Think Healthspan…Not Lifespan
It’s been called “the graying of America”.
Currently there are about 52 million Americans who are over the age of 65. This number is expected to nearly double over the next 30 years to 95 million…almost one-quarter of our total population.
Many factors have contributed to this increase, including:
- Declining birth rate.
- Medical advances.
- Aging of the “baby boomers”.
- Increasing life expectancy.
In particular, we’re just plain living longer.
A century ago, the average American could expect to live to their early fifties. Today, average life expectancy is 73 years for men and 80 years for women.
But lifespan is just a number. It doesn’t say anything about the quality of your life.
More and more, people are considering their quality of life as they age. Experts refer to this as “healthspan”.
In other words, healthspan focuses on how much you continue to enjoy life as you age. Your ability to live independently, maintain good health, and stay active are all important if your healthspan is going to keep up with your lifespan.
Increasingly, those of us who specialize in healthy aging are focused on healthspan as much as we’re focused on lifespan. Because what’s the point of increasing longevity if you don’t have a good quality of life to go with it?
To that end, there are some basic things you can do…starting at any age…that will increase your healthspan, as well as your lifespan. These include:
- Follow a healthy diet
- Stay physically active
- Stay mentally active
- Get plenty of rest
- Pursue happiness
- Take your supplements
- Balanced hormones
What you eat…and how much…has a major effect on maintaining a healthy body weight, which affects your health overall.
So pay attention to your diet. Eat lots of leafy green vegetables and healthy fats (like coconut oil, avocados, seeds, and nuts). Reduce sugar and carbohydrates. And stay hydrated.
When you eat also makes a difference. There’s increasing evidence that time-restricted eating (i.e. intermittent fasting) can help increase your healthspan.
Regular physical activity keeps your heart and brain healthy. It also keeps your muscles and bones strong.
So go to the gym. Go for a walk, a run, or a bike ride. Do a spin class. Or find another physical activity you enjoy. The important thing is to get off the couch and be active.
A good mix of cardio and weight training is recommended by most experts. And don’t forget to stretch regularly.
Whatever you do, don’t turn off your brain.
Even if you retire from your career, stay engaged and keep challenging yourself.
Never stop learning and never stop trying new things, no matter your age or circumstances.
Don’t skimp on sleep. It’s when you’re sleeping that your body rebuilds and regenerates.
To that end, make sure you’re maintaining good sleep hygiene. In particular, turn off the TV and the devices well in advance of going to sleep so your mind and body can wind down naturally.
After all, why live longer if you’re not going to enjoy it?
Do the things you enjoy. Stay connected with family and friends. If you’re suffering from depression or anxiety, get help.
Very few people get all the nutrients they need from food alone these days. Fortunately, it’s easy to augment the nutrients you eat by supplementing your diet.
Glucosamine and chondroitin for joint health. Vitamin C for a healthy immune system. Omega 3s for your cardiovascular system and brain. Resveratrol or alpha lipoic acid to fight free radicals. Probiotics for your gut. B vitamins to help your body cope with stress. Vitamin D for overall health.
And that’s just a sample. Find a supplement regimen that works for you and stick to it.
Much of the physical and mental decline associated with aging results from a decline in hormones as we get older.
The most common culprits are testosterone, estrogen, progesterone, DHEA, pregnenalone, thyroid, growth hormone, and melatonin.
Properly supervised hormone replacement therapy using bioidentical hormones can restore your hormones to optimal levels.
That’s where Renew Youth comes in. We’re experts when it comes to hormone therapy. And we have our sights on healthspan as well as lifespan.
To find out more, call us at 800-859-7511 or use our convenient contact form to set up your free consultation.