Healthy Aging

Dr. Stephen Anton is the next guest speaker in the IHMC Ocala lecture series.

While growing up, Dr. Stephen Anton enjoyed playing outdoors amid the pines and lakes of his Odessa hometown, northwest of Tampa, where his father, a psychologist, and his mother, a mental health counselor, sparked his interest in mind and body health. 

Anton later earned his doctorate in clinical and health psychology at the University of Florida, where he is now a tenured professor.

On February 23rd, Anton will speak about Lifestyle Approaches for Cellular Health at the Institute of Human and Machine Cognition (IHMC) in Ocala, sharing tips on how the frequency and content of our meals, as well as our exercise habits, can lengthen or shorten our lives.  

How did Anton, 47, get inspired to focus on aging? 

Dr. Stephen Anton

“I was on my postdoctoral fellowship and I was working in Baton Rouge and at the Pennington Biomedical Research Center working on a study called ‘The Calorie Trial,’ the first study to look at the effects of calorie restriction on biomarkers of aging in humans,” Anton shares. “Up until that point, I’d thought of calorie restriction for weight loss and not necessarily for influencing longevity. So, that study kind of opened my eyes to this connection between our dietary intake, our metabolism and potentially our rate of aging.”

The Ocala lecture, he said, will focus on
how multiple aspects of our lifestyle can affect our health through cellular processes that lead to growth, repair and resilience. 

“I’ll cover some different dietary approaches, the role that fasting may have and then integrate information on other habits and/or factors that may influence the cellular process called hormesis, which is how our cells essentially become stronger through temporary stress,” he explains. “I’ll also talk about exercise, heat and cold exposure, and discuss what we’ve learned about these processes and how they may be key to long-term health.”

In 2015, Anton was recognized as a Master Mentor by UF’s Mentor Academy. In 2017, he was awarded a UF Term Professorship, a distinction awarded to top professors. He is single and says he likes living in Gainesville. 

“I try to practice what I preach,” he notes. “I engage in intermittent fasting, make healthy dietary choices, get good sleep and exercise regularly, almost every day. I do weight training three or four times a week.” 

And what does he do for fun?  

“Specifically, I play ultimate Frisbee.” OS

The lecture, which will take place at 15 SE Osceola Ave., will begin with a reception at 5:30pm. To register to attend, go to

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