gmhTODAY 18 gmhToday Feb March 2018 - Page 39

Health Wise with Crystal Han Do's and Don'ts of Aging Gracefully W hen it comes to aging, some people seem to be the living embodiment of that old saying, “Age is just a number,” while the rest of us are stuck in a maddening cycle of trial and error. It might be comforting to know that graceful agers aren’t actually born with an innate gift that makes them age better. They’re just aging smarter. Here is a list of the things that might be hindering a youthful appearance and how to fix them: and dark leafy greens, have consistently been shown to live longer, better lives. Fruits and vegetables are packed with nutrients, like antioxidants and vitamins A, C, and B3, which combat free radical damage and reduce inflammation. They also prevent collagen breakdown, maintain skin elasticity, and reduce hyperpigmentation. In short, a healthy diet leads to a more youthful look and feel. Stress Life is chock full of stressors. Whether it’s family, work, or finances, there’s bound to be something that gets your nerves going. Too Much Sun Exposure The more time you spend in the sun, the more If left unchecked, stress can cause a multi- you’re exposed to UV light. UV rays create free tude of health problems like sleeplessness, radicals in your body, which damage your skin depression, and heart disease. Researchers have even linked chronic psychological stress cells, causing your skin to be less elastic and to age related diseases such as cardiovascular more prone to wrinkling. Too much sun also disease, decreased immunity, and neural de- leads to hyperpigmentation, or dark spots, generation. Often times, the way we look and and increases your risk of skin cancers. the way we feel go hand in hand, so if your The best thing you can do for your skin body isn’t doing well, it definitely shows. to keep it looking young and healthy is to use People who are aging well aren’t sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher. Studies have shown that people who applied sunscreen necessarily less stressed out. Rather, they daily were 24 percent less likely to exhibit signs have found healthy ways of dealing with that stress. Practicing yoga or mindfulness of skin aging than those didn’t use sunscreen. meditation has been shown to lessen feelings Using sunscreen with an SPF as low as 30 for of anxiety, anger, and depression. Just taking twelve weeks has even been shown to reverse a few minutes during your day to unplug signs of UV related skin damage. from technology and spend some quiet time with yourself can work. Diet Strength and endurance exercises provide Eating excessive amounts