Category Archives for "aging"
Dr. Susan Levy is a chiropractor and alternative health practitioner with more than 30 years of experience. She is also the author of the new book, Your Aging Body Can Talk, a guide to help people get in touch with their body’s inner knowingness, which can lead to greater happiness and health.
Dr. Levy speaks about the importance of preserving a youthful feeling and attitude as we go through the aging process, which allows us to be healthier and more comfortable. With this, she discusses the concept of ikigai, an Okinawan tradition that encourages everyone to discover their life’s purpose. Defining and refining one’s ikigai over time has many health benefits, as you are looking at your inherent purpose and self-worth, rather than looking at an outward reflection of accomplishments.
Being sedentary can cause negative effects on human beings. Research has shown the total body benefit of Tai chi includes diminishment of pain, improvement in one’s sense of well-being, and an increase in energy level and stamina, just to name a few. Yoga is good for flexibility and calming the self. Another option is Essentrics, which uses principles from yoga, ballet, and stretching. You can also simply walk with a purpose to stay active. Massage, chiropractic treatment, and acupuncture can also create greater alignment with one’s body.
Dr. Levy discusses her “Move It and Preserve It” basics:
1. Find what’s comfortable for you.
2. Minimize being sedentary.
3. Incorporate more purposeful movement in your daily life.
4. Have variety in your activities.
In regards to nutrition, Dr. Levy recommends including a variety of healthy foods, specifically those that are unprocessed with ingredients that you can recognize and pronounce. Organic and grass-fed options are great. Focus on fruits and vegetables. Use glass containers for food storage. Avoid all processed foods, sodas, tap water, and Styrofoam packaging.
To connect with Dr. Susan Levy or for more information about Your Aging Body Can Talk, visit http://www.yourbodycantalk.com.
Jeff Horowitz is a certified running coach and a seasoned marathon runner. He is also the author of the new book, Ageless Strength, which focuses on having the right approach to strength as we age.
Jeff explains that how we age has more to do with how we treat ourselves. As we age, our bodies stop producing as much growth hormone and lose some capability. However, if we focus on building strength, balance, and being functional with improved mobility, we will be better equipped to manage the effects of aging.
Jeff also speaks about thinking of exercise differently, more in terms of the mental component rather than just the physical motions. The goal with exercise is to enhance the number of things we can do, while continually challenging the brain in different ways to solve different problems. This improves our capability of movement and makes exercising more interesting and enjoyable.
One group that will want to focus on building more functional strength is runners, as most of their injuries come from strength imbalance. When a runner’s form is compromised, it causes stress all over the body, which can lead to injury. Runners should focus on maintaining strength laterally, which will enable their bodies to hold their form when they land each step.
The book includes different exercises that focus on meeting the challenges of each area, including strength, balance, and functionality. Create your own custom workout by choosing different exercises among the three sections. Maintain variety in your workouts to keep it challenging and fun, while allowing you to become stronger in a functional way.
Dr. Sara Gottfried is a physician, speaker, and author of the new book entitled, Younger: A Breakthrough Program to Reset Your Genes, Reverse Aging, and Turn Back the Clock 10 Years. In this book, she shares how to change habits and slow the impacts of aging.
Dr. Gottfried explains 5 aging factors where things can go wrong:
In the book, Dr. Gottfried mentions a Health Span quiz, available at http://www.healthspanscore.com/. She created this test to measure aging on a graded scale from 0 to 100%. Several categories that are taken into consideration with this test include sleep, movement, relationships, purpose and meaning, resting heart rate, and blood sugar and glucose.
The Younger Protocol, a seven-week program based on functional medicine, describes basic changes one can make to build habits and gain momentum. The first week focuses on food, including eating foods that fill micronutrient gaps, provide antioxidant support, and reduce inflammation.
The second week focuses on sleep, including sleeping on your side and maintaining appropriate Vitamin D levels.
The third week focuses on movement, specifically one to two hours of moderate exercise.
The fourth week focuses on releasing habitually tight muscles and evaluating wear and tear hormones such as cortisol.
The fifth week is about environmental toxins and what can be done about them. A positive exposure includes experience with a dry sauna.
The sixth week focuses on how to wrangle stress and adjust your stress response.
The seventh week focuses on how to change your brain as you get older.
To connect with Dr. Sara Gottfried or learn more about Younger: A Breakthrough Program to Reset Your Genes, Reverse Aging, and Turn Back the Clock 10 Years, visit http://www.theyoungerbook.com.
Katy Bowman is a biomechanist and science communicator who is passionate about movement in our everyday lives and health. Her new book, Dynamic Aging, shares valuable lessons and exercises to help anyone who wants to improve their mobility and strength.
When it comes to mobility, one of the greatest fears involves falling. Katy explains that falls later in life can be impossible to recover from. Often times, people will remove obstacles in their home to reduce the likelihood of falls. However, Katy explains that it is important to stay strong enough to deal with these obstacles, as the whole world outside your home is not obstacle-free.
Balance is another important area of focus. To improve whole body movement, Katy suggests starting with your feet. Most fit and movement conscious people have not trained their feet, however there are basic exercises one can do to begin strengthening and mobilizing the feet.
Katy also explains that learning to move differently and changing movement patterns helps to align the body better, which leads to better health. Many perceive that the purpose of movement is simply to facilitate more movement. However, having the ability to move opens doors to experiences that a lack of movement otherwise closes. This changes how you relate to things or people. Movement is critical in adding years to your life and life to your years.
There are simple ways to add movement to your daily routine. Practice getting up from the floor. Opt to go in to the bank rather than using the drive thru. Consider parking further away from building entrances. Make activities walking-based. De-convenience some of your kitchen to increase your level of movement and stretching.
To connect with Katy or learn more about Dynamic Aging, visit www.nutritiousmovement.com.
Dr. Elissa Epel is a renowned health psychologist and the director of University of California San Francisco’s Aging, Metabolism, and Emotion Center. She is also the co-author of a new book entitled The Telomere Effect. The Telomere Effect examines the role of telomeres in the aging process and provides information on how we can protect these telomeres and improve our quality of life.
Dr. Epel explains that all of our cells contain telomeres, which act as protectors to our genes. Over time, our telomeres are exposed to a sensitive chemical environment. This can cause telomeres to shorten, possibly leading to aging and disease. Rates of aging differ by the individual, as it based on our varying chemical makeup and lifestyles. We can slow the aging process by making positive lifestyle changes, which help to maintain or possibly extend telomere length.
One factor that can cause us to age faster is chronic stress. A threat stress response, which involves feeling that our physical self is at risk or in danger, is linked to a greater stress response with cortisol and inflammation. The key to altering this is through awareness of our stress and changing our response. Meditation helps people become observers of their thoughts. They are more equipped to be at peace and go with the flow.
Other factors within our body that can harm us include inflammation, oxidative stress, and insulin resistance. We can help to remedy these threats by exercising and eating whole, unprocessed foods and a vegetable heavy diet. The key is to make small changes that will add up over the years, making an overall difference in your cellular health and aging.
The Telomere Effect contains vital information and an action guide based on data from scientific studies. To learn more or take the Stress Response Quiz, visit http://www.amecenter.ucsf.edu/telomere-effect-book-release/.
In his book, The Art and Science of Aging Well, Dr. Mark Williams writes about the current science on aging in a way that give insight into how we should live to make sure we have the highest quality of life as we age. He notes a statistic that is quite relevant to aging. The death rate for humans is one per person, in other words, we all die. It is all just a matter of how and why.
It used to be thought that cells live forever. This was disproved by Leonard Hayflick. A cell can replicate approximately 50 times before they effectively die. The only way to break out of the aging control is when the cell becomes malignant.
Cells count the number of times they can replicate. Each time a cell replicates the end is slightly shorter. A telomere is an end-cap that causes the cell to stop replicating and the cell dies (apoptosis).
If our blood sugar is high, which is typically measured in blood work as A1C. This shows advanced glycation end products (AGE), which gums up the works. High consumption of high glycemic and processed foods age us faster. Avoiding these kinds of foods are important for aging well.
We were made to move. Physical exercise is a key requirement for aging well.
Proven benefits of exercise:
How much exercise should we get? An answer came from one of Dr. Williams' clients. Work up a good sweat every day.
In Cracking the Aging Code, Josh Mitteldorf does a deep dive into the science of aging. His research has led him to some theories that differ quite a bit from what many of us may have believed were true. Our body is programmed to destroy itself as we age.
As a part of this discussion, Josh explains why he doesn't believe Paleo or natural eating extend our lives. Nor does he believe that anti-oxidant therapy make us more healthy. In fact, anti-oxidants may shorten our lives.
The four core reasons we age:
Inflammation is important to help us address outside threats, but when we're older, this inflammation turns on us. Inflammation attacks us, causing arthritis, atherosclerosis, and Alzheimer's disease. It is also associated with many types of cancer.
A high-carb diet is inflammatory. Having extra bodyfat is inflammatory. But our bodies are different and we have to experiment to find what works for us.
The Thymus gland creates T-cells to fight viruses and bacteria. As we age, the T-cells begin to turn on us and are linked to arthritis and macular degeneration fo the retina.
This process of “cell death” is important to help the body get rid of damaged cells. As we age, the process degrades resulting in two types of errors: damaged cells may be missed, or healthy cells are destroyed.
Each time a cell is divided to go on the telomeres, which are endcaps for the DNA helix shortened. When the telomere reaches the end, the cell can no longer divide and effectively dies.