that “opposites attract.” It turns out that through every generation, people are much more likely to select mates with similar lifespans than random chance would predict. The phenomenon, called “assortative mating,” could be based on genetics, or sociocultural traits, or both. For example, you might choose a partner who also has curly hair, and if the curly-haired trait winds up being somehow associated with long lifespans, this would inflate estimates of lifespan heritability passed on to your kids. Same thing for non-genetic traits like wealth, education, and access to good health care. People tend to choose partners in their same income bracket with the same terminal degree, both of which are associated with living longer, healthier lives."

"...But when Ruby looked at in-laws, things started to get weird. Logic suggests you shouldn’t share significant chunks of DNA with your siblings’ spouse—say your brother’s wife or your sister’s husband. But in Ruby’s analysis, people connected through a close relative’s marriage were almost as likely to have similar lifespans as people connected through blood. “I sort of kick myself for being surprised by this,” says Ruby. “Even though no one has shown the impact of assortative mating to such an extent before, it aligns well with how we know human societies are structured.”"

"...Maybe that’s why Ancestry’s chief scientific officer Catherine Ball says the company has no plans to offer a longevity score in any of its DNA testing products any time soon. “Right now a healthy lifespan looks to be more of a function of the choices that we make,” she says. She points to places in the data where lifespans took big hits—for males during World War I, and then in two waves in the latter half of the 20th century as men and then women took up a cigarette habit. “Don’t smoke, and don’t go to war. Those are my two pieces of advice,” she says. "
 
L

lollipop

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This is huge. Surprised no one has commented on it. Reminds me of another thread you started about the people around you influencing your health. Not to mention another stake through the heart of genetics. With all the evidence mounting about epigentics and the environmental conditions the cells live in that we create/influence by choices, mind boggling how pharma still gets away with peddling genetics.
 

akgrrrl

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I am surprised that this topic has so few responses, so here is my "real life" offering. When I left home at age 18, the following year was a revelation in food and activities never experienced in my birth family. I decided to get as far away from their diet and lifestyle as possible (white bread pizza and soda/beer, tvdinners, mac and cheese, meatloaf and spaghetti, cigarettes, fake icecream(ICEMILK) and all the crap like canned mushrooms, imitation vanilla we now know made from secretion the anus gland of the beaver www.fda.gov/allowablecontaminents). In 1976, I found Austin Texas and quickly became a member of the counterculture there, engrossed in new music, whole organic food (I knew John Mackey of Whole Foods fame when he was just a carpenter in a little red house on 10th street) and a plethora of creative minds and, um, counterculture activity in and around students of Univ of Texas. I quickly lost 50 lbs. My family members began to pass from cancer very quickly. My cousin got colon cancer in his 20s. Two uncles went stomach cancer, skin cancer. My dad went brain cancer, lung cancer, skin. Fast forward to today, and I find it difficult to realize I have lived alone without any family nearly all of my adult life, and having outlived the last of them by nearly 20 years. Classical music, clean air-water-land right next to birdstreeswildlife, organic dairy, clean meat and veggies, black coffee with milkandsugar, progest, t3 and t4, and steady strength exercise activities have held me in good stead. I stopped watching tv, the last movie I went to was Waterworld, I don't own a smartphone, and my laptop is hardwired. My home is all wool rugs, wood metal or glass furniture without any glued wood products or offgassing BS. Not a smartmeter, the utilities still have to come to the property to read in person. The main thing I have lacked is close community-- trying to remedy that right now, and competent medical oversight. Self taught self treatment was my only option, so thankful for the internet and communities like RayPeatForum.
 

Herbie

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This is relevent for people who have familys, I know there are many lonely people who dont fit in.

I feel close to Ray, ive listened to all of his audio interviews going on 3 times and there was a point where I believed i would live very long because of Rays attitude towards life. He gives off this relaxed, everything will be alright, dont worry be happy kind of dna.
 

akgrrrl

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This is relevent for people who have familys, I know there are many lonely people who dont fit in.

I feel close to Ray, ive listened to all of his audio interviews going on 3 times and there was a point where I believed i would live very long because of Rays attitude towards life. He gives off this relaxed, everything will be alright, dont worry be happy kind of dna.


Oh yes I quite agree. And well said by the way
 

DaveFoster

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The social aspect seems important in the blue zones too.
That's a really interesting comment. A bad diet can definitely lead to anti-social behavior; take a sick old person for instance who avoids contact with others.
 

Lolinaa

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That's a really interesting comment. A bad diet can definitely lead to anti-social behavior; take a sick old person for instance who avoids contact with others.

Personally I am not sick or old but I really appreciate my alone time. I live alone, and free to do whatever I want. I have few friends and I am very selective of people. Lots of people are stressed, sick or crazy so I prefer to keep away from them.
 

somuch4food

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Personally I am not sick or old but I really appreciate my alone time. I live alone, and free to do whatever I want. I have few friends and I am very selective of people.

I feel like you most of the time, but when I feel the best, I actually want to mingle with people. It still happens too sporadically though.
 
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Might be true, from what I saw being fat is the worst thing you can be.

I haven't read the study but isn't assortative mating influenced by genes? People tend to marry those who are from similar heritage. The other things influencing that (wealth, educational background, ...) are all influenced by genetics.

And I really doubt that curly hair is associated with living longer :D given the longevity of countries around the world.

Oh and antisocial means crime, like murder, cyberbullying, etc. Asocial means social inhibition which is often done when ill, true. But many people stay away from some groups because they select, and they definitely should do that. Not healthy to spend time with people who try to cause you harm.
 
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Lolinaa

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Might be true, from what I saw being fat is the worst thing you can be.

1) I haven't read the study but isn't assortative mating influenced by genes? People tend to marry those who are from similar heritage. The other things influencing that (wealth, educational background, ...) are all influenced by genetics.

2)And I really doubt that curly hair is associated with living longer :D given the longevity of countries around the world.

3)Oh and antisocial means crime, like murder, cyberbullying, etc. Asocial means social inhibition which is often done when ill, true. But many people stay away from some groups because they select, and they definitely should do that. Not healthy to spend time with people who try to cause you harm.

1) I disagree with you above all the last sentence.

2)I know lots of Caribbean people who lived up to 100 years or more, mainly women though. Another one that I was quite close too passed away at 89 because of alzheimer on her last 2 years and she looked great compared to some 60 years old here in Europe.
Stop listening to the media, open your mind. There are a lot of healthy centenerian people that we dont know about. Do you know the whole world?

3) I completely agree with the last sentence as soon as you show hurtful behavior purposely and dont know your limits its bye, whether its towards me or other people who have not done anything to deserve it.
 

DaveFoster

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Personally I am not sick or old but I really appreciate my alone time. I live alone, and free to do whatever I want. I have few friends and I am very selective of people. Lots of people are stressed, sick or crazy so I prefer to keep away from them.
Indeed. Hermitism in the modern world certainly has its benefits.
 

haidut

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I am surprised that this topic has so few responses, so here is my "real life" offering. When I left home at age 18, the following year was a revelation in food and activities never experienced in my birth family. I decided to get as far away from their diet and lifestyle as possible (white bread pizza and soda/beer, tvdinners, mac and cheese, meatloaf and spaghetti, cigarettes, fake icecream(ICEMILK) and all the crap like canned mushrooms, imitation vanilla we now know made from secretion the anus gland of the beaver www.fda.gov/allowablecontaminents). In 1976, I found Austin Texas and quickly became a member of the counterculture there, engrossed in new music, whole organic food (I knew John Mackey of Whole Foods fame when he was just a carpenter in a little red house on 10th street) and a plethora of creative minds and, um, counterculture activity in and around students of Univ of Texas. I quickly lost 50 lbs. My family members began to pass from cancer very quickly. My cousin got colon cancer in his 20s. Two uncles went stomach cancer, skin cancer. My dad went brain cancer, lung cancer, skin. Fast forward to today, and I find it difficult to realize I have lived alone without any family nearly all of my adult life, and having outlived the last of them by nearly 20 years. Classical music, clean air-water-land right next to birdstreeswildlife, organic dairy, clean meat and veggies, black coffee with milkandsugar, progest, t3 and t4, and steady strength exercise activities have held me in good stead. I stopped watching tv, the last movie I went to was Waterworld, I don't own a smartphone, and my laptop is hardwired. My home is all wool rugs, wood metal or glass furniture without any glued wood products or offgassing BS. Not a smartmeter, the utilities still have to come to the property to read in person. The main thing I have lacked is close community-- trying to remedy that right now, and competent medical oversight. Self taught self treatment was my only option, so thankful for the internet and communities like RayPeatForum.

Inspiring story, thanks for sharing! Just out of curiosity - what made you move away from your immediate family? Was it spurred by something or was it simply hitting 18 and going to college?
 

akgrrrl

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Inspiring story, thanks for sharing! Just out of curiosity - what made you move away from your immediate family? Was it spurred by something or was it simply hitting 18 and going to college?

Well, Curious George, that answer is a critical piece of leaving my birth family. It didn't seem relevant to the whole of the topic, and maybe personal to me so I left that out. My Auntie, (Dad's sister) sat me down and revealed a completely different view of my mother (an adult view, which I had been shielded from since birth). Skeletons and plans. She showed me a divorce decree dated 4 months before my birth, mom's prev marriage. Mom had snagged my handsome father at a New Years party for non-comm officers US Navy, where he had enlisted with his older brother as his twin. 7 yrs younger than mother, he was inexperienced, and she was battling the cultural shame of soon to be divorcee. Got preggers, Dad was the most standup guy you ever met and "did the right thing". She made sure they were in an alimony state, planned me cooking and cleaning and house and yard maintenance until I was 23 at least: my auntie and Dad discussed that she kept me from learning anything useful for the world at large (not allowed money or bank acct, not allowed learning to drive, no dating combined with some dubious opinions about men, no movies except winnie-ther-poo et al) I was mad as could be after that little chat. Kinda like when I realized my parental units had lied to me about Santa Claus all those years. In typical teenage fashion, when I understood how much was being witheld from me, I went as far as I could to unlearn and embrace the world as possible. By 23 I was bidding on shippingcontainers of collectibles for my store on the docks of Houston TX alongside big players. I expanded my reach by traveling alone to 28 countries, opened a shop that was a hub for musicians and counterculture icons, and generally lived a wholly amazing life full of risktaking, exploration, travel, and education in custom- made pink cowboy boots and wild head of red hair. I hitch hiked from OK to MA to see my grandmother, made and lost my first Million by 31 yrs, and mastered classical piano and latin by 26. Hell on wheels soon as my auntie and I had that little 'come to Jesus meetin'
 

haidut

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Well, Curious George, that answer is a critical piece of leaving my birth family. It didn't seem relevant to the whole of the topic, and maybe personal to me so I left that out. My Auntie, (Dad's sister) sat me down and revealed a completely different view of my mother (an adult view, which I had been shielded from since birth). Skeletons and plans. She showed me a divorce decree dated 4 months before my birth, mom's prev marriage. Mom had snagged my handsome father at a New Years party for non-comm officers US Navy, where he had enlisted with his older brother as his twin. 7 yrs younger than mother, he was inexperienced, and she was battling the cultural shame of soon to be divorcee. Got preggers, Dad was the most standup guy you ever met and "did the right thing". She made sure they were in an alimony state, planned me cooking and cleaning and house and yard maintenance until I was 23 at least: my auntie and Dad discussed that she kept me from learning anything useful for the world at large (not allowed money or bank acct, not allowed learning to drive, no dating combined with some dubious opinions about men, no movies except winnie-ther-poo et al) I was mad as could be after that little chat. Kinda like when I realized my parental units had lied to me about Santa Claus all those years. In typical teenage fashion, when I understood how much was being witheld from me, I went as far as I could to unlearn and embrace the world as possible. By 23 I was bidding on shippingcontainers of collectibles for my store on the docks of Houston TX alongside big players. I expanded my reach by traveling alone to 28 countries, opened a shop that was a hub for musicians and counterculture icons, and generally lived a wholly amazing life full of risktaking, exploration, travel, and education in custom- made pink cowboy boots and wild head of red hair. I hitch hiked from OK to MA to see my grandmother, made and lost my first Million by 31 yrs, and mastered classical piano and latin by 26. Hell on wheels soon as my auntie and I had that little 'come to Jesus meetin'

Amazing! Glad to hear despite all this hardship you managed to thrive.
 

akgrrrl

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Amazing! Glad to hear despite all this hardship you managed to thrive.

Glad you found something of interest there. And, how very interesting that you perceive those sets of circumstance as hardship...the leaving at 18...family members passing in illness...being so alone and responsible for myself for the next 3 decades. I don't really remember feeling like it was a hardship. For me, hardships came later in the GreatWhiteNorth in the form of traumatic accident and subsequent reconstructive surgeries, extreme isolation, medical incompetence/intentional neglect, and daunting weather, lifestyle, and conditions of work. Hoo boy, I do have a bucketload of good stories after 30 yrs though
 
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