Aging: 40 is the new 30
Population researchers have come up with a new way of looking at age, and it doesn’t have much to do with the year you were born. Instead, a study from the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA) is aimed at refocusing the way demographers view, and report on, the world’s aging population. Instead of relying on chronology, the new framework encompasses such factors as health, cognitive function, and life expectancy. Demographers have traditionally used chronological age as a proxy for those aspects of aging, but as lifespans lengthen and enjoying good health into later decades becomes more common, age in years no longer correlates with such characteristics, the study found. “We should not consider someone who is 60 or 65 to be an older person,” said researcher Sergei Scherbov in an IIASA press release. “People now are much healthier and much ‘younger’ than people were at the same age in previous generations… (Saying) that ‘40 is the new 30’…is truer than people know.” The study was published online on December 5, 2013 in the journal Population and Development Review.
Adapted from Dr. Andrew Weil