Red Light Therapy: A New Frontier in Aging Healthy

How old are you?

That is a question we often do not want to answer especially when we happen to inspect ourselves in front of a mirror and see the definitive signs that we are aging and are not getting any younger – fine lines, wrinkles and dry and sagging skin.

Aging is a bane in human existence. It is something that we all experience yet know very little about.

  • What are the changes that come with age?
  • What is aging and why does it happen?
  • Is it possible to stop aging? If it is, how?

These are the things that we will explore and talk about in this blog.

Red Light Therapy At Home

Aging and the Fountain of Youth

First, let us talk about a legend that from ages past represented our hopes and desires for something that will do away with the bane of human existence that is old age.

Our culture is laden with a long list of complaints about old age. Literature is filled with pages of descriptions that show our fear of the downside of having long life.

For example, Mark Twain, an American author, once said, “Life would be infinitely happier if we could only be born at the age of 80 and gradually approach 18.”

Then there is the ancient Greek poet, Homer, who described old age as “loathsome” in his classic work, “Odyssey.”

Adding fuel to the fire, there is William Shakespeare, the Bard of Avon, who described old age with the metaphor “hideous winter” in his Sonnet V.

History records that Alexander the Great, the great Macedonian king who conquered most of the known world during his time, may have been looking for a river that reverses what was termed as the curse of old age before he died around 323 B.C.

The fountain of youth, a mythical spring believed to have the potential of preserving life by stopping old age has always fascinated us. Indeed, the search for this mythical source of eternal beauty has always represented our desire to stay forever young.

What is Aging?

The MSD Manual website [1] defined aging as the gradual and continuous process of natural change that begins when a person reaches the age of early adulthood. It is “that which happens to our bodies over time.”

This definition represents all of the aging that our body goes through, not only to the common signs of aging that occur later in life – the appearance of gray hair and having fine lines and wrinkles in the skin.

We can therefore say that aging is the impact of the passage of time on the human body.

There is no simple way to explain aging. It is hard to explain what happens, why it happens or how it happens when we age.

Though we may not stop the aging process, clinical and scientific studies and researches have demonstrated that the rate by which aging happens can be slowed down.

Experts say that the following are the different types of aging [2]:

Chronologic aging

Chronologic aging is a type of aging that is based solely on the passage of time. It can be described as our age in years. The probability of developing health problems increases as our age also increases.

Biologic aging

Biologic aging is a type of aging which points to the different changes that occur in our body as we age. These biological or hormonal changes impact people differently.

Some people experience the biological or hormonal changes sooner than others. Hence, we often observe that some people are biologically old at say 65 years old, while others are not until later.

Studies have shown that the most evident differences in age among people of similar chronologic age are due to their lifestyle rather than due to the differences in their actual aging.

 

Psychologic aging

Psychologic aging is the type of aging that is based on how we act and feel. For example, someone who may already be advanced in chronologic age but still live his life like a youth does is considered to be still psychologically young.

Healthy Living for Healthy Aging

So, we grow old and we have no control about it. We will age whether we like it or not. But can we do something about it? Can we make the experience of aging be more pleasant and satisfying?

The World Health Organization (WHO) says we can through what experts call healthy aging.

Healthy aging is defined as the reduction or delay of the occurrence or manifestation of the undesirable effects of aging [3]. The WHO explains that healthy aging is all about the creation of environments and opportunities that will empower and enable people to be and to do what they value throughout their lives [4].

Hence, the goals of healthy aging are maintaining physical and mental health, avoiding disorders, and remaining active and independent [5] even in old age.

The following are several tips on healthy living to promote healthy aging:

Eat Well

Eat healthy foods. Avoid processed foods as much as you can. Added sugar, salt, and fat in process foods are ruining your body and it can lead to a multitude of serious health issues, including cardiovascular disease and hypertension. Cut out sugary drinks and white starches in your diet. Eat more fruits, vegetables, fiber, and lean proteins.

Do not smoke

Smoking hastens aging so do not smoke. If you are a smoker, try quitting. Though it can be a struggle, do not give up. Quitting smoking will improve circulation and blood pressure. It will also minimize your risk of developing cancer.

Exercise

Move around. It helps to keep you young and healthy. So, go and walk the dog. Ride a bike around the block. Take a fitness or a Zumba class. Do something because any activity is better than doing none at all.

Get sleep

Like smoking, lack of sleep hastens aging. So, get a good night of sleep. That way you will be able to lower your risk of developing heart disease. It will also lower your level of stress.

Red Light Therapy and Aging Healthy

Now let me share with you a secret that people often tout as the new fountain of youth – red light therapy.

Google “red light therapy and fountain of youth” and you will be amazed to find that there are more than 6.5 million search results.

Now filter through the results and you will be amazed further to find out that many of the results are actually clinical and scientific studies about red light therapy and aging healthy.

Many of these studies reveal that while eating healthy and physical activity may be the ultimate anti-aging plan, the years that pass by still have a way of aging our skin. Reducing these signs of aging through red light therapy is much better than the unhealthy alternatives.

Red light’s ability to stimulate the production of collagen and reduce inflammation makes this therapy a potent contender in helping maintain youthful skin as well as promote healthy aging.

What is Red Light Therapy?

Red Light Therapy refers to treatments that use wavelengths of red and near-infrared light from light emitting diodes (LEDs) for health and wellness. [6]

RLT involves two forms of electromagnetic radiation – red light and infrared light. It is also called photobiomodulation (PMB) or low-level light therapy (LLLT).

Red and NIR light therapy works by delivering low-level radiation of red and near infrared light to the chromophores in the cells using cytochrome c oxidase (Cox) as the main light-absorbing protein. [7]

Cytochrome c oxidase (Cox), or CCO, is a photosensitive enzyme found within the mitochondria of our cells. Studies show that the enzyme responds best to red and near infrared light. [8]

After absorbing red and NIR light, the Cox in the mitochondria of the cell triggers an increase in the synthesis of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) – the body’s source of energy at the cellular level. [9]

The cells of the body contain mitochondria, the so-called powerhouse of the cell. This is why they respond well to red and near-infrared light therapy.

To know more about the science of red light therapy, visit this blog [10].

How Red Light Therapy Slows Down Aging?

Collagen is the essence of healthy skin. It is the most abundant protein in the human body. Moreover, it is one of the most important building blocks of bones, skin, muscles, tendons, and ligaments.

According to the Healthline [11] website, there are four types of collagen in the body.

Type I collagen accounts for 90% of our body’s collagen and is made of densely packed fibers. It provides structure to skin, bones, tendons, fibrous cartilage, connective tissue, and teeth.

Type II collagen is made of more loosely packed fibers and found in elastic cartilage, which cushions our joints.

Type III collagen supports the structure of muscles, organs, and arteries.

Type IV collagen helps with filtration and is found in the layers of our skin.

As we age, our body produces less and lower quality collagen. This results to dry and sagging skin, fine lines and wrinkles. Yes, the definitive signs of aging.
However, clinical and scientific researches and studies showed that red light has the ability to stimulate the production of collagen in the body. This helps slow down the aging process.

A 2014 study [12] established the safety and efficacy of red light therapy with a focus on pleasant skin feeling, improved skin appearance, intradermal collagen increase, and the visible reduction of fine lines and wrinkles in a prospective, randomized, controlled trial that consisted of 136 volunteers.

Another study [13] conducted in 2018 revealed that red light therapy stimulates fibroblast proliferation, collagen synthesis, growth factors, and extracellular matrix production by activating cellular mitochondrial respiratory pathways. The result is lifting and tightening lax skin and the reduction of rhytids.

Still another study conducted in 2009 investigated on the use of 660 nanometers of red light to reverse the downregulation in collagen synthesis and an elevation in matrix metalloproteinase (MMP) expression in the skin [14]. Results showed that red light therapy using 660 nanometers pulsed LED light is a safe and effective collagen-enhancement strategy.

In 2017, a study [15] also showed the effectiveness of red light therapy in collagen synthesis and in treatment of fine lines and wrinkles.

A 2013 study focusing solely on the effects of red light therapy in skin [16] demonstrated that red light therapy has beneficial effects on wrinkles, acne scars, hypertrophic scars, and healing of burns. It further established that red light therapy is effective even for pigmentary disorders such as vitiligo as well as in inflammatory diseases such as psoriasis and acne.

An earlier study in 2006 [17] on 36 subjects reported statistically significant improvement in wrinkles. The majority of the subjects reported improvements in softness, smoothness, and firmness of the skin after combined 633-nanometer and 830-nanometer light-emitting diode (LED) treatments.

These clinical and scientific studies on the effect of red light therapy to the synthesis of collagen in cells and tissues of the body in recent years prove the effectivity and efficiency of red light therapy for promoting healthy aging.

Are Red Light Therapy Devices Safe?

The Harvard Gazette [18] website reports that a study led by the Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) suggests that light therapy is safe.

Red light therapy uses LED devices that are approved by the FDA and other agencies like the CE and ROHS. They do not make use of harmful electromagnetic radiation like ultraviolet rays, so it is safe. It uses very low levels of radiant energy and does not hurt or burn the skin.

Moreover, Red light therapy is 100% non-invasive so there is no need for a recovery time after treatment. Once you are done with the therapy, you can continue doing your daily activities without worry.

How to use light therapy?

If you want to try the amazing benefits of red light therapy, visit our online shop here [19] to learn about the amazing selection of red light therapy devices that we offer. These devices are safe, 100% non-invasive and FDA approved.

Our team of experts have captured in these devices [20] both the power and the efficacy of available clinical treatments, but in a compact and affordable package that you can try in the convenience of your own home in your own free time.

With our red light therapy at-home device [21], you can commit to a consistent and life changing red light therapy regimen to achieve the best and the most amazing results for your general condition.

Red light therapy treatments are simple and are easily done.

Leredd recommends 10 minutes per treatment area, ideally every day. For the best results, follow these basics:

1. Position yourself 6 inches to 2 feet from the device.
2. Expose your skin for best results to approximately 10-20 minute treatment times per coverage area.
3. Use the device daily for optimal results. You can have your therapy session at any time of the day.

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