By 2050 one in four UK residents will be aged over 65. It is heartening to know that we all live for longer, but how can you grow older and still embrace a full life? Ageing gracefully isn’t about behaving appropriately for your age, and everyone should retain something of their inner child.
Ageing gracefully is about helping you enjoy life beyond 60 by looking after yourself from the inside out. The phrase “you are as old as you feel” and helping yourself feel younger is all about your physical and mental wellbeing. Here we look at ways to retain your verve for life as you age. 6 Ways How to Age Gracefully!
1. Exercise Regularly
Keeping your muscles strong will support your bones and joints and help you to keep moving freely. Regular movement also stops parts of your body from seizing up and counters some of those feelings of general aches and pains that slow you down.
Aim for about three hours of moderate-intensity exercise, per week, doing something that gets your heartbeat raised, and a couple of hours of more vigorous exercise (ie. resistance or weight training). Muscle-strengthening activities, such as Pilates and yoga, are also excellent means of maintaining your sense of wellbeing, mobility and self-connectivity.
Remember, a sedentary lifestyle leaves you vulnerable to chronic illnesses and early death.
2. Eat Well
If you want to age with some grace, you should definitely mind your diet! While you can dispose of most things in your 20’s and 30’s, it will be quick to catch up with you as you move beyond 40. Therefore, you need to eat your fruit and veg, eat only lean protein such as fish and beans, get in your healthy fats, often best achieved through nuts and legumes, and reduce your input of carbs and processed foods.
If you want to stay heart-healthy, you need to cook with vegetable oils and avoid too much salt.
3. Take Care of Your Skin
Your skin is the largest organ of your body, and is where you ‘show’ so much of the life you have lived. Most remedies for maintaining a youthful appearance come back to the care we give our skin. Yet, it is also responsible for regulating our body temperature and providing all-important sensations.
With something so important as ageing gracefully, we need to help it function at its best. Therefore, you need to wear sunscreen and protective clothing against harmful UV rays. You should check for abnormal moles and blemishes and get these immediately checked by a doctor. Drink lots of water and be sure to use gentle, anti-ageing products routinely.
4. Keep Your Mind Active
Your mental acuity and emotional wellbeing need active care into your older years. It is easy to fall out of a set routine when we retire, and we lose some of the sharpness that keeps the elasticity in our brain.
Equally, loneliness into our older years is common, so giving attention to developing meaningful relationships and a strong social network is essential.
One of the most powerful ways of ageing gracefully is to find a hobby that helps you learn new things while meeting like-minded people. Finding something that continues to bring you joy is essential for our older years.
5. Reduce Stress
Stress is a primary cause of all those wrinkles on your face, and it is also a massive contributor to damage to your heart – as well as your enjoyment of living.
There are many ways to relieve stress, and it begins with getting enough sleep and practising sleep hygiene in the lead up to bed. Therefore, stopping stressful activity a good few hours before you want to sleep and turning off electronic devices is essential.
Relaxation techniques such as meditation, mindfulness, and yoga classes are also a great way to ratchet down your stress levels.
6. Drink Plenty of Water
Hydration has a significant impact on the functioning of your organs, particularly your skin, and it is also essential for the maintenance of healthy brain function.
How much you should drink each day varies depending on your activity levels, how much you sweat, your gender and the health of your gut. While drinking water over coffee and tea might feel like a bind, it is the most important choice you can make in your campaign to age gracefully.
While all these hints and tips are a great way of ensuring health into old age, how you age gracefully is your choice. There are so many headlines about looking younger and getting rid of wrinkles, sagging, and that common, flabby midriff. Yet, graceful ageing is more about your joy in life, and your ability to continue all those things that matter to you – rather than just how you look. Start to choose your way of ageing gracefully…today!