Could a simple pill improve longevity and slow the aging process?

Updated: Mar 24

Biotechnologist Greg Macpherson features on The Project NZ segment: Could a simple pill improve longevity and slow the aging process?


Whether it's mythical fountains of youth, philosopher's stones or stories about vampires - the obsession with living longer has been documented for centuries.


Australian biologist Dr David Sinclair is in his 50s but says his biological age is in his 30s.

The Harvard researcher and his team have found molecules that repair damaged cells, and they've come up with a pill which he's taking himself.

The molecules they've been working on are designed to activate the body's natural defences against disease and aging.


"We've found a set of enzymes, they are coded by genes in our genome that serves as our body's defence against adversity," Dr Sinclair says.


"So actually when we exercise and we don't eat, these genes come on and act as traffic lights - and they are traffic cops that direct the body to repair itself and protect itself from diseases and aging."


Kiwi aging expert Greg Macpherson says we should adopt better lifestyle choices as well as add in a few extra supplements.

"We can get some lessons from places called the 'blue zones' and blue zones are places around the world where people have lived and get to a hundred much more than the rest of us," he told The Project.


"And these people do these things like they have a plant-based diet, they exercise a bunch and we can take lessons from that and add in a few extra supplements that are available to us now that weren't available to previous generations. And these things are going to see us be healthier for a lot longer and that's going to have some effect on the amount of time we're around."


Watch the segment below: