Special thanks to guest blogger Lori Shemek, Ph.D.
When we think of anti-aging, most people conjure up a plethora of creams, potions or outright notions. However, aging more youthfully or what I refer to as “Youthing” begins not merely on the outside of the body, but the inside of the body.
When you think about how the body responds to healthy, nutrient-dense foods, water and other healthful choices, you can’t deny the obvious fact, that keeping our cellular machinery intact is key not just to health…but to ultimately aging younger.
Increasing one’s health span and longevity that leads to a more youthful looking you, begins with your diet – what you feed your cells along with implementing other lifestyle choices.
Diet is Key
At every meal, choose nutrient-dense foods. Foods that are high in polyphenols such as blueberries, dark chocolate (80%), healthy fats such as macadamia nut oil or olive oil (These antioxidants can increase lifespan by scavenging inflammatory free radicals), avocados, leafy greens or nuts and seeds, to help promote healthy mitochondria – our cell’s battery. When the ‘battery’ begins to die or does die, we lose cellular function. We need our mitochondria vital, flourishing and robust in order to create cells that are healthy – this means a leaner, energized and healthy you.
Kick Sugar to the Curb
Sugar is a highly inflammatory food and promotes poor health in multiple areas. Sugar also triggers a chemical reaction called ‘glycation’ that essentially caramelizes bodily tissue – changing the nature and structure of tissue, not just on the outside of our body causing wrinkles and sagging skin, but the inside as well. When proteins and sugars come together, this ‘browning’ reaction occurs. A good example would be crispy brown potatoes on the stove – the crispy part is glycation. This same effect is happening in the body with sugar ingestion.
Hydrate and Feel Great!
Without water there is no life. Water is key to our optimal health, slowing down aging and reducing stress by reducing the stress hormone cortisol. However, not all water is equal. Alkaline ionized water is a type of water that is superior in its ability to ultra-hydrate and act as a cellular antioxidant. This type of water slows aging. Organic acids in the body break down tissues, causing aging and age-related diseases. Look for a water ionizer that creates molecular hydrogen in the water in addition to providing an alkaline pH. Molecular hydrogen is a natural antioxidant, and antioxidants fight the free radicals that cause aging. Being able to fight aging from all angles just by changing your water is a no-brainer. Drinking tap water, filtered water, bottled water and even purified water cannot benefit you like alkaline ionized water can.
Drink a minimum of half your body weight in ounces of water each day. For example, if you weight 120 lbs., drink 60 ounces of healthy water daily.
De-Age with Moderate Exercise
It turns out that we don’t have to slave over the treadmill or elliptical for hours in order to ‘de-age.’ Simply walking at a moderate pace, research shows, provides multiple anti-aging benefits. Exercise in excess leads to inflammation and the resulting overall negative health effects.
Regular moderate exercise such as walking or even non-exercise physical activity (NEPA) such as gardening has beneficial effects on the SIRT1 gene that regulates cellular processes such as anti-cell death, brain protection, cellular aging, and longevity = a younger you.
Get Your Zzz’s
If you could do just one thing to promote a more powerful brain, lose weight, promote optimal health, look better and live longer – would you do it? The answer is most likely yes.
For many years, sleep was erroneously disregarded as an important component to optimal health until research showed just how crucial adequate sleep is to aging younger and a quality healthful life.
Make time for sleep. Ensure you get a minimum of 7-8 hours of sleep per night. Sleep in a dark room as any light disrupts melatonin production necessary for healthy sleep. Stay away from computers or phones an hour before bedtime and watch caffeine intake during the day. Lastly, stick with the same sleep schedule – even on the weekends.
Combining the five tips above: a nutrient-dense diet, sugar restriction, the right type of hydration, exercise and sleep, will create cells that behave younger and that translates to a more youthful you inside and out.
About the author
Lori Shemek, Ph.D. is a leading fat cell researcher, health expert, weight loss expert, keynote speaker and recognized authority on inflammation and its role in weight loss, preventing disease and optimizing health. Dr. Shemek is the author of ‘How To Fight FATflammation!’ (HarperCollins) and the best-selling author of “Fire-Up Your Fat Burn!’
Dr. Lori Shemek, a health expert for the ABC TV show Good Morning Texas, has been featured on CNN, NPR and Fox News, and in Dr. Oz’s Good Life Magazine, Health, Shape, Woman’s Day, Prevention, Redbook, Ladies Home Journal, and The Huffington Post and numerous others.
Dr. Shemek is known as “The Inflammation Terminator.” She has made it her mission to help clients lose weight and educate the public on the toxic effects of certain foods and lifestyle choices and how they create inflammation in the body resulting in weight gain and poor health.
The Huffington Post has recognized Dr. Shemek twice as one of the Top Health and Fitness Experts alongside such names as Dr. Oz and David Zinczenko author of ‘Eat This, Not That’ and the Huffington Post has also recognized her as one of the Top Diet and Nutrition Experts.
Dr. Shemek holds a Doctorate in Psychology; she is a Certified Nutritional Consultant and a Certified Life Coach.