If you want to keep yourself looking and feeling young, there are a few major habits that you may need to leave behind and a couple that you should probably adopt ASAP. After all, we only live once! Here are three habits that age you as well as two other habits that will keep your youthfulness sparkling for years to come.
Habits That Age You
This isn’t the first time that you have heard smoking is bad for you, and it certainly won’t be the last, but considering the amount of adults that continue to puff away, it may be time for another reminder.
Not only is smoking linked to heart disease, high blood pressure, infertility, bladder cancer, and lung cancer, but it will also make you look older — a lot older. The carbon monoxide in cigarette smoke displaces the oxygen in your skin, while the nicotine reduces your blood flow and leaves the skin dry and discolored. You can thank the nicotine for hampering the blood supply to the point where your skin no longer looks supple and healthy, leading to…wrinkles!
In addition, smoking also intensifies skin conditions such as psoriasis, depletes many nutrients (including vitamin C), stains your teeth and fingers, thins your hair, and makes you smell like a walking ashtray.
In today’s modern world, it can often seem like everyone is competing over who has the most stress, the fullest calendar, and the longest to-do list. Being stressed out over how much you need to do can be seen as a sign of prestige and importance, but is very rarely thought of as a habit that will age you. And age you it does.
According to an article published by the Huffington Post, researchers measured the length of DNA sections called telomeres and found that people with the most work-related stress had the shortest telomeres, causing cells to die or become damaged, which may speed up the aging process.
Working on ways to cope with stress or reduce the stress in your life is the ultimate goal, but smaller steps like limiting your caffeine intake, avoiding processed foods (which can put even more stress on your digestive system), and incorporating yoga or meditation sessions into your routine can make a whole lot of difference.
No one can blame us for wanting to appear as though we just spent a week bronzing ourselves in the Mediterranean. Hopefully, though, even if you were lucky enough to actually just return from such a trip, your bronzing came from a bottle instead of the sun.
Sunbathing and tanning are some of the most horrific things you can possibly do for your skin. In addition to skin cancer, the exposure to the sun’s harmful UV rays weakens your skin cells and blood vessels. And it is this weakening that creates the not-so-sexy leathery look that some men and women don, making them appear years older than they actually are. Sunscreen is available everywhere, giving you no excuse not to slather it on every single day, every two hours (yes, even if you are on a yacht in Greece).
That being said, there are also a couple of habits you can adopt to ensure you keep your youthful glow.
Habits That Keep You Youthful
1. A Good Night’s Zzzzz
We all know we need more and better quality sleep. But if you are really concerned about maintaining your youthful glow, then a good night’s sleep needs to be your top priority. The hours when you close your eyes are the hours when your body does its healing and repairing. Seven or eight hours of sleep is ideal for most of us.
Chronic lack of sleep or bad quality sleep has a detrimental effect on the way we look and feel. No matter how diligent you are with applying your face creams, the hours when you slumber are when your cellular renewal is at its fastest. Furthermore, think of how much happier and less stressed you are when you get enough sleep. (Do I have to remind you that stress is also aging?!)
And when you find yourself thinking that you don’t need that much sleep, remind yourself that Penelope Cruz gets 14 hours.
2. Consistent Exercise
Finally, fitness helps to keep you young both in mind and spirit, as it increases the energy you have and your ability to continue doing the things you love. But even more than that, research has shown that endurance exercise can help fight (and potentially reverse) the signs of aging, such as balding, grey hair and thinning skin.
Consistent exercise helps you maintain muscle mass so your body doesn’t start sagging and improves your bone density. A study from McMaster University found that mice that ran the human equivalent of six 10-minute miles, three times a week, had healthier mitochondria. From there, they also had superior balance, heart health, muscle tone, brain mass and less grey hair. If it works for mice, then we should give it a try!
Gehana Kennedy is the owner of vitaminshop.ae, the go-to source for high-quality wellness products including a range of step-by-step formulated vitamins, fitness supplements and natural skin care products. With innovative ideas and implementation of new technologies, she was able to establish a platform that offers not only quality products but also valuable information for customers.