When we’re young and alert we don’t often dedicate a thought towards aging. We are out here living our bests life, and then all of a sudden we discover a wrinkle or a grey hair and we go bananas. Not that I’ve experienced my first grey hair yet, so I’m actually not the one to talk, but this is how I imagine I’d react. I’ll just start throwing a tantrum with bananas. Everything we do, from the day we are born until our first grey hair (well, actually until we die) determines how fast and how gracefully we age. That smoking and keeping an unhealthy lifestyle speed up the aging process most of us know, but what about the every day habits we do that makes us age faster?
Don’t worry, be happy
By singing Bobby McFerrin’s catchy song phrase “don’t worry, be happy” you’ll slow down your aging process tremendously! Wishful thinking, I know, but to smile, being optimistic, and looking at the bright side of life will press the pause button on aging. The power of the mind is more effective than we think and by giggling and sharing laughs you’ll both feel and look amazing.
Tame your sweet tooth
Sugar is something hard to resist. Being a major sweet tooth back in the days myself, I can confirm this. Unfortunately you won’t look sweeter the more sweets you eat, especially not when it’s in the form of processed white sugar. Sugar spikes our insulin, and when this happens to often it puts our body under stress which results in premature aging. Not only does it increase our insulin dramatically, but sugar also has the sneaky habit of attacking our protein fibers within our cells leading to wrinkles. Because of this sugar is one of the worst things for our skin. It’s sad, but unfortunately true.
Of course there’s a difference between sugars and sugars. Natural fruit sugars from real unprocessed fruit provide us with vitamins, minerals, and fiber. Candy, cookies, and sweet drinks are the kind of bad sugar you want to cut down on. Remember that sugar is sneaky, and we can find it in unexpected places such as bread, yogurt, and cereal. Always read the ingredient labels.
Low fat diets
Now you might be thinking, “hell yes, bring on the french fries and nuggets!”, but no. That’s not the fat I’m talking about. It’s important to separate the different fat categories. We have healthy fats and we have unhealthy fats. Healthy fats like avocado, nuts, seeds, and olive oil contains omega 3 fatty acids, vitamin E and proteins which all work together to make our skin moisturized and smooth from the inside out. Healthy fats are also important because they make our bodies absorb other vitamins such as vitamin A and K, which both support a lot crucial functions in our body, not to mention keeping us looking young.
Binge watching Netflix
Well, it’s not actually the Netflix itself which makes us age, but more that we sit down. The more you sit, the more does your mortality rate go up. We know that movement is important for a healthy and long life, but the sitting itself can also increase the risk for blood clots and heart disease. But don’t go out and get scared of sitting down, there’s a lot of small things we can do to fit in movement in our daily habits.
Get yourself a standing desk at work, take brakes and walk around, stretch the first 10 minutes of watching TV, fill up your water bottle at the water cooler on another floor, etc. Get creative! We all know how we could improve our movements, we’re just lazy. It’s also important to have a steady exercise routine. By working out you add a lot of years, youth, and a healthier mind to your life.
Sun bathing like your life depends on it
Suns out, buns out. We go all crazy as soon as summer sneaks up around the corner and the first sun rays hits our pale, winter derived skin. Do have in mind that every time you work on your tan you are speeding up the aging process tremendously. The strong UV rays from the sun are our skins worst enemy! I mean sure, the sun provides us with healthy vitamin D, but too much of the D will turn against us. Okay, it’s not the D vitamin to worry about, I just had to make a corny joke. It’s the UV rays we need to be careful of, and too much of their direct exposure to our skin is very dangerous.
Make sure to always use sun screen! Even in winter, especially on your face. Think about it, the sun is always shining no matter if there’s clouds blocking it. And because these rays are so strong, they still hit your face causing UV damage. Love your face! Use sun screen.
Exercising too much
Yes, exercising is one of the most important things we can do for our health and longevity, but as with everything, too much of a good thing can actually have the opposite effect. When we exercise too much we increase our cortisol levels, our bodies natural stress hormone. By putting to much stress on our body over a long period of time will speed up the aging process by causing insomnia, increase the chance for depression, and memory loss. Increased levels of cortisol might also be the culprit to why you’re not loosing that stubborn belly fat. When our body is stressed if holds on to fat as a survival instinct. So no, training too hard without the proper nutrition and recovery is deadly to us.
Not getting your daily veggies in
We’ve been taught since we were young little shits that fruit and vegetables are extremely healthy and that we should eat more of them. Not only are they healthy, but they are crucial to aging gracefully and knocking away disease. Fruit and vegetables contains phytogens, a powerful antioxidant only found in plants which attacks free radicals and fights against cell damage. THey might not look much for the world, but plants are the most nutritious and disease fighting medicine we can eat. And we can eat them on a daily basis! It’s kind of mind blowing to think that every time we eat we have the power to fight or feed disease.
Now some of you might be thinking that it’s not as yummy as McDonald’s, but it’s all about what your taste buds are used to. Vegetables are easy to sneak into your meals. Add grated carrots to your bolognese sauce, sprinkle some berries on top of your cereal in the morning, and always add a salad to your meals. Eating more fruit and vegetables doesn’t mean that you have to sacrifice anything else. It’s all about adding more nutrients, not taking anything away.
Nourish your inner child
On paper we’re supposed to be and act a certain way depending on our age. This is pure stupidity! A number on a paper doesn’t determine when you should loose your imagination, stop playing, or take on crazy ideas with your friends. Never ever loose your inner child. Stay young and crazy, just in a more, responsible way depending on your environment.
By keeping your playfulness you’ll actually become more creative and more keen to solve problems in your career. Why? Because you won’t have a fixed mind. Children are bold, they try things, and they learn from it. Keep this mentality as long as you possibly can! Societies worst weapon is to silent our inner children. Don’t fall for the bullshit.
Don’t stress it
Last, but definitely not least I want to tell you to stop worry. Stop stress over the fact that we are getting older. As long as you’re focusing on staying healthy, feeling happy, and nourishing your soul with social relationships you will be fine. Aging is a part of life, and the more we try to deny it or cover it up the more it will show. Simple as that.
So get our in the world, grab it by the balls, live your best life while making better choices for yourself. Let’s become sexy old farts together!