Around this theme, there has been much written and talked about.
When we go to the plastic Surgeon, more often than none, we want to look better and that is the motto of ValeroSurgery:
It is only natural to want look your best!
However, as in my section of Myths and Realities, it is necessary to review some current concepts of rejuvenation and health, diet, exercise and wellness.
As we shall see later, we cannot rejuvenate in a strict sense. Plastic Surgery, yes, can refresh your image, both in the facial and body areas. It is not in itself a hoax or an optical illusion or a mirage. It is a reality, and therein lies the Art of Plastic Surgery (click Plastic Surgery as Art) is a real, lasting change, that so to speak, challenge and defies science only in appearance, because we cannot rejuvenate our cells or our molecules with which we are made, but by improving appearance, Plastic Surgery positively changes the concept of Self Esteem into a healthier one, and this creates a comprehensive wellness, body and emotions.
THE TRUTH ABOUT HUMAN AGING
DOES THE FOUNTAIN OF YOUTH EXISTS?
Antiaging products are big business—a multibillion-dollar industry. But the marketing of these products often misrepresents the science. Rather than let their silence imply compliance, 51 of the top researchers in the field of aging research collaborated to create a position paper that sets out the current state of the science. A shorter, more pointed essay, called “no truth to the fountain of youth,” by three of the position paper signers: S. Jay Olshansky, Leonard Hayflick and Bruce A. Carnes, is in Scientific American June 2002 issue; the position paper itself is here.
The past century a combination of successful public health campaigns, changes in living environment and advances in medicine have led to a dramatic increase in human life expectancy. Long lives experienced by unprecedented numbers of people in developed countries are a triumph of human ingenuity. This remarkable achievement has produced economic, political and societal changes that are both positive and negative. Although there is every reason to be optimistic that continuing progress in public health an the biomedical disturbing and potentially dangerous trend has also emerged in recent years.
There has been a resurgence and proliferation of health care providers and entrepreneurs who are promoting antiaging products and lifestyle changes that they claim will slow, stop or reverse the processes of aging. Even though in most cases there is little or no scientific basis for these claims, the public is spending vast sums of money on these products and lifestyle changes, some of which may be harmful. Scientists are unwittingly contributing to the proliferation of these pseudoscientific antiaging products by failing to participate in the dialogue about the genuine science of aging research.
CAN WE HUMANS REJUVENATE?
Although it is possible to reduce the risk of disease and aging related to growing old and to mask the signs of aging, it is NOT possible for individuals to grow younger.
This would require reversing the degradation of molecular integrity that is one of the hallmarks of aging in both animate and inanimate objects. Outside of performing the impossible feat of replacing all the cells, tissues or organs of biological material as a means to circumvent the processes of aging, rejuvenation is a phenomenon that is not currently possible.
Life span is defined as the observed age at death of an individual; maximum lifespan is the highest documented age at death for a species. From to time we are told of a new highest documented age at death, as in the celebrated case of Madame Jeanne Calment of France who died at the age of 122. Although such an extreme age at death is exceedingly rare, the maximum life span of humans has continued to increase because world records for longevity can move in only one direction: higher. Despite this trend, however, it is almost certainly true that, at least since recorded history, people could have lived as long as those alive today if similar technologies, lifestyles and population sizes had been present. it is not people that have changed; it is the protected environments in which we live and the advances made in biomedical sciences and other human institutions that have permitted more people to attain, or more closely approach, their life-span potential. Longevity records are entertaining, but they have little relevance to our own lives because genetic, environmental and lifestyle diversity guarantees that an overwhelming majority of the population will die long before attaining the age of the longest-lived individual.
Life expectancy in humans is the average number of years of life remaining for people of a given age, assuming that everyone will experience, for the remainder of their lives, the risk of death based on a current life table. For newborns in the U.S. today, life expectancy is about 77 years. Rapid declines in infant and maternal and late-life mortality during the 20th century led to an unprecedented 30-year increase in human life expectancy at birth from the 47 years that it was in developed countries in 1900. Repeating this feat during the lifetimes of people alive today is unlikely. Most of the prior advances in life expectancy at birth reflect dramatic declines in mortality risks in childhood and early adult life. Because the young can be saved only once and because these risks are now so close to zero, further improvements, even if they occurred, would have little effect on life expectancy. Future gains in life expectancy will, therefore, require adding decades of life to people who have already survived seven decades or more. Even with precipitous declines in mortality at middle and older ages from those present today, life expectancy at birth is unlikely to exceed 90 years (males and females combined) in the 21st century without scientific advances that permit the modification of the fundamental processes of aging. In fact even eliminating all aging-related causes of death currently written on the death certificates of the elderly will not increase human life expectancy by more than 15 years. To exceed this limit, the underlying processes of aging that increase vulnerability to all the common causes of death will have to be modified.
Advocates of what has become known as antiaging medicine claim that it is now possible to slow, stop or reverse aging through existing medical and scientific interventions.
Been made for thousands of years, and they are as false today as they were in the past. Preventive measures make up an important part of public health and geriatric medicine, and careful adherence to advice on nutrition, exercise and smoking can increase ones chances of living a long and healthy life, even though lifestyle changes based on these precautions do not affect the processes of aging. The more dramatic claims made by those who advocate antiaging medicine in the form of specific drugs, vitamin cocktails or esoteric hormone mixtures are, however, not supported by scientific evidence, and it is difficult to avoid the conclusion that these claims are intentionally false, misleading or exaggerated for commercial reasons. The misleading marketing and the public acceptance of antiaging medicine is not only a waste of health dollars; it has also made it far more difficult to inform the public about legitimate scientific research on aging and disease. Medical interventions for age-related diseases do result in an increase in life expectancy, but none have been proved to modify the underlying processes of aging. The use of cosmetics, cosmetic surgery, hair dyes and similar are only means for covering up manifestations of aging. At present there is no such thing as an antiaging intervention.
DETERMINING BIOLOGICAL AGE
Scientists believe that random damage that occurs within cells and among extracellular molecules are responsible for many of the age-related changes that are observed in organisms. In addition, for organisms that reproduce sexually, including humans, each individual is genetically unique. As such, the rate of aging also varies from individual to individual. Despite intensive study; scientists have not been able to discover reliable measures of the processes that contribute to aging. For these reasons, any claim must be regarded as entertainment, not science.
ARE THERE GENES THAT GOVERN AGING PROCESSES?
No genetic instructions are required to age animals, just as no instructions on how to age inanimate machines are included in their blueprints. Molecular disorder occurs and accumulates within cells and their products because the energy required for maintenance and repair processes to maintain functional integrity for an indefinite time is unnecessary after reproductive success. Survival beyond the reproductive years and, in some cases, raising progeny to independence, is not favored by evolution because limited resources are better spent on strategies that enhance reproductive success to sexual maturity rather than longevity.81 although genes certainly influence longevity determination, the processes of aging are not genetically programmed. Over engineered systems and redundant physiological capacities are essential for surviving long enough to reproduce in environments that are invariably hostile to life. Because humans have learned how to reduce environmental threats to life, the presence of redundant physiological capacity permits them and the domesticated animals we protect to survive beyond the reproductive ages. Studies in lower animals that have led to the view that genes are involved in aging have demonstrated that significant declines in mortality rates and large increases in average and maximum life span can be achieved experimentally. Without exception, however, these genes have never produced a reversal or arrest of the inexorable increase in mortality rate that is one important hallmark of aging. The apparent effects of such genes on aging therefore appear to be inadvertent consequences of changes in other stages of life, such as growth and development, rather than a modification of underlying aging processes. Indeed, the evolutionary arguments presented above suggest that a unitary programmed aging process is unlikely to even exist and that such studies are more accurately interpreted to have an effect on longevity determination, not the various biological processes that contribute to aging. From this perspective, longevity determination is under genetic control only indirectly. Thus, aging is a product of evolutionary neglect, not evolutionary intent.
The scientific respected free-radical theory of aging serves as a basis for the prominent role that antioxidants have in the antiaging movement. The claim that ingesting supplements containing antioxidants can influence aging is often used to sell antiaging formulations. The logic used by their proponents reflects a misunderstanding of now cells detect and repair the damage caused by free radicals and the important role that free radicals play in normal physiological processes (such as the immune response and cell communication). Nevertheless, there is little doubt that ingesting fruits and vegetables (which contain antioxidants) can reduce the risk of having various age-associated diseases, such as cancer, heart disease, macular degeneration and cataracts. At present there is relatively little evidence from human studies that supplements containing antioxidants lead to a reduction in either the risk of these conditions of the rate of aging, but there are a number of ongoing randomized trials that address the possible role of supplements in a range of age-related conditions.
The widespread observation that caloric restriction will increase longevity must be tempered with the recognition that it has progressively less effect the later in life it is begun, as well as with the possibility that the control animals used in these studies feed more than wild animals, predisposing them to an earlier death. Although caloric restriction might extend the longevity of humans, because it does so in many other animal species, there is no study in humans, which has proved that it will work. A few people have subjected themselves to a calorically restricted diet, which, in order to be effective, must approach levels that most people would find intolerable. The fact that so few people have attempted caloric restriction since the phenomenon was discovered more than 60 years ago suggests that for most people, quality of life seems to be preferred over quantity of life. The unknown mechanisms involved in the reduced risk of disease associated with caloric restriction are of great interest and deserve further study because they could lead to treatments with pharmacological mimetics of caloric restriction that might postpone all age related diseases simultaneously.
MODIFYING LIFE STYLE AND AGING
Upbeat lifestyle, including exercise and a balanced diet along with other proven methods for maintaining good health, help increasing life expectancy by delaying or preventing the onset of age-related diseases. However, there is no scientific evidence to support the claim that these practices increase longevity by modifying the aging process.
All these concepts, I’m sure you noticed, are not mine originally. I concur with the conclusions. This is a part of a very important study made in 2002 by 51 authors and researchers in the broad field of Health and Aging. With pleasure I’ll provide an electronic copy of these studies.
I thank Dr. Gregorio Hernandez Zendejas, Plastic Surgeon and Athlete, for allowing me to post the information contained in this section.
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