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How Stress Factors into Aging

How Stress Factors into Aging

Stress causes the body to go into a state of inflammation because of increased cortisol.  Cortisol is the hormone your body produces in response to stress.  In short bursts, it can be beneficial - but over time, this hormone causes the body to go into an inflammatory state. 


This increases the rate of aging and can cause memory problems.  When you reduce your stress levels, cortisol levels go down and your body begins producing a hormone called human growth hormone.  This allows the reversal of many age-related problems.


You can reduce stress by eliminating stressors from your life, improving your time management, exercising, and by learning techniques such as meditation and yoga.


Stop Smoking 


Smoking causes many age-related health problems.  When you quit smoking, your body begins to repair itself.  Smoking deprives your brain of oxygen and can cause problems with your cardiovascular system that further limit nutrition to the brain.




Sleep is also a critical habit that will reverse the aging process.  This is because when you don’t get enough sleep, your body produces more cortisol leading to inflammation.


Most people need at least 7-10 hours of sleep each night to feel well rested and reduce the production of cortisol.  You’ll be amazed by how much this simple change can improve your memory and concentration.


Keep Up Your Social Life 


As you get older, there can be a tendency to lose touch with friends and family members and become socially isolated.  This can lead to depression and can lead to problems with focus and memory.


Participating in regular social activities can help you reverse this problem.  For example, going to a regular game night or joining a book club can help you stay connected to others socially and keep your mind sharp.


Exercise for Your Brain 


As you get older, you can also help sharpen your mind by exercising it.  Completing crossword puzzles and logic puzzles such as Sudoku can help you reverse memory and concentration problems.


Scientists now say that video games stimulate your brain and contribute to memory retention. Researchers at UC San Francisco conducted a study with older citizens and discovered that the more they played video games, the better they got at multi-tasking and performance.


And experts are working on a medical fix, too. Dr. Eric Kandel of Columbia University in New York is conducting a study to help re-energize our brains so that they can more easily retrieve memories.


They discovered that a gene known as RbAp48 is silenced more as we grow older. But when that gene was increased in mice, the mice regained their memories – so they’re working on a reversal of this aging issue for humans, too.

Reading and even working at a challenging job can help you reverse any problems you’ve begun to experience.  You can also find online sites that specifically provide exercises to improve your memory and focus.  Your brain needs regular stimulation to stay healthy.


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