It isn’t as if it hasn’t happened before. It’s been happening my entire life. It’s made me question my ability to perform and it’s made me question my self worth. People say I should appreciate it, people say I’ll like it one day.
But I just can’t help but be annoyed when I am asked for ID at a rated R movie. I am 24 and one half…I think there is a rule about giving oneself ‘halves’ after the age of ten. However, I’m nearing my mid twenties. #ImFrustrated
It was questionable enough when my fiance and I got engaged after three months of being together, but when people started asking him if he “robbed the cradle,” it became a problem (I am actually older than him). It isn’t that I don’t appreciate my youthful features because I do. I would, however, prefer adults to see me as an equal rather than a child.
I combat this problem in several different ways. I wear a full face of makeup every day, my wardrobe is mostly professional, and I have mastered the solid handshake with eye contact. But after the following discovery I am wondering if I should just throw in the towel and give up.
The Younger Gene
The “younger gene,” as Harvard Medical School is calling it, is the gene that is responsible for maintaining a youthful appearance regardless of age. Harvard Professor of Dermatology Alexa Kimball conducted a study of the “genetic recipe” for youthful skin. Data was analyzed from one million people through a “private genetic database named 23andMe.”
According to her research the younger gene is found in ten percent of white Americans and 20 percent of black Americans. Kimball and her team estimate that it allows individuals to appear ten years younger than they actually are (Fan-freaking-tastic).
How Does it Work?
The findings suggest that genes are divided into seven categories. These categories are responsible for the various functions in the human body, including DNA repair, skin elasticity, and protection against environmental factors.
Kimball is most interested in “the gene that produces lamellar bodies in the skin.” These are responsible for the production of fat-containing molecules and nutrients that keep skin soft and moist.
“Many of us felt that people with darker skin aged better because of more pigment and better sunlight protection, but we have found there is much more to it than that. They have other characteristics in their skin which confer good aging, which until now we had no idea about,” Kimball said.
What’s the Big Deal?
The twentieth century brought a lot of change:first flight by the Wright Brothers, the first Model-T, and the existence of teddy bears. However, the biggest change began when people started living longer.
Life expectancy rose amongst the wealthiest populations from 50 to 75 years. The increase was caused by a number of things, including improvements in public health, nutrition, and medicine. In addition, fewer people were smoking and having multiple children.
According to the Royal Geographical Society, “It is likely that life expectancy of the most developed countries will continue to slowly advance and then reach a peak in the range of the mid-80s. According to UN statistics for the period 2005 – 2010, Japan (82.6 years) has the world’s highest life expectancy followed by Hong Kong (82.2 years) and Iceland (81.8 years). The world average is 67.2 years and the UK average is 79.4 years.”
With this information, the “younger gene” will not only allow people to live longer,but it will allow people to live a more fulfilling life into their later years. Physical aging would no longer be a concern. Take that Juan Ponce de Leon.
Thus, my fate is sealed. I can’t beat genetics and why would I want to? After all, I’ll look 90 when I’m 100. #SuckItGenetics