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Certain cells may hold key to preventing age-related disorders

Baby boomers often face the prospect of various age-related disorders and disabilities, but researchers at the Mayo Clinic believe they have found one way to help prevent or delay the onset of age-related conditions. Published in the journal Nature, the study suggests that eliminating certain cells can reduce the effects of aging, SeniorJournal.com reports.

The study builds on previous research which found that human cells can only divide a limited number of times before they stop. At that point, the so-called senescent cells can cause a number of problems including damaging adjacent cells and making it easier for cancer to spread. Now that scientists have found that the stagnant cells contribute to aging, they believe there could be ways to prevent it.

"Therapeutic interventions to get rid of senescent cells or block their effects may represent an avenue to make us feel more vital, healthier, and allow us to stay independent for a much longer time," author Jan van Deursen told the website.

Specifically, the research team found that eliminating the cells throughout your life could prevent conditions such as cataracts, muscle loss and weakness. While such treatment may be years away from becoming commonplace, there are other ways that you can prevent some conditions simply through lifestyle changes.

According to the American Optometric Association, age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is leading cause of vision loss in adults over 50, but there are certain ways you may be able to address the issue before it happens. Experts say that as little as 500 milligrams a day of vitamin C has proven to slow the progression of AMD, with both zinc and vitamin E showing positive benefits as well.

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