Updated: Aug 27, 2022
According to World Health Organization, ageing is a course of biological reality which starts at conception and ends with death. It has its own dynamics, much beyond the human control. However, this process of ageing is also subject to the perceptions by which each society makes sense of old age. In most of the developed countries, the age of 60 is considered equivalent to retirement age and it is said to be the beginning of old age.
Premature aging is when the signs of aging occur earlier than is standard. More scientifically, premature aging happens when a person's biological age is older than their chronological age(as per date of birth). Premature ageing also means you are able to see the signs of ageing when you are still young(as per DOB) and you see signs earlier than expected.
Premature ageing is different to different persons, as we are uniquely different from one another (in terms of personality, everything) and so are our bodies.
Here are the prominent signs of premature ageing if you notice them before turning 35:
1. Sun spots
Most Sunspots (also known as “liver spots” though they have nothing to do with your liver) fade somewhat over time. They typically do not disappear completely because the skin has been permanently damaged by the sun. Sunspots are flat areas of discolored skin that can be a tan or varying shades of brown.
They appear on any part of your body that gets exposure from the sun, such as your face, shoulders, back, and the backs of your hands or forearms. The appearance of sunspots typically starts to occur around the age of 40, though some people may develop them earlier or later in life, depending on the amount of sun exposure they’ve had. They are non-cancerous and don’t pose any risk to your health. However, they indicate premature aging.
2. Gaunt hands
Over time, the top layers of your skin become thinner and contain fewer structuring proteins, such as collagen so on, that give your skin its shape and maintains its girth.
Your hands may start to appear more veiny, thin, and prone to wrinkles as a result.
There’s no objective metric for when hands start looking older, but most people tend to notice it during their late 30s and early 40s.
Many people develop patchy discoloration on their chest or breasts as they get older.
Similar to sunspots, these areas of differing pigment can be caused by damage to your skin cells from sun exposure.
This kind of hyper-pigmentation isn’t always connected to aging. It can be the result of eczema or other skin conditions that damage the melanin cells in your skin.
There isn’t an average age of when this skin condition typically appears.
4. Dry or itchy skin
Dry or itchy skin (sclerosis cutis) may happen more frequently over time, as you get older. That’s because thinning skin is more susceptible to dehydration.
You may notice your skin becoming drier and more prone to flaking as you near your 40s and in mid 30s.
As you enter your mid 30s, your skin slows down the production of collagen, a protein that gives your skin its shape. Collagen is what helps your skin bounce back and stay plump.
With less collagen in the skin, it’s easier for visible wrinkles and sagging to occur. You might notice this happening more in areas in and around the frequently used muscles, like the forehead, or where you’re more exposed to the sun.
The age when people first notice wrinkles varies, with little standard for when it’s “premature.”
And sometimes aging may not even be responsible. It could simply be dirt or dehydration.
6. Hair loss
Hair loss happens as the stem cells that trigger new hair growth in your hair follicles die off.
Hormone changes, environmental factors, genetics, and your diet all play a role in how quickly this happens. This can also happen due to scalp damage.
Up to 40 percent of women over age 70 experience hair loss. Men experience it earlier, with 50 percent seeing hair loss after the age 50.
What's the root cause of aging & premature aging?
We see n no of articles which attribute premature aging to smoking, sun exposure and tanning, genes, sleep habits, diet, alcohol, caffeine intake, environment, stress, so on. But all these causes 'INFLAMMATION' which is the root of premature ageing or any sort of disorders related to body and mind, which are the two faces of same called SPIRIT.
Before we move on we need to understand, there's difference between health & fitness, although they are used analogously. Fitness basically indicates being able to do any physical or mental activity. Fitness indicates capability, however health is a comprehensive term. One should understand that health includes physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health. Health basically indicates 'being free from illness or injuries.'
What Is INFLAMMATION?
INFLAMMATION is a localized physical condition in which part of the body becomes reddened, swollen, hot, and often painful, especially as a reaction to injury or infection.
Inflammation is also the process by which your body's white blood cells and the things they make protect you from infection from outside invaders, such as bacteria and viruses.
What causes INFLAMMATION?
We narrate some examples where we increase inflammation:
1. It's a cold day in winter, despite this you eat ice cream, then you get cold, along with sneezing and mild fever, you take cold tablets along with a paracetamol. This results in inflammation.
2. You are a fitness freak, every day you work out in Gym. But on a weekend, you drink 2 bottles of bear or drink a full bottle Wine. This results in inflammation.
3. You eat excessively spicy food(heat), you become acidic, you take eno or omiprasol, this results in inflammation.
When inflammation happens, chemicals from your body's white blood cells enter your blood or tissues to protect your body from invaders(to protect you from infection.) This raises the blood flow to the area of injury or infection. It can cause redness and warmth. Some of the chemicals cause fluid to leak into your tissues, resulting in swelling. This protective process may trigger nerves and cause pain.
Higher numbers of white blood cells and the things they make inside your joints cause irritation, swelling of the joint lining, and loss of cartilage (cushions at the end of bones) over time.
INFLAMMATION can be both MILD & CHRONIC:
The above explanations are related to chronic inflammation, which is a result of continued and accumulated inflammation to certain parts of your body.
Ayurveda wonderfully explains this! In Ayurvedic medicine: one of the three humors (or doshas) in the body, made up of the elements air and ether and responsible for movement and activity, this is referred to as 'Vatha'. Other doshas are 'Pittha'(heat) and 'Kafa'(sputum). All of these are mutually dependent on one another.
Under normal healthy body, all these 3 factors should be balanced. Any imbalance in any of these doshas will result in inflammation either mild or chronic. Continued mild inflammation leads to chronic inflammation which results in gastritis, cold, or any ailments, this results in premature aging and ultimately it affects our life span.
People who lived for longer time were found to be having less health issues. They didn't had diabetes, heart diseases for quite a long time. Maybe some of them might have developed at their last years.
How to tackle INFLAMMATION holistically?
युक्ताहारविहारस्य युक्तचेष्टस्य कर्मसु | युक्तस्वप्नावबोधस्य योगो भवति दु:खहा || 17||
yuktāhāra-vihārasya yukta-cheṣhṭasya karmasu yukta-svapnāvabodhasya yogo bhavati duḥkha-hā
yukta—moderate; āhāra—eating; vihārasya—recreation; yukta cheṣhṭasya karmasu—balanced in work; yukta—regulated; svapna-avabodhasya—sleep and wakefulness; yogaḥ—Yog; bhavati—becomes; duḥkha-hā—the slayer of sorrows
BG 6.17: But those who are temperate(moderate) in eating and recreation, balanced in work, and regulated in sleep, can mitigate all sorrows by practicing Yoga.
Yoga is the union of the soul with God. The opposite of Yoga is Bhoga, which means engagement in sensual pleasures. Indulgence in Bhoga violates the natural laws of the body, and results in Roga (disease). As stated in the previous verse, if the body becomes diseased, it impedes the practice of Yoga. Thus in this verse, Sri Krishna states that by being temperate in bodily activities and practicing Yoga, we can become free from the sorrows of the body and mind.
As we learn the art & science of balancing or moderation in everything we do, we become healthy & fit, this indeed will drastically reduce inflammation.
All the 3 factors mentioned before in Ayurveda, will be balanced if we regulate our eating, sleeping, work, recreation & sexual activities, so on.
We can do this by following the principles of Astanga Yoga which are given in this article: https://www.getinspiredspiritually.com/post/significance-of-meditation-and-astanga-yoga Please read through this for more information.
It's because of strict adherence to Astanga Yogic principles that Himalayan Yogis we able to live for an average of 125 years. They practice celibacy, and were completely detached from the worldly desires.