We’re all getting older and normal aging is grim.  It means losing ten percent of your muscle mass every decade after age forty.  It’s the same with bone mass.  At age 60 it’s hard to get out of your favorite deep chair or the tub.  Your joints hurt.  So does your back, your hips and your knees.  That’s normal aging.
Normal aging and all that we dread about getting older is actually decay.  Of course, aging is inevitable.  We’re stuck with getting older, but decaying is optional. As you reach age 40, in the absence of signals to grow, all your body systems, including your brain, decays, and you “age.”
Here are the keys to overriding the decay signals:
1.  Daily exercise.  Walking is the best.  It’s aerobic.  It can reduce your risk of heart disease and many cancers by 50 percent, and Alzheimer’s by 40 percent.  Nothing in medicine can touch that.  The rule: Try for 45 minutes a day, 4 days a week, forever.
2.  Healthy eating:  For once and for all, give up junk food.  Try to eat only real food:  whole grains, unprocessed meats, real fruits & vegetables.
3.  Emotional commitment:  Pursue something you care deeply about.  This will be something greater than yourself.  For many of us it’s our family, our God, helping others, making our world a better place.
4.  Feeling a real engagement with living:  Learn new stuff, be active in mind and body, try new things, have fun, be happy.
It’s really up to you.  Aging is inevitable.  Decaying is optional.  You’re in control here.  And that’s nice.  Very, very nice.

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