May 2, 2024

In the next few years, the fields of aesthetic medicine and longevity research will merge, transforming our clinical practice; a lot of aesthetic clinicians are going to move slowly towards something that is a thousand times bigger than medical aesthetics alone. We will continue to practice aesthetics – treating patients with cosmetic interventions – but it will be a small part of what we do every single day in the clinic, asserts Dr Tim Pearce; aesthetic practice is changing, and longevity is the bigger future.

In this blog, we give you a teaser to a great podcast where Dr Tim is joined by scientist and Founder of Nuchido, Dr Nichola Conlon. They discuss her background research in bioavailability, cellular ageing, and drug development and how she has become a longevity expert and entrepreneur. They also explore the revelation that it IS possible to reverse our biological age, improving our health span in line with our lifespan, and why many people are sceptical to believe it.

If you want to learn how to introduce longevity into your clinic and become an anti-ageing specialist but feel overwhelmed by conflicting information, Dr Tim will be hosting a webinar with Dr Nichola Conlon on the 28th May 2024. The aim is to help aesthetic clinicians get started in longevity, whether you are a beginner or an advanced practitioner.

Sign up to be notified when the webinar registration goes live.

Combining aesthetics and longevity is a proactive approach to ageing

Dr Nichola’s expertise lies in the cellular mechanisms of ageing – what is happening on the inside of the body to cause ageing in our cells. She explains that despite often thinking about ageing on the outside – particularly related to aesthetics and the effects on the skin – ageing is not merely a surface-level concern but a process that unfolds within our cells, shaping our entire biological landscape.

During her career path, she started in academic laboratories with a PhD in bioavailability – how orally administered nutrients, supplements, and drugs are absorbed in the gut, and how they spread around the body and into cells to allow them to perform their function. Dr Nichola then moved into drug development, including pipeline work on cancer medications, but an untapped potential to research and study drugs to slow ageing was unveiled to her at a time when the field of longevity science was emerging.

Unfortunately, she soon became frustrated with how pharmaceutical companies operate, noting,

“I had gone into the world of drug development thinking that we could get this science out to help people, but the reality is that drug development takes a very long time – about 10 years minimum to get a drug to market. This meant that all this cool stuff we were working on was not going to benefit anyone anytime soon.”

“Similarly, we would send hundreds of different molecules to our laboratories to be screened to see if they had the anticipated effect, and quite often when we received the report back, the ones that worked well were plant-based or naturally derived molecules. Unfortunately, if it is a known molecule a drug company can find it very difficult to patent and own, and if they cannot patent and own a molecule, they will not invest the hundreds of millions into the development needed.”

anti-ageing proceduresWeighing up the struggle between commercial and ethical decisions led Dr Nichola to leave the world of drug development in 2017 and found her company Nuchido Laboratories to proactively explore and develop accessible products to slow ageing (and prevent age-related diseases) using some of the efficacious, natural molecules that were of little interest to pharmaceutical companies.

Like Dr Tim, who continues to practice as a general practitioner, Dr Nichola has an inherent desire to make a tangible difference in people’s lives with accessible and effective interventions – this creates the opportunity to use both longevity science and aesthetic medical treatments as a proactive approach to ageing for patients.

Read more about his personal journey and why Dr Tim is moving on from aesthetics and embracing longevity.

Ageing as a disease

Longevity science is reframing our approach to healthcare in an environment where ageing is still not regarded as a disease by most authorities. Rather than treating individual diseases in isolation, science is advocating the targeting of ageing itself – the common denominator or co-morbidity underlying many age-related ailments. By addressing ageing at its core, we can potentially mitigate the onset and progression of various chronic diseases because they are symptomatic of ageing, from cancer to cardiovascular issues and neurological decline.

Dr Nichola pointed out,

“We are constantly told that we do things that are bad for our health, drinking, smoking, eating the wrong diet, or not exercising; although they are all risk factors for common diseases, putting on years (ageing) is by far the worst thing that you can do for your health.”

If the biggest risk factor or root cause of disease is ageing, then why not target the root cause; this is precisely the field of longevity research.

Ageing is also exponential; it is not gradual. Ageing speeds up and the consequences of ageing get worse the older we get with the incidence of common diseases increasing significantly after about 50 years old.

We are beginning to realise that ageing is not an inevitable decline but a modifiable process – as we maintain our cars with regular MOTs, preventative measures like changing oils and liquids, and noting when warnings appear on the dashboard, so too can we nurture our bodies to stave off the ravages of time and get ahead of diseases, rather than just waiting for something to ‘break’.

This new approach is about shifting our mindset from reactive healthcare to proactive wellness and holistic well-being, alongside a future where beauty and vitality converge in harmony – a journey that begins with understanding the science of ageing, whilst at the same time democratising it to make it accessible and comprehensible to all, including patients.

By empowering individuals with the tools to understand and influence their own ageing process, we pave the way for a healthier, more vibrant future for the population, where we can truly redefine what it means to ‘grow old age gracefully’.

What is ageing?

Ageing is not a simple process of wear and tear. In the podcast, Dr Nichola explains the connection between evolution and ageing.

Our bodies are vessels that have been designed by evolution to safeguard our DNA – the blueprint of life – ensuring its passage to the next generation. However, throughout life, our DNA is under continuous assault from things that are trying to damage it, whether it is the simple act of breathing to the damaging rays of the sun, or our diet and exercise choices. In response, our bodies deploy sophisticated repair mechanisms to maintain DNA health, albeit at a considerable metabolic cost because they require a lot of energy resources.

aesthetics worshipAs we progress beyond childbearing age (and our evolutionary purpose), our bodies face the dilemma of whether to allocate precious energy and resources towards sustaining these repair mechanisms or conserve energy for other functions. It, therefore, dials back on a few things, and we see a gradual accumulation of cellular damage and visible signs of ageing, alongside declining health, and vitality.

In the science of longevity, this is known as the Disposable Soma Theory of Ageing, which describes how our bodies prioritise reproductive success over long-term health – the body or soma is disposable once it has done its job of passing on the genes and it no longer matters about maintaining a healthy status.

Against this evolutionary backdrop, our modern lifestyle, especially in developed countries, has meant that the human lifespan has doubled thanks to advancements in sanitation, healthcare, and medicine. Still, our biology has yet to catch up – evolution did not intend for us to live this long.

The ethics of biohacking

The problem for modern humans is that we now have a discrepancy between our lifespan, the number of years that we will live, and our health span which is more important because our health span is the proportion of our lifespan that we will live in good health.

Looking at statistical data, Dr Nichola explains that for a woman in the UK, the average life expectancy or lifespan is 83 years, but the health span is only expected to be 64 years, meaning almost a quarter of life is spent in poor health, suffering from multiple chronic diseases.

Yet, when she shares with others the new and exciting research, she has been working on for a decade that could help people to essentially ‘not age’, many are shocked and question why we would want to live longer, but she explains that it is not just about making people live longer but it is about making people live healthier for longer. Sadly, many still struggle with the concept, regarding ageing as an unpleasant inevitability that we just need to accept.

The emergence of controversial figures like Bryan Johnson, emblematic of the biohacking movement, also highlights the spectrum of responses to the quest for longevity. While some view extreme measures sceptically, or even as selfish, others recognise the potential for transformative change.

This also emphasises the importance of reframing the discussion around longevity, shifting from a narrative of trying to avoid something bad (like a chronic disease) or to live until you are 200, to one of empowerment and self-nurturance to live healthier for longer, enriching quality of life, and giving purpose, fulfilment, and vitality to our later years.

Dr Nichola explains that we should compare ageing to cancer. Just as cancer was once seen as inevitable, with no known medical interventions or cures available, yet now actively researched and often expected to be treated with positive outcomes; the study and treatment of ageing present a similar opportunity with something of an ethical imperative to explore strategies to mitigate its effect on chronic disease and to enhance quality of life.

Longevity aesthetics futureThis blog is designed to give you an insight into this exciting conversation – please watch the full podcast with Dr Tim and Dr Nichola hosted below. They invite you to learn more about what lies ahead as science, aesthetics and longevity converge to proactively reverse our patients’ biological age.

If you want to be involved in the first wave of learning about longevity, sign up to be part of the revolution. Remember, you can find Dr Tim Pearce on Instagram and follow Dr Nichola Conlon on Instagram.

Aesthetics Mastery Show

We CAN reverse our biological age, but people don’t want to believe us!

Dr Tim meets Dr Nichola in the latest Aesthetics Mastery Show. Their discussion dives deep into Dr Nichola’s background in cellular aging and drug development to understand how she has become a longevity expert and entrepreneur. Tim uncovers why she ditched drug development and reveals the crazy truths about anti aging science. They also discuss the revelation that it IT IS possible to reverse our biological age but why so many people out there are sceptical to believe it.

Watch the full Aesthetics Mastery Show here.

The video has a number of comments from subscribers and viewers, both practitioners and clients, including:

@shannonkosko2243

“Thank you for the great video! I can’t wait for more!!!”

@stuartist

“Very interesting episode! Can you look into Khavinson’s peptide bioregulators on a future podcast? Some believe they help with health and longevity.”

@user-pk3qm6cy2v

“Can’t wait for such an exciting new revolution if that’s the right word”

@lumieremedispa6051

“So pleased to hear about this from you. I have been following this for the last 10 years but too afraid to look into introducing into practice. We are trialling an NAD supplement currently with outstanding effects and will be introducing to patients soon. Thanks for bringing it to the forefront!”

@benwright4510

“I really feel that if people understand ‘health span’, they will want to be a part of age reversal medicine. I’m a massive fan, as well as a customer of Dr Conlons’, using her Nuchido Time + which switches biological pathways back on, that I didn’t know had turned off or dialled down. Experiencing how it feels, as these pathways are restoring themselves is incredibly relieving. Cognitively and physically, the same tasks are becoming easier to do because my physiological function is more effective. My health and therefore span of health is being extended. This, more than just living longer is critical in enjoying life. Why would you want to spend more time than you need in suffering or even dis-function when you could be happier and more physiologically self-efficient?”

See feedback and comments from practitioners and clients on our YouTube channel – feel free to join the debate!

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Dr Tim Pearce eLearning

Dr Tim Pearce MBChB BSc (Hons) MRCGP founded his eLearning concept in 2016 in order to provide readily accessible BOTOX® and dermal filler online courses for fellow Medical Aesthetics practitioners. His objective was to raise standards within the industry – a principle which remains just as relevant today.

Our exclusive video-led courses are designed to build confidence, knowledge and technique at every stage, working from foundation level to advanced treatments and management of complications.

Thousands of delegates have benefited from the courses and we’re highly rated on Trustpilot. For more information or to discuss which course is right for you, please get in touch with our friendly team.

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