January 24, 2017

Stress Reduction to Prevent Disease – Part 1

By David Kekich

Stress drains you from the inside, robbing your energy and vitality. Stress leads to fatigue and will silently sabotage even the strongest motivation. Do everything right— everything—and chronic stress can crash it all down!

Even a few minutes of focused stress reduction every day is a powerful way to prevent disease and accelerate your regeneration.

I’m going to show you how to not only reduce your chronic stress, but also how to avoid most of it.

Chronic Stress Accelerates Aging and Makes You Sick

Just like exercise, emotion signals your cells to grow strong or weak. The same molecular pathways go to work for you or against you. Stress, hostility and loneliness starve your cells and put them in danger. However, optimism and love trigger growth. Like deciding to exercise, you can pretty much master your emotions. It’s a choice.

Consider this: people who feel more stressed have telomeres that are almost 50% shorter than those of people who say they are less stressed. This equates to a whopping 9-17 year difference in biological age!

How much stress do you experience during the average day? Chronic stress kills, you know. It kills by:

  • Weakening your immune system
  • Disrupting your digestive system
  • Causing heart disease, stroke, cancer, Alzheimer’s and more

In fact, 80% of all doctor visits in the U.S. are related to stress-induced conditions, and 90% of all diseases are caused or complicated by stress. In addition to the above, these stress-indued conditions include:

  • High blood pressure
  • Kidney damage
  • Ulcers
  • Food allergies
  • Diabetes
  • And obesity

Cortisol, the main stress hormone, even causes your lean muscle to break down while increasing the storage of fat. Want to be a lean energy machine? Then learn to relax. Stress can affect every one of the trillions of cells in your body. In essence, chronic stress accelerates aging and makes you sick. Why do everything else right, only to lose it all to stress?

How to Monitor Your Stress

I have concluded there is one overriding cause of stress. In fact, it may be the only cause. In one word, it’s “reaction.”

Reaction to workplace pressures is the most common source of stress. Gallup reports 80% of employees suffer from stress. And stressed-out employees suffer from two to three times as much work injury as their non-stressed counterparts.

Most stress is caused by changes in your life and the sense of being out of control. Being out of control is usually caused by being in this reactionary mode, letting external events or other people control your actions, rather than your actions determining the external events in your life. Most of us feel stressed much of the time due to these two factors.

Some ways around this are to monitor your stress.

  • List all your daily events. Then decide which ones are truly important to you and which aren’t. Then act on those that are important.
  • Do you tend to react to things that seem urgent at the expense of ignoring or procrastinating on those that are important?
  • Your key is purposeful action and avoiding procrastination. When you procrastinate, your events control you.

You probably know what thoughts and actions advance you forward in life. I trust you know what specific action or actions energize you and are most productive for you.

  • What are you best at?
  • What do you enjoy doing?
  • Know these answers.

Focus on those related activities, and you will cut 90% of the stress out of your life. In other words, get “proactive.” Take control of your life one day at a time.
Is that how you manage most of your average day? Probably not. If you do, congratulations! But if you’re like me, you’re constantly faced with interruptions and distractions: phone calls, emails, family emergencies, arguments, mail, traffic jams, unexpected guests, financial problems, tax issues, bill paying, other peoples’ agendas, etc, etc, etc.

Chronic stress is often these continual minor stressors over an extended period of time. The cumulative effect slowly erodes your body over time at your cellular level if you don’t make a conscious effort to let your body recover.

2 Habits for Happiness

So how do you keep this insidious killer from robbing you of your health, happiness and prosperity?

It’s actually very simple. Plan your days in advance.

  • Fill your schedule with positive uplifting actions that move you toward your goals.
  • Go back a few weeks in your calendar, and list all your counterproductive reactionary items.
  • Do the same moving forward for the next two weeks.
  • Every time you react to something, and every time you feel stress, write it down.
  • Write down what you hate doing, as well.
  • Then group these items and hand them off. Delegate them. Outsource them. Or just ignore the ones that won’t damage you if they don’t get done.

Second, work in peace, quiet and privacy.

  • Shut distractions out during designated chunks of your work day.
  • Turn off your phone and email during these periods.
  • Close your door, and leave specific instructions to not bother you except in extreme emergencies such as a medical crisis or anything else that is absolutely life, family or business threatening.
  • Start in small steps and work your way up until you completely control most of your work day.

Once you master these habits, you’ll wonder why you didn’t do so years ago. Your business and personal life will prosper like never before. And you’ll live longer.

(By the way, I was interrupted twice while writing this section, because I am not behind a closed door. Being distracted and then trying to refocus doubled the time it should have taken me to write this. I’m writing this book to myself as much as to you. So I need to keep reminding myself, over and over. The rewards far outweigh the effort.)

Even productive living creates stressful situations. As long as you’re in action, you will always have some stress in your life. Self-imposed deadlines, major changes in your life and others can create stress.

How to Make Stress Reduction a Priority

We simply don’t grow without stress. Some stress is good for you. It evolved as a survival mechanism. Without it, we don’t adapt and become strong. It gives you a rush of adrenalin when you’re faced with a sudden life-threatening situation. You react faster, often without even thinking. Your strength can suddenly double for an instant.

What kills you is not adapting to the chronic stresses of life. Now that we’re civilized (at least technologically), we seldom face life-threatening events. However, modern life puts other pressures on you. Instead of being attacked by a wild animal, escaping and then relaxing for a week, we get stressed by the multiple processes of living in a complex world. And this stress doesn’t end as fast as it occurred. Stressful situations may stay with us for days, weeks and even years. Or they may pop up one after another. They can make us feel as helpless as babies. Sometimes they spin our lives out of control. They all cause our stress system to activate. The system designed to help us in an emergency becomes dangerous to our health if it runs all the time.

Physical and emotional stress causes the release of cortisol and catecholamines (adrenaline and nor-adrenaline), hormones that keep the body performing under high stress situations. As I mentioned, these hormones are good in short bursts, such as in emergency situations, but damaging after long periods of exposure.

Catecholamines are also known as the “fight or flight” hormones, because they “rev up” your system (increase blood pressure and heart rate) in response to stress. Cortisol suppresses normal inflammatory responses and immune functions to allow you to continue to perform in an emergency. Long-term exposure to cortisol and catecholamines, however, is linked to a whole host of physiological problems, including:
  • Memory loss
  • Immune system inhibition
  • Endocrine system disruption
  • Increased free radical production
  • Chronic increased blood pressure
  • Chronic increased heart rate

This chronic stress is what kills us instead of saving us. So we need to make stress reduction and relaxation a priority in our lives if our plans are peace, health and longevity. The good news is it’s not hard to do.

All you need to do is stop and get off the horse once in a while. Relaxation is not only fun and easy, but it will extend your life and help keep you from getting sick.

Focus and intentional practice are much more effective than passive relaxation. You might practice:

  • Meditation
  • Yoga
  • Prayer
  • Deep breathing exercises
  • Creative visualization
  • Listening to soothing sounds such as nature sounds or relaxing music
  • Soaking in a tub
  • Biofeedback
  • Tai chi

There are many other stress busters out there. The more stress management tools you learn and use regularly, the happier and healthier you’ll be. Stress management can measurably reverse much of the stress-induced damage very quickly. You can even restore over-taxed immune systems in ninety days or less. Best of all, your benefits accumulate. The longer you practice stress management techniques, the healthier you become.

You are responsible for much of the emotional stress placed on your body. If you perceive a situation as stressful, your body will react. If you can manage difficult situations without overreacting, you save your body from unnecessary chemical damage.

To read the 2nd half of this article, Stress Reduction to Prevent Disease – Part 2, click HERE. 

 

David Kekich is President/CEO of Maximum Life Foundation that focuses on aging research, a 501(c)(3) corporation dedicated to curing aging-related diseases. For more information, visit: www.MaxLife.org. David contributes to our column Living Healthy to 120: Anti-Aging Breakthroughs. MaxLife is helping to make the anti-aging dream a reality with cutting edge Bio-Engineering research and products.

Low Testosterone Causes Life Threatening Diseases

Why the condition Low-T could be sabotaging your life beyond preventing you from lighting your fire…

“The time to hesitate is through…no time to wallow in the mire…”  ~Jim Morrison

If you…

  • Could stand to lose a few pounds…
  • Don’t have the energy you used to…
  • And seem to always get that “bug” that goes around…

Then, friend, you’re going to need to check this out!

Because although those things are a sure sign of aging…you may not have to just lie down and take it.

And if you do feel drained of energy, sport a mighty gut that resembles a “baby bump,” have circulatory issues or other head-scratching health concerns, the answer could be found in your old pal testosterone.

That’s right, buddy – the very same hormone that caused therapy-inducing embarrassment during your formative years (we needn’t go into details of just how the testo became your sexual manifesto) may be striking again…This time sabotaging your precious health instead of your social life.

Gaining an understanding of how testosterone affects you is only the first step, the main thing is to take action and get it under control so it never embarrasses you again or worse – causes disease.

Yes – you read that right – low testosterone levels can increase your chances of getting heart disease, diabetes, dementia and other age-related conditions!

Fortunately, it’s preventable if you know what to do…and you will – if you stick with me here…because the time to hesitate is through!

Major advances have been made that can help you carve out a safe path around these pitfalls and enjoy life far into your Golden Years without worry, depression, or contempt. A little common sense along with a few natural remedies can eliminate age-related health problems for life.

Testosterone: The good and the bad

Testosterone is an oddball hormone to say the least…

Essentially, this steroid is built with cholesterol. It’s found in utero and right after we’re born. But one of its most memorable entrances comes during puberty.

The embarrassment of developing “pizza face” as the facial hair begins to grow under testosterone’s influence…the cracking, popping voice as the larynx begins to grow and mature…and of course – the psychological turmoil that came with all these changes.

Then, as its levels balance and the maturity settles, testosterone gives us our competitive edge, confidence, energy, and – ahem – sex drive.

And although most gals have only 1/7 the amount as us fellas, ladies – you’re influenced quite a bit by what little’s there! Of course, we all have more or less depending on our genetic make-up.

Then, as we men age this oddball hormone turns on us again.

Testosterone giveth and testosterone taketh away…

Funny thing is – once it balances in your system, testosterone begins to get ironic on you.

That confidence, energy, sex drive, and edge – it just zaps them and quietly takes them away from you – then it gets even more vicious and increases your risk of certain diseases.

So here’s a health flash for you:

The best indicator of your overall good health can be found in your sex drive, libido, mojo, machismo, virility…whatever you care to call it. If you can’t or no longer have the desire to “light that fire,” then it could be a sign of degrading health.

But who ever said you shouldn’t have sexual energy, health and virility as you age?

You can if you make a few dietary changes and refocus your mind…

Great health comes from combining natural remedies based on scientific proof, and a little common sense…wrap that up with some positive thought and you have a healthy package – a gift that keeps on giving your whole life.

Ignore proper nutrition and testosterone could easily have its way with you…

But, just what causes this hormonal ruckus?

It’s all about the X’s and Y’s

There are two sperm types, X or Y.

  1. The X is the largest chromosome storing the most genes to control life’s complex biological processes.
  2. The Y chromosome on the other hand only stores a small amount of genetic information.
  3. In combination…XX = Female and XY = Male.

Simply put, every human needs one X chromosome for life…but only males need the Y.

It makes a dude a dude!

At only 6 weeks after conception, the Y chromosome starts the development of male testes, which begin making testosterone.

And this hormone is more than a game changer; it’s also a brain changer!

Because cognitive thinking processes and critical psychological development is triggered by testosterone.

Earlier I said a downgraded libido may indicate degrading health…

Why, then, is the libido such a strong indicator of male health and vitality?

Because a healthy libido means everything is working smoothly. Your mojo defines your health and your health defines your mojo!

The secret to controlling age-related disease and illness is simply to prevent the weakening of the processes keeping your cells energized and “growing.” Life extension experts believe one day we will crack the “immortal gene.” Having better understanding how our environment, nutrition and lifestyle factors all play together is the key.

And part of that key to understanding is eating right…

Here’s a great libido boosting recipe you’ll love!

Mojo BBQ Roast

What you’ll need:

  • 2 pounds of organic grass fed beef or Bison meat
  • 2 eggs
  • 5 crushed garlic gloves
  • 2 teaspoons of freshly crushed sage
  • ¼ cup of ground flax seeds
  • 2 tablespoons rolled oats
  • 2 tables spoons EV olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon raw sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
  • 1 teaspoon Cayenne
  • 1 tablespoon of natural BBQ sauce (with no HFCS)

Sauce:

  • ½ cup BBQ sauce
  • ½ natural organic catsup (no HFCS)

What to do:

  1. Mix together, place into a well oiled (EV coconut oil) glass baking dish. I use a 6 x 10 size.
  2. Mix sauce and pour over meat. Cover with foil and bake 350 degree for about an hour.
  3. Serve with broccoli and couscous.

Eating testosterone friendly foods does more than nourish…it can also slow or prevent…

Pandemic Testosterone Deficiency (TD)

.

Low testosterone levels are typically defined as less than 300 ng/dL (nanograms per deciliter) of total testosterone and less than 5 ng/dL of free testosterone.

Testosterone Deficiency (TD) is wide spread in today’s male population and responsible for many health problems and concerns. It’s important to note that testosterone production increases rapidly at puberty and decreases rapidly after age 50.

It’s estimated that more than 13,000,000 American males have testosterone deficiency (TD) and less than 10 percent get help for it.

Studies reveal men with obesity, diabetes, or hypertension may be twice as likely to suffer from testosterone deficiency (TD).

We know the primary purpose of testosterone is to develop male reproductive organs . . . testosterone also supports 10 other vital male qualities.

Testosterone Supports 10 Secondary Qualities:

  1. Muscles
  2. Bone Mass
  3. Fat Distribution
  4. Hair Patterns
  5. Laryngeal Enlargement
  6. Vocal Chord Thickening 
  7. Healthy Mood
  8. Fertility
  9. Sex Drive
  10. Cellular Energy

To reverse testosterone deficiency (TD), you need to know what causes it.  Already missing the extra X chromosome, man needs all the help he can get from testosterone. We know nutrition is key, but this will do you no good if your cells are exposed to toxins. Most men’s cells are chocked so full of environmental and dietary toxins that there isn’t any room for nutrients.

Before you can do any good, you’ll first have to eliminate the poisons attacking your cells and causing diseases.

6 Chemical Terrorists Wreaking Hormonal Havoc:

  1. Monosodium Glutamate (MSG)
  2. NutraSweet (Aspartame)
  3. Hydrolyzed Protein
  4. Hydrogenated Oils (Trans Fats)
  5. Sodium Fluoride
  6. Biphenol A (BP-A)

Aspartame, MSG and hydrolyzed protein are excitotoxins that destroy neurons. Exposing yourself to any of these toxins is the same as exposing your cells to chemical warfare. Bio-hazardous chemicals like fluoride, BPA and trans-fats have also been proven to cause brain and reproductive damage. 

Animal studies have shown pregnant mothers exposed to small doses of glutamate have children who develop reproductive health problems during puberty, such as shrinking testicles. There is evidence these excitotoxins also trigger hyperactivity and result in low cognitive performance. The neurons get so over-excited they literally burn up and die, shutting down hormone signaling as well as brain function.

The FDA claims your brain is protected by a blood-brain-barrier, however this is incorrect. Not only can these excitotoxins cross your blood-brain-barrier and enter your brain directly, there are also parts of your brain without a blood-brain-barrier at all, such as your hypothalamus – the part of your brain that performs a variety of functions but most important – it links your endocrine system with your central nervous system.

So it’s up to you to keep you hypothalamus healthy and working properly.

Here are a couple excellent food choices for maintaining a health hypothalamus:

  1. Sprouted whole grains/seeds
  2. Raw Vegetables
  3. Raw Fruits
  4. Raw nuts
  5. Fish

Basically, there are certain health hazards that come with age. Yet these hazards can be avoided – or at the very least, indefinitely put off – by paying close attention to what you put in your body.

Here’s an age controlling recipe that might just be your fountain of youth:

Chyawandwich

What you’ll need:

  • 2 pieces of sprouted seed bread
  • 1 tablespoon of Chyawanprash (5,000 year old Ayurvedic practice, its an Indian jam blended with age-defying herbs and spices. It can easily be found online.)
  • 1 tablespoon raw almond butter (vitamin E, zinc, magnesium, phosphorous, calcium, folic acid)
  • 1 teaspoon extra virgin coconut oil (good fats)

What to do:

Lightly toast the bread just enough to melt the coconut oil into both halves, then spread the Chyawanprash on one slice and the almond butter on the other slice. Make a sandwich and enjoy.

How to Level the Playing Field Naturally

Eat right, exercise and educate yourself on why you’re feeling the way you do to determine the best course of action to fix it.

Your body is a remarkable and complex machine that has the power to heal itself as long as you respect it and treat it right.

Having lower testosterone – or rising estrogen – levels doesn’t mean it’s time to throw in the towel – it just means you need to take extra special care of yourself and find out how to replenish your youthful past.

Keep nutrient rich foods in your diet and stay out of the funeral pyre. Instead of getting old, make sure you’re growing old so when the time comes, you’ll be able to light that fire!

How To See Better…At Any Age

Keeping Your Eyes Healthy

When it comes to taking care of your eyes, here are the basic 4 rules to halt and reverse vision loss, at any age:

  1. Get them checked regularly.
  2. Incorporate healthy eye-food into your daily diet.
  3. Give your eyes rest.
  4. Exercise regularly:
    • Men can lower their risk of cataracts by running and engaging in other cardio-respiratory fitness activities, according to a 7 year study.
    • Chinese massage incorporates several poses that increase blood circulation to your eyes and strengthen the eye muscles. Also, several techniques reduce stress levels through the body and increase breathing power, so your entire body, including your eyes feels refreshed.

Every geek, gamer, and programmer needs to know about the following eye exercises. These eye exercises take 5 minutes and will improve your vision by strengthening your eye muscles. Take a look and watch Paul McCartney demonstrate some eye exercises he learned in India. Your eyes will definitely feel more relaxed.

Got Weak Eyes?

When you begin to age your body begins to protest. Everything seems to be slowly becoming more difficult just a little at a time. One thing that happens to just about everyone is the inability to see like you used to. Even those with 20/20 vision begin to experience a need to don eyeglasses when reading close work or when driving, for example. Working on the computer becomes more of a challenge and that fine print on vitamin labels is almost impossible to read.

Some of the common age-related eye disorders set in for the following reasons:

  • Because of a diet lacking nutrients that improve vision or prevent vision from deteriorating
  • Due to loss of tissue tightness around the eye socket, leading to droopy or puffy eyelids
  • Weakening of the retinal muscles leading to lower closer-range vision and so on

Incidentally, smoking reduces blood circulation to the eyes. And in the study cited above, being overweight can increase your chances of developing cataracts.

Conditions such as cataracts, glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy and dry eyes are so very common these days, what with the way we stare at the computer, walk around without sunglasses on sunny days and stay awake for longer than our eyes can stand.

Cataracts are clumps of protein molecules that cloud up your lens making it difficult to see clearly, whereas a build up of pressure on the optic nerve causes glaucoma. This happens when the watery liquid flowing between the lens and the cornea is blocked.

Healthier Eyes At Any Age

There are plenty of ways in which we can work to stay vision fit and combat eyesight deterioration. If your dentist tells you to brush your teeth to keep them healthy, then you need to keep your eyes healthy with the following vision correction methods:

  • While at work make sure that the source of light is behind you, and not shining directly at you. Overhead lights are fine as long as they do not throw off the glare at you from the computer screen you are looking at. If you can manage: position the light source over your left shoulder, if you are right-handed, and over your right shoulder if you are left-handed.
  • A straight back will keep work at eye level or slightly lower so that you are looking down. Reclining will take us away from reading at “eye level” and we land up looking upwards.
  • To relax stressed eyes, close your eyes as much as you can. (If you’re doing it correctly it should feel like you’re scrunching your face together.) Hold the pose for a few seconds and quickly open your eyes. Blink and repeat five times.
  • Blink. Blink. Blink. Fifteen-twenty times a minute.
  • To strengthen eye muscles, close your eyes and roll your eyeballs around for one minute.
  • Every now and again, rub your palms together and place them over your eyes. Count to 20. Do this regularly.  If you can, sit on the floor with your knees raised to your chest. While your palms are over your eyes, rest your elbows on your knees and breathe deeply.
  • Don’t let cigarette smoke, or any kind of smoke get into your eyes. It can cause the formation of free radicals in the eye, which can cause macular (retina muscle) degeneration.
  • Most of the time we are only reading or interacting with things indoor, but our eyes aren’t made just for this! Going outdoors helps the eye stay true to its nature. And when outdoors, try to focus on things at a distance to exercise the eye muscles.
  • Prevent your chances of getting eye infections by washing your hands often, especially if you are in a public space. Do not share face towels or eye cosmetics. And do not rub your eyes too vigorously.
  • Avoid reading while ill, because this puts extra strain on the eyes.

Super Eye Foods

The eyes are the light of the body. So it is important to eat healthy foods that contain the right nutrients to allow different part of the body to function very well, especially the eyes. There are some things you can do to maintain the eyesight as we age and to sharpen the focus. Most of these solutions include what is contained in your daily diet.  Antioxidants and anti-inflammatory foods and nutrients can maintain eyesight and improve vision.

  • Bilberry extracts. This herb has been shown to slow the development of cataracts. It increases the blood supply to the eyes.
  • Red, orange, yellow fruits and green vegetables are particularly good for the eyes. They are loaded with antioxidants such as beta carotene, vitamins A, C, E.
  • Omega-3 oils found aplenty in cold water fish such as salmon, tuna, cod and sardines are healthy for the eyes.
  • A tea made from eyebright, Echinacea, clover, burdock and licorice boosts your immune system… helping you resist eye infections.

Chinese Eye Massage Techniques and Exercises

As a bonus, here are some Chinese eye exercises to help you relax and see, beneficial by relieving, firming and healing the eye. Eye massage can increase blood circulation inside the eye, and thus many eye problems can be relieved by self-healing. Your eye muscles, like any other parts of your body, want to be exercised for optimal health. Some of the valuable Chinese eye massages are in the below video:

If eyes are the window to your soul, strengthen the eye muscles and help improve vision, eye health, body…and soul.  You’ll see better….for longer.

 

Ponce De Leon – We Got It! The Good Life!

Declining fitness was once expected at about age 35 – now we know it doesn’t have to.

Why grow old gracefully? Even though Ponce de Leon’s efforts to find the fountain of youth were futile, may individuals have continued his crusade.

Aging is a fact of life, and surprisingly, scientists do not know a great deal about this process. For most individuals, the celebration of their 35 birthday begins to mark the decline of physiological functions.

So you’ve slacked off a bit and avoided exercise.

Maybe your job demands too much of your time or you simply fell out of the routine. I have news for you. Whether you’ve taken off one year, ten years or haven’t exercised a day in your life – it’s never too late to start.

You see there are problems with living a life devoid of exercise. Big problems. Your weight rises along with your blood pressure and cholesterol. Your muscles and joints degenerate at an astounding rate leaving you with daily aches and pains. Your body becomes weak, making you susceptible to all kinds of medical issues. Your body stores more fat, time to react lengthens, endurance weakens, osteoporosis sets in, flexibility decreases and joint bones crush. But, with exercise, change how you age.

How Your Body Changes

  • Increase in your fat storage with a reduction in muscle and bone mass results in an elevation in percentage of body fat. A large part of these changes can be accounted for by a less active lifestyle and exercise, and a drop in basal metabolism. This means that fewer calories are required to maintain body weight, while at the same time, fewer calories are expended.
  • Decreases in reaction time can be observed under laboratory conditions, but you probably won’t notice this unless you are in your 50’s. This slowing is a result of decreases in nerve conduction velocities and an increase in the time required for the brain to process the information and to select the appropriate response.
  • The amount of blood your heart can pump per minute also declines along with an individual’s maximum breathing capacity. These factors explain why endurance capacity decreases.
  • Women are particularly prone to osteoporosis or the thinning of bones. This problem can begin as early as age 25, and speeds up as menopause is approached. It is during the first few years after menopause that the rate at which bone density is lost is tremendously accelerated.
  • Decreases in flexibility result from a loss of elasticity in the connective tissue. That’s one of the main reasons which explains why a person will experience initial joint stiffness after being idle or remaining in a set position for a relatively short period of time.
  • The wearing away of the cartilage which attaches to the ends of the bones, will affect everyone sooner or later. Some evidence suggests that activities which demand repeated pounding, or those which require extremely heavy loads to be moved, place tremendous stress on the joints and ten to accelerate this process.

Exercise For Youth

Before you give up all hope and flood the personnel department with requests information about early retirement, results of studies which compare sedentary and active people whose ages from 40-80 years old are encouraging.

The research suggests that you use it or lose it. Exercise strengthens the heart and reduces your risks of cardiovascular disease, as well as osteoporosis. Information does suggest that exercise can postpone the onset of normal age-related deterioration. Exercise improves blood flow to the brain.

Well-designed exercise programs are important for all individuals, but they take on even greater emphasis as one ages. The body is less forgiving when over-used and requires a longer period of time to fully recover from work.

Why Should I Start Now?

You’ve heard about the benefits that consistent exercise bring, but what if you haven’t been consistent? Should you even start at all? This has been the subject of many medical studies and the results are unanimous:

Exercise helps improve your quality of life, even if you start late.

Researchers are constantly finding new benefits to consistent exercise. It’s no wonder that Dr. Robert Butler, of the National Institute on Aging, once said “If exercise could be put into a pill, it would be the single most prescribed medicine in the world.”

Imagine if a pill could offer all of these benefits (without harmful side effects):

  • Substantially reduces the risk of coronary heart disease and osteoporosis
  • Decreases the risk for stroke, colon cancer, diabetes and high blood pressure
  • Helps to achieve and maintain a healthy body weight
  • Contributes to healthy bones, muscles and joints
  • Helps relieve anxiety and depression
  • Promotes well-being and reduces stress
  • Is associated with fewer doctor visits, hospitalizations and medications
  • Helps prevent and treat chronic medical conditions associated with old age
  • Increases energy levels and promotes sound sleep
  • Strengthens immune system

I know that I would take that pill – wouldn’t you? Exercise may not be something that you can gulp down with a glass of water, but it will offer you all of the above benefits that can greatly enhance your quality of life.

Excuses, excuses, excuses…

I know what you are thinking. Those benefits sound great, but I can’t exercise because:

  • Exercise is painful. Not if you do the type most suitable for you.
  • Exercise is boring. Most people who exercise find it to be quite enjoyable.
  • Exercise takes too long. It only takes 30-60 minutes a day.
  • Exercise is confusing. Not when you work with a trained professional (me).
  • Exercise if for young people. Studies have shown that exercise if for all ages.

Get Started the Right Way

Many people have started an exercise program only to quit days later. Now that you have decided that exercise may be worth your time after all, ensure your success with the following tips:

Make a Commitment

You know the meaning and value of a solid commitment. It’s in your blood. So don’t view exercise as something you will merely try. You will only reap the true benefits of exercise when you stick with it.

A great way to reinforce your commitment is to solicit the support of your friends and family. Tell them how you plan to improve your health and quality of life through exercise – who knows, they may join you.

Set Reachable Goals

This is an immensely important ingredient to your success. Don’t start your exercise program with unreasonable expectations. If you expect to lose all of your unwanted pounds and fat, drop your blood pressure and cure your joint pain all in one week then you will be sorely disappointed. Remember that it took years for your body to fall out of shape so it makes sense that it will take some time to regain it. The key to unlocking all of the benefits of exercise lies in one word: consistency. Only then will your body be transformed.

Rearrange Your Schedule

They say that you can’t teach an old dog new tricks. This may be because his schedule simply didn’t allow for it. The truth is that as we age there is a tendency to become ‘stuck in our ways.’ The thought of rearranging your schedule may leave you a bit squeamish.

Remind yourself that exercise is worth your time and then think long and hard about your daily schedule. The fact is that you do have time to lend toward exercise – you simply need to find it. Set aside 30-60 minutes for exercise and then stick with it.

Increase the Challenge

You should start your exercise program with the thought of easing into it. Since you haven’t exercised in awhile your body will need to build up strength and endurance. Consider a car that has been sitting in your garage for years. You wouldn’t turn it on and instantly slam down on the gas would you? You need to warm it up.

However, this warm up period should not last forever. Your body has an amazing ability to adapt to new challenges and will grow complacent when asked to do the same exercises over and over. When your routine begins to feel easy take that as a hint to increase the challenge.

Don’t let another day pass you by. You deserve the good life. Take action now.

Nordine Zouareg is a former Mr. Universe, an International Fitness Coach, Speaker and Author of the book Mind Over Body: The Key to Lasting Weight Loss is All in Your Head! He offers world-class advice on health and fitness, inner balance and stress management, and achieving one’s full potential the inner keys to extraordinary performance. An inspiring message of hope and achievement, based on his own extraordinary story. For more information, visit: www.NordineZ.com

 

 

 

Best Time for Fitness

At what time in your life is fitness most important?

Today.

And it will be even more important tomorrow if health and longevity are your goals.

We get away with a lot when we are young. Our bodies are very forgiving. But as we age, if we want to avoid sickness, disease, immobility and dependence, fitness becomes increasingly important. Paradoxically, most of us exercise more, much more, when we are young. It’s a little easier, we have more time, and lots of it comes with play.

A recent article in USA Today by Janice Lloyd tells us that after 65, we should stay fit to stay healthier. But that applies to the after 45’s and 55’s, as well.

Ms. Lloyd cautions Baby Boomers to think again if they’re longing for a sedentary old age.

She reports that “health experts at the annual meeting of the Gerontological Society of America shed new light on exercise‘s value as a strong tool in combating diseases often associated with aging.”

“How you live after age 65 is vitally important,” says Laura Carstensen, director of the Stanford Center on Longevity. “Up until then, a healthy life is dominated by your genes. After that, it’s predominantly about lifestyle. Exercise and nutrition become more important.”

Alzheimer’s and cardiovascular disease, sarcopenia, osteoporosis, obesity, arthritis, and certain cancers appear more often in later life. To help fight dementia, play memory games if you want, but it might be better to “invest in a good pair of walking shoes,” says Peggye Dilworth-Anderson, the gerontology society’s president and a board member of the national Alzheimer’s Association. That thinking is consistent with a study reported by University of Pittsburgh researchers in October showing older adults who walk 6 to 9 miles a week to stay fit have a lower risk for cognitive decline later.

One session at the meeting attempted to show how physical activity fitness can restore muscular strength in the elderly. The current genome study by Simon Melov of Buck Institute for Age Research in Novato, Calif., compares the genes of a young person whose leg is immobilized for two weeks in a brace with the genes of an older person who suffers from sarcopenia, a muscle-wasting disease affecting old people. Both age groups responded successfully to exercise and made improvements. But no one has to run a marathon to regain strength. Walking down a hospital wing can jump-start improvement, according to LaDora Thompson of the University of Minnesota’s department of physical medicine and rehabilitation.

She studied how physical therapy can reverse the damage of inactivity. Even standing and walking improve muscle strength.

Cancer patients have traditionally been advised to back off exercise and let their bodies rest and recover, but health experts here discussed new research that shows the benefits of exercise for people undergoing treatments.

One reason for all this emphasis on physical activity is the USA’s rapidly aging population. Life expectancy has soared to 79.9 years. Boomers currently have a 50% chance of being alive at 85. “Our job is to make use of the added years,” says Carstensen. “It would be immoral to receive this gift and squander it.”

Report-after-report, study-after-study, confirm these findings with health experts. What they don’t mention, and what almost everyone overlooks, is the overriding reason to stay fit. It could be your key to super-longevity and maybe even open-ended, disease-free youthfulness.

The reason most overlook this is they take a linear approach to the future. They assume the future will simply be an extension of the past. So they project incremental gains in lifespan, and they never consider emerging rejuvenation technologies which will translate to age-reversal. They don’t take into account the fact that progress is growing exponentially and is leading to limitless growth.

But you know better, and that’s why you’re going to hit the gym first thing tomorrow morning, isn’t it?

David Kekich (Living Healthy to 120: Anti-Aging Breakthroughs) is President/CEO of Maximum Life Foundation that focuses on aging research, a 501(c)(3) corporation dedicated to curing aging-related diseases. For more information, visit: www.MaxLife.org. David contributes to our column Living Healthy to 120: Anti-Aging Breakthroughs. MaxLife is helping to make the anti-aging dream a reality with cutting edge Bio-Engineering research and products.

Sexy Grandma? Sizzle over 60

There is a powerhouse of women ruling the world.  If you check the Forbes List of ”The 100 Most Powerful Women,” you would see that more than 60% of them are past 60 years young and still keep the sizzle!  Mature women are in positions of power and leadership.  But, does that include ruling the bedroom?

As a grandmother myself, let me dispel some myths about women over 50. Remember your own grandmother?  They looked old at forty!  Today, our lifespan is over 80 years. We work in the world, spend our own money and still manage to keep families together.  Is it possible that women in their middle and older years could be more sexually active, as well? As fertility declines and menopause approaches (or passes), good health can lead to good sex.

Myth #1: Women over fifty don’t like sex

The truth is you can realistically expect 10-15 years of a sexually active lifestyle after the age of 55.  At this point, the freedom to walk past the pregnancy prevention shelf proves its worth, especially when your healthy, willing and attractive man comes into play. 


 

Myth #2: Women over fifty find menopause terrible and debilitating

Menopause can be worse than diet ice cream. Nobody looks forward to those captivating time in a woman’s life. However, it comes and goes and there is one less thing you have to buy from the “women section” of the pharmacy. You can came out the other side feeling stronger and surer than ever — and sexier.

The magic bullet for this period of life is

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