While it seems that our bodies are pretty solid structures – and they are – at a cellular level they are constantly renewing. You change each blood cell three times a year. You completely turn over the cells of your taste buds every ten days. Even your skeleton renews itself roughly once every ten years. Clearly, the body is amazingly resilient—so some healthy living goes a long way towards healthy aging.
Pfizer recently conducted a survey of Americans to ask how they felt about getting old. Of those who said getting older was better than they expected, most gave “I still have my good health” as the top reason. Those who said aging was worse than expected also gave health as a reason – in their case, health problems.
What can you start doing today – at any age – to reboot your body and feel better about getting older? Here’s a quick 30-20-10-5 plan.
30 minutes a day of regular physical activity
Our survey respondents 65 and older reported being more afraid of being dependent (35 percent) or living with pain or disabilities (29 percent) than dying (7 percent).
Fortunately, more and more research is showing that regular physical activity can maintain or improve health and vitality longer as we age. It doesn’t have to be high impact – it just needs to be consistent. Aim for 30 minutes of walking – or gardening, or tai chi, or some other activity you enjoy – every day.