You’re only as young as you feel, and we all want to look as young as we feel too
When we’re kids, we can’t wait to get older. Then, as we make our way through adulthood, we want to nurture our youth for as long as possible.
Of course, getting older is a blessing. With age comes wisdom, experience, confidence and self-assurance, but it can sometimes feel like the spark and energy you had in your youth has been misplaced along the way – especially if you don’t like what you see in the mirror.
Looking and feeling younger isn’t about ticking certain boxes that society deems attractive; it’s about looking after yourself so that you can enjoy life as the best version of you.
With that in mind, we’re going to take you through some of the simple things you can do to look and feel younger every day. From going organic to strengthening your relationships, here’s everything you need to know.
A plant based diet is rich in antioxidants, which help to fight inflammation while also providing you with vital fibre. A clean diet with plenty of fruit and veg supports gut health, promotes better fat burning and provides essential nutrients for your cells. A simple way to get started is to make your meals from scratch rather than relying on ready meals. That way, you can include the healthy ingredients you want to incorporate into your diet.
Start every day with a stretch
Aches and pains become more common as we get older, and nothing makes you feel more ancient than a sore spot that stops being able to move freely. Stretching your body is essential to staving off these joint issues, which is why you should start every day with a few simple flexibility exercises. Even if you only have five minutes in the morning, this can be enough to wake up your body and combat the tensions that have arisen overnight.
Go organic with your meals
Switching to organic fruits, vegetables and cereals can increase your intake of essential antioxidants by 20 to 40%, according to a major study published in the British Journal of Nutrition. You can find organic alternatives to most fruits and veg in your local supermarket, so it’s an easy swap to make that can have significant pay off in the long run.
Pick up the pace
Exercise is one of the key pillars of our health, so take the time to find the fitness form that works best for you. It might be cycling, running, swimming, CrossFit, dancing or something else entirely. Whatever you do, mix the pace up while you do it. Studies have found that switching between bouts of high and low intensity movement are better cardio than longer sessions carried out at a steady pace.
Wear sunscreen every day
Broad spectrum sunscreen will protect against both UVA and UVB rays, making it the cornerstone of any skincare routine to protect youthful skin. Sun damage accounts for the vast majority of skin ageing, so protecting against this is vital for keeping your skin’s youthful glow. Even when it’s cold or cloudy, sun protection is important.
Avoid added sugars
A little sweetness can be nice, but there’s such thing as too much of a good thing when it comes to sugar. Excess sugar is linked to a range of age-related conditions, including type 2 diabetes, kidney disease and high blood pressure. Studies have found that sugary drinks are particularly bad, causing the cells to age more rapidly in the long run. Take note of the sugar content of the things you’re buying, and see whether you can swap them for healthier alternatives.
Self care has become much more mainstream in recent years, with meditation acting as the poster activity for the movement. This can only be a good thing, as regular meditation has been shown to reduce the symptoms of mental health concerns like anxiety and depression – both of which can have a snowball effect and cause you to look and feel older. Taking the time to reflect and be mindful can reduce blood pressure, boost immunity, lower stress, ease insomnia and more.
Build your strength
Like flexibility and cardio, strength training is a key aspect of exercise. Our muscles naturally waste as we get older, causing us to look and feel weaker. Lifting weights and doing resistance training not only firms up your muscles and strengthens your bones and joints, but it also boosts your mood and confidence. Just make sure you start light and build up your weights gradually, while maintaining good posture with each movement.
Use skincare with antioxidants
Finding the right skincare routine is essential for looking and feeling younger, but with so many options and ingredients out there, the task can feel overwhelming. There are certain ingredients that are considered ‘hero’ options however, including antioxidants. These fight free radicals, support skin repair and give your skin the nutrients it needs to flourish. Invest in an antioxidant serum to use with your SPF cream in order to give your skincare routine the boost it needs to let you glow.
Look after your gut
Gut health is essential to your overall health, which in turn is key to how energised and youthful you feel. The gut microbiota is the colony of bacteria that live in your intestinal tract, and it plays a crucial role in your overall wellbeing, allowing your digestive system to perform at its best and boosting your immune system and metabolism. Certain foods are associated with better gut health, including plain Greek yoghurt, which is rich in probiotics like tempeh and sauerkraut.
Strengthen your bonds
Humans aren’t meant to be lone wolves. We live for the connections we make, so it makes sense that strong relationships and friendships give us more energy and positivity, which in turn can help us look and feel younger. Make the time to engage with the people who are most important to you, whether with a coffee date, a phone call or a message to let them know you’re thinking of them.
Drinking enough water helps you feel energised for the day ahead, while also supporting digestive health, heart health, skin health and more. Aim to drink 8 large glasses of water a day, and eat foods with plenty of water in them like fresh fruits and vegetables.
When we help others, we feel better about ourselves. Volunteering can give you a better perspective on life, improve your mental health and give you more confidence. A meta analysis of adults over age 55 found that regular volunteers were 24% less likely than others to pass away over the course of the study. Meanwhile, other studies have shown that volunteering helps to curb stress and reduce inflammation.
For some people, cosmetic procedures are the best way to look and feel youthful. And among the various cosmetic procedures available, Botox reigns supreme. Botox is a non-invasive treatment designed to smooth out wrinkles, plump up your skin and make you look younger, fresher and more energised. Consider researching Botox to see whether it’s the right route for you to take.