THE FAT ON AGING
A study by the Mayo Clinic published in “Nature” claims that fat cells are non-dividing (senescent) cells that produce harmful byproducts called inflammatory cytokines, which may play a major role in the aging process. Experimenting with mice, they discovered that targeting and removing “fat” cells, reversed or slowed many biomarkers of aging. So in addition to living a healthier life, it appears that maintaining low body fat percentages (16-18% for men and 18-22% for women) will also support a longer life. Makes sense, it’s rather hard to find a centenarian that is not thin and feisty!
WATCH YOUR SUGAR
Excessive insulin response (and high blood sugar) can be controlled by limiting consumption of sugar, eliminating high fructose corn syrup, and minimizing starchy carbohydrates. Consuming protein or fiber with carbohydrates will slow insulin response. Plan to eat small protein portions with healthy carbohydrates to minimize insulin response, and reduce sugary, starchy junk foods to maximize health.
To maximize health, avoid processed foods with labels, especially if there are more than three ingredients, or if there are ingredients that sound like chemical compounds. Consider switching to a fresh food diet to maximize health.
Herbs that can relieve gas and gut pain include anise, caraway, cumin, dill, fennel, ginger and peppermint. Consider adding these herbs to meals, or consuming them as supplements when gas, bloating or pain become problematic.
YOU ON STRESS
High “perceived” stress causes the adrenal glands to produce more cortisol, which not only contributes to fat storage, but also diverts energy away from healing and inflammation control as part of the “fight or flight” response. We are more likely to succumb to illness when we are highly stressed, and we age more rapidly when under stress. To maximize health and youthful appearance, explore multiple methods to “de-stress” and reduce cortisol levels so that your “perceived” stress levels seem low and manageable, even if they are not.