Whether we age gracefully is influenced by many factors including our: genetics, attitude, stressors, environment, nutrition, lifestyle habits, immunity and sometimes just luck!
While some of these factors may be out of our control, there are certain lifestyle choices we can make to assist our bodies to age gracefully. Below are some key tips from Elysia’s Naturopath and Nutritionist, Gina Burn:
An important factor in healthy aging is cultivating a positive outlook. Research shows that your attitude, resilience, and ability to cope with stress are powerful predictors of healthy aging.
Begin by accepting that nothing in life is permanent and that challenging times will pass. A great attitude can help you embrace getting older, instead of just tolerating it.
Meditation and yoga are great tools for maintaining positive mental and physical habits and preventing mental and physical decline.
Move your body
Serotonin, the neurotransmitter that regulates mood, appetite, and sleep, can lower with age. This may result in depression, anxiety and hardening of the arteries. Exercise is an excellent way to give serotonin levels a boost, while decreasing the stress hormone, cortisol.
Create a habit to take a brisk walk or swim every day, to keep your arteries healthy and lift any feelings of sadness or fatigue.
Vitamin D helps maintain a healthy immune system, promotes calcium absorption, and protects against certain types of disease. Taking a walk for 20 minutes per day in the sun will help to meet most of our daily requirements of vitamin D
Avoid unnecessary toxins
Drink alcohol in moderation and engage in periods of alcohol detox. Avoid smoking and unnecessary toxins that speed up the biological and visual aging process. Removing these toxins will make you look and feel younger.
Take your B’s and Antioxidants
Antioxidants are substances that can prevent or slow damage to cells caused by free radicals which are molecules that the body produces as a reaction to environmental and other pressures. Ensuring you are receiving the below antioxidants will assist with anti-aging and be able to fight external pressures:
- Vitamin A, C, and E are helpful anti-aging antioxidant nutrients to take internally and many skin-care companies also include them in products for topical use.
- Magnesium is required by most cell functions. It helps us relax and for healthy muscle function.
- Omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil, algae oil, flax, hemp, chia seeds and walnuts- have an anti-inflammatory influence over the body.
- Curcumin is the active constituent of turmeric and is a powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory for the gut, joints and brain.
Vitamin B is an essential nutrient; helping to convert food to fuel, improve memory, boost immunity and energy levels, produce red blood cells, regulate hormones and more.
Inadequate levels of folic acid (B9) are linked to an increased risk of dementia and depression. To ensure you get enough folate in your diet, increase your leafy green veggies, citrus fruits, peas, and beans.
Talk to your Naturopath about a B Complex that’s suitable for you.
To age well, we need to live well…consciously.