7 Consistent Habits of People Who Age Well
Maintain a positive outlook on aging.
You are what you think you are when it comes to aging. Seniors who think of age as a means to wisdom and overall satisfaction are more than 40% more likely to recover from a disability than those who see aging as synonymous with helplessness or uselessness, according to The Journal of the American Medical Association.
So perspective and mindset can play a huge role in how physically and emotionally resilient you can continue to be as you age.
Eat nutrient-rich, whole foods.
Nutrition plays a major role in how your body ages. The latest research shows that a low-glycemic diet high in fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein is healthiest.
In contrast, sugary, carbo-hydrate heavy, and unhealthy fatty foods—think, chips, soda, and white bread—can speed up the aging process. So, when shopping or dining out, opt for whole grains and natural sweeteners.
Eat until you're satisfied—not stuffed.
Chronically overeating—eating way past feeling healthily full and satisfied—can lead to health risks, including shorter life span, cardiovascular disease, and type 2 diabetes. To age well and live longer, it's best to stick to a balanced diet and healthy eating patterns.
Staying active is a vital part of aging well. The average woman can lose 23 percent of her muscle mass between ages of 30 and 70. You lose muscle more rapidly as you age, but exercise (resistance workouts) in particular—can increase mass and strength, even well into your 90s.
Socialize and stay connected.
Belonging to a community and staying connected with people you love is a big deal. Spending time with friends and relatives isn't just fun, it can help you live longer. Those of us with strong social ties were shown to have a 50 percent higher chance of living longer than those with poor or insufficient relationships.
Prioritize sun protection.
Too much time in the sun can cause wrinkles, not to mention skin cancer. But wearing sunscreen can help prevent your skin's aging.1 And while the sun's UV rays do trigger vitamin D production, which is essential for bone health, that's hardly a good reason to expose yourself.
After a few minutes of sun, your skin stops making vitamin D—and starts making skin cancer." Most people get plenty of Vitamin D, but if you think you're not, try eating more salmon or even eggs (don't skip the yolk). Wear sunscreen every day—even on days when you'll be indoors or traveling.
Get plenty of sleep.
You probably know that you need seven to nine hours of sleep each night (and that a solid power nap can help make up for lost night of Zs). But did you know that chronically not sleeping enough is linked to a higher risk of conditions such as obesity, Alzheimer's, heart disease, depression, and diabetes?
And it turns out that "beauty sleep" isn't a myth. During sleep, your body releases a growth hormone that helps restore collagen and elastin, the essential building blocks of young, healthy skin.
Recent research has also shown a connection between insomnia and accelerated aging of the brain, in other words, chronic lack of sleep adversely affects your brain structure and function and can speed up the aging process.