Speaker Bio & Presentations

Kara Fitzgerald New Headshot 1

Special Speaker

Dr. Kara Fitzgerald

Kara Fitzgerald, ND, IFMCP, is the first-ever recipient of the Emerging Leadership Award from the Personalized Lifestyle Medicine Institute in recognition of her work on DNA methylation. She received her doctorate in naturopathic medicine from the National University of Natural Medicine, she lectures globally on functional medicine, is on the faculty at the Institute for Functional Medicine (IFM), and is an IFM Certified Practitioner with a clinical practice in Newtown, Connecticut. She runs a Functional Medicine Clinic Immersion program for professionals and hosts the podcast New Frontiers in Functional Medicine. Dr. Fitzgerald is also actively engaged in clinical research on the DNA methylome using a diet and lifestyle intervention developed in her practice. Her first study was published in the journal Aging. She has published a consumer book, Younger You, and an application-based program, 3YY, based on the study. She lives with her daughter in Connecticut.

Presentations & Workshops

Effects of a Diet & Lifestyle Intervention on Biological Aging

The regulation of the human genome by the epigenome is now regarded as a cornerstone, heritable, physiologic process, playing a key role in phenotypic expression of health and disease. DNA methylation is a well-researched, primary epigenetic process that has been used to establish biological age assessments, namely DNA methylation “clocks,” which act as possible surrogate markers of age-related morbidity and mortality risk.  

The potential for reversing biological aging using these clocks is just beginning to be explored. Yet emerging research suggests that it is possible to do just that. This has profound implications for the growing health-related economic and social challenges of our rapidly aging population. It has been proposed, using the Future Elderly Model, that delaying aging even modestly by 2.2 years, could save $7 trillion over the next 50 years. 

This presentation will cover:

  • The state of the research on DNA methylation and biological age reversal 
  • Dietary and lifestyle interventions that have been shown, in both animals and humans, to favorably impact DNA methylation and biological age
  • Polyphenols with adaptogenic effects on DNA methylation
  • The intersection between metabolic and genomic methylation pathways and why we need to be judicious in our use of high dose methyl donor supplements
  • Biological embedding and the epigenetic impact of trauma over generations

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