Aging is inevitable for all of us, but we can choose to do it gently and gracefully by making the right lifestyle choices. The following are seven bad habits that can speed up the aging process, causing you to look and feel older than your years:
You don’t drink enough water. If you find yourself reaching for a soda every time you’re thirsty, you’re doing major damage to your skin. Water helps to maintain skin moisture, helps to deliver essential nutrients, and aids calls in rejuvenating more quickly. If you aren’t drinking enough water, your skin is going to be drier and more prone to wrinkles.
Most of your meals are fast food or pre-packaged junk. The high levels of sodium and cholesterol in these foods contribute to cardiovascular disease and diabetes. Not to mention, when your diet is based around these types of foods, odds are you’re neglecting to eat foods that deliver the nutrients your body really needs.
You drink too much alcohol. This contributes to cirrhosis of the liver, high blood pressure, heart failure, and obesity. Men should limit themselves to two drinks per day, while women should limit themselves to one.
You smoke. There is a long standing relationship between smoking and reduced longevity, and smokers have higher risks of developing almost every age-related disease. Smoking also contributes to premature wrinkling of the skin.
You eat too much sugar. Even if you don’t think you consume all that much sugar, try checking your food labels. Packaged foods are often high in hidden sugars. Aside from causing weight gain and the health risks associated with obesity, sugar instigates a process called glycation in the body. Glycation damages protein fibers that keep skin elastic, contributing to premature wrinkling.
You’re a couch potato. Regular exercise helps to prevent many age-related diseases and prolongs your life. It controls your weight and blood pressure, helps to boost your mood, and keeps you flexible as you grow older. Aim for at least 30 minutes of exercise each day to reap the benefits.
You don’t get enough sleep. Lack of sleep affects your complexion and can make your eyes look tired and droopy. Develop better sleep habits and you’ll actually look younger.
The good news is that all of these habits can be changed! Make your New Years resolutions now, and call our office for an appointment if you need help reducing the look of lines and wrinkles from years of poor choices.