No one, my friends, wants to get older! More mature, maybe. Financially stable through years of work? Of course! But we don’t actually want to deal with the body aches, pain, illnesses, conditions and other things that come with the body’s aging process.
Of course, there’s no magic wand that will completely stop the hands of time. But there are some simple steps you can take to remove some of the factors that are known to contribute to aging.
Eliminate free radicals
Chemically unstable molecules that can damage your DNA and attack your cells, free radicals are known to accelerate the effects of aging. Limit your exposure to these age-causing agents by avoiding their known sources, which include cigarettes, charred meats and trans fats. Switch your conventional produce for organic items and produce from your own garden, as herbicides and pesticides are also common free radical sources.
Reduce any inflammation
Inflammation is a part of many of the diseases we associated with aging, including Alzheimer’s, heart disease, diabetes and cancer. The popular Mediterranean-style diet has be shown to reduce inflammation, so be sure to give it a try if you are having this issue. Other foods that reduce inflammation include dark chocolate and turmeric, and regular exercise can also work some wonders.
Limit your glycation exposure
When sugar mixes with fats and proteins, it can form molecules that boost aging. This process is known as glycation, and advanced glycation end products (AGEs) are believed to speed up the aging process by producing more free radicals and promoting inflammation. Turn down the heat when you are cooking to avoid ingesting AGEs. The browning effect form high-heat cooking causes the formation of these molecules. Limit the many sugar-filled foods you consume overall, too.
Lessen your stress
It’s easier said than done, but limiting your stress is vital for good health in general, and it is definitely a way to help stave off aging. When you are stressed, the hormones your body releases cause your blood pressure to go up and your pulse to race. Your body then releases a hormone known as cortisol to counter these effects, but when your cortisol levels are chronically elevated, it will age your body faster. Practice relaxation techniques to help manage your stress levels, such as meditation, and get the full amount of sleep you need each night.