Lifestyle can determine whether you show your age

Simple changes can make you feel and look younger

In the never ending search for the fountain of youth, many people try different anti-aging creams, botox and other procedures to reduce wrinkles or even plastic surgery.   However, one doctor said making simple life style changes can someone look and feel younger.

Sherie Mason, 60, wants to stay young forever.

"The most recent thing that happened was I got my first age spot," said Mason.

Mason, like many others, is always looking for the best way to look and feel young.

"I cleanse, but then I use an anti-aging serum all over my face," said Mason.

Americans spend about $8 billion a year on cosmetics and plastic surgery has gone up 59 per cent since 2000.

According to the American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, non-surgical facial procedures rose dramatically in 2010.

The most common non-surgical procedures for women under 35 were Botox injections, hyaluronic acid injections, microdermabrasion, and chemical peels. Rhinoplasty was the most common surgical procedure performed on women between the ages of 22 and 34, followed by facelifts, blepharoplasty, and ablative skin resurfacing.

But Dr. Jennifer Landa, the chief medical officer of anti-aging regenerative medicine at BodyLogicMD, said before deciding on plastic surgery, people should realize staying young has a lot to do with lifestyle.

"Staying away from toxins is a big thing that people can do to avoid looking and feeling old," said Landa.

The toxin BPA in plastic water bottles mimics hormones, especially estrogen.   That can give women an imbalance and increase risk of heart disease, causing organs to age.

"Aging of all our organs, every single internal organ, including of course the skin, which is one of our biggest organs," said Landa.

BPA can also be in canned foods, so local for labels that say BPA free.

Inflammation can be another aging trigger.   Sugar can be the cause of inflammation and it exists in many foods people eat including bread, potatoes and pasta.

"Inflammation in the skin and sugar causes cross linking of collagen and that causes wrinkles," said Landa.

A lack of viamins can speed up aging.  A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition shows healthy levels of vitamin D may help slow the aging process and protect against age-related diseases.

"One thing you can do is 15 minute sun exposure per day with no sunscreen," said Landa.

Avoid sleep from becoming an aging trigger by getting seven hours a sleep a night.

"We all need sleep 7-8 hours to get the best effect of our anti-aging regimen," said Landa.

Not getting enough sleep can lower immune defenses, inhibiting cell turnover and cause  skin to look dull and droopy.

Keep stress from increasing the signs of aging by making a point to spend time with friends.

"We need to have fun, and depression is really something that ages people," said Landa.

A study found that satisfying friendships can protect against obesity, depression and heart disease.

"Stress increases the hormone cortisol and anything that we can do to decrease the hormone cortisol will decrease slow down the aging process," said Landa.

Here are some other ways to slow the aging process.

1. Exercise
2. Don't smoke
3. Moisturize
4. Eat healthy
Consider the following foods that can combat aging: Strawberries, blackberries, corn, egg yolk, artichoke hearts, broccoli, flaxseed (omega-3 fatty acids), water, and dark green leafy vegetables

There are some surprising factors that can help determine how long someone lives. A Harvard study found men who live in an area where they're outnumbered by women, tend to live three months longer than men whose choices of mates are more limited.   

The economy at the time of birth can be a factor; in fact, research from the University of Mannheim shows people born when the economy's strong live 10 months longer than people born during slumps.

Another factor is when a child starts first grade.  Apparently, entering first grade at the age of six can increase a child's life span by two years.
Scientists at the University of California Riverside saiud starting early can cause adjustment issues which can lead to education problems, and that can affect longevity.

To live four years longer all someone has to do is be rich and famous.  Scientists found successful people who make good money and are well know can live longer than their least successful counterparts.