27 Aging Contributors

Each person experiences age-related physical changes based on many factors:  biological factors, such as molecular and cellular changes, and oxidative damage are called primary aging, while aging that occurs due to controllable factors, such as an unhealthy lifestyle including lack of physical exercise and poor diet, is called secondary aging (Busse, 1969).  These factors are shown in Image 5.27.1.

Concept map shows contributors of aging include: natural selection, tissue damage, decline or loss of cellular function, drop in number of cells, oxidative damage, DNA modification, and unhealthy lifestyle.
Image 5.27.1: Contributors to Aging

Getting out of shape is not an inevitable part of aging; it is probably due to the fact that middle adults become less physically active and have experienced greater stress. Smoking tobacco, drinking alcohol, poor diet, stress, physical inactivity, and chronic disease such as diabetes or arthritis reduce overall health. However, there are things can be done to combat many of these changes by adopting healthier lifestyles.

Text is taken directly from  Lally & Valentine-French (2017).  Figure adapted by O’Neil, McCarthy, & Williams.

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