Anti-aging from the inside out

You can stop the clock if you feed, rest, and recharge your body right. Live more days like this to roll back the years and prevent aging.
There are so many reasons to embrace getting older. Post-college what-do-I-do-with-my-life syndrome? Over.

The whole plastic-container-as-furniture thing? Long gone, thankfully. But ita��s hard to feel psyched about creaky knees, drooping energy, drooping. . . other things. Ita��s no wonder women line their medicine cabinets with a�?magic serumsa�? and hit the plastic surgeona��s office for a little poke here and a little tuck there.

Do whatever works for you a�� just dona��t make the mistake of tackling your outsides while ignoring your insides.

Experts say the best anti-aging a�?treatmentsa�? are the foods we eat, exercise we get, and daily habits we keep.

a�?The body ages along several pathways, all of which operate from the inside out,a�? notes David L. Katz, MD, founding director of Yale Universitya��s Prevention Research Centre.

a�?Some basic lifestyle tweaks can help reduce these processes and have a noticeable effect right at the cellular level.a�?

Everything from a calm morning commute to a nourishing dinner tonight can make you look younger tomorrow.

And the same habits that improve your appearance also help keep serious illnesses like heart disease and cancer at bay. The result?

A longer, better, and a�� yes a�� prettier life.

TAKE A WALK WHILE THE COFFEE BREWS
Ita��ll do you good right down to your bones. The fact is that bone mass peaks around age 30. After that, bone loss progresses at about 1 to 2 percent per year, says exercise physiologist Steven Hawkins, PhD. But regular weight-bearing activity like walking or jogging actually increases bone density. Aim for 20 to 30 minutes first thing in the morning to ensure that you do it.

GET ICY
Rub a few ice cubes on your face for a minute. Ita��s not just a wake-up call a�� by chilling the skin, you slow the metabolic activity that can lead to visible signs of aging, says Ava Shamban, MD, a Beverly Hills, CA a�� based dermatologist. Once you remove the ice, blood rushes to the skina��s surface to help carry away some of the toxins that cause wrinkling.

EAT A BREAKFAST OF ANTI-AGING CHAMPIONS
Diet can be a powerful weapon against aging. Or it can make you look and feel old before your time. This is your first chance of the day to make the right choice, so ditch the chocolate croissant or sugary cereal for a more balanced morning meal.

Health experts believe that a diet high in white flour, sugar, and processed foods creates inflammation in the body that harms your heart, brain, and kidneys a�� as well as the bodya��s largest organ, your skin. Numerous studies have shown that low-grade inflammation causes cellular deterioration that shows up as wrinkling, sagging, and other signs of age, notes dermatologist Nicholas Perricone, MD. The ideal anti-aging diet, he says, is rich in healthy fats (found in omega-fortified eggs and foods like avocados and salmon), to reduce inflammation; high in protein, to boost cellular repair; and loaded with the antioxidants you get from fruits and veggies. So start the day with, say, an omelet and fresh fruit, Perricone suggests. Ita��s like a facial for breakfast.

CHILL OUT a�� ITa��S JUST TRAFFIC
Dona��t let commute chaos make you feel a full 10 years older by the time you get to work. a�?Agitation and anxiety flood your body with stress hormones like cortisol,a�? says Frank Lipman, MD, an integrative and functional medicine physician in New York City.

Over time, these stress hormones spur the excess inflammation blamed for much of the aging process. While therea��s not much you can do about that jackknifed tractor-trailer, you do have control over your reaction to traffic.

Do a mini meditation a�� researchers have found that it helps prevent the effects of aging on the prefrontal cortex, the area of the brain that manages self-control. Simply feel your body press against the seat, and focus on breathing deeply in and out, says Lipman; youa��ll dial down the activation of those stress hormones. Not working? Turn up the radio and find a song to sing along to. a�?Anything you can do to distract yourself from whata��s driving you crazy will help reduce stress levels.a�? a�� Healtht Lifestyle Tips