Have you ever wondered what the fountain of youth is really all about? We get new clients coming to us weekly that want to be fit enough to live for a long time! Or as one client said so well: “Aging isn’t for sissies!” Whether you are trying to avoid illness or disease or want to turn a corner towards feeling better in your body there are three key ingredients for aging well.
- Challenging Your Brain – Activation
The greatest threat to aging is disuse. The brain’s sole priority is to keep you alive. Your brain needs activation for survival, so if neurons aren’t being activated enough they die to conserve energy. What this means is if you don’t use it, you lose it and you don’t want to leave most neurons under-activated for a long time!
There are many things you can do to stimulate activation. Learning something new, trying new experiences, moving, purposefully activating your sensory system, playing more, learning, practicing vision and balance drills, breathing, coordination, mobility, etc.
- Appropriate Fuel Supply
In order to perform at your best and to start feeling better fuel supply is often overlooked. It’s not sexy. It’s not fun for most people, so it gets put on the back burner. But from the brain’s perspective if you stop breathing you die! So it’s kind of a big deal to breathe correctly, especially considering you breathe 22,000 times per day! Breathing is about exchange. We want to have a balance of O2 and CO2, but what happens when you have poor breathing mechanics and habits and you breathe 22,000 reps per day? If things aren’t performing properly you are left with pain, weight gain, digestive issues, sleep issues, poor mobility, brain fog, poor endurance, etc. Respiratory movement patterns and habitual breathing behaviors are critical to improve for living in optimal health!
The other significant factor for the brain to operate optimally is getting the proper nutrients, particularly glucose, to be properly fueled. Fuel from nutrients is about energy. Your metabolic system matters. If you’ve been struggling with making any kind of change, whether its weight loss, reducing pain, or gaining muscle start here. If you are ruined metabolically or not able to support your brain metabolically, you breathe poorly, you eat poorly, there’s no way you can make up for it in your change efforts. You may not have the metabolism to support the change you are trying to accomplish.
- Moving Well, Then Moving Often
If you’re not moving well or are experiencing pain the above two are critical to improving your quality of life. Bad movement promotes pain, dysfunction, and progressive decreases in movement that lead to progressive decreases in brain function and quality. Movement can mean a lot of things! You could simply go for a walk, you could do yoga, you could strength train, you could swim, etc. You just want to make sure you’re doing things in proper form and working to correct any issues that aren’t aligned with proper posture. This will help you reduce your risk of injury and allow you do accomplish more in the long run. If you want better brain function first move well, then move more often. The goal is to own good, quality movement first. Anything else is simply loading up a dysfunction and reversing your ability to progress safely.
Backed by research, the smarter you are, the better you eat and breathe, the better you move, and the more you challenge your brain to adapt to new things the more injury resistant you become, the more healthy you become, and the more you enjoy life! If you want to live a long, healthy life you much improve brain function. It all starts and ends with the brain and the nervous system! Do you want more helpful tips about how to get started improving brain function for a long, healthy life? I will be doing a talk on April 29th, explaining the art and science of aging well from a brain’s perspective. Come in and sign up at the front desk to reserve your spot!