If you read my blog, then you know, I’m 42 (read about it here). Let me tell you, one of my very best friends is 1 year older than me. She would tell me, “when you turn 26, you’ll notice things changing with your body.” Switch out the 26 for 30, 35, etc. I am here to tell you, she was always, always, always right. My most recent shift in my body happened about 6 months before I turned 42.
Our bodies change in so many ways over time, but so do our lives. Think about it. When you were 16, did you have the responsibilities you do now? How about at 25? Or 35 even? (sorry younger friends, you know you’re going to change) I wonder at which defining moment in life the responsibilities start to go backwards…. At any rate, responsibilities = stress in a lot of ways, as they tend to take up brain power, time, and energy. How can our bodies possibly go unaffected?
As we know, it’s more than that. Hormones change, even for men. Metabolisms can be impacted. Energy is certainly impacted. Our bodies suffer. Our skin suffers. Is there a way to fight back? Can we combat this aging decline? I sure think so and science agrees! No one is necessarily saying we can reverse aging entirely, but we sure can slow down that rude, loud train.
A few tricks that are well supported by research are:
Intermittent Fasting: I hope you’ve read my posts about IF 101 and IF 101, Part Two, but if you haven’t, there’s still time :). Go now. Do it. There is so much scientific research to support the use of intermittent fasting in reducing the signs of aging. This process allows cell to clean house both within the cell and to get rid of the cells that just aren’t cutting it anymore. This allows for the brain to also clean itself for clearer thinking. Cells are clean and happy which also impacts how we look. Some people lose weight on IF, some find it easier to maintain weight, some simply find they feel better in general.
Now, there are about a gazillion ways you can take on IF or fasting, so you have to find what works for you. And, don’t forget to be flexible. You may be able to do a longer faster on certain days, but need a shorter one on another day. Listening to your body is key. I use the Life Fasting app to track my fasts so I can look for trends in how long I’m going or how I’m feeling.
Exercise: We all know that moving our bodies is important, but the reality is, you don’t have to go crazy. Sure, it’s important to get your heart rate up and to sweat, but again, our bodies are all different. Benefits of exercise vary from weight management, metabolism boosting, to endorphin producing. All these benefits help us to appear younger and have more energy. A lot of research even points to the value in exercising with others and how that deepens your enjoyment and connection. Overall, try to walk more and use your car less. Find what you enjoy doing or what makes you feel like a badass. When you feel that way about the movement, you’ll be more likely to do it.
Eat Your Veggies: Come on, don’t fight it. Eat those veggies, eat the rainbow (and I am most certainly NOT referring to Skittles). Generally, the brighter the colors are, the higher the nutrient value to your body. Variety and quantity matter in meeting your vitamin and nutrient needs to their fullest. Adding extra veggies to your meals and even going plant based for half of your meals can really make an impact.
I know, I know. Some of you think you don’t love vegetables. I guarantee you can learn to like them. Different cooking methods really matter to taste as well as proper seasoning. Need help figuring out what you like or how to like veggies? I can help 🙂
Drink Water: Water is our life source, friends. Every bodily function requires the proper hydration to be fully functional. Not to be crass, but your pee should be clear, people. If you have not read my posts on water, go check them out under the health section. A couple tips you’ll find there are to add lemon and drink at least half your weight in ounces.
Be Happy: Honestly, this could just as well be called Have a Positive Outlook. Find that silverlining. It’s there. Sometimes you may have to dig for it, but when you can identify why or how an event potentially helped you in some way, you can see the glory in it. This goes along very well with being grateful. Sometimes, it’s simply being joyful you woke up to another day full of possibilities. Other times, your gratefulness list may be endless. Finding joy and being present in each moment opens us up to the wonderment of living. All around you there is mystery and beauty to ponder over.