How to Keep your Body Young as You Age
Are you getting excited about retirement? Do you want to travel the world, finally start that hobby you never seem to find enough time for, or simply spend all your time with your grandkids? We, at JOYVIAL, believe you shouldn’t wait for retirement to start living your life. We want for you to spend your aging years as healthy, JOYful and vibrant as possible.
As you age don’t you want to …
Maintain a sharp mind and avoid diseases such as Alzheimer’s, dementia or similar mind-altering ailments?
Have a strong and flexible body to tie your shoes, put on your own clothes and comb your hair?
Have the energy to play with your grandkids or pursue your favorite activities?
There are lots of habits we can control that can contribute to healthy aging. Our last blog was dedicated to offering ideas on how to age with a healthy mind. Here we will focus on ways you can help your body stay strong and vibrant as you age.
3 areas to focus on to keep your body young
1. Eat nutrition dense foods
Why: Every cell in the body is dependent on being fueled with the most nutrient-dense foods to maintain optimal health. In fact, there are really just two types of diseases. The first develops when we give our body things that it doesn’t want, like the toxicity that is found in packaged foods and fast food. The second reason for disease to develop is because we don’t give our body the vitamins, minerals and required nutrients it needs to thrive.
Feed your body well and it will flourish. Leave it lacking what it needs and you invite deterioration. This deterioration happens to each cell leading to accelerated aging, brain diseases and other chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes and even cancer.
How: There is so much you can do to keep you body healthy and strong.
Eat an anti-inflammatory diet: Inflammation is at the source of most of our disease. Your body has to deal with fighting off environmental bacteria and viruses. In addition, it must also rid itself off the many toxins you add through the foods and drinks you consume. These toxins include things like food preservatives, food coloring, pesticides on all non-organic produce, processed sugar, manufactured food like products (think hamburger bun) and so much more.
In short, an anti-inflammatory diet, leads every cell in your body to thrive, stay young and be full of energy. Example:
Eat lots of high antioxidant foods
Eat food high in omega 3 healthy fats
Reduce your sugar consumption
Reduce dairy consumption including milk - a 12-year long Harvard Nurses' Health Study found that those who consumed the most calcium from dairy foods broke more bones than those who rarely drank milk
Limit alcohol and caffeinated drinks
Drink plenty of water
…and yes, life can still be so much fun without all these things. You will love eating nutrition dense foods once you get started and will enJOY new habits that nourish your mind and body.
2. Move your body
Why: Do you still want to be able to tie your own shoes or put on your undies when you are in your 80s and 90s? I do!
I want to be able to walk up stairs at home. Or, when traveling, I want to be able to walk up the steps of a beautiful Asian temple. I want to be able to pick up things I may drop without fear of losing my balance.
Moving our bodies is not solely beneficial because it helps us maintain a healthy weight, but it also does a slew of other things.
Through movement we sweat and therefore flush out toxins. Regular movement lubricates our joints, while deep breathing brings vital oxygen to every cell in our body. Our body’s brain chemistry and hormone levels change when we move, improving our brain function and elevating our level of JOY. In short, you want to start moving your body today and never stop moving until you are old to be able to do the things you want to do.
How: Focus your movement on 3 different areas: strength, flexibility, and cardio. You want strong leg muscles for walking, (more than just from the couch to the bathroom).
In addition, you really need to focus on having a strong core. A strong abdomen supports your lower back, helps you stand from a seated position, bend, lift, and maintain your balance. So many hip fractures are due to the person losing their balance.
Learn easy but effective ways to strengthen your core, and find your most enJOYable way to move your legs. For some that’s yoga, others enjoy running or a brisk walk while you may choose to go to a Salsa or hip-hop class. Find what moves you and create a routine you love.
3. Manage your stress
Why: Stress creates a number of unwanted changes in your body. For one, when in a stressful situation, the human body redirects much of your blood flow to your arms and legs. From an evolutionary standpoint that made a lot of sense. Tens of thousands of years ago we were only stressed when we had to fight off an enemy (i.e., need blood in my arms to kick and punch) or we ran away from that enemy (i.e., we needed our blood in our legs to ruuuuuuuuuun).
Not much has changed in our stress responses but now, we are stressed 24/7. This results in our bodies lacking the needed blood flow in areas the body doesn’t see as vital for survival such as your skin, your hair and nails and even your digestion and some organs. If your hair is thin, your nails are brittle and your skin is dry, you are likely already looking at the signs of daily stress. Proper stress management can keep you looking vibrant as you age.
How: The options on how to manage your stress seem endless and are different from one person to the next. Many of our blogs are dedicated to how to manage stress, so I invite you to check out the “Manage Stress” blog category to find what resonates most with you.
Do you want to keep your mind and body young? Our professional executive health coaches have extensive experience helping clients start living the healthy and JOYful life they want. Click the 'Contact' button in the top right corner or simply send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule your free discovery session.