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You Have to Age, But It Doesn't Have to Be Fast

By Paul Rothbart

You can't stop the clock. That's just a hard truth. We are constantly aging from the moment of birth. You can't prevent getting older, but you can slow down the effects of aging. Many people enjoy active healthy lifestyles into their 80s and beyond. They haven't found the fountain of youth, but they do know how to take care of themselves. Most of them started while they were still young. Don't wait for gray hair, wrinkles, and the aches and pains of age. Start taking care of yourself now.

Aging Starts Sooner Than You Think

Research has discovered that by the age of 25-30, the maximum heart begins to slow at a rate of one beat per year. This gradually reduces the heart's ability to pump blood. Each decade, that capability decreases by 5-10 percent. 

As you reach middle age, blood vessels start to get stiffer and many people tend to gain weight. The blood also starts to thicken, which makes it harder to travel through blood vessels. Cholesterol and blood sugar levels start to rise, which can increase the risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes. This is why it is important to take the steps to slow aging while you are still young.

Sleep

It's very common for young people to just go nonstop on less than optimal sleep. They feel strong and some enjoy pushing themselves. This is a mistake. Everyone requires 8-9 hours of sleep to allow the body to regenerate daily. Cheating yourself of much needed sleep can accelerate aging. Cognitive decline is tied to poor sleep, as are many of the health issues brought on by aging.

Exercise

Don't wait until you reach middle age and start gaining weight. Exercise now. It's easier to maintain a healthy weight than to get down to one. A strong, physically fit body will tend to resist the effects of aging. The cardiovascular system will stay healthy, keeping the heart able to pump blood efficiently. Regular exercise can also help keep cholesterol and blood pressure down, reducing the risk of heart disease. Get moving early and keep moving.

Eat Well

A healthy diet can also help slow aging. Many young people stuff themselves with junk food. Start fighting aging now. Eat fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins. Keep saturated fats and sugar to a minimum. This can lower your risk of diabetes, heart attack, and stroke. Ensure that you get the right amount of vitamins and minerals. Antioxidants and omega-3 fatty acids are also healthy and good at fighting aging.

There's no getting away from aging. But just because that number keeps going up doesn't mean your health has to decline. Take good care of yourself while still a young adult. It can give you the head start you need to be a healthy middle-aged adult and senior citizen.

To learn more about your health, wellness and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Hayward, Calif.


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