Anti-aging products are flooding the market, yet do they really work? When it comes to true anti-aging, you can never start too soon. Unfortunately, the anti-aging we are looking for doesn’t come in a cream base, wrapped in a pretty package. Living a life that is geared toward anti-aging is the true key toward healthy aging.
Aging begins in your cells as dis-ease begins on a cellular-molecular level. In your cells are tiny little power plants known as mitochondria that are the epicenter for energy production. Adenosine triphosphate or ATP is the energy your body uses to fuel your daily activities. Healthy mitochondria are the bedrock for optimal energy production, vibrant aging and protection against oxidative stress. With age, mitochondria decline and become weaker.
Fortunately, there are numerous things any person can do to prevent mitochondrial and cellular aging now. Everyone can benefit at any age from eating a clean organic diet, drinking two to three liters of natural spring water a day, exercising and sweating, avoiding processed foods and refined sugar, minimizing alcohol and avoiding tobacco, getting an adequate amount of sunshine and vitamin D while preventing sunburn. All of these things alone will halt the aging process and preserve healthy skin. With this basic foundation, you can give yourself the best skin, body and health possible as you age.
Incorporating healthy habits now is the best way to approach anti-aging. The main goal is to minimize oxidative stress in the body. Increase your antioxidant (ECGC, resveratrol, vitamin C, glutathione) intake especially as you approach your thirties, in addition to maintaining proper zinc, selenium and silica levels. Eat for beauty. Eating plenty of phytonutrients from dark leafy greens, vegetables, berries, good quality fats and drink plenty of green juice. Maintain proper nutrient levels in your body with a simple micronutrient testing and test your telomeres to see how quickly your body is aging.
Additionally, make sure to…
- Eliminate all toxins from your face and personal care products like parabens and sulfates, as well as house-cleaning products.
- Undergo seasonal detoxes to keep your body functioning optimally and keep your channels of elimination open. Detoxing helps to eliminate all sorts of toxins from the body, including endotoxins—those formed by bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites.
- Decrease inflammation in your body through an elimination diet and heal your leaky gut. Chronic inflammation is the gateway to dis-ease.
- Improve your sleep—it’s the quality of the hours you are getting. Sleep in a pitch-black room, start winding down two hours before bed, put your phone on airplane mode and don’t exercise two hours before bed.
- Exercise and break a sweat. Exercise improves cognitive performance, enhances memory, reverses depression, slows or stops mental decline associated with aging and prevents dementia. In head-to-head studies, exercise beats or equals Prozac as an antidepressant.
- Meditate and decrease stress in your body. Stress is highly underrated and a huge culprit to dis-ease. Every time you worry and go in fear, your brain sends chemical signals to your body to react and with enough repetition this chronic stress can have detrimental effects on your body.
There are no quick fixes to reverse aging. Sure, you can opt for plastic surgery but that doesn’t mean that you are adding years to your life. Beauty is from the inside out. The more you take care of your body, the more it will age gracefully. Anti-aging is an art form and life is a ritual.
Isabel Sharkar, ND, is a licensed naturopathic physician and co-owner of Indigo Integrative Health Clinic, in Georgetown. For more information, call 202-298-9131 or visit IndigoHealthClinic.com.