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    How old are you really? Learn the power of subjective age.

      |  Jul 27, 2022

    While we are regularly asked “How old are you?,” we are rarely asked the far more important question: “How old do you feel?” It’s that second question that is the key to unlocking a healthier, longer life. Intrigued? So were we. That’s why we created Modern Age.

    We all experience the passage of time differently, with some people thriving and others declining. Scientists have long attributed this to a mix of genetics and environmental factors but in recent decades it’s become clear that only a small portion is genetic. For example, in 2002, seminal studies found that genetics is only responsible for 20–30% of our odds of longer, healthier lives. That means the remainder — the vast majority — is up to us.

    Meanwhile, a team out of Yale and Miami University showed exactly how powerful perception can be, when it comes to age. They interviewed participants about their attitudes about growing older, then tracked the group over the years. The results were clear: the people who felt positively (“I have as much pep as I did last year”) lived a median 7.6 years longer than those who felt negatively. A positive approach toward aging can also improve quality of life materially. For example, a 2018 study showed that among individuals who carried the APOE ε4 gene, a strong indicator of dementia, those with positive age beliefs were nearly 50% less likely to develop dementia than those with negative age beliefs.

    That brings us to subjective age, which is how old we feel. Over the past four decades, scientists have been increasingly focused on aging perceptions and how they relate to other markers of getting older. Study after study has linked feeling younger with positive outcomes such as better memory, greater strength, and younger brain age.

    Recent research has shown how subjective age is connected to how our bodies function at the deepest level. An innovative 2019 study compared the self-reported subjective age and blood samples of 3,740 individuals to see if there were any differences in biomarkers associated with aging. On the whole, people who felt younger had “favorable biomarker profiles,” meaning their bodies were performing better in areas like liver and endocrine function. They concluded that people with lower subjective age, “may have lower prevalence of age-related diseases when compared with those who feel older…” This goes both ways, with research showing people who feel older having an elevated risk of mortality and hospitalization. As Emily Laber-Warren writes in the New York Times, “You’re only as old as you feel.”

    With an understanding of the vast benefits of feeling confident and positive about aging, we are designing Modern Age to empower you on your aging journey. We start with subjective age: Where you are now, and where you want to go.

    On the simplest level, subjective age is the answer to, “How old do you feel today?” But one number alone doesn’t provide the full picture, which is why we’ve created a subjective age assessment that looks at it across multiple dimensions: your visual age, lifestyle age, and psychological age. Our assessment dives into these subfactors with questions about your activity level, sleep patterns, nutrition, and much more. Through A photo analysis, we measure a variety of factors such as the appearance of fine lines to hyperpigmentation which enables us to calculate your visual age . These three subfactors help us understand your overall subjective age. Modern Age’s board-certified clinicians are available to guide you through the results to create a personalized plan in a telehealth consultation or in person at Modern Age’s New York City Flatiron studio. Our curated offering across treatments, products, and prescriptions enables you to take a proactive and holistic approach across how you look and how you feel.

    Today our offering focuses on skin, hair, bones, and hormones — the places where we first start to see and feel the impact of age. These are also the places where we can have an immediate and meaningful impact. For example, how we look is a huge driver of our perception of age, which is why we will offer skin treatments like Botox and fillers and over-the-counter products that are clinically proven to reduce the visible signs of age. Similarly, we will offer PRP hair treatments and products for thinning hair. We also know that there is a lot we can’t see, and that’s where our bone density scans and hormone treatments come in. By being proactive in these areas, we have more control over how we feel, today and in the future.

    The great news? Research shows that feeling in control is linked to lower subjective age and all the associated health benefits. Here’s to being in the driver’s seat.

    Follow us on Instagram for more on subjective age and our new approach to taking control of your aging journey. Share your subjective age with #mymodernage