There are certain physiological processes and changes that take place in both men and women as we age. It is understood that the effects of aging can make themselves known through various symptoms and changes in our physical and mental abilities. Here, we examine a few supplements that can bolster a healthy aging body, or at least tap the brakes for the aging process.
Aging & Your Health
The process of aging begins when the stage of adolescence has ended, and adulthood has begun. Once aging begins, certain types of physiological decline slowly creep in. These changes are classified as the process of senescence, or physiological aging. The decline of certain functions, and the ability to manage metabolic stress, make up this process.
Your lifestyle makes a significant impact on your own senescence. One predominant example of senescence is a decline in cardiovascular efficiency in the latter half of life. The heart and cardiovascular system can weaken over time, leading to increased risk of cardiovascular issues (e.g. high blood pressure, angina, arteriosclerosis). Eating healthy, drinking water, mitigating stress, and staying active all reduce these risks.
Other common physiological changes due to aging include cognitive decline, and an increased risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. Memory loss and even silent stroke risk can increase in some people. Other changes include decline in reproductive health, increased susceptibility to disease, decline in skin health as evidenced by wrinkles, and decreased muscular and bone strength. Fortunately, healthy lifestyle and diet habits have a huge hand in mitigating the effects of aging.
Supplements for Healthy Aging
Next to being conscientious of your diet and lifestyle, taking in the right nutrients, consistently and sufficiently, can help keep your body functioning properly as you age. Here are seven herbs and nutrients that can mitigate the effects of aging in one way or another.
Astaxanthin is an antioxidant that can benefit the skin. Astaxanthin can help reduce wrinkles, hydrate aging skin, and reduce skin inflammation. Astaxanthin is specifically helpful, in that it can reduce the effects of UV light on aging skin. Astaxanthin can benefit muscle recovery, eye health, and other bodily health areas as well.
Calcium is critical for strong, healthy bones. Calcium is a necessary contributor to healthy bones, no matter your age. For aging bones that might not absorb calcium as well as they used to, taking a calcium supplement can increase their strength and fend off osteoporosis. Your bones will best benefit from calcium combined with vitamin D.
CoQ10 is a substance that cells use for energy. CoQ10 can have serious benefits for some aging adults. CoQ10 levels decline with age, and this can increase risk of heart disease, brain disease, and other conditions. Studies have shown taking CoQ10 can improve heart function, brain function, sugar metabolism, fertility, and more.
Lutein is a carotenoid that occurs naturally in carrots. Lutein is instrumental in preventing macular degeneration, and mitigating it. Studies have shown that individuals with macular degeneration who took a lutein supplement daily experienced an increase in macular health and visual acuity.
Resveratrol is a unique substance. Found in red wine, resveratrol has a beneficial effect on certain enzymes that control the effects of aging. Studies have shown that resveratrol can help the body handle stress. It can help lower blood pressure, and benefit the heart and other organs.
Vitamin B12 is critical for sustaining healthy blood cells and nerves. Every aging person can benefit from taking B12. That suggestion applies especially to those on a vegetarian or vegan diet, since plant-based foods contain little-to-no B12.
Vitamin D supplementation is valuable to aging adults. One study convinced researchers that vitamin D supplementation is highly recommended for aging adults, due to the body’s decreased vitamin D metabolism. It is best to take it alongside calcium, since the body uses these two substances together.
Whether you are in your 20s, or in your 90s, you can benefit from taking the right supplements for your needs, to prevent the negative, even debilitating, effects of aging. Talk to your healthcare provider about how the above (and other) supplements could be of benefit to you as you age.