I remember the day when I was visiting my Mom in the nursing home and first met her roommate Monica.
Monica could barely walk, she had trouble speaking, she had lost a good amount of her hair and was missing some of her teeth.
My Mom whispered to me, “How old do you think she is?” and I guessed maybe late 70’s.
I almost fell over when my Mom told me Monica was 52.
That was a slap-in-your-face, grim reminder of how the aging process can take its toll no matter what your numerical age is.
Yes, my friend, the biological clock ticks away for all of us, it’s not very kind and there’s no turning it back.
But the good news is you can help S L O W it down and encourage better physical health as well as a youthful appearance.
You just need understand what the aging process is all about, look at the primary factors that contribute to age acceleration, and most importantly, take some safe, effective measures to fight back at those causes of aging…and win!
So what exactly is aging?
In order to understand how you age, we need to take a peek inside your cells.
Inside the center (nucleus) of your cells, your genes sit on twisted strands of DNA called chromosomes. At the ends of your chromosomes are stretches of DNA called "telomeres."
Telomeres protect your genetic code and make it possible for your cells to divide. Cell division is needed so you can grow new skin, blood, bone and other cells when needed.
Telomeres are like the plastic tips on your shoelaces. They prevent the ends of your chromosomes from fraying and sticking to each other, which would in turn mix up your genetic information and may lead to cancer, other diseases or death.
But unfortunately, nothing lasts forever and that includes your telomeres.
You see, each time one of your cells divides, the telomeres continue to get shorter and shorter. When they eventually get too short, the cell no longer can divide and becomes inactive or dies.
As this process continues and increases over time, you begin looking and feeling older and older.
Plus since your bones, tissues, muscles and organs are made of cells too, once the cells that make them up begin to die, they are more susceptible to damage, disease or merely not working as well as they once did.
This is why, for example, many elderly people have trouble digesting their foods when they never did before—because enzyme production declines as we age.
Factors that speed up the aging process
Although telomeres naturally shorten over time and nothing can be done to completely stop this, there are certain factors that can accelerate the aging process.
Number one is a poor diet--especially eating foods with trans-fats, vegetable oils, sugar and refined carbs. All of these substances contribute to inflammation in your cells (and arteries!) which impairs your cells’ functioning, encourages the development of disease, and can make you look FAR older than your years.
Stress is another major ager. Chronic stress causes the repeated release of the hormone cortisol and over time not only can this greatly impair your immune system functioning, but it also damages your cells and speeds up the aging process.
Environmental and household toxins cause inflammation in your cells, they stress your liver and kidneys (your organs of detox) and can put you on a path of disease and aging much easier and faster than you ever dreamed possible.
Decreased levels of hormones also play a big part. Hormones impact every major organ and system in your body, so when your levels of certain hormones begin to diminish, you can feel the effects from head to toe.
Fight back…and WIN!
Now that you know how aging occurs and all the possible factors that can make it that much sooner before Boy Scouts offer to help you cross the street, now is the time to take action and fight to SLOW down that aging process in you!
Here are six very effective strategies than can help:
There are many ways to help de-stress: Meditation, exercise, yoga, counseling, deep breathing, prayer and seminars, to name a few.
Also taking up a hobby or getting a pet have both been shown to reduce stress in various studies.
Pick what feels right to you and help get rid of that stress.
You just might end up living longer if you do!
The first step here is to avoid common sources of household and environmental toxins like unfiltered tap water, bug sprays, weed killers, cigarette smoke and medications (both prescription and OTC) as much as you can.
Every little bit counts. The biggest bang for your buck may come simply from using a filter for your tap water.
Another biggie is buying organic produce whenever you can. I know it's typically more expensive than commercially grown crops, but is there a price on your health and life? Plus you can help control the cost by shopping local farmer's markets or participating in community supported agriculture (CSA) programs. Check it out here: www.localharvest.org
I know this one should be obvious...but if you smoke, please stop now. Millions of people have done it before you, so it's not impossible. Believe me, you couldn't do anything nicer for yourself.
And if you’re on any medications, talk to your doctor about alternatives, decreasing your dose or getting off them altogether. Although they are intended to “help” they also are a major source of health-harming toxins. That’s why there is such a thing called side effects.
3) Engage the power of the right diet
The best way to avoid age-accelerating trans-fats, hydrogenated oils, refined carbs and sugar overload is to eat REAL foods.
I’m talking about things like fresh fruits and vegetables, meats and poultry, whole grains, legumes, nuts, dairy, eggs and healthy fats.
I can guide you on exactly how to do that, while still enjoying delicious, mouth-watering meals that will make your taste buds dance!
In the Great Taste No Pain system,
or if you're gluten-sensitive, Great Taste No Gluten
I explain ALL the health dangers of the typical modern diet, show you how to structure delicious meals made from nutritious, health-enhancing real foods, and even give you a collection of scrumptious recipes to try.
Believe me, you'll see there's nothing bland or boring about eating for great health once you taste these recipes!
And get this—a recent study has shown that a healthy diet can also help counteract the aging effects of stress!
A new study from UC San Francisco has shown that while the impact of life’s stressors can accumulate over time and accelerate cellular aging, these negative effects may be reduced by maintaining a healthy diet, exercising and sleeping well.
“The study participants who exercised, slept well and ate well had less telomere shortening than the ones who didn’t maintain healthy lifestyles, even when they had similar levels of stress,” said lead author Eli Puterman, PhD, assistant professor in the department of psychiatry at UCSF.
4) Get regular exercise
Regular exercise is an anti-aging MUST.
It helps your body eliminate dangerous, age-accelerating toxins, it increases the strength of your heart, helps improve digestion, promotes better sleep, it helps lower blood pressure, helps you maintain a healthy bodyweight and by strengthening the muscles surrounding your joints, it can help decrease the symptoms of arthritis!
Pick an activity that works for you, get your doctor’s nod of approval and get moving.
5) Consider bio-identical hormone replacement therapy
Unlike synthetic hormone replacement, bio-identical hormone replacement therapy works to help naturally reestablish the way your body sends messages to your tissues and organs to keep them healthy…and help keep you feeling younger!
The body has an easier time assimilating bio-identical hormones because they are exactly identical in molecular structure to the hormones naturally made in your body.
Synthetic hormones, on the other hand, have extra molecules which are not recognized by your body, so they are not broken down as easily by your body’s enzymes. This means that they could stay in the body longer, and over time they could turn into toxins and carcinogens.
Note that you’ll have to seek out a practitioner that does BHRT—and because it’s more of a holistic therapy, most mainstream doctors won’t have the faintest idea what you’re talking about if you ask them about it.
Here is a reference that can help you locate a doctor in your area:
You can also call compounding pharmacies in your area—they prepare BHRT prescriptions and can be a good source of information about BHRT doctors as well.
And if you happen to be in the New York/New Jersey/Connecticut area, check out the Salerno Center in Manhattan. - http://salernocenter.com/
6) Supplement with Omega-3 essential fatty acids
Studies are showing that the Omega-3 essential fatty acids EPA and DHA can play a crucial role in slowing down the telomere action associated with the aging process.
Researchers from Ohio State University have published the result of a study in the journal Brain, Behavior and Immunity that shows how taking Omega-3 supplements can alter the ratio of a person's fatty acids in a way that helps preserve telomeres by lowering systemic inflammation.
To conduct the study, the researchers broke the 106 disease-free adult participants into 3 groups.
Group 1 was given supplements of 2.5 grams of Omega-3 fats (combined EPA/DHA), Group 2 received 1.5 grams of EPA/DHA and Group 3 was given a placebo.
Groups 1 and 2 (both of whom took Omega-3 supplements) showed, on average, lengthening of their telomeres.
And the placebo group? Their telomeres either stayed the same or declined!
The research team concluded that improved Omega-3 to Omega-6 fat ratios from fish oil supplementation resulted in a reduction in total body systemic inflammation, which can lead to reduced telomere shortening.
So if you want to jump on the fish oil bandwagon to help preserve the youth of your cells, as well as help lower cholesterol, experience fewer joint aches and improve your memory (among other things), pony on up to VitalMega-3.
VitalMega-3 gives you a full 1,200 mg. of health-enhancing Omega-3 EFAs (including EPA and DHA) in every 2-capsule daily serving.
Time marches on, my friend, and we are all going to age. That is a certainty.
But as you can see from the information above, there’s so much you can do to help slow the aging process internally and keep feeling great well into your golden years!
It’s never too late to feel better, and I personally think you’re worth it!
To your health,
PS: Always be sure to let your doctor or healthcare provider know what supplements you are taking.