The goal, for most of us, is a long, healthy life. Genetics clearly play a significant role, but environmental factors are, perhaps, equally important in determining longevity and health. Although, for the moment, our genetic make-up is beyond our control, we can influence our lifespan with our diet and daily routine.
Imagine driving in city traffic. The lights are timed so that, if you’re lucky and there aren’t any accidents or crazy drivers cutting in front of you, you can drive several blocks before a red light stops you. But realistically, multiple factors often throw the system off balance and the traffic rarely flows smoothly…
Today’s Internet world can provide us with a truly amazing amount of information about virtually any topic. We simply click on a search engine like Google, and we don’t even have to know how to spell our topic of interest. The computer will politely offer us the right word(s). What it can’t do, however, is evaluate the data it presents.
I, for one, take little comfort in the recommendation to “age gracefully.” Is that really the only respectable action we can take when faced with the seemingly inevitable decline in mental and physical activity as we get older? Or is there evidence that we may be able to slow-down, possibly even reverse, some of those uninvited changes?
Summer is the season for baseball games, county fairs and tempting foods. Hot dogs, cotton candy, pork rinds, sausages, fried dough…it may be OK to yield to these energy-rich, nutrient-poor treats on occasion. But, in this issue of the Health Journal, we examine how they can wreak havoc on our bodies if consumed too often.
Our children and grandchildren continually remind us of our younger days, when we could perform physical and mental feats with seemingly no effort or fatigue. So, why the age-related loss of energy? And can we do anything to stop or attenuate its progression? Recent research suggests the answer to the second question is “yes.” But first questions first.