Something in our brains allows us to estimate the age of a person. It is just what our physical appearance looks like, apparently. We all know a bunch of people who look really young for their age or really old. But have you ever given any thought to your biological age? What is it?
Let’s suppose you answered with the total number of years you have spent. In that case, you are incorrect. There’s more to it than just chronological age.
Everyone is well-versed in the concept of their chronological (sometimes called actual, physical, or calendar) age. It advances by one after every year. A person’s “biological age” is a rough estimate of how well their body and brain are functioning.
In other words. biological age refers to the age at which a person’s body functions and health status are similar to those of a person of a certain chronological age.
Biological age varies from chronological age since it reflects the body’s aging.
Scientists have only provided absolute proof for what we’ve always suspected: some people age more slowly or swiftly than others. It is possible for two persons to share the same birth date yet have quite different biological ages. Contrary to popular belief, lifestyle variables account for up to four times as much as genetics for most of us.
Unlike chronological age, biological age reflects how well your body actually works. It has been around for some time as a unit of measurement.
Age is a Risk Factor for all Chronic Diseases
Generally speaking, our health and immunity are at their peak while we are young. The prevalence of long-term diseases is rather low. Our vulnerability to them increases as we age.
Our bodies get more inflamed due to cellular damage and cause further damage to organs with aging. Cancer, heart disease, dementia, stroke, and autoimmune disorders increase the risk or become more likely due to this damage.
Adopting a healthy, biologically-appropriate lifestyle can help you seem younger than your actual years. If you choose to live carelessly and abuse your body, you will accelerate the natural aging process.
Also, every one of us ages at varying speeds. Now scientists have tried to compute biological age by looking at the state of inflammation in the body.
Measuring Biological Age. Why?
If you want to know if your wellness routine is beneficial or detrimental to your healthspan, quantifying and tracking your biological age is a good place to start.
Biological age, which refers to the degree to which our cells, organs, and bodies continue to operate, is not exactly correlated with the universally consistent ticking of the clock. Although chronological age has been related to an increased risk of some chronic diseases, biological age appears to be a far better predictor of particular health problems, longevity, and death.
Confirming a person’s “bio-age” accurately has four uses:
- Making a diagnosis before any symptoms have appeared
- Whether it’s favorable or negative, quick responses to lifestyle adjustments
- Identifying the factors that contribute to aging
- Tailoring medical treatment to each individual’s biology
Knowing one’s biological age allows for more precise and individualized care. There is now an abundance of new devices, goods, and services that allow us to determine our age. Biological age testing kits use biomarkers and other indicators to determine a person’s age biologically.
Scientists have developed methods to determine a person’s biological age by analyzing their epigenetic markers due to advances in medicine and technology. These markers modify the DNA or RNA responsible for packaging proteins.
The first epigenetic clock was developed in 2009 by Axel Schumacher, and in 2013 substantial advances were made to use several tissue samples by physicians Gregory Hannum and Steve Horvath, making biological age testing a relatively new science.
The first-generation DNA methylation-derived epigenetic clocks allow for an accurate approximation of the donor’s calendar age from a sample of their cells to within 3.6 years.
Because those biological tests are designed specifically to measure aging, they are an ideal starting point for establishing a baseline.
How Can I Calculate my Biological Age?
Some of the things we do in life and the conditions in which we live can affect how well our genes function, such as,
- Working habits.
- Physical activity.
- Alcohol consumption
- Exposures to toxins/sun.
You may turn back the hands of time on your biological age by taking advantage of Epigenetic testing to learn about the changes to your DNA’s methylation patterns. It has been found that 60% of your DNA and the expression of your genes can be adjusted.
Dr. Horvath claims that age 30 is the “age of onset” for aging. If you’ve had the good fortune to reach 30 in good health, you might want to consider getting your biological age validated. Regardless of age, it’s a good idea to set a baseline and reevaluate your yearly progress.
Biological Age Testing Types.
The biological age can be determined in a number of ways using these kits, including by examining DNA, measuring telomere length, evaluating epigenetic markers, and studying a number of blood indicators like C-reactive protein, cholesterol, and glucose. Lifestyle and environmental factors, such as cigarette smoking and exercise routines, may also be included in certain kits.
The most researched methods can be read and understood in this recent article Here.
The value of biological age can only be evaluated by comparing it to other testing methods.
Numerous studies have placed these aging indicators head-to-head to evaluate which performs best at predicting mortality. One biological age clock from the most recent generation of epigenetic testing has so far shown the most promise and accuracy.
Questionnaire Based Age test.
A few online tests can help you decide your biological age based on your blood work, which is mentioned below.
1. Aging. AI. Aging. Ai is Insilico Medicine’s piece of software that utilizes artificial intelligence to extrapolate a person’s biological age from their blood test results.
One can monitor their biological age over time and see how it stacks up against their chronological age with the help of this program. The accuracy ranges from 5.5 years to 5.9 years, depending on the quantity of data provided.
However, while Aging.AI shows promise, it should not be used in place of a professional medical evaluation but rather in addition to it. Because biological age is a complicated and multifaceted term, it is important to carefully consider the software’s forecasts.
2. RealAge by Sharecare. Although many of us will not have blood test data on hand to upload into the above-mentioned application, we cannot use them. Another online tool that can be used is Real Age by Sharecare technologies. It’s not as precise as other biological tools since it doesn’t rely on blood testing, but it makes up for it with a straightforward questionnaire.
Questions on this test are one of a kind since they directly assess physiological and emotional data. Follow-up tools, such as the ‘dashboard,’ which permits behavior tracking and provides individualized recommendations, are also available and are specifically designed to increase the RealAge score.
It will take you around 15 to 20 minutes to complete the questionnaire, including questions on your health and way of life. Forty-five million individuals have taken it. People enjoy that it estimates your biological age and provides advice on how to live healthier.
3. Aging AI. The Young.ai app, developed by Deep Longevity in collaboration with Insilico Medical and many other health organizations, is available for free on the iPhone.
To determine your biological age, all you have to do is upload a photo or a blood test to the app, and the more information you provide, the more accurate the software’s assessment will be. With the use of artificial intelligence, they will analyze the data and provide recommendations backed by science to enhance your health and well-being.
Blood/Saliva based test
Researchers in the science of aging, such as Steve Horvath and David Sinclair, has noticed the growing field of biological age testing. They have conducted the tests on human saliva and blood and found them most accurate. While there are few biological age testing kits that have gained popularity in the US are as follows.
4. Index by Elysium
Index by Elysium is a saliva-based, at-home epigenetic test kit designed by Ph.D. Professor Morgan Levine claims it is the most accurate epigenetic test currently available.
After sending in your saliva sample, you should expect to hear back from the lab in about six weeks. You receive two results:
- Biological age
- The cumulative rate of aging
An individual’s biological age may be determined by extracting DNA, reading the methylation changes, entering the DNA into a computer to generate methylation profiles, and then interpreting the data.
TruDiagnostic provides insight into your aging rate, biological age, telomere length, and the effect of your immune system on your age. Their methylation testing is utilized in over sixteen anti-aging impersonal clinical studies conducted by institutions including Cornell, OneSkin, and Harvard.
TruyDiagnostic provides a comprehensive report based on state-of-the-art data in about two to three weeks, emphasizing age-related methylation sites. Subtypes of these tests are below,
- TruAge TruAge is significantly more costly than a few of the alternatives on this list. For $399, customers must provide a blood sample to determine their epigenetic age. TruDiagnostic notes, “TruDiagnostic’s TruAgeTM kit checks over 900,000 locations on the genome, which is 425 times more significant data than any other commercially available test.”
You’ll get an 85-plus-page report in about two weeks detailing everything that might affect your “real” age. They help you understand possible risks and where to focus your efforts. In addition to strategies for delaying the onset of biological aging. This test costs around 499$.
- TruDiagnostic Pace. If you want to know how rapidly you’re aging but don’t want the hassle or expense of TruAge, the new PACE test from TruDiagnostic is for you. The same method is used to evaluate your sample at 850,000 loci.
This age test kit provides a DNA test that analyses methylation patterns in one’s DNA. Chronomics appears to be a promising epigenetics testing platform with a streamlined appearance and substantial support. They have been covered by BBC Science, Forbes, and City AM.
They “evaluate over twenty million epigenetic markers” and claim an error rate of 0.01%. The testing also gives you specific advice on improving your way of life to age more slowly. The kit costs around 450$ and gives their results in 3-5 days approximately.
GlycanAge took a level of innovation to determine biological age. They decided to assess a specific type of sugar molecule instead of blood algorithms, telomeres, or epigenetic testing (called glycans). A high concentration of glycans in the blood is an indication of immune system inflammation.
Because good glycans tend to diminish and bad glycans tend to increase with age, measurements of both are taken into account to provide useful information about a person’s overall health. This test produces very variable findings, making it difficult to identify your real biological age from a single glycosyl level test.
GlycanAge is priced at 348$, and you can expect your results in around 3-5 weeks.
myDNAge evaluates the urine and blood samples using SWARMTM technology (Simplified Whole-panel Amplification Reaction Method), a patented analytical method.
Users can submit a blood or urine sample for epigenetic analysis for $299 and receive a one-page report containing their biological age with other relatable information.
DoNotAge is yet another company in the market for anti-aging products, and they have now released a biological clock testing kit.
The Diagnostics 2.0 test provides information about various health factors, including metabolic function, immune system function, and inflammation levels. It can help identify potential risk factors for chronic diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, and cancer, according to the company’s website. The Kit costs around 275$ and gives the result in around 12 weeks.
A saliva sample is sent, and after a wait of up to 12 weeks, the data is processed by machine learning algorithms to reveal distinctive biological patterns. In addition, the research demonstrates individualized suggestions for lifestyle modifications and dietary supplements that may improve general health and lifespan.
10. InnerAge 2.0.
Using your lifestyle and bloodwork, InnerAge calculates your biological age based on your gender-specific biomarkers. Once you’ve finished the analysis, InnerAge will provide you with a custom daily recommendation list to help you move higher in the biomarker zones. This test costs around 249$ once, and the results are delivered within 6 days span.
To determine your age, InnerAge looks at a number of different biomarkers—17 for men and 13 for women. They provide a one-of-a-kind perspective since they go deeply into your data, with no Word documents and no mile-long PDFs. Just a color-coded dashboard that sorts your action items by impact, revealing which biomarker is beneficial or detrimental to your biological age.
Also, you will be provided with guidance on hundreds of supplements, as well as lifestyle and fitness recommendations, to help you attain your personal optimal zones.
11. Epi Aging USA.
Dr. Moshe Szyf, an expert in the study of epigenetics and aging, created EpiAging USA. The biological age test evaluates users’ cellular DNA via a saliva sample. EpiAging’s kits are reasonably priced at $199, and unlike the other tests, they have been validated by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA).
EpiAging’s Android and iOS applications provide users access to personalized lifestyle recommendations based on their test findings.
Re-testing is recommended by all of these providers every six months. It is also to be kept in mind that the results may not indicate a person’s general health and wellness, and the accuracy and trustworthiness of these kits are still debatable. The results should be discussed with a doctor for proper interpretation and treatment of any resulting health issues.
Here is the list in tabular form of all the companies mentioned above,
|Test Name Brand||Pricing||Sample method||What is Measured||Price|
||499$||Saliva||Epigenome/DNA methylation||6 weeks|
||450$||Blood||Epigenome/DNA methylation||3-5 days|
||349$||Blood||IgG Glycan||3-5 weeks|
||299$||Urine + Blood||Epigenome/DNA methylation||4-6 weeks|
||275$||Saliva||Epigenome/DNA methylation||12 weeks|
||249$||Blood||Epigenome/DNA methylation||5-6 weeks|
The information gained may justify the cost of monitoring your biological age if you are taking steps to slow the aging process. It is to be kept in mind that diseases are not meant to be diagnosed, treated, or prevented with Biological ag testing kits. It is always advisable to have a brief one-to-one consultation with your doctor about your concerns.