Secrets of Wellness & Longevity

Secrets of Wellness & Longevity

Some of my closest friends are over 85 years old …. going on 20! They are vibrant, happy and productive seniors who fascinate me with their stories and secrets to wellness, resilience and longevity. They didn’t have it easy. These friends came from difficult pasts, survived wars, immigration, poverty, and major injuries. So, how do they do it? What are their secrets to wellness hiding behind their smiles?

  1. Move Your Body!

Physical activity and building muscle mass is one of the biggest ways to preserve your health. Our bodies need four different kinds of exercise:

  1. Aerobic activities to increase your heart rate and breathing
  2. Strength training to build stronger muscles
  3. Balance exercise (great to prevent falling in older adults)
  4. Flexibility to stretch your muscles

Aging and sedentary lifestyle leads to increased body fat, and lowered amounts of muscles. For example, when we are 30 years old it is considered age-appropriate to have 22%  body fat and 78% body muscle. By the time we are over age 65, 34% body fat is considered healthy, and 66% body muscle. Improving our body composition to score into a younger age group is one of the best ways to “reverse the clock” of many age-related health conditions

We measure body composition using a Bio-Impedance Analysis machine as part of every patient’s annual physical exam to help define their goals, and reach them!

  1. Plant Based Diet

Food is medicine. It is no secret that a diet abundant in vegetables is the best prevention of many illnesses, especially cardiovascular disease and cancer. Aim for 5-10 servings of vegetables daily, organic if possible and in various colours. Rotate your choices to have at least four very different lunches and dinners to get enough variety of nutrition.

With age, our body produces significantly less digestive enzymes. Some seniors have poor dental health and may find it difficult to chew. Supplementing with digestive enzymes and probiotics can greatly improve the digestion and absorption of nutrients into the body. Use more herbs and spices, avoid drinking fluids just before meals, and try “food combining” to maximize digestion.

Our clinic uses Hair Mineral Analysis and Live Blood Microscopy to assess various aspects of your digestion and absorption.

  1. Don’t smoke


  1. Drink red wine

Many centenarians who live in “Blue Zones” of longevity are regular consumers of red wine. They drink a little, many days a week. Binging on weekends does not give the same benefits. Research studies support that small amounts of alcohol consumption benefit our mental health, heart, and rates of cancer, most likely due to the resveratrol and antioxidants.

  1. Have a Social Life

Health is not just for our body! Humans also need social interactions, hobbies, and faith to preserve our mental and emotional health. A great social life will reduce stress, and may help reduce blood pressure, anxiety and depression.

  1. Family

Stay connected! Healthy relationships, staying in touch with family, and multigenerational living arrangements are worth it. Seniors also benefit from learning basic computer skills to communicate with friends and relatives who live far away. What a great way to share your new chia pudding recipe J

In closing, it appears that we reap what we sow. Live your life in balance all along, including movement, good food, wine, family and friends to ensure optimum wellness in your golden years.

“The secret to living well and longer is: eat half, walk double, laugh triple and love without measure.”

(Tibetan Proverb)

Bronte Natural Health Clinic is Oakville’s most experienced and award winning clinic of naturopathic medicine. We offer a wide variety of health and wellness assessments to help you create a customized program for prevention and treatment of various health conditions. Contact us at 905-825-8787 or for more information.

Join us for DocWalk, our free community walking club. The schedule is posted weekly on Meetup and our Facebook page.

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