U.S. doctors online nowAsk doctors free
A 40-year-old member asked:

How do lifestyle and genetics determine longevity?

2 doctor answers5 doctors weighed in
Dr. Mary Ann Block
A Verified Doctoranswered
33 years experience
Both important: If your family lived a long, healthy life you have a good chance of doing so as well. However, if your lifestyle includes things like smoking, drinking too much, obesity and stress, the benefit of having good genes could be eliminated. The opposite is try too. A healthy lifestyle can help offset poor genes.
Dr. Randy Baker
Holistic Medicine 41 years experience
Both important but..: Both genetics & lifestyle are important factors in longevity but we are learning that lifestyle plays the larger role.This is because lifestyle affects genetic expression via epigenetics.We have 2 copies of each gene. Often one is more functional than the other & lifestyle (including mental attitude) affects which copy of the gene is expressed more. So genes influence but don't determine our fate!

Similar questions

A 47-year-old member asked:

Is longevity influenced more by lifestyle or by genetics?

1 doctor answer1 doctor weighed in
Dr. Steven Charlap
Holistic Medicine 38 years experience
Environment : Environmental factors such as lifestyle and exposures are about 60% of the result, genetics about up to 30%, and doctors account for about 10% based on identical twin and other longevity studies.
Last updated May 6, 2018


Content on HealthTap (including answers) should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment, and interactions on HealthTap do not create a doctor-patient relationship. Never disregard or delay professional medical advice in person because of anything on HealthTap. Call your doctor or 911 if you think you may have a medical emergency.