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Speaking of Health…

by Doc Holliday

Let’s face it, most of us here in Pattaya once had slimmer waists, more hair or fewer wrinkles. We had more energy and less irregularity. We had fewer visits to the doctor and far fewer nocturnal visits to the toilet. You get the picture. We’re not getting any younger.

Or are we?

Medical research continues to make new inroads in matters of aging. Scientists at Harvard Medical School have reversed the aging process, changing weak and feeble old mice into healthy animals by controlling certain genetic processes in their bodies. More recently, researchers at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center injected young stem cells into old mice, not only turning back the clock on aging but also doubling their life span. (Which may not seem important to you, but the rodent community was elated.) 

While these and other laboratory advances may not find their way to our species in the foreseeable future, there are steps you can take now to help reset your biological clock. You no doubt are already practicing some of these simple strategies.

Let’s begin with a look at five negative influences on age: smoking, lack of sleep, excessive sun exposure, inactivity and stress. Each factor has a hugely deleterious impact on aging. Managing them (that is, quit smoking, sleep eight hours nightly, avoid sun, walk 30 minutes daily and meditate) can reduce your real age (in apposition to your chronological age) by more than 15 years, according to Doctors Michael Roizen, MD, and Mehmet Oz, MD, founders of RealAge.com.

Other aging catalysts include a bulging waist and excessive blood pressure, blood sugar and cholesterol. Keeping all four in a healthy zone “can make your RealAge as much as 19.8 years younger,” say the doctors in their best-selling book, You—The Owner’s Manual.

Foods can help you look and feel younger

Dietician David Grotto, author of 101 Foods That Could Save Your Life, says you can turn back the clock by living healthy and eating the right foods such as those with vitamins A--carrots, apricots, nectarines, sweet potatoes, egg yolks, spinach, broccoli and collards, and C—think tomatoes, citrus fruits, kiwi, and getting enough vitamin D—easily done in Pattaya’s sunshine.

Agreeing is Dr Heidi Rengeass, author of the Anti-Aging Cookbook. She says two cups of fruits and vegetables a day to increase beta carotene intake can lead to healthy skin and eyes, as well as reduce the risk of some cancers and heart disease. Cooked tomatoes are a good source of the antioxidant lycopene to deter the body from premature aging, she notes.

Fruits readily available here--such as mangosteen and pomegranates--are promoted as exotic "anti-aging" foods in the West. So too for nuts, seeds, veggies and unprocessed foods that come from the earth.

Get healthy. Get younger. You’re never too old to have a happy childhood.

This article is for informational purposes only; it does not replace professional medical advice.