Unexpected Ways to Add Years to Your Life from Unexpected Ways to Add Years to Your Life

Unexpected Ways to Add Years to Your Life

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Unexpected Ways to Add Years to Your Life

The key formula to living a long and healthy life is not a secret – eat right, sleep well and exercise more. All three will inevitably help you feel better and stay in shape. However, some small daily habits can have a tremendous effect in the long run. How you treat your body and skin impacts not only how you feel, but also how you look.

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Lower the heat

The biggest temptation in the winter is cranking up the heat in the house. However, you will end up hurting yourself. The heater dries out the air indoors. That can lead to inflamed skin. An acceptable wintertime temperature indoors is 70 degrees for the living room and at least 64 degrees for other rooms, according to the West Midlands Public Health Observatory. Don’t go over 75 degrees though. Tip: Keep a glass of water in the room for some humidity.

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Adopt a pet

A study that examined 421 adults who previously suffered heart attacks found that after one year, subjects who owned dogs were more likely to live longer than those who did not. Another analyzed 240 married couples and found that those who owned pets exhibited lower heart rates and blood pressure levels. Research has shown that dog owners are 54 percent more likely to reach the weekly recommended amount of exercise. Experts have found that cat owners are less likely to suffer from a stroke when compared to those who don’t own a cat, according to WebMD.

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Lift weights

Later in life, bone and muscle mass tends to decrease, flexibility starts to diminish and balance and agility are sometimes compromised. People need to build muscles as they age to increase metabolism, which helps regulate weight and blood sugar levels. Studies have found that strength training can increase strength in older adults and, as a result, enables them to live more independently.

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Avoid certain foods

If one night before bed you eat a lot of processed food that is high in sodium and trans fat, your skin will look bad the next morning,” Deborah Malkoff-Cohen, registered dietitian and certified diabetes educator, says. Don’t fill up on refined sugar, complex carbs and processed foods. Unhealthy eating habits lead to inflammation, which causes oxidative stress, which is an imbalance between the production of free radicals and the ability of the body to detoxify their harmful effects, making you look older.

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Ditch the soda

The reasons to never drink soda, even diet soda, again are countless. The chemical junk that comes with the tastiness does both long and short term damage to your body. As the body cells divide and people get older, the telomeres that protect the genes shorten. Studies have found that sodas were associated with telomere shortness, increasing cell aging just as much as smoking.

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Eat nuts

Nuts are energy dense foods rich in bioactive macronutrients. Their unique composition is critical for their health effects. Studies show consistent evidence of the beneficial effects of nut consumption on risk of congenital heart disease, including sudden cardiac death, as well as on diabetes in women, and on major and emerging cardiovascular risk factors.

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Put your phone down

A study has found a link between cell phone usage and cancer. Another suggests that the low level radiation from the phone “heats up” body cells, damaging the skin and making the user look wrinkled and fatigued. This becomes problematic when a person uses a phone too much – the skin doesn’t have enough time to recover – proteins don’t get to the damaged areas to fix the cells.

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Learn new things

Recent research has found that brain age decreases by 0.95 years for each year of education (and by 0.58 years for every daily flight of stairs climbed). So keep your mind occupied. Neuroscience has demonstrated that brain elasticity is encouraged by new things, Dr. Roger Jahnke from Health Action Synergies and author of “The Healer Within” says.

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Stop using a straw

This may come as a shock but think about it: What do your lips do when you are drinking through a straw? You purse them. Do that too many times and you’ll start to see lip lines and wrinkles after a while because of the repetitive muscle motion. These lines will become even more obvious as you age because the skin loosens. “Too much” means drinking about 15 beverages a day that way.

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Don’t overtrain

Too much of anything is bad for you. Exercise is no different. Doing a lot of high-intensity cardio exercises can backfire on you. Your body goes into stress mode, breaking the skin’s collagen, the protein that basically holds the body together, keeping the skin and muscles strong. No collagen means no protection from wrinkles. You need to do more strength training as you age to keep your muscles fit and to protect your skin from wrinkles.

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Stop frowning

This is a repetitive movement that puts stress on your skin, so is squinting when you don’t have your sunglasses on. Chewing gum is not a good idea either. All of these, when done over and over again, form small lines which become more visible as you get older.

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Don’t rub your eyes

The most sensitive skin is around the eyes. Logically, any pressure you apply will make it susceptible to wrinkles. Rubbing them is a major cause for sagginess. Avoid touching the skin. Use eye drops if they get dry.

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Try alternative nostril breathing

Alternate nostril breathing is a quick and calming way to restore balance, remove toxins, and rejuvenate the nervous system. Practice it by opening and closing each nostril with the thumb and ring finger, and continue inhaling and exhaling from alternate nostrils. A few minutes a day will do. It also helps release accumulated tension and fatigue. You can see how in this video.

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Stretch

Stretching keeps you flexible so your body can move in many ways. Whatever relaxes the muscles is a great habit. Consider a low-impact exercise and yoga as well. Breathe in and out through your nose for a relaxing effect on the nervous system. Stretching helps you deal with stress and reduce pain. Stretching keeps the joints loose and muscles agile as you get older, preventing simple tasks from becoming problematic.

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Change your routine

You have to keep your brain occupied with more than its very basic function of telling your heart to keep beating. It’s hard to get out of the cycle of inactivity once you go down that hole. It affects your daily routines, including exercising. Fewer workouts mean lower energy levels, no flexibility and more chronic pain, which will make you feel, and eventually look, much older than you are. Studies have shown that dull routines kill marriages faster than fighting.

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Don’t wash your face so often

Washing your face twice a day is more than enough, with an extra time before and after exercising. Soaps, especially the alkaline ones, can really dry your skin by removing all of its natural oils. This makes the skin itchy, very irritating and prone to breakouts. Wipes and cleansers are not a much better option. The oils in the skin are crucial for its health because they keep it supple.

Unexpected Ways to Add Years to Your Life