Aging is inevitable but aging well is not. The good news is that you have more control over that than your genetics does. It is also never too late to do something about how you age. Living full of vitality until the end of your life is much more preferable than lingering for 10-20 years—getting sick and frail. There are some fairly simple things that you can do in order to enhance the quality of your life.
Everyone knows that they need to exercise in order to lose weight but you may not think about it as helping you to age more gracefully. When you get regular exercise it helps your heart and lungs while also helping your musculoskeletal system. When you strengthen your bones and muscles this helps to prevent falls and fractures plus it enhances your overall mobility. You are able to get up and move around much easier. Regular exercise also helps your brain to stay younger and your cardiovascular system to stay in shape. Many people give up on exercise if they don’t lose weight fast enough. Refocus your goal of exercise as a way to live a vital life not just as a means to lose weight. Get at least 150 minutes of exercise a week–that is easy for the majority of people.
A healthy diet is another thing people thing about as a means to lose weight. A healthy diet gives your body the nutrients that it needs in order to build healthy bones and muscles, to keep your heart functioning well, to improve your mental clarity, and to give you energy; among other things. A healthy diet is one that focuses on protein and vegetables. Fruit is ok but limit your intake to one or two per day. Live by the 90/10 rule: 90% of what you eat should be for your health and it is ok to have 10% of what you eat be a little more “fun”. Whole foods that are organic are the best source of nutrition in your 90%.
Getting adequate sleep is critical to feeling energetic and rejuvenating your body. You should get enough sleep that you wake up refreshed. Keep your bedroom dark, quiet and cool. Turn off the TV and computer at least an hour before your bedtime. If you have trouble falling asleep melatonin, yoga stretches, and Epsom salt baths are wonderful natural things you can do to help you sleep better. Better sleep means better aging.
There are people who say that your hormones should decline as you age but there is also a school of thought that believes you age because your hormones decline. Both men and women can benefit from bio-identical hormone balancing to help them live optimally and age more gracefully. Balancing your hormones (this includes Progesterone, Estrogen, Testosterone, and Thyroid) helps you to feel stronger and more vital, think clearer, and prevents overall deterioration of your health. Bio-identical hlormone balancing is not just for women with hot flashes–it is for men and women who want to age well.
Take control of your aging process and control the things that you can. There are other things that you can do but the four things I mentioned above are often overlooked and yet fairly easy to do. The little things you do each day do add up. If you want to live a full and vital life it starts with a decision to make some changes towards that goal.