Imagine You… Living Long, Looking Good 3

We are entering an era of unprecedented breakthroughs in our approach to wellness, prevention of disease and the aging process. Geneticists postulate our gene coding may be responsible for only 30% of our lifespan. That leaves 70% up to us. Genetic engineering is becoming mainstream. There are well-funded startup companies whose primary mission is to cure the aging process. Individuals may not be able to tap into those resources just yet, but those days are coming! Until then, there are measures we can take to optimize our chances to be the best we can be, inside and out.

Why do we age? Why do muscles weaken and memories fail while our skin withers?  Apoptosis, programmed cellular death, contributes to disease and aging. So, how do we prevent this from happening or put the breaks on…at least for a while.

Let’s cut through the noise and stroll the path of imagine you…

Imagine you…could take a drug that can slow the aging process? There is such a drug–it’s food. Hippocrates, the father of medicine said, “Let thy food be thy medicine.” Those words ring as true today as they did millennia ago.

Studies have shown that a balanced diet consisting of low glycemic carbohydrates, adequate lean protein and healthy fats can stabilize blood sugar and reduce systemic inflammation. This approach helps to maintain a healthy blood sugar level, which translates into reduced cellular inflammation, better mental acuity, happier mood and better performance.

1    Divide your plate into 3 sections.

2    Fill one third with lean protein the size and thickness of the palm of your hand; fill the remainder with colorful vegetables, a little fruit and use monounsaturated fats as a condiment.

3    Enjoy life in The Zone.

Imagine you…could look as good as your younger self. You can, with renewal treatments to replace volume time slowly steals away. As we age, lines, wrinkles and hollows become more evident. The culprits that rob us of our youthful appearance include sun exposure, life style choices and genetics.

Neuromodulators erase lines and wrinkles, and the FDA has approved dermal fillers for almost every area of the face and hands. Pharmaceutical companies continue their research to quench the thirst of the aging baby boomer generation.

Imagine you…could keep your joints supple and muscles strong. You can, just keep moving. We loose limb strength up to 10% a decade after the age of 50. Nerve connection to muscle fibers weaken, as do the neurons to your brain. A brisk daily walk will have a big impact–it helps control weight, lower bad cholesterol and blood pressure. Engaging in daily cardio respiratory activities eases the symptoms of depression and delays dementia. Resistance training, to ensure bone, muscle and joint health, is as important as cardio. Don’t belong to a gym–no excuse. Push-ups and standing squats are great resistance exercises you can do at home or as you travel.

Imagine you…sleeping well each night. Exercise and diet are very important to keep our circadian rhythms in balance. There is one simple thing proven to help with weight loss and sound sleep–water. It is hard to believe that 70% of Americans need better hydration. Simple rule to keep hydrated–your body weight divided by 2 equals the minimum ounces of water required daily. If you weigh 150 pounds, your water intake should be 75 ounces per day. If you drink coffee or alcohol, add at least 2 more cups to your water intake.

Imagine you…can take an elixir of health everyday. Long chain omega-3 fatty acids and a spectrum of polyphenols (colorful fruits and vegetables) is critical to combat cellular inflammation. Not all omega-3 and polyphenols are created equal. Since fish are at the top of the marine food chain, all of them are contaminated by PCBs. Many manufacturers of omega-3 fatty acid products use either hexane or acetone to isolate their products. If you take fish oil, and everyone should, visit the International Fish Oil Standards (IFSO) online site, an independent lab where manufactures submit their products for testing.

Remember, longevity is in your hands. What is now possible was once only imagined.

Zara Cerni is a certified Aesthetic Consultant and Health Coach at Physicians Center for Renewal, Newport Beach and Laguna Niguel.