Last Updated on by
Does Depression Speed Up The Aging Process?
Depression – it’s a condition that affects 10 percent of US citizens and encompasses all types of depression. Some that suffer from depression, have the occasional bout over a lifetime generally tied to a specific event in life. Some will experience depression after the death of a loved one, divorce, a decline in health or sudden unemployment. Others will experience severe depression.
Severe depression can last for months even years. This type of depression can severely affect one’s ability to preserve healthy relationships and work. Severe recurring depression often starts in adolescence or as a young adult and affects about 5 percent of the population. You might be surprised to learn that this type of depression can actually shorten your life.
Don’t confusion feeling sad with being depressed. Grieving is an important process for anyone recovering from a major event. However if the grief becomes lasting and debilitating you may have depression and should seek help.
Depression and Your DNA May Not Mix
New research from the Netherlands has shown that depression can accelerate the aging process and it could actually lead to life threatening disease(s).
The research shows that those with major depression have telomeres that are much shorter than those of healthy people. Telomeres are the DNA caps that act as buffers found at the ends of the gene chromosomes. According to the study’s co-author Josine Verhoeven the telomere length is a reliable measure of biological age and genetic health. The shorter the telomeres are the greater your risk is to develop a wide variety of conditions such as cardiovascular disease, cancer or chronic inflammation.
Major depression returns and sometimes doesn’t go away for a long period of time. It has the ability to mess with your ability to eat, sleep, and enjoy your life. It causes an increase in cortisol, which is the stress hormone. More research is necessary but Verhoeven suspects that inflammation and stress might be the reason for the shorter DNA caps.
Thankfully, it appears that shorter telomere lengths are not seen in mild depression. The study saw no evidence of this. There may be other ways to protect your telomeres other than seeking treatment for depression. You can quit smoking, eat a healthy diet that is heavy in fresh fruits and vegetables, and taking an HGH supplement can help you to stay younger and healthier. Find out about the benefits here.
Depression Correlated to Lifestyle Factors
There are a number of depression causes including some that are genetic. Research over decades has shown a correlation between depression and various factors.
- Those people who have less than a high school education are more likely to suffer from depression than those that have high school or post secondary education.
- Those who divorce are at greater risk of suffering from depression. Men are more likely to suffer from depression than women.
- Unemployment that is involuntary no matter the reason elevates the risk of depression. Depression is a leading cause of disability in the USA and it can lead to unemployment and a decrease in the quality of life.
- Adults age 45 to 64 are the most likely to have depression at 4.6 percent while those 18 to 24 are diagnosed at a rate of 2.8 percent.
- Women are twice as likely to have depression as men in the same age group.
- 12 percent of women in the USA will suffer from clinical depression some time during their life.
- Ethnic minorities in men are at higher risk.
- Hispanic and African American have less access to treatment.
- 90 percent of African American men will not get help.
The World Health Organization says that around 121 million people around the world are living with depression and less than 25 percent have access to treatment. Depression is the fourth leading cause of disability in the world. High income countries have higher rates of depression, which could be related to stress and unhappy lifestyles.
Bottom line – If you suffer from depression you should get help. There are many treatments that can help you and you certainly don’t want to shorten your life expectancy because you are depressed. Remember eat well, sleep well, exercise, take care of yourself mentally and spiritually and consider taking an HGH supplement.