Aging with Grace and Mindfulness: Healthy Choices Slow the Process
Sep 04, 2015 02:51AM
● By Peter Braglia
“Aging is not just the number of years you’ve inhabited planet Earth, but rather the degree
of wear and tear your body, brain, and vital organs are expressing at a given point in time.”
~ Ronesh Sinha, MD
Like it or not, Americans are living longer than ever before. For example, an American male born in 2008 can expect to live to the age of 75, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. For girls, it’s 80. Back in 1960, it was 67 for boys and 73 for girls, on average.
Unfortunately, many of today’s generation of seniors and “superseniors” are not experiencing health or joy during their extended years. Too many of them are in nursing homes unable to capitalize on their golden years. Their plight has skewed views of aging, giving many trepidation and fear about the reality of an extended life span. The Pew Research Center recently asked more than 2000 Americans how they feel about this situation. Only 4 percent responded that they would like to live from 101 to 120 years or 121 years or longer. Most seemed content to contemplate a life that is as long as or longer than the current average; sixty-nine percent say living to be from 79 to 100 years old would be just fine.
The quality of your later years will largely be dictated by the choices you make in the preceding ones, choices which will stave off or hasten the aging process. Your generation must live differently by nurturing “innate intelligence” through healthy choices rather than relying solely on drugs and surgery after you become sick or injured.
Since every bodily function and human experience you have is processed through your nerves, a healthy structure and spine is vital to living an active, healthy life. Your brain and spinal cord act like a computer chip that requires proper information and power supplies to work properly. Movement of the spine dictates how information is received in the brain through nerve endings called mechanoreceptors. The spine also houses critical nerves, arteries and veins that carry food and waste in and out of the brain and spinal cord.
A spine with too much, too little or improper movement directly affects the wiring and firing of nerves that come from your brain and travel down your spinal cord. By restoring motion to the spine via a chiropractic adjustment, changes begin to occur including a decrease in stress signals and stress hormones, inflammation and pain (if present). Most importantly, chiropractic care can result in healthy body-brain neurological communication, which is essential for overall health.
Quality nutrition is another key to longevity. Modern eating habits are polluting your body, making you more susceptible to many preventable illnesses and diseases. You are no longer getting the nutrients from food that are necessary to function at optimal level. The water you drink and food you eat can include toxins.
Here is the good news: even if you wait until you’re in your forties or fifties to start, you still have time to turn your health around for your future. Every choice you make from the present moment forward can have a positive impact on your lifespan and enjoyment of the time you have.
Peter Braglia, DC, is medical director of True Health Family Chiropractic at 7365 Main St, Stratford. He can be reached at 203-923-8633 or TrueHealthCT.com. See Community Resource Guide listing, page 69.