Don’t fret about getting older. It’s far better than the alternative, especially when you realize that it doesn’t have to mean getting weak and frail. In Oceanside, CA, my clients don’t worry about age, they know it’s just a number. The true test is how good you feel and how much you enjoy life. One thing that will keep you feeling great and looking good is eating healthy and regular workouts. Unless there’s a magic pill that can turn back the hands of time, a healthy lifestyle is the best thing yet to maintain strength and agility.
Your muscle mass decreases as you age.
As you get older, muscles get older too and begin to shrink, losing mass in the process. If you spend most of your time sitting, it makes that process go faster. Response time slows and fluid in the tendons decrease making you feel stiffer. Even your metabolism slows. Of course, you can continue sitting and allow all that to happen or you can take up the gauntlet and fight back. It’s not vain to want to stay fitter and move more fluidly. It’s actually kind to those around you. You’ll be able to live healthier, with fewer or less severe health problems and be active longer.
Studies show that regular exercise can slow and even reverse the signs of aging.
One study had 130 participants who were active in cycling, 75 of them were age 57 to 80 and 55 were 20 to 36. The study showed that there was no loss of muscle mass and strength, no increase in body fat or rise in cholesterol levels, while testosterone levels were high even in later years. The immune system remained viable with no signs of aging. Another study showed that a combination of strength training and HIIT—high intensity interval training—increased mitochondrial activity. That’s the cellular activity that keeps your body younger at a cellular level. The biggest change came to those in the group 65 to 80 where 69 percent increase in mitochondrial ability.
What you eat makes a huge difference.
You can add to that youthful feeling and appearance by eating healthy. What you eat can slow or accelerate aging. Extra sugar in your diet certainly accelerates the aging process advanced glycation end products—known as AGES—by combining with skin collagen—skin protein that keeps it firm. Cut out drying alcohol that adds toxins to your system. Charred meat and salt also age you. Processed foods, trans fats and sugary drinks—especially colas (both diet and regular) are also on the “no-no” list. Increasing healthy carbs like fruits and vegetables, eating healthy fats like avocados and adding lean protein will help you look and feel younger.
- Adding herbs to your diet can boost nutrition levels and provide more building blocks to keep your body young, but won’t add extra calories.
- The type of vegetable you eat is important. For instance, switching in spinach for iceberg lettuce in salads can protect you from dementia and Alzheimer’s.
- One animal study showed that exercise improved stem cells quality and their functioning. Many studies have showed that improved functioning and amount of stem cells can turn back the clock.
- Moving at least five minutes every hour also helps keep you healthier, even if you already workout regularly. Choose to move more often and move faster. One study shows that people who walk faster live longer.