We are constantly bombarded with anti-aging messages in the media. Television commercials and magazine ads tout the latest anti-aging creams, wrinkle remedies, and the latest fad diets to lose weight fast and look younger. But, the truth is, aging is a part of life. How we choose to age is really the focus and getting older should be embraced, not frowned upon. It comes down to improving overall health and having a mindset that focuses on wellness. When it comes to the fountain of youth, what we put in our bodies is more important than what we put on them.
At Shakthi, we focus on aging gracefully. We work with our patients on ways to incorporate a healthy diet and lifestyle into everyday life to promote overall wellness no matter the stage of life. The fundamental principle to aging gracefully is to nourish the body from the inside, out. This starts with healthy eating, a move toward a more plant-based diet, adding movement and exercise into everyday life, and supporting mind-body practice.
What I Eat in a Typical Day To Maintain Wellness and Age Gracefully
Working with patients on modifying and improving their diets to optimize gut health, lower inflammation, achieve hormone balance, and promote a nutrient-rich diet, I’m often asked what I eat every day to stay healthy. Here’s what a typical day of eating healthy looks like for me:
I usually begin the day with a serving of steel cut oatmeal with almond milk and blueberries, and a smoothie. I make my own smoothies to ensure I’m getting about five to seven servings of fruits and vegetables. This usually includes kale, spinach or a green, combined with two or three different fruits such as berries, apples, peaches, (or whatever is in the fridge). I add a pinch of cinnamon for sugar control, almond milk and protein powder.
I create my own trail mix with all types of seeds and nuts including walnuts, almonds, hemp seeds, pumpkin seeds, etc. I usually eat a serving of this trail mix around 10:00 am to keep me satisfied until lunch.
Lunch is always a plant-based meal. My favorite lunch is homemade soup, such as butternut squash soup, which provides me with another serving of healthy vegetables. I make my own soups to avoid preservatives by adding water and my favorite seasonal veggies in a Vitamin for a quick and nourishing lunch. I’ll add a salad to this and enjoy a healthy, filling meal.
3:00 PM snack:
Many people, including me, need a snack to get through that mid-day slump. This is the perfect time to load up on more of my homemade trail mix. Nuts and seeds provide a healthy dose of protein, which fuels the body and fills you up.
Hydration is also very important, which is why I drink green tea and turmeric water all day.
Dinner may include whole wheat tortillas, lentils, chickpeas, beans and more fresh vegetables. Variety is important and I eat a diverse selection of legumes and seasonal veggies prepared with delicious spices (many that have anti-inflammatory properties) for a satisfying dinner.
My goal is to have at least eight to 10 servings of fresh fruits or vegetables throughout the day, prepared in a variety of ways. I tend to stay away from dense foods like bread or pasta, which weigh me down and make me feel tired and bloated.
I eat frequently. I eat when I’m hungry. And, I stop eating when I’m full. The key is to eat foods that fuel the body and provide it with all of the nutrients needed to maintain balance and good health.
Yoga: One of the Best Anti-Aging Tools
In addition to a nutrient-rich diet, I make sure to incorporate exercise into my routine. Yoga is one of my favorite ways to include mind-body movement into my day. In fact, yoga and meditation have been clinically proven in a number of studies to help build and balance the systems of the body naturally, which is vital to aging gracefully. In addition to helping heal an unhealthy gut, yoga also promotes better sleep and hormone balance, and increases muscle mass, which is vital as we age. Yoga also promotes a healthy mind-body balance that isn’t available in any pill or anti-aging cream.
Create a Personal Plan for Aging Gracefully
I stress to my patients that every person is different; what works for one individual may not work for another. To achieve the greatest overall health from your diet and lifestyle, working with an integrated medicine and nutritional specialist to assess your individual health needs is essential. Together, we can help you customize a lifestyle regimen that is personalized and effective through every phase of your life.