Tag Archive | The Brain

Mortal Combat: Beating The Signs Of Aging

It’s something that we can’t deny, the looming of Old Mother Time will get us all eventually, and while we hit a peak with both our physical and emotional health, both start a gradual decline that we can get quite concerned about. But what are the key changes in the body as we age, and what can we do to prevent them?

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Bones

As we age we lose our bone density, also known as osteoporosis. Part of the reason our bones become less dense is because of the lack of calcium, as the body will absorb less calcium (and vitamin D) from foods. Certain bones tend to weaken more than others such as the bones in the spine, which can be very painful, and while you can pay a visit to the chiropractors to work on realigning your spine, you can work at increasing your bone density by doing a few things. Exercise, especially resistance based ones, has been shown to increase bone density. You should also increase your intake of calcium and vitamin D, and up your intake of good fats, as these will help to absorb the calcium and vitamin D into your bones. In addition to this, you need to cut back on foods that will take calcium from your bones, such as carbonated drinks, caffeine, and the main culprit, refined sugar.

Muscles (And Body Fat)

The decrease in muscle mass starts around the age of 30 and is caused by the decrease in levels of growth hormone, or testosterone in men. Most people will only lose about 10 to 15% of their strength due to age, but there are issues like sarcopenia which comes from extreme inactivity. You can continue to strengthen your muscles as you age by taking part in resistance training, or anything that requires you to fight against gravity, from sit-ups to push-ups and pull-ups. Body weight exercises are a great place to start. Exercising is also great to reduce body fat as you age. By the age of 75, your amount of body fat tends to double in comparison to your early 20s and 30s, which will increase the risk of illnesses like diabetes.

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The Brain

Generally, the number of nerve cells will decrease in the brain as you age, but although your brain is able to compensate by making new connections between the nerve cells, your brain will tend to have more cells than it needs to do standard activities, also known as redundancy. Of course, the concern for many of us as we age is the onset of age-related cognitive decline, such as dementia or Alzheimer’s. The trick to preventing this as best as possible is, again, exercise, but for your brain. That feeling of frustration when you’re learning something new is the thing you should be aiming for. This is the point where your brain is making new connections and neurons. So by doing things that are completely brand new, from learning an instrument to a language, this is what will keep your mind sharp and fresh.

These are the three areas that you need to focus on to age well. And, remember, it is never too late to start, no matter how old you are.

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This is my Hood! Stream of Consciousness Saturday.

Hot copious cups of cheap Nescafe wakes up my foggy brain cells. Sometimes, I wonder how on Earth this super machine of the brain functions, with a million thoughts and ideas buzzing in and out at the same time and not combusting. socsbadge2016-17

I have never been able to stay on one singular thought for as long as I can remember and I believe that this frenetic energy of buzzing thoughts increased with adulting, motherhood, wifedom, and my writing life.

Hovering over my shoulder while on the kitchen’s hot plate flipping pancakes, my muse whispers the beginning of a plot that keeps running away from the lines once I sit down to write, my trio are all talking at the same time to me, of course my superpowers enable me to hear each person, resolve their questions, whip up impeccable omelet for dear Himself and commune with my buzzing muse all at the same time.

How on Earth have I managed not to run off with the raggle-taggle band of gypsies to Never, Never Land, where we never grow old, never have to deal with an escape artist of a muse, a demanding brood of hungry children whose bellies seem to gobble the pancakes so fast, yet their pleading eyes’ keep asking for more?

For want of an explanation, I believe it’s because this is my hood, and I’m in charge. Join me for a hot cuppa of cheap coffee 🙂

© Jacqueline Oby-Ikocha

Linda’s prompt for today’s’ SoCS is a to find a word with the two letter ‘ho,’ and I can’t help but slip in a Ho,Ho,Ho, it will soon be Christmas time 😉


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