Sample Research Paper on Aging

Aging

Introduction

Aging has been regularly described as accumulation of diverse as well as deleterious changes that affect tissues and cells associated with advancing in age. This process is associated with increased risks of diseases and eventually death. Aging has been described as a complex process which is regulated by multiple pathways. Proteostasis network has been identified as the major component that accelerates aging in human beings. This network consists of molecular chaperones, protein degradation machines and stress reaction transcription features. They operate by responding to protein misfolding and proteotoxic stress, which works in ensuring cell viability. The process of aging has largely been associated with wide-scale loss of protein homeostasis (proteostasis). There have been various theories explaining the process of aging but none has ever been universally accepted. Others points to natural selection process associated with Charles Darwin while others point to environmental traits. The issues of scientific innovations have also brought a complex in explaining and understanding the process of aging (Beckman & Ames, 2007).

However, aging can be identified to begin not at a specific age but the end of a certain developmental period in life. Generally, aging has been identified to start at the age of 30 years in human beings though not generally accepted. After human beings end the production age ranging to 40 years, scientific evidence demonstrates the reduction of proteostasis in their body, which triggers the aging process. This process may be faster and starts early in some than in others depending on various factors from cultural, socio-economic and environmental (Allen & Coombs, 2010.

Aging Continuum

The aging process can be identified to follow a certain path in all human developmental stages. The following section tries to uncover the human developmental stages, which are attributed to the aging process in human beings. Generally, human beings have been identified as a superior being and all research used to consider human beings as the ultimate benchmark for their studies. Human development starts at conception when life is formed though in the smallest form. However, this proposition is prone to disputes and arguments when others will consider life as from birth. Regardless of which point of view an argument may base their facts on, the recognition of life’s beginning is essential. For the sake of this analysis, life begins at conception. The extreme of aging continuum is conception to ultimate death. In between these two stages, human being undergoes various distinct stages, which makes the whole process. From conception, the next stage is birth after a specified period of time. Birth is followed by infancy where the infant is now exposed to other environmental, social, economic and cultural factors, which further contribute to the aging process. The type of food, drinks and upraising witnessed by the infant dictates the rate of aging process (Rowe & Kahn, 2008).

After infancy, childhood sets in when the child is introduced to various cultural beliefs like behaviors and human interactions. The environment under which a child is brought up is instrumental in ensuring the growth, development and finally aging process. The form of education the child is introduced to further complicates the aging process and determines the rate which the process follows. There have been instances where some individuals are observed to age faster than others and the above factors have been used to explain these variations in human being aging process. Puberty forms the other stage in the aging continuum when an individual now recognizes various life aspects. The recognition and independent decision making in individuals at this stage has been further attributed to variations in aging process. The decisions individuals make at this stage have a significant and great impact in their aging process. It is at this stage that individuals are able to make independent decisions and choices, which significantly influence aging process. The type of lifestyle individuals adapt is fundamental to their growth and affects aging. Many theorists have inclined their propositions to ascertain their arguments that aging may be traced to start at this stage (Ahmed & Tollefsbol, 2009).

When adulthood sets, aging process is described to be at advanced stage. This process involves the parenting period when individuals are responsible for the upbringing of young ones. Finally, the last stage in aging continuum is the old age. At this stage, individuals are usually at the last stage of their life and death is the ultimate of aging process. As earlier discussed, various factors influence the aging process and it is not a uniform process culturally. Various cultural aspects influence aging process differently. Minorities are highly influenced by cultural settings in their aging process. Cultural practices like circumcision, marriage and interactions highly determine the aging process in minors. Other cultures require minors’ interactions with adults while others emphasizes on seclusion. Depending on the habits adopted, the aging process is highly influenced. When good habits are emphasized, the aging process is delayed or prolonged while good habits accelerate the aging process. Hence, good habits and lifestyles ought to be emphasized. Observations have been made based on the above literature concerning aging, older adults who practiced good habits in eating and interactions especially in their early stages have shown slower aging symptoms compared to those with bad habits. Those who grew up in socio-economic, cultural and environment friendly surrounding exhibited low signs of aging. Therefore, economic, social, cultural and environmental factors are essential in determining the aging process and would be top in my list to improve the aging process (Ross, McCormack & Curran, et al. 2001).

 

References

Ahmed, A., & Tollefsbol, T. (2009). Telomeres and telomerase: basic science implications for aging. J Am Geriatr Soc. 49 (8), 1105–9.

Allen, J.A., & Coombs, M.M. (2010). Covalent binding of polycyclic aromatic compounds to mitochondrial and nuclear DNA. Nature287 (5779), 244–5.

Beckman, K.B., & Ames, B.N. (2007). The free radical theory of aging matures. Physiol Res. 78 (2), 547–81

Ross, O.A., McCormack. R., & Curran, M.D, et al. (2001). Mitochondrial DNA polymorphism: its role in longevity of the Irish population. Exp Gerontol36 (7), 1161–78.

Rowe, J.W., & Kahn, R.L. (2008). Successful aging. Aging (Milano)10 (2), 142–4.