The 5 Wellness Habits That Slow Down Aging, Science Reveals
Staying on top of your overall health and wellness game as you grow older is not a question; it's a necessity. Self-care experiences, fitness routines that promote longevity, facials that put the glow back in aging skin, and anti-aging beauty products that promise to deliver results are all the rage, because people want to remain youthful for as long as possible. Living a long, healthy life may require more than a few tweaks to your regular routine, but don't stress. We've put together the wellness habits that slow down aging so you don't have to. Keep reading to learn more.
Do some yoga.
Getting your namaste on is not only relaxing; it can slow down the aging process. Many studies reveal that practicing yoga has a wealth of health benefits, including positively impacting cellular aging, balance, mobility, and mental health, along with warding off cognitive decline. These are all things that raise concerns among older individuals.
For example, a study published in the journal Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity reveals that doing yoga for 12 weeks can slow down cellular aging among healthy individuals. Another study published in Frontiers in Human Neuroscience discovered that embarking on a yoga and meditation retreat for three months was linked to decreased stress and inflammation.
Opt for a Mediterranean diet.
The next of the best wellness habits that slow down aging has to do with diet. According to Blue Zones, a Mediterranean diet can decrease your chance of developing heart disease and tack up to six years onto your life. It's what individuals in Ikaria, Greece—one of the Blue Zones, where many individuals live to 100 and beyond—stick by. If you're unfamiliar with this diet, get familiar, because it's a golden key to longevity! The Mediterranean diet is all about olive oil, fresh veggies, whole grains, beans, some fish, and tinier portions of meat and dairy.
And research backs up just how great the Mediterranean diet is. According to Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, research shows this particular diet can lengthen your lifespan and promote healthy aging.
Maintain and build your muscle mass.
You've likely heard this before, but preserving and building muscle mass as you get older is critical. According to Harvard Health Publishing, after you hit the age of 30, you start to lose anywhere from 3% to 5% of lean muscle mass every 10 years. This natural part of your body's aging process is called sarcopenia.
What can you do about it? Well, Landmark reports consuming protein, getting in strength training (specifically two to three half-hour workouts each week, after speaking with a medical professional), adding more omega-3s to your diet, keeping your vitamin D levels in check, and going on walks can all help preserve muscle mass.
Getting social is a major part of your health and wellness that shouldn't be overlooked. According to Mayo Clinic, socializing helps kick any feelings of loneliness to the curb, along with boosting your cognitive and memory skills, mood, and overall wellness. It can even help extend your life.
Mayo Clinic psychologist, Dr. Craig Sawchuk, explains, "We are social animals by nature, so we tend to function better when we're in a community and being around others." He says that people who spend much of their time by themselves have a greater chance of feeling depressed and leading an all-around lower quality of life.
Get enough solid shuteye.
Getting sufficient sleep is imperative to your overall wellness. According to News in Health, getting restful Z's can boost your mood and brain performance. Some say it's just as important to ensure you stay in good health as a solid workout routine and diet. Not getting enough solid sleep can put you at greater risk of developing disorders or diseases, such as obesity, heart disease, dementia, and stroke.
Sleep researcher at the University of Colorado, Dr. Kenneth Wright, Jr., explains, "There are certain repair processes that occur in the body mostly, or most effectively, during sleep. If you don't get enough sleep, those processes are going to be disturbed" (via NIH).
According to sleep expert at NIH, Dr. Marishka Brown, three key factors attribute to "healthy sleep." She says, "One is how much sleep you get. Another is sleep quality—that you get uninterrupted and refreshing sleep. The last is a consistent sleep schedule."