Redefining Old (04:08)
Our perceptions of aging are changing; many people feel young into their 90s. Dilys Price, age 83, took up sky diving to prove age is just a number. Up to 80% of how we age depends on our lifestyle.
Biological Age (02:54)
By staying active, older people can keep themselves young on the inside and extend their lives. Charles Eugsten, age 96, has the body of a 66 year old. He attributes vanity to his success.
Skeletal Changes of Aging (02:27)
Weight training strengthens bones and increases joint flexibility at any age. However, gravity flattens our feet, spreads our waist, and shrinks our spine. Only astronauts can gain height.
Defying Retirement (03:07)
Alan Rigley, age 82, walks 10 miles daily at his job at a home improvement store. Older people rarely get colds because they have already had so many. He has not missed a day of work in 11 years.
Aging and Beauty (02:45)
Our skin cells continually renew throughout our lives; collagen deteriorates. Frances Dunscombe, age 83, models at London Fashion Week; insecurities kept her from following her dream earlier. After age 50, most of us become more comfortable with who we are.
Aging and Wrinkles (02:24)
The sun's ultraviolet light breaks down collagen. A higher amount of melanin in darker skin delays wrinkles, while whiter skin ages sooner. Poker player Bruce Atkinson, age 75, uses wrinkles to hide his facial expression.
Aging and Sense of Humor (04:16)
Older people are more honest because they are less concerned about what people think. They are also more childish yet emotionally mature. Julie Kertesz, age 81, became a stand-up comedienne and turned adverse life experiences into performance material.
Creativity in Older Brains (02:40)
Many people are most successful in their 70s. New brain connections are forged to compensate for forgetfulness— opening new ways of thinking. Gay McIntyre, age 82, has become skilled at jazz improvisation; practicing helps train his brain.
Connecting Left and Right Brains (03:36)
Our brains slow as we age, but also compensate. John Bailey, age 88, has 70 years of knowledge about perfume. His logical brain knows amounts and proportions, while his creative brain can compose many combinations.
Scents of the Past (02:22)
Smells like soaps, medicines, and shoe polish used decades ago can trigger memories. Georgina, Heather, and Geoffrey share stories from childhood and young adulthood.
Greater knowledge, creativity, and linked brain hemispheres can make aging a time of peak success. George Kerr, age 78, has been awarded the highest judo rank. He can predict every move and solve problems among students.
Capacity to Love (05:03)
Our ability to empathize increases with age; caring for people, pets or a plant has a positive effect on our health. Ozzie Cresswell, age 89, felt isolated until he began keeping chickens in his retirement community. He has since made friends.
Family Relationships (02:54)
Evolution may have honed caring skills for childcare in the family. Jean, age 84, cares for her great-grandchildren. Matriarch Jean Hall, age 90, has passed down her maternal skills to five generations of women.
Genes partly control how we look as we age. Older people tend to resemble their pets and spouses; having a companion extends life.
Fred Miller, age 94, thought he was too old to remarry until he met Joan, age 81. They describe their first date. Growing old comes with wisdom, creativity, and increased happiness; elderly people share their favorite aspects of aging.
Credits: Golden Years: Secret Life of Growing Up (00:33)
Credits: Golden Years: Secret Life of Growing Up
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