We can’t stop the aging process but there is a lot you can do to enjoy healthy aging. If you begin with these five healthy habits, you can actually slow some of the aging processes and live your best life each and every day no matter what your age.
5 Habits of People Who Enjoy Healthy Aging
1 - They Get Enough Sleep
Lack of sleep actually makes cells in older adults age quicker which can lead to reduced immune function and contribute to the onset of disease. Everyone needs different levels of rest, depending on amount of activity, age and other factors like illnesses, however, people who enjoy healthy aging get 7-9 hours of sleep a night to really rejuvenate their bodies and minds.
When you sleep, your body releases hormones and compounds that manage hunger, regenerate muscle after activity, maintain your immune system, retain memory and decrease risk of many health issues.
While sleep patterns do shift as we get older, if you aren’t able to get between 7 and 9 hours of sleep, it’s not a sign that your body doesn’t need it, but a sign that you need to find a way to get more sleep.
- Establish a routine, going to bed at relatively the same time each night and getting up at roughly the same time each morning. Your body will adapt better if you are consistent.
- Avoid using technology right before bed. Television, electronics and bright lights right before bed can impair your ability to sleep. In particular, tablets and smartphones can interfere with sleep because of the blue light they give off. If you can manage it, don’t have a television in your bedroom, skip the late night shows and opt instead to read a great novel, listen to soothing music or maybe indulge in a relaxing bath.
- Get plenty of fresh air and exercise during the day but by 3-4 hours before bedtime, you should be winding down, not up.
- Skip the extra drink, a cup of coffee or tea or even a big glass of water, right before bedtime. All of these can affect the quality of your sleep once you have dropped off, and make it difficult to get back to sleep.
2 - They Eat More Protein and Essential Amino Acids (BCAAs)
A key to healthy aging is getting enough protein and those who increase their protein intake as they age can actually slow age- related muscle loss.
Proteins are made up of amino acids and are a basic requirement for almost all important functions of your body. It plays a role in maintaining healthy muscles, hair, skin, connective tissue, enzymes, hormones, cells and fluids. As you age you lose muscle, essential amino acids like REJUVENATE help maintain and re build muscle.
A 150lb adult requires a minimum of 55 grams of protein every day. If you are active, aging or looking to build muscle, you will need upwards of 80 grams. This is a great reference chart. Speak with your doctor or a registered dietician to be sure of how much protein is right for you, then make adding protein to your diet a priority.
Try having a protein smoothie for a snack or to start your day, and include REJUVENATE supplement to get your daily requirement of essential amino acids. With these in play, you can slow down or even reverse the muscle loss that comes with aging, with or without an active workout routine. Without strong muscles, your body won’t have the strength, flexibility and balance it needs to keep you active and healthy.
Getting More Protein Tips:
- Start your day with a protein smoothie
- Take REJUVENATE post workout to repair muscle OR if you can’t exercise to help maintain muscle
- Snack on protein between meals – almonds, protein balls, greek yogurt
3 - They Hydrate Hydrate Hydrate
Our bodies are almost 60% water. That makeup allows us to digest foods, have good blood circulation, transport nutrients to various organs and helps to regulate our body temperature. Water also helps to energize muscles by maintaining sufficient levels of electrolytes and is also responsible for normal kidney and bowel function.
The benefits of drinking water include maintaining that all important balance of body fluids. Your body loses water on a daily basis: drinking enough of it helps you to replenish the water that is lost. If you don’t drink enough water and your intake does not equal your output, you can become dehydrated. If you live in a warm climate, if you exercise a lot or if you are prone to sweating, you need to make sure you drink even more. Older adults might also find that their sense of thirst is less acute, so they might not realize that they are becoming dehydrated.
- Keep a water bottle handy and filled up throughout the day and bring it with you everywhere: you might be more inclined to drink if it is right before you.
- Make sure you drink water with every meal.
- Choose fruits and vegetables which have a natural high water content: cucumbers and watermelon, for example.
- Add some frozen fruit to your water bottle, such as strawberries, blueberries, mangoes, lemons, limes for a little flavour boost; or try cucumber for a clean flavour that can’t be beat!
4 - They Keep Up Their Strength
By engaging in some light strength training, as well as cardio exercises like walking, swimming or biking, you can maintain better overall strength, flexibility and balance. Strength training uses resistance and light weights to increase muscle gently. Both your own body weight (think yoga!) and external weights—such as small handheld dumbbells—can be used in repeated actions to build strength and tone your muscles.
The key is to be consistent and regular with your exercise. Your muscles burn calories, even when you’re not working out, when they’re in the habit of getting a workout. Further, strengthening muscles around bones helps to improve bone density and lower your chances of dealing with osteoporosis.
- Get into the habit at home with stretching an body weight exercises
- Be consistent
- Talk to your doctor before beginning any new exercise regime
5 - They Stretch
Regular stretching increases and maintains your flexibility – an important function for all muscles, joints and increases your range of motion. Stretching post exercise is especially important to decrease muscle stiffness and pain. Stretching can also improve posture, manage stress, promote circulation and reduce muscle tension.
Try to stretch warmed up muscles, after an exercise class, a bike ride, a swim or a long walk. Even better is try a yoga class; one that provides a great overall full body stretch. You will walk taller, breath better and feel lighter.Stretching Tips:
- Stretch after exercise when muscles are warmed up
- take up yoga for an all over body stretch