Happy Monday, Ladies! I hope you all enjoyed your Mother’s Day. I had a wonderful weekend with my family. Yes, I even DANCED Saturday night! If you’re a follower of this Blog, you may recall I wrote a post on aging gracefully. I pointed out the simple fact, that no matter how rich, how poor, how thin, how happy, how unhappy you are, there is one thing in this world you cannot fight, and just happen to be battling at the EXACT same rate as the next person… AGING. Madonna is over 50. Yes, Even Madonna turned 50! Enough said. But in that Blog post, I talked about my desire to age without any help from Dr. 90210. I wrote about how to age “gracefully.” But, today, we’re taking it one step further. Today, we’re talking how to put that aging process on slow-mo. And I’m not on the fence here. I just turned 35 and because I don’t intend on going the plastic route, I’m gonna fight the shit out of this aging process.
Now, this morning didn’t quite help the whole aging thing. In fact, this morning just helped speed up the process instead of slow it down. I was all ready for the gym and on my way to carpool, when I got a frantic call from my husband to get to the gas station immediately, buy a jerry can of gas, and bring it to “Lemieux” street, as his car had conked out… on the way to the gas station. Naturally, this threw off my whole morning, completely frazzled me, and made me come up with yet another excuse to skip the gym. So I did, and I’m in still in Lululemon workout clothes and haven’t yet broken a sweat today. I’m sitting idle, sipping lattes at Starbucks, not fighting any aging process at all. 🙂
Now as I discuss fighting this process (and fighting gravity for that matter), is it me, or have you also noticed A LOT of “new” and “perky” looking boobs popping up these days? It seems that some women in my community have embraced the knife. But I have to tell you, some of them look fantastic! In fact, the boob jobs and Botox injections on many of these women I have been spotting lately, have been a great work of art. Congrats on a job well done! But maybe because I’m the daughter of a therapist, my first instinct when I see a boob job on a married woman is, “She’s not happy. Something must be wrong in her life. I hope she’s okay.” Now, you may think I’m totally off, but I really believe there’s something deeper going on when a married woman goes under the knife. I think there’s more to it than just boosting your self confidence and trying to look good. But that’s just me. So if you disagree, let’s agree to disagree, okay? I just feel we don’t do things to alter our appearance if there’s not something deeper going on. I hate my nose, but I’m not fixing it. My 34-C once perfect boobs have dropped in rating, but I’m not touching ’em. My 5’8″ smaller framed body has some cellulite and a few stretch marks from my pregnancies. But I am not fixing a thing. I’ve kinda surrendered to living imperfectly. Just saying. And maybe I’m the one who doesn’t get it… I don’t know. But all that said, I’m still taking the best care of myself that I can.
So today, I wanted to bring back the helpful tips. For all of us fighting the aging process, here are some tips that you can incorporate into your life to HELP SLOW IT DOWN:
- The no-brainer – EAT FRUITS AND VEGETABLES. Ok, how much? Actually, 50% of your diet should be made up of fruits or vegetables. 50%!!! I’m definitely not consuming enough! And the key to fruits and vegetables are the antioxidants. Antioxidants = longevity = your friend in aging. So foods rich in antioxidants are: red apples, walnuts, beans, blueberries. Antioxidants are key in helping to fight heart disease, cancer, Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease. Top picks for fruits: blueberries, cranberries, blackberries, raspberries, strawberries, apples, and cherries. Top picks for veggies: kale, spinach, broccoli, artichokes, avocado, asparagus, cauliflower, sweet potato, carrots, pumpkin, and onions.
- Reduce your caffeine intake. Yah, this is not fun to hear, as so many of us rely on coffee as morning fuel. Coffee, black tea, diet sodas and chocolate are high in caffeine. This is not your friend when it comes to aging.
- The 411 on exercise: In an ideal world, you should be exercising 30 minutes EVERY day (with only one day off a week). Don’t shoot the messenger! But seriously, exercise and strength training increase your metabolism, strengthen your cardiovascular system, boost your immune system, improve your memory, and help provide a good night’s sleep. You don’t need much… a brisk 30 walk after work will do the trick. And as I tell my husband, anything is better than nothing.
- I talk a lot about water, but it’s BIGGIE in slowing down the aging process. You should be drinking at least a quart of water for every 50 lbs of body weight to flush out your toxins and keep your skin healthy. Remember, caffeinated and carbonated drinks are no substitute. In fact, they dehydrate your body.
- A few great things to add to your diet to fight aging: cabbage, olive oil, flax-seed oil or rapeseed oil. Yogurt is good for you too. Also, adding thyme and/or lavender to your cooking is believed to slow down the aging process. And of course, always whole grains over white.
- Relaxing your mind does wonders for your aging process. So, things like yoga, Pilate’s, meditation, deep breathing, all relieve stress. They also increase your oxygen and blood circulation which in turn improve your energy levels. Embrace these calming activities. Don’t be so quick to dismiss them.
- Have sex! Yes! Dr. Oz is a big advocate of this. Studies have shown that men and women who have frequent sex live LONGER and are HAPPIER. Do you know that men who have sex regularly lower their risk of prostate cancer, and women who have regular sex live on average, three years longer? All according to Dr. Mehmet Oz.
- Cleanse and exfoliate your skin regularly. Do you know that natural ingredients in your kitchen can treat and prevent the early signs of aging? Feel free to massage CASTOR OIL on your face and neck to improve your skin tone and firm up your muscles. Obviously, your daily moisturizer should also contain an SPF to protect from the harmful effects of the sun.
- Sleep is a biggie. For many, sleep has become a major problem. Getting UNDISTURBED good quality sleep each night is key in allowing the body to rest and repair itself. When you are lacking good sleep, your concentration suffers and your hormone levels become imbalanced, causing stress levels in your body to increase. And stress is your enemy, my friends, when it comes to the aging process.
- Practice good dental hygiene! Take care of those gums ladies, for real! People who have gum disease are at an increased risk of heart disease and stroke. And don’t forget to FLOSS!
- Smoking and drinking. I had to throw this one in. I’ve spoken of it before, but it must appear on this list. Hypnosis and acupuncture have been proven to help quit smoking. Some studies even say that drinking even in moderation is not good at all, especially for women. I’m guilty sometimes.
- Always keep your brain going. Meaning, you should be stimulating your brain as often as possible. You must exercise your brain, just as you do your body. Not exercising your brain can lead to memory problems and a lot more. So, crossword puzzles, taking up a new language, enrolling in a night course, or learning a new instrument all keep your mind engaged. If you don’t use it, you lose it, ladies!
And finally, have fun! Be positive and keep a good spirit. Live each day to the fullest. Laugh with your friends. Embrace the imperfections… they’re what make you perfect. Be happy. Be healthy. Every stage brings something beautiful. Enjoy the stages.
And ladies, please share your own tips on how you’ve been aging gracefully and not on fast forward mode. Help out a friend! 😉