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Worried about looking your best as you age? Start taking care of yourself now and you’ll have a head start on aging gracefully. Here are some simple steps to get started.
Don’t Skip the Sunscreen
Growing up, most people hear that they need to wear sunscreen to prevent getting wrinkles at a young age. This is true—exposure to UV radiation causes the collagen to break down, leading to wrinkles. Exposure to the sun without proper protection can cause skin cancer, premature aging, and sunburns. To ensure you are protected, apply sunscreen liberally to any areas that will be exposed to the sun. It’s also important to wait until the sunscreen absorbs into the skin (approximately 30 minutes) before going outside.
Drink More Water
Drinking water benefits your entire body, especially your skin. Because skin is an organ, it’s made up of many cells, and those cells are made up of water. Without proper hydration, skin can become flaky, tight, dry, and be more prone to wrinkles. Drinking the recommended eight glasses of water a day can be a challenge if you’ve never been a big water drinker. Some good ideas to get more water into your body include eating water-based foods, buying a cool water bottle, and infusing your water with berries, mint, or vanilla beans.
Start Moisturizing Now
Both men and women should be using a quality moisturizer on their skin every day. Moisturizing is the key to healthy and youthful skin because it hydrates, softens, and causes skin to be more elastic. The moisturizer you purchase should have at least one humectant, which provides long-lasting hydration. Some common humectants to look out for include hyaluronic acid, propylene glycol, and glycerin.
Regular exercise makes it possible for you to look and feel younger. Exercising promotes the body’s production of the HGH hormone, which people often call the “fitness hormone.” This hormone promotes muscle growth and it also burns extra fat. Exercise has all kinds of other health benefits too:
- Reduces stress
- Improves your self-confidence
- Boosts “happy hormones”
- Relieves anxiety
- Boosts brain function
If you’re not used to exercising, it’s important to start slow to avoid overdoing it. Aim to be active at least 30 minutes every day. Ideas to get you moving include taking a walk with friends, dancing, doing housework, walking the dog, walking around when you’re on the phone, and working in the garden.
Aging isn’t something you can necessarily stop, but you can do things to slow down the process to look and feel young and healthy for longer. Aging gracefully is all about taking care of yourself, especially your skin and your body. Drinking plenty of water, exercising, getting the recommended seven to eight hours of sleep at night, reducing stress, and keeping your skin moist are all things you can do now to ensure you age as gracefully as possible.