The average adult life expectancy is about 77.8 years, but not for you! You could be like a “Blue Zoner”. Have you heard the stories of those people who live past 100 and look and act like they are 60? In Dan Buettner’s book, The Blue Zones, he details research from five areas around the world where the inhabitants were likely to live beyond 100+ years of age. What is their secret? Here are a few habits from the blue zones and a couple research-based bonus hints on aging gracefully.
1. Social Connectedness According to Buettner, connection with others is the most powerful thing that you can do to slow down the proverbial aging process. In particular, make it part of your daily and weekly ritual to plan playful and meaningful activities with friends and family members who share your values.
2. Ageless Nutrition What you eat every day creates the cumulative building blocks for looking and acting ageless. The Blue Zone diet tends to include high amount of fruits and vegetables rich in phytochemicals. Try eating more vegetables than fruit, especially leafy greens. Remember to eat organic when a fruit or vegetable is on the Dirty Dozen list. The Blue Zoners eat a high amount of monounsaturated fat (Olive oil, avocados and certain nuts. Note: don’t cook at high heat with olive oil. Use avocado oil instead.) They focus on plant proteins, wild-caught fish, grass-fed meats when available, fermented products like yogurt, kefir, tempeh, miso and natto, and very little processed foods. Sound daunting? Click here for a delicious way to incorporate those leafy greens and good fats and proteins into your morning every day with Heather’s Ageless Shake.
3. Meditation Yes, it pretty much IS a cure-all! In fact, not only does a meditation practice lower blood pressure, reduce risks to cancer and decrease the stress centers in the brain, it helps make you ageless! Dr. Elizabeth Blackburn won a Nobel Peace Prize for proving that meditation slows aging. How? It increased the telomerase levels in the body. Telomerase is the enzyme responsible for increasing telomeres. Long telomeres are your key to anti-aging. They are the protective cap on the end of each chromosome. If your chromosome is protected from deterioration, your whole body ages at a slower rate. Want to learn how to meditate? Click here for the May 2019 Master Meditation special.
4. Exercise Your Brain Experts unanimously agree that the two secret ingredients to keeping your brain ageless is to engage in activities that provide novelty and challenge. Haven’t you heard that rumor about individuals who continue to work or do something meaningful well after retirement age. Yes, they tend to age backwards. Simple everyday brain hacks: crossword puzzles, sudoku, brush your teeth with the opposite hand, drive home a new way, listen to a language course audio while driving, put away the calculator and do math in your head. Just do something new and somewhat challenging.
5. Visualize a Vibrant Ageless You This is my new favorite “magic” trick! Visualization works. It’s what sets apart the greatest athletes and musicians. They consistently and purposefully visualize themselves performing successfully. The brain and the body don’t know the difference between engaging in a real-life activity and an imagined one. The same biochemicals and neural networks are activated in the body. Some studies have even shown that individuals who visualize working out can create a similar effect in their muscle mass as those actually working out. Really! So, set aside 5 minutes a day to close your eyes and see yourself, vibrant, healthy, strong and gorgeous! And keep an eye out for our Manifestation events!