The methylation pathway is very important to maintain DNA integrity and to prevent telomere shortening. Foods and nutrients that donate methyl groups are essential to prevent genetic mutations that can result in cancer. Men with the highest levels of Folate in their blood have the longest telomeres when compared to those with the lowest levels. Folate (800 mcg each day), vitamin B12 (500 to 1000 mcg daily) and the entire B-vitamin family are associated with longer telomeres. Nuts and seeds are also important methyl group donors
Zinc (25 to 50 mg per day) and Magnesium (400 to 800 mg each day) are necessary to accurately complete DNA sequencing during cell replication. A lack of these cofactors can lead to DNA strand breakage, premature cell destruction and acceleration of the ageing process. Vitamin C (1 to 3 grams per day) has been shown to slow the loss of telomeres in human beings and thus can prevent cardiovascular disease. Vitamin E tocotrienols (400 mg per day of a full-spectrum supplement) have been shown to restore the length of telomeres while reducing DNA damage.
Stress and inflammation are two controllable factors that can shorten telomere length and increase cell ageing. Stress management is essential to lower the release of chemical messengers that fuel inflammation. Polyphenol compounds like Curcumin (Tumeric) can lower systemic inflammation and help to maintain telomere length and extend a healthy lifespan.
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