Looking To Your Genes For The Secret To A Long Life

Written by Joe Cohen, BS | Last updated:

Wouldn’t it be great to live to be over 150?

Well, in early 2017, the National Academy of Medicine held an event to kick off their Grand Challenge in Health Longevity. The goal? To discuss how they will make this a reality!

30 years ago, this would have never even been considered.

But the exponential growth of technology and the increase in gene-based studies have made this possible.

Longevity is a complicated topic and we’re not close to immortality, I’ll tell you that. But we have made strides in identifying genes that play an important role in longevity. By understanding these genes, we can adjust our lifestyle choices and diets to optimize our body and health.

Oxidative stress has been linked to over 200 human diseases, so it only makes sense to start your journey there.

There are 3 important genes that have an effect on reducing oxidative stress: SOD2, SOD3, and KLOTHO.

What Is Oxidative Stress?

Oxidative stress occurs when your body can’t produce enough antioxidants to handle the elimination of free radicals. Excess free radicals result in damage to your cells and DNA, which leads to many chronic health issues such as inflammation, brain fog, and neurodegenerative diseases

Improving These Genes Can Help Us Live Longer

SOD2 Gene

SOD2 is a mitochondrial enzyme that helps defend the body from oxidative stress and helps with maintaining the function of neurons.

As we grow older and our antioxidant mechanisms decrease in function and efficiency, higher SOD2 activity plays a particularly important role in delaying neurodegenerative disease.

But, some research shows that in certain cases lower SOD2 activity can actually be a good thing.

How? Get all the details in SelfDecode’s latest personalized blog post on the SOD2 gene so you can better understand how to optimize your variant!

SOD3 Gene

SOD3 differs from SOD2 in that it operates outside of the cell instead of in the mitochondria, and uses zinc and copper to function rather than manganese.

However, they share the same primary role in producing antioxidants to defend the body from any oxidative stress.

Studies have found that certain variants of SOD3 have an influence on lung disease, strokes in women, and polyneuropathy in people with diabetes.

Find out what diet and lifestyle changes you can implement to help this gene fight off oxidative stress!


Klotho is known as the longevity gene, and is even named after the Greek God “Clotho,” who was responsible for controlling the lives of mortals.

One thing researchers are pretty sure of is that the higher the expression of klotho the better! High klotho is associated with high levels of superoxide dismutase (SOD) enzymes, which help to reduce oxidative stress.

There are over a dozen KLOTHO variants and the ones that have higher KLOTHO function are correlated with a reduced risk of cholesterol, blood pressure, stroke, retinopathy, and more illnesses responsible for decreasing lifespan and overall health.

The Tip Of The Longevity Iceberg

These are just 3 of the many genes that have been connected with longevity and lifespan!

So, you can understand why this Grand Challenge in Healthy Longevity event took place, and why the attendees shared a strong sense of confidence that a solution will be found.

In fact, with the extensive number of genetic studies that link genes to longevity currently available, there are already answers out there!

That’s why SelfDecode was created, to help you navigate through your genetic information. You can use the Personalized Genetic Blog to get a better understanding of how your variants for these genes, and other longevity-related genes, affect you.

About the Author

Joe Cohen, BS

Joe Cohen, BS

Joe Cohen flipped the script on conventional and alternative medicine…and it worked. Growing up, he suffered from inflammation, brain fog, fatigue, digestive problems, insomnia, anxiety, and other issues that were poorly understood in traditional healthcare. Frustrated by the lack of good information and tools, Joe decided to embark on a learning journey to decode his DNA and track his biomarkers in search of better health. Through this personalized approach, he discovered his genetic weaknesses and was able to optimize his health 10X better than he ever thought was possible. Based on his own health success, he went on to found SelfDecode, the world’s first direct-to-consumer DNA analyzer & precision health tool that utilizes AI-driven polygenic risk scoring to produce accurate insights and health recommendations. Today, SelfDecode has helped over 100,000 people understand how to get healthier using their DNA and labs.
Joe is a thriving entrepreneur, with a mission of empowering people to take advantage of the precision health revolution and uncover insights from their DNA and biomarkers so that we can all feel great all of the time.


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