Two of the oldest women in the world recently died at over 110 years old. “Centenarians,” or people who live to be over 100, are on the rise. From age-old answers to futuristic anti-aging elixirs, the promise of longevity is at our fingertips. But forget trekking across the world to find the fountain of youth; three of the best revitalizers are inexpensive and easy to come by. What are they?
One of the best ways to get in on the anti-aging action? Just that — action. If you sit on your rump at work or school all day, and then move straight to the couch for a night of TV, you will start to feel old really fast.
It’s not enough just to swing by the gym a few days a week. If you go right back to being sedentary, it will take longer to recover from your workouts and you’ll still feel stiff and achy. To keep your body feeling agile, keep moving! Some say walking explains the “French Paradox”—they stay in shape despite a high-fat diet because they walk 5 miles a day. That may not be practical in your neighborhood, but you can certainly add more movement to your day: at the store, take a faraway stall. Walk the dog every night. If you have a desk job, move around for 10 minutes every hour. Even a one-minute stretch can make you feel more alert and energized.
In one of my favorite posts at nomorebacon.com, Ryan talks about looking at the bigger efficiency picture. Sometimes we think we’re being more productive by taking shortcuts, trampling the grass to shave a few minutes off our trip. But if we take the long way, think of how those extra steps will increase our energy and productivity in the long run—not to mention keep us feeling younger and healthier. Isn’t that the better use of time?
The revitalizing powers of this next one are too often overlooked. It’s one of the greatest contributors to health and youthfulness, yet we take it for granted. Maybe we assume that because it’s free and easy, it can’t possibly be as effective as a $115 anti-aging serum. But it is. Before you spend big bucks on rejuvenating night creams and wrinkle-erasing serums, try drinking more water!
“For a sharp mind, smooth skin, better health, and fluid movement, you need water,” says Reader’s Digest. Water improves the elasticity of your skin. It helps the body flush toxins out. Simply staying hydrated will make you look and feel younger. For every non-water beverage I have, I drink two glasses of water first. Drinking a glass of water 30-60 minutes before a meal can also prevent overeating.
The first two secrets to staying young weren’t new (we just need a little reminder sometimes). But the next secret to a longer life might surprise you.
“Step aside, quacks. The search for longer life is a real science now,” Anne Underwood chirped in a Newsweek article, adding that “legitimate longevity-boosting treatments could be available in 10 to 15 years.” By legitimate, she means that scientists are seeking to harness and concentrate naturally-existing substances in order to prevent chronic disease and keep the body working in tip-top shape.
Expect to hear a lot about body-rejuvenating elixirs in coming years. Big pharmaceutical companies like Sirtris are in a race to patent the fountain of youth in drug form. “To date, two compounds have sparked scientists’ interest: resveratrol, a substance found in grapes, red wine and peanuts; and rapamycin, first isolated in the soil of Easter Island,” wrote TIME Magazine, also hot on the longevity drug trail.
I suspect they’ve made resveratrol a target because it’s both a protective antioxidant and a metabolism-booster (read more about the research here). Resveratrol is already being used in supplement form to promote health and facilitate fat burn.
While you may be able to reverse aging down the road, there’s really only one way to preserve youth and prevent degenerative diseases—start taking care of your body now!