Oh, the endless battle to look younger, feel younger, and live longer. Some people seem to have it all figured out. Is there a secret formula for youth or is it just the luck of genetic lottery? We say it's a mix of both. Besides, what’s the use of good genes if you don't take care of them? Here are our tips for staying young and healthy:
Whether you're into circuit training or yoga, there's no doubt that keeping active and exercising regularly contribute to a younger, healthier look. An aerobic exercise, like brisk walking, jogging, swimming, and biking, increases blood circulation and strengthens the heart and lungs. It also aids in digestion, reduces stress and anxiety, and is shown to slow down bone loss.
Meanwhile a strength training exercise like weight lifting can build bone mass, is shown to slow down osteoporosis, kicks start metabolism, improves balance, and helps in keeping you fit and flexible.
Foods That Turn Back Time
Spinach: This super vegetable contains a high dose of vitamin K, which improves bone density and fights osteoporosis. Leafy greens like spinach provide one and a half times your daily vitamin K requirement. They keep your eyes clear and sparkling as they're a good source of zeaxanthin and lutein, and soak up harmful light.
Curry powder: Rich in curcumin, which maintains mental muscle and wards off Alzheimer's by preventing the growth of amyloid plaques (sticky proteins that are toxic to brain cells).
Tomatoes: You might have heard this when you were a child, and it’s true that tomatoes are rich in lycopene, which protects your skin from oxidation that leads to sun damage and wrinkles. Drizzle olive oil over some sliced tomatoes for a nice, refreshing salad. The oil will help you absorb the lycopene better.
Almonds: These tasty treats are packed with vitamin E. A mere handful delivers half of your daily requirement. They also improve your coordination and balance. Mix them in a salad for an added crunch or munch on a few to stave off mid-afternoon hunger pangs.
Dark chocolate: Chocolate, glorious chocolate – proving that turning back the clock can be delicious too. Dark choco lowers blood pressure. It's rich in flavanols, which are potent plant chemicals that encourage blood vessels to relax.
Habits That Help
Get enough sleep: There's a reason they call it "beauty sleep." While you're snoozing, skin cells regenerate, and the muscles in your face that create lines tend to relax. Getting enough rest can do wonders for your body, not just physically but mentally as well. Sleeping seven to eight hours a day is proven to improve memory and helps the areas of your brain that deal with problem solving.
Meditation and yoga: Research has shown that the genes in our body that fight inflammation, kill diseased cells, and protect from cancer all switch on during meditation. A relaxed mind releases tension from the body and keeps the stress at bay. Stress, of course, is one of the culprits of ageing quickly.
Wear sunscreen! Nothing ages you faster than too much sun exposure. Sure, it's cool to have a healthy glow, and you'll look younger too if you get enough sun, but too much can lead to skin damage or worse. So slather on the sunscreen and limit sun exposure to 30 minutes at a time.
Smoking's a no-no. This should be a no-brainer. Not only is smoking dangerous for your health as it can cause cancer, but it also ages a person significantly, triggering wrinkles around the mouth, eyes and neck.
Keep your brain active. Doing mental exercises like crossword puzzles, solving word games and riddles, or even just reading every day, keep your mental faculties sharp and reduce the risk of Alzheimer's and other degenerative brain diseases.