The only thing we have in common with every person on the planet is this: we’re all getting older. But what if we could delay the aging process? I sat down with HeeJoo Park, our head pharmacist, CEO and longevity expert to get the inside scoop.
As a pharmacist, how did you become an expert on anti-aging?
I work in a pharmacy that supports alternative medicine so I always wanted to learn more about it. I received the certificate through the American Institute of Anti-Aging Medicine. Doctors and health practitioners seek out this certificate and training so they can incorporate longevity into their practice to help patients. Most of its recipients are medical doctors (85%) followed by researchers and miscellaneous health practitioners. I fell under the ‘other’ category as I was one of two or three pharmacists amongst a sea of MD’s.
What does Anti-aging mean to you?
It isn’t just about living longer or losing weight. Anti-aging is about living richer, healthier lives where all of our faculties function. Anti-aging has a holistic approach meaning the complete person, physically and psychologically, is considered in the treatment of a disease.
How can we leverage our body’s natural mechanisms to slow down aging process?
Through epigenetics. Epigenetics is “the study of heritable changes that occur without a change in the DNA sequence.” While some traits are heritable, Anti-aging believes we do have control over how those genes are expressed depending on our lifestyle choices such as diet and exercise.
How is the anti-aging approach different from traditional medicine?
If A is causing B in your body traditional medicine will treat B whereas anti-aging will treat A. According to Anti-aging expert Michael Galitzer, MD traditional medicine views health as the absence of disease whereas anti-aging views health as all faculties functioning at their optimal levels of efficiency. This transcends the how we view the aging process and asks us to reevaluate acceptable health.
How can I set up an Anti-aging regimen with my doctor?
First, find a clinician that listens and understands your needs and doesn’t rush you through an appointment. Providing a relationship rather than a transaction leads to better understanding and healthcare. Changes don’t take place overnight, there isn’t any magic pill. But there is an important attitude that must be present for change to occur if you want to eat better and lose weight. If it took years and years for you to get the way you are, it will take years to reverse the habits you have created. It’s about focusing on what you love to do, what excites you and what you are grateful for. Essentially, it’s about having one thing: purpose.
To learn more about anti-aging, check out The Epigenetics Revolution