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Published On: Mon, Nov 16th, 2015

How Healthy Habits Can Help You Stay Younger

photo/ www.agrilicious.org/

photo/ www.agrilicious.org/

It’s always a good idea to have a youthful attitude. But you should still take practical steps to look after yourself. Cultivate a positive mental attitude, mental stimulation, and healthy habits.

A Positive Mental Attitude

One way to stay younger is maintaining a positive mental attitude. Take a positive view of things. Forgive those who upset you, and become more tolerant of things you cannot change. Positive attitudes result in positive emotions, and emotions affect the biochemistry of the body. When you feel upset, you secrete more cortisol, the stress hormone. 

When you have too much cortisol, it changes your entire body:

  • Your skin changes, with more bruises and purple stretch marks.
  • Your muscles become weaker. 
  • You have more mood swings, fluctuating between irritability, anxiety, and depression.
  • You gain weight in your face, chest, and abdomen, while your arms and legs remain slender. 
  • You have a flushed face, high blood pressure, and osteoporosis.

Mental Stimulation

What’s more, there is a lot of research to suggest mental stimulation slows the aging process. There are many traditional brain puzzles and online brain games to stimulate brain functions. 

One theory, called the cognitive reserve theory,“aims to explain why some people with Alzheimer’s pathology maintain normal lives until they die, while others show the severe symptoms associated with the disease. Lifelong experiences, stimulating activities, education and midlife occupation, as well as leisure activities in later life, can help build this cognitive reserve to protect us.”

9 Common Physiological Changes

You will experience many physiological changes as you age.

Here are 9 common changes that may occur:

  1. Your bones become thinner and brittle. Osteoporosis is a condition where bones are fragile and a fall can result in broken bones.
  2. Your heart becomes slightly enlarged, the heart walls thicker, and the heart rate slower.
  3. Your brain becomes less alert and it becomes harder to remember things.
  4. Your nervous system becomes less efficient, affecting your senses and slowing down your reflexes.
  5. Your senses become less acute. Vision becomes more blurred and hearing duller. You may not taste as much, nor do you smell things as keenly as before.
  6. Your digestive system does not work as well. It’s not uncommon to feel nausea, get stomach aches, or suffer from constipation.
  7. Your teeth and gums may cause you more problems. The enamel that protects teeth begins to decay and you become more susceptible to gum disease.
  8. Your skin begins to sag and wrinkle as it loses it elasticity.
  9. Your sex organs become less active. Women may have less vaginal lubrication while men may have erectile dysfunction.

5 Anti-aging Strategies

The good news is that many of the physiological changes are not inevitable. While science has not yet found a way to reverse aging, it has found many ways to slow it down.

You can stay healthy at any age.

  1. Cultivate a healthy routine. A good diet, plenty of water, enough rest, and regular exercise can keep the body healthy.
  • Exercising might include cardiovascular exercises, stretching, and strength-building.
  • A healthy diet consists of food that is low in unhealthy fats, high cholesterol. Avoid packaged foods, as these can be high in additives and preservatives. Eat high protein foods, high fiber foods, complex carbohydrates, and polyunsaturated fats.
  • Only drink filtered water. There are many effective filtration processes available. Avoid tap water because it can be high in fluoride, chlorine, and contaminants from rust in pipes.
  1. Visit a doctor and dentist for regular health checkups. Visit specialists when necessary rather than self-medicate. If, for example, you have a serious skin condition, see a dermatologist. It’s better to have a dermatologist recommend an eczema, dermatitis, or hemorrhoids product. You may not even need a prescription and could use some all-natural solutions. 
  2. Break bad habits like smoking or drinking. These only speed up the onset of serious health problems. Yes, some people, like the actor George Burns, have lived in good health smoking and drinking. But such people are unusual. It’s not worth experimenting to see if you have the same robust constitution.
  3. Improve your attitude. If you tend to grumble, complain or castigate others, now is the time to stop. Yes, people fall far short of your expectations. Yes, good customer service is not what it used to be. And yes, much better people should run for office. But by getting upset, you are only affecting your own well-being. It’s like drinking poison hoping the other person will drop dead.
  4. Stimulate your mind. Try out online brain games like Happy Neuron or Lumosity. According to an article on mental stimulation in Mempowered, a website for brain improvement, “A study of 469 people aged 75 and older found that those who participated at least twice weekly in reading, playing games (chess, checkers, backgammon or cards), playing musical instruments, and dancing were significantly less likely to develop dementia. Although the evidence on crossword puzzles was not quite statistically significant, those who did crossword puzzles four days a week had a much lower risk of dementia than those who did one puzzle a week.”
  5. Stay social. An active social life is important. Spend time with family and friends. Take part in community events. All these things can help you feel better. 

Aging Well

By maintaining a positive attitude and healthy habits, you can age gracefully, enjoying an alert mind, sharp senses and good health.

Author: Ravi Kumarr Gupta

 

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  1. 5 Reasons For the Regular Uptake of Grapefruit - The Global Dispatch says:

    […] Yes, grapefruit really does suppress your hunger pangs! Not to forget to mention many other health benefits too. One of the most sought for fruits in winters-the grapefruit can provide you with innumerable health benefits you might not even be aware of. The tangy and slightly bitter taste that entices your taste buds might not be appealing to many, but is certainly worth the health benefits it brings along. Healthy habits and diets help you stay younger and stronger. […]

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