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Disclaimer:  This information is not meant as direct medical advice. Readers should always review options with their local medical team. This is the sole opinion of Dr. Meakin based on literature review at the time of the blog and may change as new evidence evolves.

Introducing PhenoAge

How the next generation of age calculators can Improve Your Health

The difference between chronological age and biological age

Undeniably, (whether we admit it or not), age is the most crucial variable to our overall health. Age affects everything from our probability of developing a chronic disease to intangibles like how good we feel throughout the day and our zest for life. Intuitively, everyone knows that when all else is equal, a 20-year-old is in a better state of health and well-being than a 60-year-old.

Yet your age may not be what you think it is.

Every year we have a birthday. The number of birthdays we have had in our lifetime is known as our chronological age. As we age, people often say, "Age is just a number." This statement usually attempts to dismiss the fact that we are inevitably getting older, yet it is precisely accurate. In other words, a given individual's chronological age may not reflect their biological age. Indeed, someone’s chronological age can be uncoupled from their actual biological age by a surprising degree. Some people may age faster, and some people may age more slowly depending on the genes they inherit from their mother and father and their lifestyle choices. For example, the actual biological age of a 50-year-old person with good genetics and a healthy lifestyle may be 40. Conversely, the primary biological age of a 50-year-old with average genetics and an unhealthy lifestyle may be 60.

Today, machine learning allows us to measure our age in a way that more closely approximates our actual biological age than the value of our chronological age. The PhenoAge calculator compares biological age to chronological age to aid health interventions objectively.