We don’t have a choice whether or not we age (though I’m sure some would like to argue that). Humans are programmed to live a certain amount of years and while we now have more medications and technologies to help us live longer, our time will come whether we like it or not. While maintaining a healthy lifestyle with proper diet and exercise may prolong your life a few more years, this is not the main reason we should be taking care of ourselves. Getting proper nutrition through vitamins, minerals, diet, exercise & mindfulness, is essential for our bodies to function properly and perform the way they are supposed to. Over the years, we become deficient in certain vitamins (calcium, for example) and need to make sure we are taking the necessary steps to replenish those nutrients in order to maintain our health. It is essential to provide your body with the right fats, proteins and fibre to strengthen your immune system and organs in order to fight disease and stay strong. Daily exercise (at least 20 minutes each day) is also essential for healthy aging to maintain muscle that is easily lost, get your heart rate up, increase blood flow and strengthen your entire mentality.
Healthy aging is important because while we may not have a choice on when we pass on, we do have a choice on how we decide to live. Making sure that you provide your body with the proper fuel and exercise will help our bodies fight disease so we don’t begin to slowly decay before we die. Those who are not providing their bodies with the essential nutrients and exercise throughout the aging process will have a harder time fighting off disease and maintaining a healthy weight that is necessary to spend quality time with family and friends while doing the things you love and should be doing as you begin to retire. We don’t need to be decaying our bodies before they decay naturally!
While you are young you need to begin these healthy lifestyle patterns so it comes naturally to you as you age. While these changes may actually prolong your life (avoiding disease and obesity), it will make your life worth living until the day you die. We don’t need to fear aging. If you are taking care of yourself, you should be able to live a happy and active life and then end it properly.
Lastly, but certainly not least, we need to be concerned about our brain health. Coconut oil, for example, provides essential fats and antioxidants that are so important for brain function. Some benefits include:
- Improving the body’s use of insulin
- Improving cholesterol by increasing HDL (good cholesterol)
- Boosting thyroid function resulting in increased energy
- Acting as an antioxidant and natural antibiotic
- Improving overall health of skin and hair
Add coconut oil to your smoothies, in salad dressings, in medium heat cooking (high heat will damage the oil), or add it to your baking when it calls for butter or oil. Extra virgin coconut oil (preferably organic) is solidified in room temperature and will need to be warmed up to become liquid.
It’s never too late to start eating healthy and exercise. It also doesn’t need to be difficult. There are so many resources online to help you get healthy. Take 20 minutes out of your day to go for a walk, hike, jog or bike ride. Remember – you should never be dieting! Discover the power of food and how even some small changes can change your life. To get started, click here to get a FREE Grocery Store Cheat Sheet to bring with you the next time you shop. Having these foods in your fridge are essential to beginning a healthy lifestyle.
Visit CDC for more information and resources about this topic.