Let’s get real: Health problems can be real concerns, especially as we age. But despite popular belief, growing old doesn’t have to mean experiencing a decline in your health. There are many things you can do to ensure a healthy, happy lifestyle well into old age.
Healthy aging starts with knowing how to make the right decisions when it comes to your physical and mental well-being. Read on for more.
What Is Healthy Aging?
According to the World Health Organization, healthy aging is “the process of developing and maintaining the functional ability that enables well-being in older age.”1
A person’s functional ability is their capability to be who they want to be and do what they most desire. This includes a person’s ability to meet their own basic human needs, to learn, stay mobile, and to build or maintain personal relationships.
So where is a good place to start? Where all health starts – in your gut. Turns out, your gut is full of helpful (and sometimes harmful) bacteria that are significantly in charge of your health.
Within your gut, you’ve got a sort of “bacterial cloud” called your gut microbiome. Your microbiome can send messages to you about potential health problems – if you learn how to listen to them. In fact, the National Institutes of Health show that your gut microbiome can offer over 8 million genes to your body. That means there are 360 times as many bacterial genes in your body than your own human genes!2
Why is this important to know? Well, keeping all those bacteria healthy and happy can help keep you healthy and happy well into old age. So, just how do you keep those bacteria happy?
Key Considerations Of Healthy Aging: Supporting Your Gut Health
Bacteria can grow quickly. They’re capable of instantaneous information processing and communicating – they can even influence your thoughts and actions. So you want to feed your gut bugs the right foods.
Do your best to avoid lectin-rich foods that could upset the balance between your good gut bacteria and the bad ones. If you give your good gut bacteria what they want, they will reward you with better overall health.
Here’s a quick list of foods to avoid in order to help you maintain better gut health as you age:
- Whole grains – foods like wheat, pasta, all-purpose flour cookies, and cakes
- Legumes like lentils and beans
- Nightshade vegetables like eggplant, tomatoes, and squashes
- Processed foods or foods with added sugars
- Fruit when it’s not in season
But there are also foods to focus on eating for healthy aging:
- Avocado (have one every day if you like)
- Leafy greens
- Cruciferous vegetables
- Olive oil
- Pasture-raised lean meats: chicken, turkey, beef (no more than 4 oz a day)
- Wild-caught fish3,4
Another nutrient to focus on eating are polyphenols. Polyphenols are natural micronutrients that you can get by eating certain plant-based foods. And consuming them can yield some pretty positive health benefits, many of which support healthy aging.5
You can find these beneficial micronutrients in lectin-free foods like cocoa, in-season berries, and greens. You can also look to dietary supplements like Vital Reds which offers 34 polyphenols in a tasty, easy-to-mix drink. Vital Reds was designed to support higher energy levels, digestive health, and skin health.†
More On Support Your Gut Health For Healthy Aging
When it comes to supporting your good gut bacteria, there are two main tasks at hand: (1) Keep your good bacteria balanced and (2) Keep your gut lining strong.
If you can naturally support the defense mechanisms in your gut lining, you could potentially help your digestive system better protect itself from foreign invaders that might hinder your longevity. In a way, it all comes down to your mitochondria.
Here’s why: Your mitochondria are like tiny powerful plants in your cells.6 They convert the food you consume into fuel for your cells. The issue is that as you age, your mitochondria begin to decrease in number.
Turns out, many age-related health issues involve your mitochondria health. That’s because they participate quite significantly in energy production.
Mitochondria help shape the way your cells use enzymes to oxidize nutrients. But, they also play a sizable role in calcium balance and your body’s ability to efficiently metabolize dietary substrates, fats, proteins, and carbohydrates.7 The bottom line: healthy mitochondria levels are important for healthy aging.8
Maintaining healthy mitochondria levels is one way to help your body fight back against age-related issues like fatigue, “brain fog”, and slowing metabolism. To help support healthy mitochondria you might try certain supplements such as MitoX or Active Advantage.
MitoX supports your body’s natural mitochondria production inside your cells. Active Advantage supports your body’s natural production of mitochondria and ATP, the primary fuel source for your cells. Mitochondria-supporting supplements such as these are designed to help you maintain healthy digestion, youthful energy, and a strong, healthy body.†
Mobility and Longevity Go Hand In Hand
Here’s a major tip when it comes to healthy aging – don’t stop moving. Whenever you exercise, you tear your muscles. But when your muscles repair themselves as they are built to do, they get stronger. Does this mean you have to bench press hundreds of pounds to stay fit? Not at all.
Here are a few easy-to-repeat exercises that can help you maintain your physical strength without putting too much stress on your body, because you control the resistance.
Just five minutes a day can help you maintain a healthy weight and muscle mass. Just make sure to get your doctor’s approval before beginning any new exercise or exercise regimen.
Minute 1: Jog in Place – Take this at your own pace. There’s no need to do this with intensity, either. It’s about loosening joints and getting going, not losing your breath. You just want to be able to wake your body up, not push yourself to exhaustion. In fact, you can even do this while seated. Just lift your arms and legs as if you’re jogging.
Minute 2: Classic Crunches – Keeping your core strong is necessary when it comes to maintaining your body’s mobility. In some cases, improved core strength might help you lessen back pain, too. Simply lie on your back and bend your knees. Lift your head and shoulders using your abs, instead of using your neck or arms. You do not need to sit all the way up. Feel your core as you lift and repeat as many times as you can.
Minute 3: The Plank – Planks engage all of your muscles at once, but don’t require any movement. Just get into a “push-up” position, then lower down onto your forearms with your hands in a fist, and hold it. That’s it. Try to hold the position for a full minute if you can. Keep your back straight and your butt level with your back, and keep your gaze down. Your elbows should be placed just below your shoulders. This is just one of many balance exercises you can do.
Minute 4: Squats – You’re almost done. Place your feet parallel to one another, a little wider than hip-width apart. Slowly bend your knees, keeping your chest forward and your head up. Bend as deeply as your body allows and then return to standing. If you’re having trouble with balance, grab hold of a counter or the back of a chair.
Minute 5: Meditation – You did it! Now it’s time to lower your heart rate. Simply relax and breathe deeply. Sit up straight or lie on your back and inhale through your nose, then exhale through your mouth. Try to relax your feet, knees, back, arms and hands, and neck.
You can focus on increasing your stamina for these workouts by paying attention to better sleep habits, and consuming polyphenol-rich, lectin-free foods. And if you discover you need an extra jolt of support, look to supplements such as Longevity Max. This cutting-edge solution was formulated in an effort to help you feel stronger, sharper, and more vibrant.†
What Do We Know About Healthy Aging?
In the end, age is just a number. What really matters is how you feel and how well you take care of your health. If you stay motivated and knowledgeable about active aging, you can extend the quality of your life for years to come.