Calling all super seniors in Parksville Qualicum Beach

Study's author coming to speak here on April 11 at Parksville Community and Conference Centre

Interested in a long, healthy life?

Lead researcher Angela Brooks-Wilson will be in Parksville to discuss “super seniors,” described as those age 85 and older who have never been diagnosed with cancer, heart disease or stroke, dementia or Alzheimer’s, diabetes or lung disease.

Brooks-Wilson is studying what sets super seniors apart from the majority of individuals prone to common age-related diseases.

She told The NEWS earlier this month that super seniors are “actually quite rare.”

On average Brooks-Wilson said the parents of super seniors lived 14 years longer than their contemporaries and while lifestyle factors contribute to a long life, it’s possible shared genetics play a strong role in familial longevity.

“The study is designed to identify genetic factors that contribute to healthy aging,” she said. “The idea behind studying people who are 85 and free of disease is that we want to look at health rather than just longevity.”

Parksville Qualicum Beach is known as one of the oldest communities in Canada. According to Statistics Canada the average age in Qualicum Beach is 64.

Brooks-Wilson will be discussing the Healthy Aging study, a research she’s been spearheading for more than a decade. The study is now in its second phase and as reported earlier in

The NEWS Brooks-Wilson is seeking super seniors to take part in the study. She’s also seeking centenarians, people age 100 or older, regardless of their health history for another branch of research.

Brooks-Wilson is attempting to find out if super seniors lack genetic susceptibility factors that contribute to common diseases found in the majority of people, or if they possess special resistance factors that enhance their ability to enjoy long and healthy lives. She will be discussing the key findings of her study to-date on Saturday, April 11 from 10 a.m. to noon in the Forum at the Parksville Civic and Technology Centre located at 100 Jensen Avenue. Admission is $10 at the door and the presentation is open to anybody interested in it. The presentation is sponsored by VIU ElderCollege as a Saturday Speaker event.

According to a news release issued by VIU ElderCollege, members of the audience are invited to meet Brooks-Wilson to continue the discussion at a no-host lunch at a local restaurant after the presentation.

If you’re a super senior or centenarian interested in taking part in the study please contact 604-675-8151 or e-mail rthomas@bcgsc.ca.

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