Not too long ago, the media got hold of the theory that the first person to live to the age of 150 has already been born. No one as of now can prove that to be true, but it does seem safe to say that most, if not all, would find comfort in a longer lifespan — especially if joined by vitality and quality of life.
Longevity indeed is on an upward trend. At least in the United States, the percentage of centenarians has been steadily rising since the turn of the millennia.
And by 2050, the population of centenarians (100+ year olds) is predicted to increase by eight-fold! In itself, that will create a unique set of infrastructural challenges.
In the past 100 years alone, the average life expectancy for men and women is up about 30%. Such a drastic improvement has shifted the paradigm of how people expect to live their lives. And to us, longevity should also mean a quality of life, too.
Plenty of us might be happy to ‘cash out’ somewhere close to the 80-year (current U.S. average) life expectancy. But why not aim as high as we can?
A Change of Pace
People now recognize the potential for longer life. That means they are taking interest in how to care for their health both short and long-term. Adjusting lifestyle practices to cater to long-life emphasizes education. Learning about sustainable diet, exercise, and those small, daily changes together can lead to big results.
The more well-informed, the easier it becomes to establish those lifestyle practices associated not only longevity, but an enjoyability in those later years.
Where to Start?
The most familiar basics to health apply to longevity too. Careful choices in diet and sufficient sleep — the body relies on these factors beyond most any finer adjustment. Yet for those in the business of long-life, it’s known to aim for near-perfection as they support their body. That means optimizing those necessary machinations of our biology.
Fueling metabolic health through antiinflammatory eating, amplifying the benefits of exercise with careful timing and matcha, and honing your sleep cycle through mindful use (or non-use) of devices later in the evening. Just to name a few.
So let’s take a closer look. The principles of a longevity-focused lifestyle build upon what the body evolved to do best. Resisting the elements, to be flexible, yet resilient. We all can strive to maintain an integrated balance in our body. In medicine, this is known as homeostasis. And is arguably the bottom line to a long, healthy life.
Not too much, not too little. And just enough resilience training to help us bend instead of break. Exercise and intermittent-fasting are probably two of the best examples.
First Things First
If you’re contemplating a long life, try not to hesitate. It may be true that it’s never too late to take fitness seriously, but research highlights why it’s important to start early. Leading life-expectancy doctors are also working to bring awareness specifically to the youth.
Particularly by encouraging them to achieve health activity levels and fueling that activity with a balanced diet. The American Heart Association notes that a majority of children are getting too little activity and are spending more time than recommended being sedentary. Indicating even bigger problems for adults who tend to be less active with age. 
Things to watch out for include early-onset cardiovascular disease. Where getting active (early) and staying that way is agreed as maybe the most powerful form of prevention. Really, this applies to most other age-related diseases. Reported to reduce risks of cognitive decline, diabetes, mental health issues, and even cancer risks.
A less suspected source of long-life?
Microbiome optimization, fermented foods, and overall gut-health are trending. That’s good news for those of us interested in enjoyable, long-life. This year’s latest science affirms the many connected health benefits. Those with a healthy, balanced gut microbiome share similar, reduced-disease risks as those who exercise regularly. Most simply, our gut’s flora eat what we eat. They help digest, create energy, and synthesize nutrients. But without the right support, they can also create toxins. And overtime, those can lead to chronic inflammation and many common diseases.
Aside from healthy eating (see the anti-inflammatory diet), we can supplement with probiotic foods like sauerkraut. We also should choose matcha, because the natural antioxidant catechins promote health bacteria in the gut. Great for digestion and poor nutritional absorbency issues.
Something interesting, researchers increased the lifespan of fruit-flies by 60% through supplemented probiotics. The study reports that, with a relatively similar biochemical metabolism as humans, the results indicate improved longevity in humans. 
Gut-health Starts with Birth?
The benefits of a well established gut microbiome begin early in life. Young children, even as early as 3 or 4 years of age, who develop a probiotic gut environment will benefit the most. But again — it’s longevity’s theme of ‘sooner the better,’ no matter your age.
Perhaps the most striking example of this theme, though, are the reported consequences of non-vaginal births. The latest science signifies that C-section deliveries can elevate individuals’ risks of asthma, type-1 diabetes, celiac disease, and obesity. Intriguing, many of these correlations are related to auto-immunity.
The mechanism suggested is that C-section deliveries obstruct children’s exposure to the mother’s microbiome, through the birthing canal in vaginal deliveries. This lack of exposure brings about a vastly different microbiome between child and mother, and may be what’s at play.
It’s particularly concerning — in North America the rate of C-section deliveries has risen to nearly 33% — that’s a lot of children with increased likelihoods of disease. 
As studies continue to vet the microbiome’s influence on longevity, let’s not leave those more exciting options off the table. Compounds which can benefit the aging process are a huge area of research. Graceful aging is in-reach more than ever. ‘Rapamycin’ and ‘metformin’ are two profound possibilities.
Rapamycin for one, is an immunosuppressant compound used clinically in the treatment of cancers and organ-transplants. What’s more, among a number of pharmacological influences in the body, rapamycin is under study for its boost to longevity in animal models.
The mechanism suggested is through a reduction of a protein marker associated in the aging process, known as mTOR. An acronym to rapamycin’s targeted effect, this protein is involved in numerous physiological processes.
Yet when inhibited, research claims rapamycin to be the first identified compound to improve mammalian lifespan, regardless of gender. This is but one promising example of what modern health optimization looks like. 
A candidate compound in the pursuit of longevity also includes metformin. This FDA approved drug is typically prescribed to mediate impaired glucose metabolism, such as in diabetics. Aside from this role, it’s under research for its influence in the process of aging.
Animal modeling and human testing notes metformin’s potential benefits against inflammation and oxidative stressors. More studies are needed to fully understand the possibilities, and we’ll keep you posted. But both of those candidates sound a lot like matcha!
Matcha for Longevity
Rapamycin and metformin might be promising, yet still tentative options. But what about matcha? There’s enough time-vetted experience of green-tea’s benefits to have confidence. Natural compounds like Epigallocatechin-gallate (EGCG) and unique amino-acids like L-theanine. These are present in matcha, and are well documented promoters of a long, health lifestyle.
EGCG especially is one of nature’s most potent antioxidants. It’s found in significant levels only in matcha, and is believed to hold anti-cancer, anti-obesity, and cardiovascular-regulating properties. Research is confident that drinking matcha quenches inflammation and eliminates free radicals.
These benefits result in improved metabolic pathways, improved cardiovascular health (e.g. inhibition of fatty arterial build-up), and a more precise immune response. EGCG is a type of catechin, which matcha contains different types. And these are also studied to reduce viral infection, including the flu.
The Bottom Line
What it means to be healthy is changing quickly. So, as researchers continue working to better understand the body, and the instrumentation behind disease, we should strive to keep an open-mind.
There’s no right or wrong way to practice health’s foundation. And it’s a different journey for everyone. So, if you're (rightfully) skeptical about modern or synthetic life-extending compounds, then we always recommend to stick with the tried-and-true:
You can make the most of your health by giving matcha a try. Unlike tough exercise strategies or restrictive diets, it’s an easy daily practice (learn more with our 30-day challenge). And the long-term benefits are huge.
The Japanese have been drinking it for about a millennia, and they have more centenarians than anywhere else! Can that really be a coincidence?