How old are you?

How old are you?          Ken Zhang

 
When people ask you, most are expecting you to answer with your chronological age, or how many years since you’ve been born.  If you are want to be humorous, you can think of this as the number of times you’ve been around the sun. Another way to answer is with your biological age, which is how old your body is.
 
Scientists have only scratched the surface of aging and longevity, but a good gauge of your biological age is the length of your Telomeres. Telomeres are protective caps found at the end of your chromosomes. As we age, our cells divide, replicate, and die, the lengths of these Telomeres get shorter. As a result, older people have shorter telomeres. Our body counteracts this shortening with an enzyme called telomerase, which help by extending the Telomeres caps.
 
Researchers are still exploring processes to help aid in Telomeres shortening, with meditation being shown in several studies to help resist cellular aging(Link), even altering your DNA(link). Most importantly, mental stress can have a dramatic effect on your physical body( think back to your high-school exams, I know I probably aged three years studying for one exam alone)... Meditation helps you cope with stress and helps release hormones that are conducive to cellular health and maintaining your Telomeres.
 
So, back to the original question, how old are you again?