Aging affects all of us in different ways. Some of us lose our eyesight, others our hearing. Loss of taste is common and usually accompanies a loss of smell. We don’t venture out into the sun as much, so our vitamin D levels decline. We either don’t or can’t exercise as frequently. Some of us struggle with depression or cognitive decline, while others battle falls and urinary incontinence. It is not always pretty. Yet aging is a natural and inevitable process we experience. Ideally, we want to do so with more grace and less suffering. In this blog post, we will discuss tips and strategies to slow the effects of aging, maintain youthful-looking skin and improve fitness.
1. Stay hydrated
Get in the habit of drinking six to eight glasses of water per day. Try adding a slice of orange, lemon or another fruit to naturally sweeten the taste. Avoid sugary beverages like soda or juice.
2. Get enough sleep
Sleep is crucial for health and well-being. It also prevents premature aging. Try to develop good bedtime habits: don’t watch TV shows late at night that are scary or highly stimulating, which, unfortunately, also includes the news these days. Consider a warm bath, some herbal chamomile tea or a good book before bed. Keep your bedroom dark and cool.
3. Protect your skin from the sun
UV light rays can cause wrinkles, age spots, skin cancer and skin damage. Wear protective clothing, such as a wide-brimmed hat or long-sleeved shirt, or use a good sun-blocking lotion.
4. Eat a healthful diet
This is especially important. Get enough protein, plenty of fruit and vegetables, and avoid processed and sugary foods, which contribute to inflammation, aging and illness. Incorporate healthy fats, such as nuts, nut butter, olive oil and avocados. Make sure you are getting enough fiber too.
5. Use the right supplements
Most one-a-day multivitamins you find at the store are not well-absorbed, are excreted undigested and use cheap ingredients. Instead, consider a high-grade multivitamin, multimineral or protein powder vetted by your doctor. Powder forms can be mixed into a healthy and filling smoothie that includes leafy greens; frozen, organic berries and cherries; nut, coconut or oat milk; and even fiber. Consider additional supplementation with vitamin D, a methylated vitamin
B complex, zinc, selenium and fish oil.
6. Exercise regularly
Exercise has proven benefits for your heart, lungs, bones, mood and more. Yet exercising as we get older becomes harder. Try taking a walk with a friend, playing with your grandkids or even investing in a personal trainer.
7. Manage stress
Often easier said than done, but first examine where your
stress is coming from.
Then, decide how you can either fix the source or, if you can’t, how to change your response to it. Practice relaxation techniques, learn yoga or tai chi (the latter has been shown to prevent falls), read, listen to music, or spend time with friends or family. Remember that loneliness is
associated with a higher incidence of age-related problems.
Remember that you do have some power over the rate at which you age, and you
definitely have power over your attitude toward aging. This is a normal process we must go through. If you’re ready to take control of your health, let our team at Age Management of West Michigan help.