Be Fit For Life

with Ellen Cohen-Kaplan

What’s your “Fitness” age ?

Leave a comment

It was another amazing day of fall colors and sunshine yesterday.  This autumn must be setting records for the most sunny days and warmest temperatures. Today, on the other hand, was a good day to cook!

JCK_9527JCK_9538JCK_9569JCK_9565

JCK_9557JCK_9551JCK_9540JCK_9586

This week, I came upon a few interesting measures of one’s “fitness” age, which can be used as an indicator of lifespan and overall health.  The first tool uses just 5 measurements: waist circumference, resting heart rate, frequency and intensity of exercise, sex and age  to determine your “fitness” age. I’m always a little leery of these types of predictors, but I like the fact that this one is backed up by research and studies with high correlations to known fitness measures like VO2 max.  More than a few studies have shown correlation between waist circumference and mortality. Many have shown correlations between VO2 max and longevity. Resting heart rate is a good indicator of just how hard your heart has to work to deliver oxygen to muscles and vital organs.

See this link to take the test:

http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/10/31/how-old-is-your-health/?_r=0

Yet another looks specifically at longevity. See this link below.

http://www.longevitycentres.com/tools-agecalculator.html

This indicator asks the most pertinent questions, because it includes known indices like hereditary factors. This tool looks at:

  • Average physical activity
  • Body Mass Index (i.e the percentage of fat versus muscles and other tissue)
  • Current cholesterol and blood pressure ratings
  • Dietary makeup
  • Exposure to and management of stress in your daily life
  • Frequency of medical examinations and health screenings
  • Genetic predisposition for heart disease, diabetes and other serious conditions
  • How well your family members aged
  • Potentially detrimental habits such as drinking and smoking and general drug use
  • Preexisting medical issues such as diabetes or digestive problems
  • Psychological state as influenced by your professional and personal life.

It looks like Dr. Oz cornered the market on the one of the measures that has been around the longest, RealAge score. This tool  looks at measurements that help determine how old your body would be if you didn’t know how old you really are. Chronology is a number, but how well you take care of your health is the real indicator of how old your organs, bones, muscles, tissues and joints really are. The take-away from this blog is to think about the measures that are within your control. Thankfully, we have a lot of control over our nutrition and activity levels. There are so many cases where our lifestyle habits supersede our heredity.  Longevity isn’t the only thing- take into account not only how many years in your life, but also the life in your years!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s