Slowing the Aging Process with these 4 Tips


Holistic Living Blog

by Rachelle Tetreault L,Ac


To enjoy the benefits of slow aging begin with hydrating foods which nourish us on a cellular level. The Neurobiology of Aging recommends that a major part of our daily diets be vegetables, legumes, fruits, and whole grains. Legumes may include beans, peas, and lentils. Replacing both meat and dairy with these substitutes help to naturally slow down the aging process. The latest research in diet and aging around the globe shows us that the major centenarian(those that live to 100 years) population eats these foods the most. It has also been shown in these populations with the longest life expectancies that there is daily walking incorporated into their lifestyle. Life tends to be simpler and more grounded in nature in many of these societies. Also, there is an involvement in socializing with neighbors and loved ones.

We now live in a world where we are seeing a more rapid decline in overall health. More people are starting to show signs of degenerative disorders and cognitive impairment. The AARP statistics reveal that almost 40% of people 76 years and older take some type of healthy brain supplement. Based off of the National Institute of Health (NIH), the numbers of degenerative brain disorders have climbed over the last thirty years.

Slowing the aging process keeps us more agile, both mentally and physically. Slowing the aging process basically begins with the prevention of inflammation in our brain, heart, eyes, and joints. This can be accomplished with eating cleaner, improving circulation with deep breathing, stretching, and walking daily. Eating food high in antioxidants is a key to help protect brain health. Blueberries are a wonderful source of anthocyanins polyphenols which are a major antioxidant to preserve brain health.

In the western world, Alzheimer’s medications have all failed at a rate of 99.6% again according to Neurobiology of Aging. Yet the basics like proper sleep, weight management, daily walking, good air quality, and limiting alcohol alone may reduce the risk of dementia over 20%.

A Harvard study on brain health showed that cognitive dementia is at a much higher risk with a diet of saturated fats accounting for over 60% of a risk factor versus a diet low in animal fats, processed food, sugars, and salt. There is known to be a blood-brain barrier leakage which allows the permeability of both saturated fats and cholesterol which leads more directly to brain inflammation. Brain inflammation leads to whole body deterioration which we eventually see in many neuro-degenerative disorders.

You may often hear me mention the benefits of the art of deep breathing. This allows the entire body to reap benefits which essentially lowers inflammation and allows balance and harmony to exist with mind and body. Deep slow breaths move the lymphatics and calms the nervous system, slows the heart rate and improves digestion and focus. This ultimately allows the mind to become more agile and less likely to react negatively to daily stressors increasing inflammatory cytokine markers in the body.

Stretching allows our muscles to stay flexible and strong helping to prevent future injuries from falls or mishaps. Without stretching, we become less agile, and our muscles become tighten. Muscles will actually both shorten and tighten, therefore, increasing the likelihood of injury without the proper elongation of stretching. This will help to maintain proper rotation of all the joints and allow better extension in doing so.

The Buddhist monks have known the value of stretching for some time and remain youthful because of it. There is better circulation and lymphatic movement combined with both deep breathing and a full elongated stretch. Start out small and practice daily. There should be no sharpness or bouncing of joints involved when practicing. If so, then reduce the stretch to comfort level.

Reducing stress reduces inflammation. This includes lifestyle, diet and nutrition, walking daily, deep breathing and stretching. Remaining present in the moment and being grateful for each day keeps us grounded. Let us realize the gift of longevity may be ours for the taking if we are so inclined. Quality of life is also improved when using these essential foundational steps to begin your journey to optimal health. Blessings of longevity to you!