We can grow old with beauty and grace. Slowing down the aging process is easily possible by lowering our exposure to causes of cell destructive processes. And poor choices. We all know that all the cells of the body die off and are replaced regularly. However, when our food and lifestyle choices cause the cells to die outside of their own order, then the cells DNA is changed. That change over time can lead to strange and erratic new cells, which leads to illness and disease. It’s really that simple.
Many of our choices relate to our desire for ease and convenience, which my Mom was always suspicious of. (I was talking with a friend recently about how Mom never trusted convenience items and instant foods (She said “What?, how hard is it to boil a potato to make mashed potatoes”, and, “What is tanggggg anyway?” Or, when I offered to buy her a microwave oven to replace the toaster oven that conked out, she said ” not in MY house!!!”) So, needless to say, at age eighty-nine, she was still able to walk around the block every morning, and wanted to work in the back yard. )
We really can slow the aging process and help stop heart disease, cancer, and diabetes in this country, today, and actually live better, simply by the choices we make. Here are some for your consideration. This list is not at all complete, but will give you something to think about.
Certain foods and behaviors attack the body at the cellular level, damaging the DNA. We can limit our exposure to this type of destruction by avoiding processed foods, charred foods, over indulgence in meats and sweets, trans-fats, cigarette smoke and alcoholic drinks.
Choosing more Organic fruits and vegetables, buying close to home – in season, or, growing some of our favorites, will limit our exposure to pesticides and herbicides. Choosing kosher meats, cage free chickens and wild caught fish, will help you tremendously.
Inflammation is a major cause in many chronic diseases, including cancer, diabetes, heart disease, and Alzheimer’s. Choose the Mediterranean-style diet.
Some of the best anti-inflammatory foods also are high in Anti-oxidants, such as turmeric, mustard, dark chocolate, grapes and greens. Adding exercise to the mix, is also a great way to lower inflammation.
What happens when we mix sugar with protein and fats? It forms glycated molecules which promote premature aging. Avoid this ‘free radical’ accelerant by limiting high sugar foods, and lowering the heat in cooking. (We see that eating more raw foods, is to our benefit, more and more).
When we talk about the principals of health, stress management, rest, and hydration, can not be over looked. If you want to slow the aging process, bathe your cells in plenty of water (inside and out). Drink water all day. Half your bodies weight in ounces of water, per day, is the new standard.
Get the rest you need. Not just sleep at night, but also some relaxing down time, some play time, some fun time, in your days.
That said, understand the need to find ways to manage the stress we all face day to day. Stress releases many hormones that send us into the fight-flight response. Chronically elevated cortisol levels, not only causes you to look older than your years, but can cause weight gain and hinder weight loss. Also causing injury to every area and system in the body, stress wears on the heart, brain, bones and digestive systems.
Great ways to manage stress include hobbies, volunteering, listening to music, meditation, exercise, gardening, laughter, and keeping a gratitude journal. Do what works for you, something you enjoy. Get started today changing your life.