How to Stay Young From the Inside Out
Aging is an inevitable fact of living, though how we experience and enjoy life as we age can be greatly influenced by our perspective and lifestyle choices. Studies show people who report feeling younger than their actual age are often physically and mentally healthy, with stronger memory, immunity, and stress resilience. Put simply, your mindset can actually help you enjoy life more at every age.
From daily actions to long-term solutions, here’s how you can take care of your mind and body, stay young, and enjoy life to the fullest at every age.
Whether you like to craft, golf, or clown around while video chatting with your friends or grandkids, prioritizing play can help you stay young from the inside out. Being playful in your own way can increase your life satisfaction by diffusing stress, sharpening skills, fostering connections, and supporting your sense of vitality and well-being.
Though it’s rich with physical and mental health benefits, play may have faded from your repertoire as you embodied various roles throughout adulthood (professional, spousal, parental, etc). The good news is you can revive your playful side at any age and reap the benefits of allowing yourself to enjoy simple pleasures with a lighthearted attitude.
Ask yourself: What activities or antics did I enjoy as a kid? Or what activities make me feel content and present? Once you’ve gathered a spark of inspiration, intentionally set aside time each day or week to fully enjoy your chosen activity.
2. Move your body in ways you enjoy.
A lifestyle of physical activity is beneficial for your total well-being at every age, with especially valuable outcomes as we age. While strength training (like weightlifting) prevents the deterioration of bone and muscle mass associated with aging, endurance and high-intensity training (like cycling or swimming) slows down aging, boosts cardiorespiratory health, and contributes to longevity.
Along with improving your general physical fitness, regular exercise also reduces stress, improves mood, protects against cognitive decline, and promotes immunity from infections.
Keeping in the spirit of play, consider how you can combine pleasure with physical activity. For instance, you may take an online salsa class if you love to move to music, or you could install a basketball net if you once loved shooting hoops. As you tune into the movement you love, you can even create short breaks throughout the day, such as dancing to one song in between tasks or stepping outside to practice dribbling while watching the sunset.
3. Get creative in the kitchen.
Did you know our nutritional needs shift as we age? We often require fewer calories than we did in our 30s and 40s, while also needing the same, if not higher, levels of essential nutrients. Research suggests those who typically cook at home eat a more nutritious diet with fewer calories.
Along with supporting healthy aging, cooking your own food can also help you save money, maintain a healthy weight, increase immunity, and boost your creativity, happiness, mental acuity, and quality of living.
Think of a food or dish you love but have never created. Perhaps you love hamburgers and have already made your own patties, so you decide to try your hand at making your own hamburger buns, ketchup, or relish. Even if your buns are a bit lopsided or your ketchup is runny, you’re likely to feel the sense of satisfaction that comes from creativity and a tangible outcome.
4. Stay connected.
Human beings are naturally social creatures who rely on each other to survive and thrive in our day-to-day lives. While social isolation can have a negative effect on your physical and mental health, maintaining social connections can help you keep a healthy weight, lower disease risks, prevent cognitive decline, stave off inflammation, soothe stress, and generally support your overall mental well-being.
Socializing is so vital to human beings that it has even been shown to empower full and independent living by helping us maintain our physical mobility, which tends to decline with age.
Though it cannot completely replicate in-person contact, technology is an excellent tool to nurture both close and peripheral relationships right from home. To foster a greater sense of social support and connection, set aside time once a day or week to call different members of your family, schedule a regular video chat meetup with a small group of friends, or participate in live streams for fitness classes or spiritual services.
5. Maintain your oral health and function.
Your smile is an asset to your physical, psychological, and social well-being, which is why losing one or more teeth can have such a significant impact on your health, immunity, and experience of day-to-day living. Tooth loss can make it difficult or uncomfortable to chew certain foods, which can make it difficult to receive the full spectrum of nutrition you need to stay young and healthy in an aging body. Additionally, tooth loss can leave you feeling like your smile is damaged or aged, which can trigger a sense of social isolation, depression, or low self-esteem.
If you have lost or are expecting to lose one or more teeth, know that you have options. Long-lasting tooth replacement solutions, such as dental implants, can help you restore your smile’s health, appearance, and function.
Tooth loss can be stressful, though you can start reclaiming your smile, vitality, and sense of well-being by understanding your options for replacing missing teeth. Dental implants, for instance, most closely resemble the structure, function, and appearance of your natural teeth, making them the restoration of choice for many patients.
If you want to know if dental implants are right for you, Dr. Staley is here to answer your questions, evaluate your dental needs, and help you achieve a smile that’s strong, full, and healthy. Contact us at Staley Dental to schedule an appointment today.