Longevity Center founder on the importance of implementing aging science in your health regime, no matter how old you are.
All over the world, people are taking an interest in longevity – the concept of living in a healthy state for as long as possible. But, while some await the development of new drugs and therapies that will delay or reverse the effects of aging, others are choosing to start their longevity journey today. There is already so much that can be done to prolong, and indeed optimize, one’s state of health and longevity medicine is driving a shift from the existing “sick care” model to a healthcare model that is both preventive and personalized.
With its growing network of clinics in Europe, Longevity Center is at the forefront of the longevity medicine revolution. The organization recently opened its latest clinic in Zurich, Switzerland, after opening centers in Poland in 2019 and Germany in 2022.
Longevity.Technology: Leveraging the very latest developments in biomarkers of aging, metabolic health, genetics, epigenetics, nutrition, mitochondrial health, sleep science, and more, Longevity Center’s goal is to identify and mitigate the main risk factors that impact on health and vitality. To learn more, we caught up with the clinic’s founder and CEO Joanna Bensz.
At its state-of-the-art clinics, Longevity Center aims to help its clients “live better for longer” by adding more quality years to their lives. Bensz is keen to stress that the approach is based on well-established science – not longevity hype.
“In the longevity sector, it seems like a lot of people want to talk about ‘living forever’ or ‘not dying’,” she says. “But I believe you also need to think about what you want to do with your life – not just about how to live as long as physically possible.”
“My personal view of longevity is that if I optimize my health today, then living longer should be a nice bonus. There are so many rejuvenation therapies that might become available in the future, but they’re not here yet, so you don’t want to die of something avoidable in the meantime.”
Longevity for all ages
While there may be a perception that a longevity clinic is only for those of a certain vintage, Bensz says Longevity Center’s client base – now numbering more than 1,500 – has an average age of 40.
“From the beginning, we set out to challenge the idea that longevity is for older people,” she says. “We aim to help people feel their best, whatever age they may be. It’s all about predictive maintenance – monitoring and managing your health on a proactive, personalized basis.”
For any new client at a Longevity Center, the first and possibly most important step is the initial assessment. As comprehensive analysis of your current state of health, the assessment is closely tied to the hallmarks of aging – a set of biological changes that are widely agreed to contribute to the process of aging. Given that aging is the primary risk factor for most chronic diseases, this approach makes good sense.
“What makes us different is that we really focus our tests and interventions around the hallmarks of aging,” says Bensz. “We really want to understand the connection between your health and the aging process, both in terms of the interventions we recommend, but also how we monitor results.”
A 360° view of health
The rigorous assessment includes all-manner of longevity diagnostics, testing everything from mitochondrial activity and cognitive performance to microbiome health and your genetic and epigenetic profile.
The assessment is used to help clients gain a deeper understanding of their current state of health, along with recommendations on how improve things like metabolism, quality of sleep, resistance to stress, diet, as well as an exercise and activity program tailored to their individual needs.
“Our primary focus is to help you to design your personal longevity plan that will actually help stimulate your longevity,” says Bensz. “Based on all the information – genetics, epigenetics, physical results and so on – we can decide which areas of your biological age need to be addressed. We are always looking for the weakest link in the system so we can start by fixing that and bring you towards optimal health.”
A personalized approach
If deemed beneficial, Longevity Center may also recommend scientifically proven interventions, from red light or hyperbaric chamber therapies to cryotherapy or personalized supplementation.
“Our focus will always be longevity, and stimulating a long, healthy life, but there are many different ways of getting there,” says Bensz. “There is no supplement that will make you live forever today, and everyone has their own preferences in terms of how they want to get there. We give you the information and recommendations you need to make the right decisions to improve your healthspan.”
To ensure it stays on the forefront of developments in the field, Longevity Center has established a series of “labs” that focus on researching the latest science. The organization currently has labs for metabolic and nutritional health, brain and memory, sport medicine, mitochondrial health, sleep, skin and body, as well as dedicated labs for both male and female longevity.
Looking ahead, Bensz says that the next 12 months will be significant for Longevity Center, which will be opening two new “regeneration centers” in 2024. These cutting-edge sports medicine centers will focus on optimizing body performance with a focus on physical regeneration. The organization also has several other new initiatives in the works.
“We are working on our own line of personalized supplements, as well as a digital platform to keep our clients engaged,” says Bensz. “We’re also developing a licensing model so that we can build and grow our clinics in in other parts of the world, and we’re just finalizing our Longevity Academy, which will initially be focused on providing training in longevity nutrition.”