​UAE residents' lifespan increases by 2.2 years in longevity trials

An expert says that the biggest cause of death is not cancer or heart disease, it is ageing

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Waheed Abbas

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Published: Mon 25 Dec 2023, 4:56 PM

Last updated: Mon 25 Dec 2023, 10:39 PM

The average life expectancy of more than 100 UAE residents, who took part in the first phase of the longevity trial, increased by an average of 2.2 years following over 90-day trials, results showed.

Healthcare group PureHealth launched the Longevity 1.0 trials in October last year with an aim to add up to 25 additional years to the resident’s average life expectancy over the next 50 years.

During Longevity 1.0, participants’ lifespans increased due to improved biomarkers, which was achieved through exercise and a healthier diet, under clinical supervision. At the start of the trial, lab results showed 9 participants were at risk of diabetes. After 90 days, just 3 participants were classified as at risk. The level of physical activity among participants increased by 25 per cent, with the most active group losing an average of 3.5kg.

The UAE’s largest integrated healthcare platform’s campaign was launched to increase residents’ life expectancy to 101 years through future concepts such as personalised smart coach, and various technologies such as digital twins and artificial intelligence.

Dr Asma Al Mannai, executive director of the Research and Innovation Centre at the Department of Health in Abu Dhabi, said such initiatives confirm the distinguished position that Abu Dhabi has established on the global healthcare map as an incubator for innovation in life sciences.

Farhan Malik, managing director of PureHealth, has said that the biggest cause of death is not cancer, heart disease or any other ailment, it is ageing. “We need to look at ageing as an epidemic. When we talk about longevity, we don’t just mean increasing life spans, but health spans – making people healthier for longer,” he said earlier.

Longevity 2.0

In the UAE, life expectancy is currently around 76 years and PureHealth aims to increase it by 25 years to 101 years.

According to Worldometers, the average life expectancy in the Emirates is 80.46 years in 2023.

Globally, people in Hong Kong, Macao, Japan, Switzerland and Singapore enjoy the highest life expectancy ranging between 85.83 years to 84.27 years. Women, on average, have a higher life expectancy than men globally.

The Abu Dhabi-based group launched Longevity 2.0 trials in 2023, with more than 3,000 participants joining the campaign for happier, healthier and longer lives.

The aim is to combat common age-related diseases and extend the period of life spent in good health. Improving essential biomarkers that impact body composition, functional fitness, cardiovascular fitness, and well-being, can enhance longevity. To improve biomarkers, people can make healthier lifestyle choices such as eating better, exercising more and avoiding smoking.

Dr Erik Koornneef, director of research and innovation at PureHealth, said longevity 2.0 reflects the remarkable strides it is making towards transforming Abu Dhabi into a blue zone city, which are areas where people live longer compared to the global average.

Following the average improvement of 26 months in the biological age of most participants, the company is confident the second phase of the longevity trial will continue to bring success.

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