Being Younger Longer
Amongst most definitions of staying healthy, longer life-span and looking young and anti-ageing, ‘healthy ageing’ is one of the most commonly used and researched phrase, for want of a better phrase.So, what is healthy ageing?
The World Health Organization (WHO) defines healthy ageing as the process of developing and maintaining functional ability to enable wellbeing in older age . Wellbeing incorporates physical, mental and social health and is the birth right of every human being.
In the 21 century the significance of anti-aging has changed from merely prolonging lifespan to improving health span for successful ageing.
There are numerous terms that have emerged for healthy aging. Preventing disease, being full of vitality and energy while living longer is common in all terms. I'm using some of these terms interchangeably.
Some common and recent terms of the decade are:
- Successful ageing
- Optimal aging
- Younger longer
- Aging gracefully
- Graceful ageing
- Become Youthful
- Grow older,Don't age.
Healthy ageing is an experience of a person that is influenced by healthy behaviours throughout the lifetime. Healthy behaviours include good nutrition, physical activity, spiritual and internal healing, self-health care, good relationships and social engagement. The intent to age well should be fostered early in life - as early as 30 years age, if possible.
A common misconception about healthy ageing is the absence of disease or health condition. In reality, many older people experience one or more health issues that, when well-managed, have little impact on their wellbeing.
It’s important to know that there is no typical older person. Some 80-year-olds have strong, physical and mental capacity, while other people of the same age may be largely care-dependent.
The moment we reach the age of 30, our bodies start the degeneration process. Women start taking more care of their skin, while men start exercising. The feeling to look and feel younger emerges or develops. We all know its highly important to eat right in order to not only, look young but also feel young. There is a glut of anti-ageing products, edible or externally applicable, but only a few fulfil their promises.
Source: NSW Falls Prevention. Nueroscience Research, Australia. The Importance of Healthy Ageing.
The 5000 year ancient, Ayurveda and Yoga Sciences’ treatments have emerged in a big way due to their natural-ness. Ayurvedic herbs can help you delay the signs of ageing, improve gut health and combat its visibility on your skin.
Traditional Chinese herbal medicine has a long history in Asian countries, which have antiaging properties and could intervene aging-associated disorders. The effectiveness of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) relies on its large variety of naturally active chemicals, multiple targets for therapy, and diversity of treatment approaches .
In a special issue, researched by Zhao & Luo of four drugs that are known to invigorate Qi and strengthen Yang according to TCM theory are discussed. Ginseng (Renshen) and Astragalus membranaceus (Huangqi) are two of the most highly regarded Chinese herbalism for invigorating Qi. Yang et al. extensively describe the plant species, characteristics, processing and active part and ingredients of Ginseng .
A number of recent phytochemical and pharmacological studies have uncovered potent compounds in all parts of the ginseng plant. They include ginsenosides, alkaloids, phenolics, phytosterol, carbohydrates, polypeptides, ginseng oils, amino acids, nitrogenous substances, vitamins, minerals, and certain enzymes. Ginsenosides are the major bioactive metabolites. They can increase lifespan, regulate the function of multiple organ systems including cardiovascular, nervous, and cutaneous systems through antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
Source:The Express Tribune. 6 Anti-ageing Foods that may add years to your life.
Ant-aging Herbs and Fruits
These herbs are rich in antioxidants that fight against cell damage and introduce new cell growth.
1.Basil -.Basil is a great herb for fighting visible signs of ageing on your skin. It is the new anti-ageing superfood that can help you in your fight against wrinkles. Contemporary application of basil can prove beneficial in retaining the moisture and hydration of your skin, reduce roughness, and give a smooth texture to the surface.
2.Guduchi - Also known as Giloy, this herb has huge anti-inflammatory properties. It works towards revitalising the skin tissues and fighting inflammation. The herb, along with benefitting the skin, also recuperates the immune system and stimulates mental clarity.
3.Ashwagandha - This native Indian herb has been celebrated for its rejuvenating properties and benefits for the skin, hair, and overall health. Ashwagandha helps in rapid cell regeneration and rejuvenation that in turn helps in delaying signs of ageing, especially pertaining to the skin.
Regular consumption of ashwagandha, can considerably clear your skin, make it more youthful, glowing, and improve its quality. The herb also works on improving skin elasticity.
4.Amla- Amla or Amalaki is loaded with anti-oxidants and Vitamin C. Its anti-ageing properties can promote healthy skin by firming it, reducing signs of ageing, and make your skin glow. The herb may have positive effects on your hair texture, strength and growth.
5.Turmeric - Turmeric is a root similar to ginger and is a popular ingredient in medicine, cuisine, and skin care. But one surprising quality of turmeric is that it has the ability to tell the brain to ramp up its production of Brain-Derived Neurotropic Factor (BDNF).
BDNF is a hormone that tells the brain to perform at higher function levels. Curcumin, a small but significant part of turmeric has proven to help in cancer recovery.
6.Gotu Kola- Gotu Kola is popular for improving blood circulation and wound healing, and for enhancing mental functioning; Gotu Kola has a centering effect instead of giving a quick serge or jerk of energy without over-stimulating side effects, something like matcha green tea. A study from 2016 states that Gotu Kola, taken with folic acid, helped boost cognitive function in stroke patients.
7.Gin Seng - Ginseng, a name often heard in the Japanese and Korean beauty products, is a fantastic anti-ageing herb. The phytochemicals present in this herb fight ageing signs and activate the skin’s metabolism. The herb also fights and protects your skin from free radical damage caused due to sun exposure. Ginseng contains a lot of phytochemicals that help stimulate and activate skin's metabolism.
8.Guggulu - Guggulu is a powerful and potent herb that is derived from the flowering tree Mukul Myrrh. Its anti-inflammatory properties help in combating various diseases and inhibit the growth of free radicals in the body.
9.Brahmi - Brahmi from wetlands of India, Europe and parts of Asia can be used in treating anxiety and promoting cognitive function. Chewing the leaves of the plant is said to be the best way to relieve stress and anxiety. Numerous studies have also shown that it can improve concentration and even raise IQ. Studies have shown positive effects of Brahmi in increasing serotonin levels in the brain, which can make a person relax.
10. Valerian root - In Ayurvedic medicine, this root is used in promoting relaxation and treating anxiety. It is also recommended as a natural sleep aid. Valerian root has hardly any side effects except for the very desirable drowsiness.
11.Vacha/Vasha - has been used since the ancient times for a range of functions like improving memory and treating asthma. Vacha is widely grown in India and parts of Europe. It can help you sleep better and calm your mind.
12.Gua Sha tool - Gua sha is rooted in traditional Chinese medicine (TCM). According to the principles of TCM, your qi (pronounced “chi”), or energy, must flow throughout your body so you can feel your best. When qi becomes stagnant in certain areas, it’s believed that health problems can occur. With gua sha, a practitioner (an acupuncturist in many cases) will use a smooth-edged tool to gently scrape areas of your body where there is inflammation or stagnant qi to help improve circulation and promote healing. Gua sha tool has been proven to help relieve tension in the face, reduce puffiness and inflammation, and it can even help reduce sinus pressure. However, since the musculature of the face is much thinner, you'll want to avoid applying too much pressure as you're working on this area.
13.Goji berries - Native to the northwest regions of China, the dried goji berry are packed with health benefits. The health benefits of goji berries include enhancing hemopoiesis, antiradiation, antiaging, anticancer, improvement of immunity, and antioxidation. Its potent antioxidant properties help alleviate free radicals or particles that cause stress, which combat inflammation (and thus promote longevity).
14.Cinnamon – Studies have shown that cinnamon can increase collagen production. Collagen production in your body may lead to increased skin firmness and elasticity. Cinnamon contains cinnamaldehyde, that improves collagen level. Cinnamon contains large amounts of polyphenol antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties.
15. Huang Qi - Also referred to as astragalus, this Chinese plant is a dynamo, when it comes to protecting your body's immune system, especially when we age. The plant has been traditionally used to treat some disorders and disease, including cancer and cardiac dysfunction. Dr. Ni says, although conclusive scientific research on any of the plant's benefits is scant. Just note that while astragalus is generally safe to take in small dose. Astragalus may interact with medications that suppress the immune system.
16. Lingzhi - According to research, this mushroom has medicinal and therapeutic properties that can improve your energy levels, enhance your memory and support healthy aging.
17.Ginko Biloba - Also known as maidenhair, Ginkgo Biloba is often used in traditional Chinese medicine. Besides containing inflammation-fighting antioxidants, studies show that it can improve cognitive function and reduce dementia symptoms. The daily recommended dose of Ginkgo Biloba tea is 240 mg, which is sufficient to reap its many benefits for the brain. It is a popular neuro-tropic for memory improvement for school-age individuals, as well as those well into their middle age.
18.German Chamomile - The most well-known uses for chamomile is to promote sleep. Researchers think this benefit may be due to a compound in chamomile known as apigenin, which appears to bind to certain receptors in the brain, resulting in a mild sleep-inducing effect .
19.Pinapple- Pineapple juice has been publicised as an antidote to disease, as well as having anti-inflammatory properties.
The fruit, which can also be drunk as a juice, is abundant in vitamin C, fibre, and an enzyme called bromelain, which can help reduce discomfort and swelling, and somewhat helps arthritis patients according to a study.
Bromelain has an anti-inflammatory impact, according to the study, and has previously been used to treat sports' injuries .
20.Shilajit - Pure Himalayan Shilajit Tea can give your body and minds the extra dose of immunity and cognitive energy. Shilajit contains 85+ minerals and vitamins. This is why Shilajit has a wide range of health benefits.
- Shilajit can increase your brain function and slow down the degradation of the brain function.
- Shilajit can decrease cellular damage in your body by flushing out toxins and regenerating your cells.
- Shilajit can help people with cardiac health, chronic fatigue and arthritis pain.
- Shilajit can even help with altitude sickness and one study from 2016 has shown strong indications that Shilajit can help liver cancer patients.
21.Ginger -may also help improve cognitive function, as well as prevent neurological diseases. Due to the anti-inflammatory properties of ginger, it may reduce risk factors in diseases like dementia, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s (12).
A study in 2011 showed quicker cognitive processing and enhanced working memory in middle-aged subjects, consuming ginger extract for 2 months. These subjects also displayed more attentiveness and a better memory quality.
Aging & Gut Microbiome
Researchers at Cedars-Sinai (journal of Cell Reports) have found that aging produces significant changes in the microbiome of the human small intestine distinct from those caused by medications, illness or disease.
Elderly people who suffer from the natural processes of senescence, find the changes in the gut microbiota composition hard to deal with. Recent research have shown that probiotics and prebiotics may help the gut microbiome. These modifications have a great impact on their quality of life, bringing a general putrefactive and inflammatory status as a consequence. Increasing interest in improving their quality of life by non-invasive treatments such as the consumption of probiotics, prebiotics, and synbiotics is being currently researched across the globe.
Research exploring the gut microbiome, and its impact on health, has relied predominantly on faecal samples, which do not represent the entire gut, according to Ruchi Mathur. In their study, investigators from Cedars-Sinai’s Medically Associated Science and Technology (MAST) Program analysed samples from the small intestine–which is over 20 feet in length and has the surface area of a tennis court–for examination of the microbiome and its relationship with aging .
*Make sure you use special herbs under supervision of an Ayurvedic expert. Grow older, don't age!
Maintaining Your Hormonal Balance
Most people associate human growth hormone and DHEA with aging, but progesterone, testosterone, estrogen and cortisol play a role in aging as well.
If the delicate balance of any one of these hormones is destroyed, it can take a serious toll on your body, brain, and zest for living.
In males a low level of testosterone, the symptoms can include erectile dysfunction, and reduced bone mass and sex drive. The hormone has many important functions, including: the development of the bones and muscles. the deepening of the voice, hair growth, and other factors related to appearance. A lower level of testosterone is also present in women.
The hormone estrogen affects your skin in looking radiant due to the hyaluronic acid it produces. Estrogen also helps your muscle mass, metabolism, and energy levels
The human growth hormone (HGH) is a protein produced by the pituitary gland, which stimulates cell, muscle, and bone growth. However, as we get older, the HGH production begins to decline.
We produce normal levels of the HGH in our younger years, which make us :
- Have Young-looking skin
- Less body fat
- Have Faster metabolism
- Have Good muscle mass
- High energy levels
- Sharp thinking
Phytoestrogens or dietary estrogens are naturally occurring compounds found in plants. It is not too difficult to include these plants as part of your diet.
- Estrogen is a hormone released in a woman’s body that regulates her menstrual cycle. The body’s endocrine system is responsible for producing this hormone.
- Menopausal symptoms can be unpleasant, and some women use hormone replacement therapy to help control them.
Phytoestrogen foods are a natural alternative to the chemical/synthetic estrogen used in hormone replacement therapies (HRT).
Source: Next Wave Therapy. Phytoestrogens Plant Power -Next Wave.
Phytoestrogens may contain estrogenic or antiestrogenic effects. The majority of research links phytoestrogens to a range of health benefits.
Phytoestrogens are found at different levelsin foods. Some of the below listed foods:
1.Flax seeds are a rich source of lignans, chemical compounds that are rich in phytoestrogens. Eating flax seeds has been associated with a decreased risk of breast cancer.
2.Soybeans and edamame are rich in isoflavones, a type of phytoestrogen. Soy isoflavones may affect blood estrogen levels in your body, although more research is needed.
3.Dried fruits are a potent source of phytoestrogens. Dried apricots, dates, and prunes are some of the dried fruits with the highest phytoestrogen content.
4.Sesame seeds are a potent source of phytoestrogens. Regularly eating sesame seeds has been shown to increase estrogen activity in postmenopausal women.
5.Garlic along with its distinctive taste and health benefits, garlic is rich in phytoestrogens and may help reduce bone loss related to estrogen deficiency. However, more research in humans is needed
6.Peaches are sweet, delicious, and packed with a variety of nutrients. They are rich in lignans, a type of phytoestrogen.
7.Some berries are rich in phytoestrogens, especially strawberries, cranberries, and raspberries.
8.Wheat bran is rich in phytoestrogens and fibre, which may decrease estrogen levels. However, more research is needed.
9.Tofu is made from soy milk condensed into solid white blocks. It’s a rich source of isoflavones, a type of phytoestrogen.
10.Cruciferous vegetables are rich in phytoestrogens, including lignans and coumetarol.
11.Tempeh is a common vegetarian meat replacement made from fermented soybeans. Like other soy products, tempeh is rich in isoflavones.
Potential Risks of taking Phytoestrogens
Some animal studies have identified potential health risks associated with phytoestrogen intake, but strong human research is lacking. Conversely, many studies have linked phytoestrogen intake to multiple health benefits and protective effects.
*Always Consult your Physician if you decide to take any Chemical / synthetic estrogens.
Effects of Blue Light on Health 
The effects of blue light can be good, bad an dreadfully significant because the harmful effects of too much UV exposure are well-known by now. Alhough blue light may affect us more than other colours of light because its highest-en Blue light has the shortest wavelengths out of all the colour bands. It falls in a range of 380-500 nanometers (nm). Even more interesting is the fact that blue light is right beside UV rays on the spectrum. Blue light energy waves are nearly as powerful as UV rays.
Positive Effects of Blue Light
Blue light is a part of natural health. When you get it in the right amount and at the right time.
- Boosts your alertness- The inner mechanism makes your body and to feel alert, energized, and focused during the day. It also regulates other functions like hormone secretion, metabolism, and even blood pressure.
- Helps memory and brain function- One study from 2017 found that exposure to concentrated blue light led to better memory performance.
- May improve seasonal depression (SAD). Light therapy has been found to be one of the most effective treatments for this type of depression for obvious reasons. The effects of blue light, in particular, are stronger than other wavelengths. It may even help with other types of depression, including bipolar disorder.
Source: Motor Impairment. Nueroscience Research. Australia Blue Brain Motor Impairment.
- Disrupts Your Sleep -One of the biggest downsides of blue light is that it can lead to serious sleep problems including insomnia. This is mainly because exposure to blue light in the evening suppresses the release of melatonin. Melatonin is the hormone most often associated with sleep. When more of it is released in your body, you feel sleepy. When less of it is released, you feel more awake.
- Sunlight has a big influence on melatonin production. In a healthy body, the appearance of the sun in the morning causes melatonin to drop, and darkness causes it to increase. That’s the reason, having bright lights on before you go to bed may make it harder to fall asleep when you lay down.
- it may cause motor impairment and therefore, should be taken seriously.
The Role of Polyphenols in being Fit.
Polyphenols are antioxidant compounds found in plants, vegetables and teas. The 4 Different types of polyphenols are- polyphenic amides, flavonoids, phenolic acids and other polyphenols.
Polyphenols play a very important role in preventing aging—specifically, they reduce free radical damage and oxidative stress in your body, which in turn reduces the cellular damage that contributes to biological aging. They also play a role in modulating inflammation, cellular senescence, and the autophagy that is so critical for eliminating cellular “junk”.
Autophagy is your body’s way of preventing damage to your cells. It essentially flushes out damaged and dysfunctional cells and replaces them with new, healthier cells.
Unfortunately, as you age, autophagy naturally decreases, which leads to an accumulation of cellular “junk” that accelerates a number of conditions that contribute to aging—including Type 2 Diabetes, heart disease, and Alzheimer’s (see detailed blog on “Ayurveda Speciality and Functional Teas” https://www.glopowertee.com/blogs/writings-about-wellness?page=2).
This is where polyphenols come into play. As one review made very clear, certain polyphenols (including resveratrol) can induce autophagy, and are “capable of modulating the expression of pro- and anti-apoptotic factors, neutralizing free radical species, affecting mitochondrial functions, chelating redox-active transition metal ions, and preventing protein aggregation.” Best of all, polyphenols do all of this safely because they are so compatible with our bodies.
By triggering autophagy, polyphenols can protect against a wide range of health conditions.There are plenty of plant-based foods that can deliver us a wide range of polyphenols, some of them are:
- Quercetin from apples
- Catechins from green tea
- Flavonoids from black tea and dark chocolate
- Anthocyanins from red grapes, blueberries, and purple plums
- Resveratrol from red grapes and red wine
- Capsaicin from red chili peppers
- Curcumin from turmeric
- Lignans from sesame and pumpkin seeds.
- Social Engagement is an integral part of human life and keeping our brain waves alive at all stages of growing.Physiological and social isolation connection is important.
- Isolation is as harmful as smoking. A study calculated -Isolation /day= 15 cigarettes /day.
- Music has an important and positive influence on your body, nerves, and brain.
- Nature- Being in touch with nature on a regular basis makes us come alive, destresses our bodies and brings calm, that is essential for health and wellbeing.
- Colouring Books- recent study has found using colouring books of animals, nature and what ever pleases you, has a positive impact on your cognitive abilities. It makes you more agile and happier.
- Meditating for very short periods can bring about inner healing and that silencing of the ever-chattering monkey in your mind.
- Engage deeply in friendships,especially older adults.
- Be the person with never ending gratitude for everything you have.
- Own your Alone! You can be alone but not lonely and yet you can be surrounded by people but feel lonely.
- Diversify your social portfolio.
1. World Health Organization. World report on ageing and health. Geneva: WHO, 2015.Search PubMed
6. Goji Berries as a Potential Natural Antioxidant Medicine: An Insight into Their Molecular Mechanisms of Action.Zheng Feei Ma, 1 , 2 Hongxia Zhang, 3 Sue Siang Teh, 3 , 4 Chee Woon Wang, 5 Yutong Zhang, 6 Frank Hayford, 7Liuyi Wang, 1 Tong Ma, 8 Zihan Dong, 1 Yan Zhang, 1 and Yifan Zhu 1
Astragalus, National Centre of Complementary and Integrative Health
The clinical efficacy and safety of the Chinese herbal medicine Astragalus (Huangqi) preparation for the treatment of acute myocardial infarction.
12.https://www.seniority.in/blog/7-anti-ageing-herbs-to-help-you-look-and-feel-younger/tioxidants that fight against cell damage and initiate new cell growth.ht13t
16. Polyphenols: Can these compounds extend your lifespan?Andrew Peloquin, Editor-in-chief, The Longevity Journal.