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Most of us are happy with the wisdom that the passing years bring. Aging does have its benefits. What we may not love, however, is the sagging skin, crow’s feet, joint stiffness and failing memory that frequently accompany the aging process.
The aging process really begins in the gut. And while we cannot stop time, we can choose to move through it gracefully.
1. Limit sugar in the diet: Sugar, in large quantities, is a toxin in the body. It creates a gooey, sticky mess inside the body and clogs up hormone receptors.
How does this happen? Over time, excessive sugar links up with proteins, causing tissue to harden. This leads to things like cellulite, arthritis, and premature wrinkling. Sugar makes you look old and feel old.
2. Get familiar with fermented foods: Keeping your gut well populated with healthy bugs is one of the best things your can do for overall health.
While fermented foods may not seem like such a big deal, the precious tradition of culturing different foods, from cabbage to dairy to fish, actually safeguards your entire body from disaster. Good microflora in the gut work with your body to digest food, limit infection, reduce inflammation, safely detoxify heavy metal and pollutants, and lift your mood!
3. Be picky about the oils you eat: Oil and fat can either be extremely detrimental to the body or extremely beneficial.
The key to figuring out which is which? Think of it this way: A stable oil is a healthy oil.
This means that you must keep fragile oils like most nut, seed, and fish oils away from heat, out of light, and exposed to as little air as possible. These fragile oils oxidize easier, which causes free radicals and inflammation.
What oils are in a majority of prepared foods, including restaurant food? Canola, soy, corn, safflower, and vegetable oil. These are all oils that are highly processed and toxic to the body. Be savvy and be picky!
Only eat food that is cooked with saturated fats, which can withstand high temperatures. Examples are lard, tallow, ghee, coconut oil and red palm oil.
4. Make sure your gut is healthy: A healthy gut means that the barrier system of the gut is intact.
When the tissue of the intestines becomes inflamed, this opens the door for autoimmune disorders, allergies, sensitivity to smells or environment and loss of brain health!
The gut and brain have a unique relationship called the gut-brain axis. When one barrier system fails or becomes “leaky,” the barrier system in the brain is likely to fail as well.
5. Learn how to manage stress: We all have stress. The trick is not to avoid it. Instead, learn how to manage your stress response.
Chronic stress halts digestive function and keeps the body from repairing itself. Stress also weakens the immune response and can send hormones into a tailspin.
So, breathe. And smile. Be grateful that your choices can empower you to age gracefully.
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