Ageing Gracefully

Posted by Neelam Balekar on Thu, Mar 10, 2016  
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Ageing is slowing down of body’s essential function. It is part of life which cannot be avoided and should be accepted gracefully. Ageing can be delayed in individual approaching ageing discreetly and understand the care needed to be taken of the body. Body has two metabolic mechanisms involved in ageing that are constantly operating called anabolism and catabolism. Anabolism is a balancing process involving restoration and healing, while catabolism is degenerative process resulting to stress. Graceful ageing can be achieved by increasing anabolism to more effectively counteract catabolism. One of the crucial factors responsible for ageing is generation of free radicals. Free radicals are oxygen containing molecules with single electron which is highly unstable and are responsible for the cell damage. These free radicals are generated by the mitochondria of the cell which serves as energy generators for carrying out normal cell functions. When we are young, our natural antioxidant defense system clears out the free radicals before they can cause damage. However, as we age, the antioxidant defense system becomes less efficient through down regulation of oxidative enzymes.

Our skin cells experience more damage as they are constantly exposed to various assaults like sunlight (UV rays), pollution, stress, smoking, bad dietary behaviour (excessive sugar) etc. The unstable free radicals formed by these assaults vibrate in the skin and pokes the collagen fibres of the dermis. After years of this free radical attack, the collagen which supports and gives elasticity to the skin becomes weaker and eventually causes the skin to collapse and form wrinkles.

The Natural way for Anti-Ageing:

 
Drink plenty of water

Water keeps skin hydrated, flushes out toxins and make skin flexible, vibrant and clear.

Healthy Diet

Nourish your skin by healthy diet which includes antioxidants, healthy fats, minerals, vitamins and phytonutrients.

Green leafy vegetables –provides high levels of anti-oxidants which is powerful weapon against pre-mature ageing.

Fish such as sardines and salmon high in essential fatty acids (omega 3 fatty acids) slows ageing process.

Herbs – Turmeric and garlic contain anti-oxidants and cleansing nutrients that can slow the ageing process, black pepper to cleanse the channels, and fennel to balance the transformational ability of the skin.

Anti-oxidant Rich Teas – Green tea, white tea,  and black tea contain antioxidants called polyphenols that protect your cells from free radical damage.

Berries – Are full of powerful antioxidants known as anthocyanins which help maintain muscle and may prevent cancer.

Easily digested proteins such as paneer, milk, soya, tofu, sunflower seeds;

Betacarotene-rich foods such as carrots and sweet cherries.

Almonds and walnuts support the skin with their protein and lubricating fat content.

Eggs

Legumes such as pea, chickpeas, broad beans and Lima beans

Foods high in vitamin C such as peaches, citrus fruits, fruit juices

Olive, Avocado, Pomegranate, Guava, Cucumber, Tomatoes, Noni juice

Carotenoid-rich fruit and vegetables such as cantaloupe, apricots, carrots, and sweet potatoes

Foods high in zinc such as seafood, nuts, milk, and lean meats

Foods to avoid  

Refined sugar  – Promotes a process called glycation.  Glycation damages cells and causes wrinkles.

Grains – Pro-inflammatory if not sprouted and lead to glycation, which will speed up the ageing process.

Processed Fat and hydrogenated oils plays critical role in inflammation which may lead to deleterious effects to the body like premature ageing, heart disease, and certain types of cancer.

Alcohol – Regular consumption of alcohol can lead to speed up ageing process although occasional glass of red wine which contains resveratrol may have beneficial effects.

Sleep – Body needs to relax to perform well therefore eight hours sleep is one of the best things to prevent ageing.

Exercise – keeping body active keeps one young by lubricating joints, supporting detoxification, and building cardiovascular health.

Essential oils like frankincense, lavender, myrrh and sandalwood have proved to be wonderful anti-ageing remedies. They are rich in antioxidants and contain compounds that reduce cellular damage.

Protection from UV rays and application of sunscreen can prevent skin damage and hence slow down ageing.

Moisturise skin daily

Reduce stress- Mental stress speeds ageing process. Some of the ways to reduce stress are Yoga, deep breathing and meditation. It boosts oxygen and blood flow and improves energy level.

In today’s world every individual is exerting without understanding what exactly he wants from life. Long working hours, bad food habits, smoking, alcohol consumption, too much stress, no exercise is leading to fast deterioration of body function which leads to fatigue, lack of motivation and early ageing. Rearranging life style and rejuvenation is required for good and healthy life so that ageing can be welcomed with grace.

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