Is Inflammation Making You Age Faster?

Aging is inevitable. But inflammaging–accelerated aging caused by inflammation–doesn’t have to be.

Coined by researchers in Italy, inflammaging is a term used to describe the kind of chronic, low-grade inflammation that speeds up our rate of cellular aging. The result? Premature aging of our skin and body, accelerating the processes that lead to collagen breakdown, fine lines, wrinkles and lacklustre skin, thinner hair and brittle nails, as well as contributing to age-related diseases like type 2 diabetes and arthritis.

As we get older, our ability to provide the optimal environment for our gut microbes to produce anti-inflammatory short-chain fatty acids naturally declines. But many of the effects of inflammaging are preventable with healthy diet and lifestyle choices. While its causes are complex and varied, UV radiation, stress and environmental toxins certainly play a role. Recent studies also suggest alterations to the gut microbiome and impaired intestinal epithelial barrier–leaky gut syndrome–can be a major factor.

As explored in The Beauty Chef Gut Guide, when our gut wall is leaky, endotoxins known as lipopolysaccharides and other compounds such as undigested food particles can pass through the gut lining and into the bloodstream, triggering an immune response and leading to low-grade systemic inflammation. If you suspect you’re suffering from leaky gut, it’s worth consulting a skilled naturopath or integrative doctor.

In addition, studies have shown that those with a high Frailty Index (a measurement of aging associated with chronic inflammation) have significantly less diversity in their gut microbiome than those with low Frailty Index scores. So while we can’t stop the aging process, with good gut health we may be able to slow down and reduce its negative impacts.

Key to strengthening your gut lining and the health of your microbiome is eating a nutrient-dense, gut-friendly diet. Think: plenty of vegetables and fruits with prebiotic fiber and incorporating the new GUT PRIMER™ Inner Beauty Support–a restorative powder designed to help repair and soothe the gut–into your daily routine.

Have you experienced inflammaging, and what are you doing to combat its effects?