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Drinking Habits to Look a Decade Younger, Say Experts

Replacing sugary drinks with healthier beverages is the first step toward turning back the clock.
FACT CHECKED BY Olivia Tarantino

Tales of mortals searching for anti-aging waters date back thousands of years. That may give you a sense of how likely you'll be to discover a magic anti-aging potion online today

But while you can't buy back your youth at your local pharmacy, you can adopt healthier drinking habits that'll convince your friends and family members that you've found the secret sauce to a more youthful you. We asked nutrition experts for their advice on drinking habits to adopt to help you look and feel like your younger self. Read on, and for more on how to eat healthy, don't miss The #1 Best Juice to Drink Every Day, Says Science.

Drink water

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If you want to slow aging and look more youthful the number one habit to adopt is to drink half your body weight in ounces of water every day, according to registered dietitian Ellen Albertson, RD, PhD, author of Rock Your Midlife: 7 Steps to Transform Yourself and Make Your Next Chapter Your Best Chapter.

"For example, if you weigh 150 pounds, drink 75 ounces of water daily," she says. "Chronic dehydration can cause your skin to age." Pair drinking more water with drinking less alcohol. "Eliminate alcohol or at least drink in moderation only occasionally; alcohol ages the skin faster than normal," she says.

Add lemon to your water

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Add a squeeze of lemon into your water. Drinking a glass of water with lemon juice first thing in the morning is one of the simplest, most effective things you can do for your health, says Ronald Smith, RD, a registered dietitian at EatDrinkBinge. "Lemon water aids digestion, promotes weight loss, flushes out toxins, and helps kick-start your metabolism, which slows as we get older," he says.

READ MORESurprising Side Effects of Drinking Lemon Water, Say Dietitians

Ditch sugary beverages

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Have you heard about "AGEs" or Advanced Glycation End Products? They are unhealthy molecules that form because of "glycation," the process of sugars binding to proteins or fats. "A build-up of AGE molecules from beverages such as soda and alcohol cause a breakdown in collagen and elastin, which results in the premature aging of the skin," says registered dietitian nutritionist Kim Rose, RDN, CDCES, a certified diabetes care and education specialist.

Sugar-sweetened beverages (SSBs) and alcohol also dehydrate your body, which can exacerbate skin wrinkles. The solution is to replace those AGE-advancing drinks with hydrating beverages like plain water and nutrient-dense beverages containing antioxidants that reduce free radicals which contribute to premature aging. "Pep up your water by infusing it with fresh fruits and herbs that are high in antioxidants," Rose says.

Try matcha tea

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New York City-based dietitian Rachel Dyckman, RDN recommends getting into a green tea morning routine. "I would say the best one to get with the maximum impact of compounds would be matcha green tea powder," she says. "It's the most concentrated form" because it's rich in catechins, powerful polyphenol antioxidants that fight free radical damage to our cells.

A recent review of studies in the journal Biomedical Dermatology noted that among the many benefits of catechins is preventing and reducing skin damage.

Try bone broth for collagen supplementation

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Powdered collagen supplements have become wildly popular as some research has suggested that they can improve joint health as you age due to their anti-inflammation properties. Collagen may also provide benefits to your skin since the reduction of collagen thickness in the deep skin layers as you age contributes to wrinkles.

You can boost collagen production by drinking bone broth or taking collagen supplements, says dermatologist Cheryl Rosen, MD, director of dermatology at Bow Tied Life. "It's beneficial for keeping skin elastic and healthy-looking." Dr. Rosen stresses that you can also stay youthful by avoiding too many caffeinated drinks, sugary beverages, and alcohol, which can increase your risk of developing problems associated with aging like osteoporosis, Alzheimer's disease, and heart, liver, and kidney diseases.

Another way to make the mirror reflect a more youthful image of you: lose weight. Try this #1 Best Drink to Burn Belly Fat.

Jeff Csatari
Jeff Csatari, a contributing writer for Eat This, Not That!, is responsible for editing Galvanized Media books and magazines and for advising journalism students through the Zinczenko New Media Center at Moravian University in Bethlehem, PA. Read more