Eleanor Roosevelt once said…”Today is the oldest you have ever been and the youngest you’ll ever be again.” It has also been said that “Aging is a privilege that not all of us are privileged to have”. In this article we discuss the aging process and how to reduce the negative effects.
When Does Aging Start?
Aging happens, but it is how we think about aging and what we do as we age that matters. Aging begins around age thirty and progresses at about 1 percent a year. This is such a slow process that we only see the results after years have passed. And for every aspect of physical and mental aging, some people may get better with age. For example, by working out and getting the right amount of exercise, some people may get stronger than when they were young.
In the book, Super Brain, Deepak Chopra and Rudolph Tanzi state that, everyone ages differently. Identical twins who are born with the same DNA will have completely different genetic profiles at age seventy. While the chromosomes of the twins will not have changed, the years of experiences will have caused the activity of their genes to be switched off in a unique pattern.
How To Remain Healthy & Reduce Aging Effects
No matter which approach you take to remaining healthy as you age, your brain is involved because certain messages are good for cells and certain messages are bad. Below we’ve included some tips for diet and other activity considerations to help reduce the negative effects of aging.
Proper Diet To Reduce Aging
Eating fast food sends one kind of message while eating salads send another. Eat a balanced diet is important, and the preferred diet is the Mediterranean, which includes the following food types:
- Olive oil instead of butter
- Fish or soy-based protein instead of red meat
- Whole grains
- Mixed nuts
- Fresh fruits
- Whole vegetables
Activities to Reduce Aging
Other ways of lowering the risk of aging include;
- Avoid over eating
- Don’t smoke
- Consume alcohol in moderation and red wine is preferable
- Wearing a seat belt
- Take steps to prevent house hold accidents such as slippery surfaces, steep stairs, fire hazards etc
- Get enough sleep
- Get enough rest during the day
- Keep regular habits but also include some new activities
- Read or listen to books
- Learn something new
- Change the way you drive to the store once a week
- Keep from being isolated, stay connected to friends and family
- Get out and do something productive in your community
- Find a daily routine for mediation, prayer, or some kind of mindfulness exercise
- Practice stress management
- Reach out to your support system and if you don’t have one, find people who can be your support system
Set up your daily living to create opportunities to make the best choices possible for healthy aging. Knowing what is good for you and doing what is good for you are two different things. Therefore learning what helps the body and mind age well is only one step in the process. Turning knowledge into a habit takes time and effort.
It takes roughly 21 days to form a new pattern of behavior or a new habit. Pick one thing to change out of the list above and try to keep it going for 21 days.
Orchard at Brookhaven is a Senior Living Community in Atlanta that is committed to helping people age well. We provide many opportunities for our residents to help their body, mind and spirit stay healthy, strong and well. Please visit our dining page, activites page or contact us if you have any questions about healthy activities and diet to reduce aging risks.