In today’s world, many age-related stereotypes are negative. Aging is not only associated with a decline in physical health and appearance but also in mental state, the ability to enjoy life and cope with its challenges.
There is no question that things change as we age, but it is entirely possible to thrive and even experience improvements in quality of life as we age. Physiological issues such as weight gain, immobility, and stiff joints don’t have to be our fate. From a mental perspective, it is even possible to improve our ability to enjoy life, lessen anxiety, and increase happiness.
The aesthetics of aging go hand-in-hand with physical and mental well-being. Graceful aging is possible and a lot of this comes down to moving your body. When you take care of your body and mind, simply put, you get so much more in return.
So, let’s dive into this topic a little further. How does a sedentary lifestyle impact how you present yourself to the world? What happens when you include regular movement in your daily routine? And what kind of movement should you be doing?
What Are the Consequences of a Sedentary Lifestyle?
With technology, humans, in general, have become more sedentary creatures. This isn’t big news, you have likely heard this message twice before breakfast! But trust me, it’s worth paying attention to.
The World Health Organization (WHO) indicates that a sedentary lifestyle leads to a higher risk of various diseases, such as cardiovascular disease, cancer, diabetes, and more. According to WHO most of these associated diseases arise due to reduced metabolic function and impaired blood sugar control. And what happens on the inside of the body tends to illuminate outward.
With a low metabolic rate, which means you burn fewer calories, your body is more likely to store energy as fat tissue. This can lead to weight gain, such as unwanted fat around the tummy and under the chin, which is common in women aged 35 and over.
The insufficient movement also affects the health of our fascia, the connective tissue network that connects everything in our body and has a lot to do with our aesthetics. Healthy fascia is what allows us to move, be flexible, balanced, and energetic. When fascia becomes unhealthy it becomes tight, forms adhesions, and impedes movement. This tightness can restrict normal circulation and fluid exchange in the soft tissue creating dullness and a tired look.
As movement gets harder, the body becomes more inflamed. Our joints ache more under the additional stress. This leads to a vicious cycle where we move less and less. As a result, mobility, flexibility, and energy decrease more, making it that much harder to break the cycle.
As metabolism gets slower and slower, your body struggles to break down and use sugar and fat for energy. The result? Most women experience hormonal imbalances. In the skin, these imbalances may show up as acne, or rosacea, causing dull uneven skin tone, dryness, pigmentation, or other symptoms.
With excess weight, more sebum oil is produced by the body leading to oiler skin and blemishes. On top of this, having excess weight on your body reduces your ability to form scar tissue, which may lead to increased cellulite.
Research suggests that sedentary behaviors are linked to a shortening of telomeres. Telomeres are located at the end of chromosomes and protect them from deteriorating. As we age, telomeres become progressively shorter. Spending more time without movement can lead to reduced telomere length, leading to premature aging.
Further research shows how sedentary behavior has other consequences, such as:
● Reduced blood flow, leading to poor nourishment of your organs, soft tissue, and skin;
● Increased sympathetic nervous system activation, which means increased stress and a reduced ability to cope;
● Cognitive impairments, leading to reductions in quality of life and motivation;
It’s undeniable that a sedentary lifestyle has serious negative consequences, impacting the quality of life and overall well-being. Not only that, but a sedentary lifestyle also impacts how you present yourself to the world, including aesthetic issues, premature signs of aging, weight gain, and more.
Can we count on Cosmetic Procedures?
On average, Americans spend over 16 billion dollars on cosmetic surgery every year, throwing money at the “aging problem” and only addressing superficial side effects. At the end of the day, cosmetic procedures do not go more than skin deep. In other words, it doesn’t necessarily address the root causes leading to unwanted aesthetics, such as lifestyle choices that cause circulatory issues, hormonal imbalances, unhealthy connective tissue, metabolic problems, etc.
While there may be temporary improvements in aesthetic appearance after these procedures, they usually lead to a low return on investment, with many individuals having to go back for further rounds or “touch-ups.” The alternative? An active and healthy lifestyle can provide real and long-lasting results!
In fact, the verdict is in: The data shows that maintaining a healthier lifestyle goes much farther than any cosmetic procedure ever will. In truth, cosmetic procedures aren’t necessary to look good after a certain age. You can age naturally and gracefully, without having to go under the knife.
Manual Rejuvenation: How To Age Gracefully
Manual rejuvenation method is centered around improvement of the facial soft tissue through various natural modalities including facial massage, gua sha, vacuum cupping, myofascial release, intra-oral techniques, and more. Although, these techniques are powerful and deliver real results, they can only go so far without optimizing our body’s innate resources for rejuvenation. That is why the program incorporates targeted exercises, stretches, and overall active lifestyle.
Paying attention to your mobility, exercise, and flexibility is important if you want to live life to the fullest. Weight gain, poor posture, loss of coordination, and unwanted aesthetic side effects aren’t inevitable. The truth is you have control over this process—even more than you might think!
Surprisingly, sedentary women actually appear biologically older than their peers by eight years. Research also points out that a lifetime of exercise slows down the aging process. So, take this as your sign that it’s time to start taking care of yourself by moving your body more. Yet, how can you do that?
How to Improve Your Mobility and Physical Activity Levels
Here’s the good news: You don’t have to go transform your identity and become an ultra-athletic woman by any means. It’s a lot easier than that.
It is about finding simple and easy ways to fit mobility exercises and increased movement into your day. Avoid overcomplicating things!
- Establish a short and simple daily exercise routine (even if it's only 15-20 mins) that includes mobility, strength, and stretching. Do it at the same time every day
- Take the stairs whenever you can
- Park your car further away from the store or office entrance
- Walk to do errands (if possible!)
- Go for a short walk on your coffee or lunch break
- Take breaks at work to stretch (Check out YouthRecipes recommended stretch routines)
- Plan active social engagements, such as hiking or walking
- Perform gentle strength training movements, such as body squats, while your food cooks or while an ad plays on your TV
- Stretch while reading, watching your favorite show, or talking to your spouse
- Join a community of like-minded holistic wellness-oriented women for inspiration
The options are endless, and they mostly depend on your specific lifestyle and situation. If you have kids, getting active with the whole family is a wonderful way to spend quality time together.
For instance, you and your family could plan a lunch outing to a nearby town and take a walk through the main downtown area, then grab a bite to eat. Or you could play sports together, such as soccer, volleyball, and more. These things all count as movement.
If you have more time, perhaps you can perform more of a routine, such as attending yoga, strength training classes, or manual rejuvenation recommended routines.
You’ll also want to keep in mind that a little bit of movement is better than no movement. Take the pressure off of yourself and simply do the best you can. Start small, and gradually, build.
Look Your Best at Any Age!
A sedentary lifestyle isn’t just bad for your health. It also ages you physically. Instead of spending money on risky and invasive cosmetic procedures, focus on what actually helps you maintain your youth, agility, and energy for many years to come.
Use this as your reminder to move a little more today. It doesn’t have to involve an entire lifestyle overhaul, just small changes over time. When you do this, your quality of life, energy levels, and confidence drastically improve! You’ll look better and feel better, as well as be able to participate and enjoy all that this life has to offer.
If you’re in need of more guidance, join YouthRecipes community on Instagram. Together, we can help you make healthy lifestyle changes so your beauty can glow from the inside out.