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CEA-Retired Fall Issues Conference
“Brian Health and Aging Positively”
Laura K.M. Donorfio, Ph.D.
September 11, 2012
1
GOALS FOR TODAY
“Brain Health and Aging Positively”
1. How Aging is Making History
2. How this Impacts You and the World
3. How “Protecting” Your Brain can
Enhance Brain Health
Positive
Aging Role
Models
2
OPENING HUMOR
3
AGING IS MAKING HISTORY
For the first time in human history, we are
living longer than ever before and the rate
of growth of the older population is
unprecedented!
Longevity Revolution
1. Individuals Are Getting Older
2. The World Is Getting Older
4
Life Expectancy Has Increased
78.2
47.3
31.3
28
5
Life Expectancy Has Increased
 By 2017—1 in 5 in U.S. will be 65+
 Florida is already there!
 Italy, Japan, & Germany are already there!
By 2017, the United States will be a giant
state of Florida!
6
Life Expectancy Around the World
U.S. 48th in world
Source: United Nations 2010
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Documented – World’s Oldest
Jeanne Calment
122 years and 164 days
France
Christian Mortensen
115 years 252 days
United States
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Documented – World’s Oldest Still Living
Maria Gomes Valentim
115 years & counting
Lives: Brazil
Born: July 9, 1896
Jiroemon Kimura
114 years & counting
Lives: Japan
Born: April 19, 1897
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CENTENARIANS—100+
 Fastest Growing Age Group Worldwide
 450,000 Worldwide
 76,000 in U.S.; 4 million by 2050
 80% are Women
 78% are White & 16% African American
 Married: 1 in 25 Women & 1 in 4 Men
 Super-Centenarians: 100 Worldwide
Get a letter from President on your
100th birthday!
10
Aging Pyramid—450,000 worldwide
2050 Reach Upwards to 4 Million
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CAN WE LIVE FOREVER…
Scientists—
Robert Butler
….believes in the next 50-100
years we can live to 150
Graham Pawelek
….believes in the next 50-100
years we can live to 200
“Aging is just a series of diseases.”
12
What Does It Mean To Be An Older Adult Today?
How Will Aging Change the Way We Live?
We Are Not Quite Sure!
13
PERSONAL AND SOCIAL LEVEL?
“Our general confusion is
compounded by a new kind of
ignorance. Until late in this century,
we humans spent time with people of
all generations, but today we aren’t
likely to have much contact with old
people until we are relatively old
ourselves.”
Mary Pipher
Another Country
14
PERSONAL AND SOCIAL LEVEL?
“The trouble is, old age is not
interesting until one gets there.
It’s a foreign country with an
unknown language to the young
and even to the middle-aged.”
May Sarton
As We Are Now
15
Why is Aging a Foreign Country?
 Added decades to life
 Healthier than ever before
 “50 is the new 40” (Google: 5 million hits)
 Age is no longer used as a marker of
where and what you should be doing in
life
 Retirement? Leisure? Grandparenthood?
 Ageism & Negative Stereotypes
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Government/Policy Making Progress
Healthcare
Road Structure
Leisure Activities
Medicare
TOTAL
IMPACT
How will
Older Workforce
Aging Impact
the World? Transportation
Assisted Living
Housing Needs
Building Structure
Social Security
Euthanasia
Young & Old Competing
for Resources
Caregiving
Law Reform
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Gerontology Making Progress
Stages
1. Young Adulthood
2. Middle Adulthood
3. Young Old
4. Middle Old
5. Old Old
6. Centenarians
7. Super-Centenarians
Age
18-34
35-54
55-69
70-84
85-99
100-109
100+
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Writers Making Progress
“Third Chapter”—Life After 50
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“Pop Culture” Making Progress
Mrs. Beasley
Grandma Barbie
20
Neuroscience Making Progress
21
Neuroscience & Brain Health
 Has made tremendous strides in
understanding the capacity for brain
plasticity…
“The ability of the brain to change with learning”
Discovered a connection
between brain health
and life style
22
Neuroscience & Brain Health
Risk for
Brain Aging
1/3
Genetics
2/3
Lifestyle
Choices
23
Neuroscience & Brain Health
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