2 Your Health: Fighting off Aging after Winning the Presidency

Campaigning is stressful – just ask the presidential candidates jockeying for Super Tuesday votes.

Getting older, quicker

According to Cleveland Clinic wellness expert Michael Roizen, M.D., presidential candidates are likely to age well past their years if they make it into the Oval Office.

“What happens is the president almost invariably ages two years for every year they’re in office,” said Dr. Roizen. “You can see it in the color of their hair, but you also see it in their risk of dying.”

Dr. Roizen has studied the public health records of former U.S. presidents from the time they enter office to the time they leave.

His research has shown that many of the presidents from the early 1900’s to the 1950’s actually had major medical problems such as heart attacks and strokes while in office.

Dr. Roizen credits modern medicine for the decline in those events with more recent presidents.

Keep your friends close

The one problem that is consistent with all presidents, according to Dr. Roizen, is the isolating nature of the job.

“The problem is a simple one,” said Dr. Roizen. “They lose all their friends, and they have a hugely stressful job. So those combinations: stress, without an easy way of managing it; makes you much older.”

Turning it around

Dr. Roizen said there is good news, as once the Commander-in-Chief has left the Oval Office; the accelerated aging process can be reversed.

“Until you’re six feet under, you get a chance of reversing your accelerated aging and can make yourself much younger through healthy diet changes and better management of stress,” said Dr. Roizen.

 

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