Healthy Aging

Linky Sunday: Seniors on gun control, videogames as art, and… a cure for aging?

It’s Linky Sunday: Put on the coffee and prepare your cursor :)

With the Newtown school shootings dominating the news, the blogosphere has focused on the pros and cons of gun control; “elder blogs” are no exception. Among them is the blog Helen and Margaret, written by Helen Philpot and her friend of 60 years Margaret Schmechtman. Helen’s post on Friday, “Guns Don’t Kill People, They Just Make it Easier to Kill People,” has sparked an appropriately passionate conversation in the blog’s comments. Click here to read and add to the discussion – or discuss in the comments at the end of this page.

Should the US embark on an “aspirin a day” campaign for aging Americans? Based on all the evidence of this “2,000-year-old wonderdrug,” a professor of medicine and engineering at USC and the author of “The End of Illness” says yes. Click here to read his New York Times op-ed.

Videogames are now art. In the past month, MoMA has announced a new videogame collection, with a show opening in the spring, and the Mueum of the Moving Image in Queens has just opened “Spacewar,” a look at the first 50 years of videogames.  And that’s not all. Paper Magazine takes a quick look at 2012 – “the year videogames became accepted as art?” Click here to read more.

Could we live to be 300? Researchers in Spain have proven that it is possible to extend the life of a mouse by up to 24 percent through telomerase gene therapy. Click here to read the news. The Washington Post interviewed Nobel prize-winner Carol Greider about the implications of the research, and in particular the scientists’ discovery that extending the life span did not bring with it an increased risk of age-related diseases – which, she says, might point to a cure for cancer and heart disease. Click here to read the Q&A.

Your ashes can now be turned into jewelry.  A company called Cremation Solutions has come up with the idea of Cremation Diamonds.  Check out the diamond site and bookmark it under weird or wonderful – your choice.

Exercise for healthy aging isn’t all about aerobics. A simple test that assesses an older person’s ability to sit up and then and rise from the floor without any help has proven to be a very accurate predictor of mortality risk. The study should prove useful in evaluating seniors’ health status, and it also shows that  “Maintaining high levels of body flexibility, muscle strength, power-to-body weight ratio and co-ordination are not only good for performing daily activities but have a favorable influence on life expectancy,” according to the lead researcher. Click here to read about the study.

How healthy is your state? The United Health Foundation has just released its 2012 rankings, with Vermont coming in as number one on the list and New York as number 18, based on factors that include environment, deaths from age-related disease, physician-to-resident ratio, per capita public health funding, and obesity and smoking stats. Click here to find out how your state ranks and why.

Happy clicking, and enjoy your Sunday! 

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