Healthy Beginnings

Embrace Healthy Aging and Avoid Those Nips and Tucks, Naturally

Healthy aging. In 1948 the World Health Organization de ned health as “a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.” Being in an optimal state of health is something we have to work toward and maintain. As we age, we have to be flexible and learn to change our routines in order to maintain a state of health throughout the various stages of our lives. The same practices that kept us healthy in our twenties and thirties will most likely not work when we get into our forties, fifties and beyond. To understand what will work, we must pay attention and practice mindfulness. Maintaining our health requires that we adapt as the days and years go by.

Instead of working toward an optimal state of health, our society seems to be obsessed with reversing aging, a concept that is actually not possible. A report by BBC researchers titled “Anti-Aging Products and Services: The Global Market,” states, “the global market for anti-aging products and services is expected to grow from $281.6 billion in 2015 to $331.3 billion in 2020.” This number includes everything from topical creams to plastic surgery. All for something that is not possible, age reversal.

Sure, we can tuck this and nip that and use creams to keep the skin hydrated, but in the end we all have the same fate, we age. So, perhaps instead of trying to avoid an unavoidable fate, we can instead embrace it. Here are some tips you can try that will contribute to a more wonderful aging experience.

1. Keep your attitude positive. If you think of your age as a means to wisdom and find excitement in gaining that wisdom, then you will have a much better experience with the aging process.

2. Pay attention to your diet. The only thing medical professionals seem to be able to agree on these days is that everyone needs to eat more vegetables. Whether you follow a paleo or vegetarian diet, almost everyone needs to increase their intake of vegetables, especially vegetables rich in color, low in carbohydrates and high in fiber along with a decrease in the amount of meat and sugar in the diet. Doing this will decrease the amount of advanced glycation end products, which actually accelerate aging.

3. Exercise regularly. Muscle is lost rapidly as we age, but exercise, and resistance exercise in particular, can help increase mass and strength well into the golden years. Plus, regular exercise can decrease the chances of getting Alzheimer’s disease by 25 percent.

4. Stay social. According to a study published in PLOS Medicine, those with strong social ties were shown to have a 50 percent higher chance of living longer than those with insufficient relationships.

5. Get regular sleep. The National Sleep Foundation recommends 7-9 hours of sleep per night. Not only does regular sleep help reduce the risk of obesity, heart disease and diabetes, it also releases a growth hormone that helps keep the skin healthy by restoring collagen and elastin, which are the essential building blocks of young healthy skin.

Lisa Cook is a Carson City native, she has been practicing yoga and meditation for 13 years and teaching for 6 years. She is the former layout designer for Well Being Journal and has recently joined The Change Place as their Director of Operations. She also teaches yoga, meditation and mat Pilates. She is currently enrolled in the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and will soon be offering integrative nutrition health coaching services at The Change Place. For more information, call 775-283-0699 or email lcook@thechangeplace.net.