My Anti-Aging Journey Began at 16–
I remember my mother’s wise anti-aging advice when I was just 16 years old. One night while having a dinner table conversation, she blurted out, “You are going to age well” and mentioned something like “you have a thin neckline”. I didn’t pay much attention, but just wondered why she was so concerned about me aging when I was so young.
My Mother’s Best Advice
Soon after that memorable dinner conversation, she took me to a local department store to purchase a new skin care line that had just been introduced for younger people. She emphatically said, “You are going to have a skin care regimen so you can take good care of your skin”. I was thrilled to get grown up beauty products from the best department store in town, so, I dutifully followed her advice. She would be proud that I have kept up my regimen for more than 4 decades. I can say it has paid off because I often get compliments on my skin. I have my mom to thank because she was right. What she knew is that anti-aging is very much about having a regimen. But anti-aging is more than just having a good skin care regimen, it’s about having an anti-aging lifestyle regimen.
It Starts with a Regimen
Studies of ‘Blue Zones’ – places around the globe where people live longer than anywhere else in the world – have shown that we can live full, rich and healthy lives well into our 90s and beyond. Researchers have isolated the lifestyle factors in Blue Zone communities that provide insight into the secrets to aging well. Further, scientists around the world are advancing the research and learning more about the science behind the aging process and how to slow it down. We are learning more and more about what it takes to stay active and energized during aging so we can live active, healthy, happy lives. I’ve rounded up some of the best anti-aging tips that are sure to help one live well with zest no matter what your age.
Here Are My Top 10 Best Anti-Aging Secrets
1. Change Your Pillowcase
Seriously. Sleeping on a silk pillowcase instead of a cotton or polyester pillowcase is one of the least known, best anti-aging tips. Silk is gentle on your skin and doesn’t tug or crease it unnecessarily while you sleep. And considering the percentage of your lifetime that you sleep, having a helpful pillowcase is a good plan for your skin.
2. Cut Back on Sugar
It’s no secret that consuming too much sugar puts us at risk for diabetes, heart disease, and obesity, but it can also contribute to premature aging. Too much processed sugar can create unwanted dark circles, premature wrinkles, and dehydrated skin. If you have a sweet tooth, it’s easy to replace processed sugars with natural sugars and anti-aging sweet foods like blueberries, sweet potatoes, or pomegranate seeds.
3. Don’t Smoke
If lowering your likelihood of getting lung cancer isn’t a strong enough reason to stop smoking (or to avoid it altogether!), keep in mind that smoking takes a toll on your skin. The vasoconstricting effect has been known to speed the aging process, increase psoriasis, and add wrinkles. Avoid smoking and second-hand smoke.
4. Eat your Avocados
Healthy fats —like those found in avocados—are one of the most important anti-aging foods to add to your diet. Fats with high Omega-3s are vital to optimal health as they help prevent chronic inflammation, a major risk factor in most aging related diseases. They help you feel full (so you don’t snack on items filled with processed sugar), and they create smoother, healthier skin. When it comes to anti-aging foods, there is probably no better one than avocados.
5. Go to the Gym
Or actually, just exercise wherever you can! One of the secrets to healthy and happy lives is getting daily exercise, and it’s also good for our skin. Staying active, moving your body and working out on a regular basis prevents chronic health conditions and slows the signs of aging. And sweat is good for the body and skin, too, so it’s a win/win. Flush out toxins and support longevity literally and visibly.
6. Keep Stress in Check
One of the best anti-aging secrets is managing stress. Since hormones associated with stress are also linked to premature aging, it makes sense that lowering our stress levels will support our anti-aging routine. Sleep longer. Practice yoga. Learn to meditate. Get out in nature. These are good for your body, your brain, and your beauty.
7. Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate
Dehydration is one of the fastest ways to age skin prematurely. Getting the right amount of water will have the opposite effect. Aim to drink half your weight in ounces every day. Our bodies are made of about 70% water, so it’s important to keep replenishing the water in our tissues. Water helps the elasticity of skin tissues and can delay getting wrinkles and fine lines.
8. Eat Anti-Inflammatory Foods
Eat whole grains, natural (i.e. non-processed) foods, including plenty of brightly colored fruits and vegetables. High anti-inflammatory foods include many greens such as spinach, swiss chard, kale, and broccoli. In addition, colorful fruits such as berries, dark cherries, and beets are high in anti-inflammatory properties. And be sure to eat foods rich in Omega-3 such as salmon and mackerel and sardines.
9. Reduce Intake of NSAIDS and Antibiotics
Avoid using antibiotics, antacids, and NSAIDs unless advised by a doctor, as they can harm the microbiome in the gut causing inflammation and lead to leaky gut which can trigger many diseases. Long-term use of NSAIDs may also cause kidney damage and increase the risk of having a stroke or heart attack or stroke.
10. Sleep 7+ Hours Each Night
Overnight sleep ideally 7 to 8 hours helps in stimulating Human Growth Hormone (HGH) that promotes the body to rebuild itself. Aim for at least 7 hours per night. The goal is to feel well-rested upon arising in the morning.
Follow a Simple Anti-Aging Routine to Serve Your Skin and Body!
With a little time and effort, you can create an anti-aging skin care and lifestyle routine that will serve your skin and body well for the next 50 years and beyond!
Enjoy and Live Well with Zest!
Written by Bev Hope
Reviewed by Board Certified MD