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The Joy of Aging

5 Questions with Keynote Speaker Dr. Jennifer Pearlman

The 10th annual Joy of Aging fundraising event in support of the Mackenzie Health Foundation takes place on October 14th at Bellvue Manor in Vaughan from 9:30am to 1:00pm. Proceeds from the event will fund the new domestic abuse and sexual assault care centre at Mackenzie Vaughan Hospital which provides specialized care and support to women, men and children experiencing domestic violence, sexual assault, elder abuse and human trafficking.

The event includes a fashion show featuring an all star cast of powerful women from the community; booths & activities featuring fun and helpful services; live music, a silent auction, a delicious healthy breakfast and fabulous gift bags. The keynote speaker at the event is Dr. Jennifer Pearlman. We caught up with her to find out more about her talk.


1. What is the focus of your talk at the event? I’m going to be sharing some top tips that our guests can take away with them and implement in their lives to live a longer, healthier and happier life. I want them to be able to take charge of their aging.


2. Why do we age? Many factors age us. We rust out. We have oxidative stress. We become inflamed. Our hormones decline. Women, in particular face a cliff of aging as they approach midlife. They literally age twice as fast as any other time in their life; much faster than men in their years around menopause. And that’s because of hormonal loss. Also, the ability to take in and absorb nutrients diminishes. The biological limit of our lifespan is capped by our telomeres, which shorten as we age and become stressed or unwell.


3. Can lifestyle changes slow the rate of telomere degenerate? The most impactful intervention to buffer the effect of chronic stress, which is the marker of chronic aging, is through evidence-based stress management interventions, such as mindfulness, meditation, deep breathing, visualization, tai chi and yoga. The mind-body connection is key. On the pre-stressload side, we can actually use biofeedback to hone our practice of these. On the afterload side heart rate variability monitoring can be used in conjunction with the mindfulness practices.


4. Other than stress management, what can you do? Self-care. Many women fail to take just those few minutes in the day or week to practice self-care; whether it’s relaxation, nature walks, or spending time with close confidants.


5. Can you give us a small taste of the top anti-aging tips you'll be covering in your talk? I’m going to be speaking about some pretty exciting new science.  We’ll cover the science of epigenetics: gene environment interactions, the idea that our DNA is not our destiny. We’ll cover new brain research on neuroplasticity and the whole mind-body connection.

For more information on how you can attend the 10th annual joy of aging please visit thejoyofaging.ca