Who doesn’t hope to live a long life? Longevity is something we all hope for.
So often, our culture focuses on living a long life, but we need to expand our definition of longevity to include health.
Wouldn’t living a long life, full of energy, agility, and health well into our last years, be wonderful?
Studies abound, analyzing pockets of long-lived people around the world. By learning from these people and their cultures, we can increase our chances of enjoying the same quality of life.
WHAT ARE THE COMMON THREADS AMONG PEOPLE WHO ENJOY LONG, HEALTHY LIVES? HERE’S A SMALL GLIMPSE INTO SOME LIFESTYLE FACTORS SHARED BY LONG-LIVED PEOPLE.
They move their bodies.
Whether it’s walking gardening, swimming, dancing or something else, they get out and move every day.
They eat a healthy diet.
One universal thread between healthy diets is to limit sugar and processed food intake while increasing fruit and vegetable intake.
They don’t smoke.
Countless studies have linked smoking chemical-laden cigarettes to disease and premature aging.
They drink moderately.
With alcohol consumption, just a little is just right for increasing longevity.
They exercise their brains.
Crossword puzzles, sudoku, and reading are all hobbies of people living long, healthy lives.
They get regular checkups.
Staying on top of any health issues that may arise gives time to treat them proactively instead of reactively and keep them under control.
FORTUNATELY, OUR CULTURE VIEWS AGING AS SOMETHING WE CAN TAKE SOME CONTROL OVER, RATHER THAN SOMETHING WE MUST SUCCUMB TO. WHAT DOES MODERN SCIENCE TELL US WE SHOULD DO TO LEAD A LONG HEALTHY LIFE?
1. Modulate insulin and IGF-1
Excess insulin and IGF typically lead to weight gain and contribute to some age-related diseases. Lowering processed foods, carbohydrates, and sugar consumption is the fastest way to begin to get insulin and IGF-1 levels under control. Supplements like Alpha-Lipoic Acid, Cinnamon, Chromium, and Berberine have all been studied for their effectiveness to help lower blood sugar.
2. Regulate mTOR
The mammalian target of rapamycin is a cell signal that regulates cell growth, cell proliferation, and stalls autophagy (natural cellular cleansing). mTOR is also necessary for the activation of receptors for insulin and IGF. Dietary and drug interventions designed to reduce mTOR appear to increase a healthy life span. EGCG from green tea, caffeine, turmeric, and resveratrol have shown a positive effect on mTOR in studies.
3. Increase AMPK
AMP Kinase is an enzyme that counters the effects of mTOR. Raising AMPK has been shown to have positive effects on weight loss, heart health, and mental acuity. Herbs and supplements that increase AMPK have a whole host of benefits on the body. Exercise has been shown to be effective in increasing AMPK and while less popular, a cold dunk or shower will give you a similar benefit. Additionally, herbs that may increase AMPK include resveratrol, quercetin, green tea, berberine, curcumin and the Chinese herb Jiaogulan (Gynostemma).
4. Active Sirtuins
Sirtuins signaling molecules that influence aging, apoptosis, inflammation, stress resistance, and energy distribution. We now understand that many foods and supplements may activate sirtuins, supporting a long healthy life. The best supplements for activating sirtuins are NAD+ and curcumin.
WHAT TO TAKE AWAY FROM THIS BLOG POST:
- Living a long life is a great goal that many of us share.
- Living a long healthy life is a better goal.
- By studying cultures with people who have achieved this, we can learn how to replicate habits to support our own happy aging.
- Lifestyle, nutrition, and supplements are the key to unlocking the gifts of longevity.
- Stop by any of our New Leaf Market stores and talk with one of our Wellness Experts for help selecting the right supplements to increase your longevity!
As we all set the intention and live a happy, healthy life, we inspire others and give them permission to do the same.
At New Leaf, we believe in Living Healthy, because it improves our loves on a micro level and also helps us begin to contribute to the improvement of our environment, our communities, and our world in ways we can’t always imagine.
Visit your local New Leaf to discover solutions to Live Healthy and make 2022 YOUR year to Live Well.