There’s no denying it. We live in a society that’s obsessed with youth. While many cultures treat age as something to be respected and revered, it seems that most western societies today treat age like an affliction that must be kept at bay at all costs. Perhaps it’s that nagging fear that the best years of our lives may be behind us (they’re not) or the universal fear of our own mortality that motivates us, but there’s no denying that we as a society are feeding an anti aging market that’s currently worth hundreds of billions. The truth, however is that the fountain of youth cannot be bottled, packaged and resold. There’s no one product that can reverse the aging effects of our lifestyle choices, although it’s safe to say that some products are better informed purchases than others (more on that shortly). Here we’ll look at healthy and natural ways in which we can all look and feel younger… And even save a little money along the way.
Shop smart with your skincare products
How many skincare products do you keep in your bathroom cabinet? How many of them claim to have anti-aging properties. How many of them do you actually need? Unfortunately, the beauty industry is plagued by a lot of pseudoscience designed to convince consumers that buying the right products will effectively reverse the aging process. A little due diligence on the active ingredients, however, often debunks these claims. You owe it to yourself to find out which ingredients are scientifically proven and which are not. Retinol, for example, is one of the rare ingredients that can actually substantiate the claims it makes. Go to www.retinol.com to see the science behind this vitamin A derivative and to see which type of product is best for your skin. By shopping smart with your skincare products you can save a small fortune and remove a lot of clutter from your cabinets.
Drink lots of water
Sure, we all know the importance of drinking plenty of water, but still far too few of us actually do it. Staying well hydrated keeps us young in a number of ways. It helps to facilitate fat burning, promotes cardiovascular health, and greater joint mobility as well as clearer and more youthful looking skin. We should all be drinking 1-2 litres of water every single day. Good news for hot drinks enthusiasts, your tea and coffee consumption count towards this. The theory that tea and coffee dehydrate you has been debunked.
Embrace strength training
Most of us are aware of the benefits of regular cardiovascular exercise. It keeps our hearts healthy and allows our circulatory systems to get the right amount of hydration and nutrients to the skin, helping us to attain that elusive youthful glow. Many of us, however, are less aware of the anti-aging benefits of strength training. Strengthening the muscle tissue around our joints helps to reduce inflammation and promote mobility while strengthening the skeleton which gets less dense as we age.
Ditch the habits that accelerate aging
Unfortunately, no serum or topical cream can reverse the effects of an unhealthy lifestyle. No matter your age or general health and fitness level you can benefit from ditching processed, nutrient poor foods and quitting smoking. Regular smoking causes profound aging of the skin of our faces as it thins the blood vessels preventing the skin from getting the oxygen that it needs to remain healthy. A poor diet will also likely result in greater storage of body fat and impaired cognitive function, both of which can age you before your time.
Diet for your skin
Healthy, youthful skin starts from the inside. As well as staying hydrated, you can help your skin stay youthful, plump and supple by filling your diet with the foods that will allow it to stay nourished and healthy. A diet rich in Omega 3 fatty acids can help your skin to retain moisture so make sure that your diet is rich in nuts and seeds. The chlorophyll in spinach, cabbage and other green leafy veg can help to oxygenate your skin while the antioxidants found in berries and dark chocolate can help to mitigate the effects of sun damage.
Diet for your brain
Of course, it’s not all about appearances, and a healthy brain is the key to making sure that you feel alert and mentally fit and healthy. Regular cognitive exercise like sudoku and crossword puzzles can keep your brain youthful but as with physical exercise, the benefits are greater when you have a healthy diet. Beans and peas contain minerals like magnesium and potassium to facilitate brain function while omega 3 fatty acids facilitate brain function and help to reduce your risk of dementia. Finally, did you know that plaque can build up in your brain? Getting plenty of cinnamon, turmeric and cumin can help to prevent plaque buildup in the brain which can impair memory function.