Actually, the NY Times ran several interesting articles on related subjects. To summarize grossly, first was that genes are poor predictors of health outcomes. Identical twins ended up with vastly different life outcomes, sometimes as dying as early as 40 years apart. Second was that income had relatively little impact on longevity. The second longest lived Americans are poor upper Midwesterners (think Minnesota). Third, which was published today, was that education was the best predictor of health, far more important that income or genes.
Fourth, which I found most interesting, was that the reason we age is that the body turns off the ability to replicate cells over time to prevent cancerous mutations. When young, the probability of a cell replication causing a cancerous mutation is low but as these replications accumulate over time, the probability goes up (kinda like a Xerox of a xerox of a xerox). They proved this by using a protein to restore the cell replication process to that of a young rat. Within some short period of time, all the rats who had the cell replication of young rats died of cancer. In other words, we age because we have to to avoid cancer. This is too bad because any eventual Fountain of Youth will also have to come with a potent anti-cancer treatment. I have always been fascinated (and having an increasingly vested interest) in the question of why we age. Tortoises live hundreds of years, some trees live for more than a thousand years and are usually the victim not of disease but of some accident -- why do humans get only their fourscore and ten? Now we have a pretty good idea. Our bodies contain the seeds of their own destruction.