Scientists the world over will agree that prevention is always better than cure. This is also the case when it comes to the subject of aging. In recent years there have been numerous new discoveries unfolding as to the secrets of aging and the quest for the fountain of youth draws closer than ever.
1. Caloric restriction is the only proven method so far to prolong longevity. Caloric restriction is as the name implies; a restriction of calorie intake but still maintaining all your nutritional needs. In a study at Washington University in St Louis, rats that were fed 30% less than normal, lived 30% longer.
As we age keeping lean is important as fat cells can produce hormones which can increase the risk of Diabetes. They can also produce substances known as cytokines that causes inflammation of the arteries. So aim to maintain a weight that is right for you.
2. Cut down on red meat. In a ten year study on 545,000 Americans that looked at how the consumption of red meat affected longevity, the study showed that people who ate about four ounces of beef or pork a day were 30% more likely to die early compared with those that ate an ounce or two less.
3. Garlic has been shown to be helpful in preventing heart disease and high blood pressure. It also helps to improve liver and digestive functions as well as improving skin texture and tone.
4. Get some Sunshine. The sun converts a substance we have in our bodies called Ergosterol into Vitamin D and as we get older this Vitamin D production does not work as well. Lack of this Vitamin increases the chances of Osteoporosis, Diabetes and various cancers.
5. Eat more fatty fish such as Salmon, Sardines and Tuna which contain the Omega 3 fatty acids DHA and EPA which can help prevent Alzheimers, heart attacks and depression.
7. Supplement your diet with high quality multi vitamins. In aging deficiencies of vitamins A, B, C, Calcium, Folic Acid, Iron, Magnesium and Zinc are the most common.
CoQ10 is another essential nutrient as we age. It is known to strengthen the heart and lower blood pressure. It is not manufactured by the body so it has to be supplied by the food we eat. The richest source of CoQ10 can be found in organ meats such as liver and kidney and in smaller amounts in spinach, potatoes, soybeans and alfalfa.
8. Maintain muscle mass with regular exercise as fat burns fewer calories than muscle. Muscle mass also helps to increase our metabolic rate. A brisk 30 minute walk five days a week will help to build muscle mass as well as making the walls of your arteries more flexible.
9. De-stress your life: stress increases the production of the cortisol and norepinephrine hormones in the body which brings up blood pressure and lowers our defences. Finding relaxation techniques such as meditation and deep breathing will greatly help to counteract stress.
10. Keep a positive outlook and give yourself the will to live, having a purpose in life gives you an edge. Spend more time with friends, travel, find something creative you enjoy doing. Creativity influences well being, especially after you retire.