We are faced with decisions throughout our lives, and sometimes we don’t see the fruit of those decisions until later on in life. Unless we were taught or came upon healthy aging tips in our younger days, we often end up in ‘eraser’ mode. Erase those lines! … and those spots! Erase those inches and saggy skin! You get it… and if you’re noticing these things, fret not! You’re not alone… and it’s never too late to make some positive changes. Again, these keys are being presented, but it’s your decision. Choose life!
10 Keys To Healthy Aging:
1. Physical Activity
The need for exercise does not decrease with age. Think of your body as an automobile; the first few years are virtually trouble free, with only basic maintenance necessary. However, as you accumulate mileage, wear and tear occur and more maintenance is needed. Think of bone loss, reduced hormone levels and the reduced ability to recuperate, as aging factors that can be remedied with a good dose of exercise. Be sure to include both cardiovascular and resistance exercise into your program, keeping the heart, bones, brain and muscles strong. Fifteen minutes a day doing something you enjoy is all it takes. You can take a look >>>here<<< for exercise info.
Older adults require as much sleep as toddlers, and yet the statistics show this is rarely the case. And we certainly know how our sleep is disturbed during menopause, right ladies? Lack of sleep is often the reason for depression and anxiety at this time in our lives. And if that isn’t enough, snoring can become an issue also. Sleep stimulates the release of growth hormone, which decreases as we age. According to an article by Debra Ronco in How Stuff Works Health, “Moving into our late 60s and beyond, our skin becomes less elastic. Our joints and bones may become brittle. Medical conditions like heart disease or cancer become more likely as our bodies are unable to repair themselves the way they used to. At this point, the levels of HGH in our bodies are only one-fifth or less of what they were during youth.” As you can see, sleep plays an important part.
3. Practice Prevention
We just learned that as we age, the need for preventative medical treatment increases. However, fewer older adults visit the doctor preventatively. Many falls, injuries and fractures of the elderly can be avoided by attending regularly scheduled clinic visits, during which advance preventative directives are issued. At a minimum, a semi-annual checkup is warranted, with increased frequency if suffering from pre-existing conditions.
4. Have Sex!
First off, don’t be misled by the myth that sex is unimportant once you hit the golden years. Sex is in fact one of the strongest mood elevators, anti-depressants and stress relievers known to man; so, in the words of Marvin Gaye, “Let’s get it on!” Of course, don’t go all crazy and injure yourself during this healthy practice, but keep those hormones active and all the relative parts working well! Sexual activity is also a good cardiovascular workout, and everyone knows cardio is good for you!
5. Ditch Bad Habits
Drinking excessive alcohol is very detrimental to the healthy aging process, and it’s even worse when coupled with smoking. Smoking is notorious for accelerating aging, deterioration of skin, increasing cancer risk, inciting cardiac episodes, and generally worsening your quality of life. Make a conscious effort to kick those bad habits before they lead you to an early grave. >>>QUIT SMOKING<<< or at least begin by >>>VAPING<<< (it has been shown to help people quit).
6. Healthy Eating
Diets high in refined and processed sugars, friend foods and saturated fats pave the way to heart disease, diabetes, and even cancer. We have a wealth of information on this subject today. The general rule of thumb is to eat as many whole foods as possible. Whole foods are unprocessed and unrefined, and as close to its natural form as possible i.e. fruits, vegetables, herbs, etc.
Studies show that people in the later years who have formed a social circle experience greater feelings of well-being. There are many ways to stay involved in this world, and you owe it to yourself to seek them out. Isolation is a major factor in unhealthy aging. Children, grandchildren, friends, the poor and needy, can all use the life skills we’ve developed throughout the years. Sharing them will keep us young!
8. Meditation/Spiritual Practice
An article by Lewis Richmond in the Huffington Post states,”Researchers have found three factors that reliably increase happiness as we grow older — gratitude, generosity and reframing (seeing your situation from a more positive perspective).” Letting things go (forgiveness), being thankful, and giving of ourselves and our resources, can play a major role in our healthy aging quest.
9. Exercise Your Brain
All of the above practices will have an excellent effect on your brain if you choose to exercise them. There are many ways to exercise your brain including reading, taking a class, listening to music, doing puzzles, teaching, volunteering etc. The key to great brain health is the same as the keys to healthy aging. If you do all the above, chances are you’ll carry a healthy brain through the golden years.
10. Purpose To Thrive!
In conclusion, so many things can drag us down into the pit of despair, but we have the power to say, “NO!” Apply the 10 keys to healthy aging and choose to thrive, even if you find yourself on a road you didn’t choose. You can still choose to rise above, and be a shining example of healthy aging! SO….