Ageing is an inevitable phenomenon, however this trajectory can be influenced by a number of internal and external factors. One of the most visible signs of ageing is reflected in our skin, and people go to great lengths to delay this process, holding on to the vestiges of youth, trying everything from botulinum toxin (botox) to surgery. Taking a holistic approach, embracing the positives of ageing and focusing on overall wellbeing we can influence the process more than we may think, especially if we are able to support our systems from within.
It is also encouraging to know that as well as slowing the ageing process through some of the factors below, it it possible to visibly improve the appearance of skin, hair and nails, even when over the age of 50, by enhancing the integrity of our connective tissue through the supplementation of marine collagen. These results have been demonstrated in a number of clinical trials, and I can say from my own personal experience, having included ProPlenish marine collagen in my daily diet for approximately six months, that I am delighted with the positive changes I have noticed, particularly with relation to skin hydration and elasticity.
It is now widely accepted that our dietary choices have enormous implications on our overall health. In very simple terms, highly processed, sugary, preservative laden foods ravage our health, increasing inflammation and destroying our gut flora, impacting all other systems. Our systems have to work hard to compensate and this becomes harder as we age. In contrast, fresh organic foods reduce the toxic load and provide anti-oxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds to help support our heath and slow the signs and symptoms of ageing.
We have an increased requirement for nutrients as we age, and whilst this needs to be assessed individually in the context of overall health, a key factor in the ageing process (in terms of skin) is the natural decline in the important structural protein, collagen, found primarily in skin, bones and connective tissue. This gradual reduction begins as early as age 21. However this decline can be reduced, and to some extent even reversed, by taking a daily dietary supplement of ProPlenish premium grade marine collagen, which is easily added to juice or smoothies and readily absorbed. Scientific studies have demonstrated increased elasticity and improved moisture retention by stimulating the body’s own production of collagen when taking this supplement.
Rest and sleep
Our bodies and minds detoxify during sleep, allowing for cell renewal and restoration. We all know the consequences of even night’s poor sleep, which become cumulative should the insomnia continue. The signs are visibly apparent, hence the term ‘beauty sleep’. Good sleep hygiene is essential to facilitate this … adopting measures such as attempting to go to bed at a similar time each night and wake at a similar time in the morning helps induce and maintain good circadian rhythm. Try to avoid using technology just before bed, including tv, computers, phones and social media. Ensure room is as dark as possible, as even low level light impacts the restorative nature of sleep.
Stress is part of life, however, chronic stress wreaks havoc on the mind and body, and left unchecked may accelerate the ageing process. Paying attention to the ways in which stress impacts us, and, importantly, the way we tolerate or manage stress, helps to regulate our nervous systems. Learning to regulate our nervous systems by slowing down, helps to reduce the adrenal hormonal cascade that ensues and ultimately creates a physiological stress. Slowing down includes finding self care strategies that resonate for you… it may be exercise, meditation, yoga, walks in nature or moments of mindfulness throughout the day and being present to that activity.
Other Lifestyle Factors
Lifestyle factors in addition to those already mentioned encompass many aspects of our lives and greatly contribute to our wellbeing and influence the speed of the ageing process. Some of these factors include the health of our relationships, work/life balance, exercise, hydration, smoking, alcohol consumption, sun exposure, relaxation and self care. Even choosing the right personal care products can significantly reduce toxic load on the body and thus increase wellbeing.
Written by Jennifer Murrant, co-founder of Healthy Luxe, a mother-daughter team that evolved from a mutual passion for health and wellbeing. Jennifer has been studying and/or practicing as a nutritionist/naturopath for over 20 years with University qualifications in Health Science (Complementary Medicine), and Post graduate qualifications Psychotherapy, Counselling and Coaching Psychology. With her daughter, Hannah, a University of Sydney media and communications graduate, the pair have created a blog, Instagram and recipe app catering to a number of dietary requirements, to help spread the wellness message.