Within the next few minutes you will learn how you can enhance and lengthen your life. The second segment is about free radicals and what to do about them. At the end of this section, you will find a brief summary.
Doctors are beginning to unlock the secrets of longevity. These days, it isn't enough to live longer, people also want to live fuller, more vital lives. How is that done? Well, it's never really "done." It's a life-long process. There are many factors you can work with. The strongest changes are made within your own mind. Changing your attitude and diet and beginning to exercise can give you tangible and noticeable results within a few weeks. It takes a heartfelt desire and a total commitment to achieve optimal health. Also, it takes patience, and a willingness to allow yourself the time you need to make the changes necessary to have a fulfilling life.
Allow yourself and loved ones to be who and where they are now. Give them unconditional, not possesive, controlling "love." Someone once said that help was the sunny side of control! Encourage them to help themselves.
If you find yourself wanting to control your friends or loved ones, consider changing yourself. There are many support groups that are offered at no or very low cost. You can find out where and when these groups meet in your local weekend newspaper. Often times, a layperson, a minister or a friend that will listen to you is all you need. There are many counselors who specialize in short-term therapy. Get a referral from a trusted source.
Studies have shown that people who learn, grow and have passionate interests and goals live longer. No matter what your age, It's even possible to raise your I.Q. just by exercising regularly! It probably has something to do with increasing nourishing blood and oxygen flow to the brain. And, you can grow biologically younger at any age by building muscle and dropping fat. Furthermore, various studies have shown that those who are severely under or overweight have the shortest life. Those whose weight is just below average live the longest. The best health insurance is to play, create and be productive every day! It is well worth the effort to invest in yourself - read on and see why.
It's Not Too Late:
* Six days before he died at age 89, Michelangelo was carving the Pieta.
* Verdi was 85 when he composed "Ave Maria".
* At age 80, Grandma Moses had her first one-woman show.
* Sportswoman and author, Marion Hart, learned to fly at 54 and made seven nonstop solo flights across the atlantic, one in 1975 when she was 85!
* Until she was 75, Martha Graham performed. She choreographed her 180th work at age 95.*
The people mentioned above, didn't even have the benefit of the knowledge we have today about nutrition, attitude, safety, and so on! There's no telling how long you can live!
According to recent research, doing what you love to do, not what everyone expects you to do, can add years and happiness to your life. Doing what you want will not only bring you joy, it will give you energy. The energy you need to create the life you REALLY want. Not only will you be happier living the life you love, you will be healthier!
One banker in his mid-fifties found this out in a dramatic way. He was dying from leukemia. One day, during a therapy session, he told the psychologist that as a child he had dreamed of becoming a professional violinist. His father vehemently told him no. He told his then young son that it was "too feminine." Near death's door, the banker began to play the violin, and his leukemia mysteriously went into remission.
Take a hint from our banker friend - express yourself! Live with a passion! You'll be a lot healthier for it. Live the life you want to live. Learn to play your favorite musical instrument. Sing the song you've always wanted to sing. Say the words you've been longing to say. Join a theatre or singing group, take a dance class, go out dancing or just dance around the house, roller skate, write a song, write a story, begin that novel, travel to your dream destination, take up juggling, check out your local community center for art, sculpture, pottery or other crafts classes, check out your YMCA for coed volleyball and other fun and beneficial activities, try playing ping pong, badminton, softball, tennis, basketball and other sports without scoring - it's much more fun that way! Run on the beach or through the woods, enjoy a sunset, roll down a green grassy hill, climb a tree, wade in a creek, bang on a drum, jump rope - do whatever delights the child in you. Be outrageous! On the scientific side - recent studies have shown that there is a direct relationship between one's physical activity level and actual life span.
Live Longer With a Pet
Petting an animal can lower your blood pressure and relax you. By reducing your body's manufacture of adrenalin, it causes the heart to pump with less force. Thereby, your pet can have much the same beneficial effect on your system as meditation. Pets can reduce stress and alleviate depression. They can help people become more confident and communicative by being non-judgmental listeners.
For those living alone, pets provide companionship and a sense of safety. They give people the experience of unconditional love and acceptance. Also, animals give a person something to nurture and care for. And they ignite feelings of joy and amusement. Pets can bring out the playful child in you. They're also great for teaching young people basic responsibility and more importantly, about being kind and gentle. Pets are powerful for seniors, too. According to psychologist Judith Siegel, a public health professor at UCLA, seniors with pets see the doctor less than those that don't have pets.
We can gain some very comforting benefits from living longer. Those 55 and older have fewer episodes of depression, according to Margaret Gatz, Ph.D., a University of Southern California psychologist. Also, there's typically more time to pursue hobbies and interests you didn't have time for when you were working 40 or more hours a week. It's a wonderful time to get more in touch with your inner self and it's needs.
There is also a wisdom and a freedom to be more of who we are. We no longer obsess over what other people think of us. We have learned to accept ourselves. We live our lives more honestly and openly then. We conduct our life from our inner truths rather than from the demands and "truths" of those around us. Here's another plus - research reported in Executive Edge newsletter says that mid-life crisis has been far overrated!
"What About Free Radicals?"
Even though oxygen is our very breath of life - it is also responsible for aging since it oxidizes in the body. The free radicals in our body are mostly toxic oxygen molecules. They are molecules that bind to and destroy cellular compounds. They can contribute to aging and disease. Free radicals can critically damage cells. Dietary antioxidants like beta carotene, flavonoids (in fruits and vegetables), vitamins C, E and minerals like zinc and selenium and amino acids, and taking other health measures could deactivate free radicals and may lengthen your lifespan by as much as 35 years. In addition to these, the following herbs can be especially beneficial to people 50 and over: echinacea, gingko biloba (improves tissues blood and oxygen supply to the tissue) garlic, astraglus, and ashwagandha work to maintain a healthy liver and central nervous, cardiovascular, and immune systems.
Free radicals are generated by environmental pollutants and toxic elements like second-hand smoke, cigarettes, lack of "proper" nutrition, alcohol, coffee, fried food (simply heating polyunsaturated oils to a high temperature can hydrogenate them - thus turning into a free radical), barbecued and charbroiled foods, rancid or stale oils, pesticides, solvents found in some household cleaning fluids, paints, furniture polish, car exhaust, acid rain, hazardous wastes, toxic fumes, petroleum-based products, radiation (including x-rays and microwave), excess sun, physical overexertion (especially in cities) frequent illness, anesthetics, chronic infection, emotional stresses such as worry and depression.
If you live in a rural area, you're likely to be safer free radical-wise than if you live in a heavily trafficked area.
Although free radicals are a minor factor in aging - improper diet, lack of exercise, negative thinking and unhealthy lifestyle contribute in a major way. So, eat, think, live "better" and enjoy a long and happy life! Please refer to "Nutrition" on the main menu for further information.
In one particular food, blue green microalgae, Japanese biochemists have found a factor responsible for an increase in sustained physical and mental energy, and for rebalancing cellular metabolism. It's called the "controlled growth factor." The growth factor is not only a general tonic which especially seems to affect the body's upper glands such as the thymus, but has specifically evidenced power as a tonic for life extension, increasing the life span of laboratory mice by 50%. Again, see Nutrition on the main menu for more information about blue green algae.
In another well-documented study, researchers fed rats only 60 percent of the food they would eat if they were allowed all they wanted, and they lived 40 percent longer than normal. Also, the National Institute of Aging put rhesus and squirrel monkeys on a diet containing two-thirds of the calories fed to control monkeys. After four years of calorie chopping, the leaner monkeys were healthy and matured slower than the well-fed group. This suggest that thinner primates, and probably thinner people, age more slowly.
Along the same lines, experts state that a vigorous digestive system is crucial for a long, healthy life. Colon cancer is second to lung cancer for leading cause of cancer death in the U.S. Three out of 100 people over 75 have colon cancer. A healthy colon is easy attainable by following a common-sense eating and exercise plan. You do not need to eat a lot to take care of your colon, it's what you eat that matters. Lots of roughage, found in greens and whole grains, helps keep this part of your body healthy. For more details, I'll refer you to Linda Berry, D.C.'s book - "A Practical Guide to Colon Health, Botanica Press.
All of the information we have covered within this disk relating to nutrition, exercise, relaxation, prevention, positive mental attitude, laughter and play ALL contribute to longevity and a better quality of life. Be encouraged, every step you take will be richly rewarded. NOTE: For more information on longevity, look to "Longevity" - a magazine and practical guide to the art and science of staying young. available at your local library and bookstores. End