5 Ways to Lower Your Biological Age
Do you ever have those days where you feel much older than you actually are? Or perhaps your numerical age is climbing, but you still have the vigor of someone 10 years younger. What’s to blame for this discrepancy between your numerical age and how old your body actually looks and feels?
Regardless of how old you actually are, what really counts towards your whole-body health is your “biological” or internal age. This is because everyone ages at a different pace. While there are many elements affecting how quickly we age internally, one major factor is our internal mobility.
Age & Internal Mobility
Internal mobility refers to the flexibility and elasticity of our major internal structures, including the spine, diaphragm, organs, and aorta. As we age, our internal mobility decreases and our aorta stiffens. Poor internal mobility and aortic stiffness have been linked to high blood pressure, cognitive decline, diabetes, heart disease, and even all biological causes of death.
The good news is that by improving your internal mobility, you can actually reverse aortic stiffness and begin to lower your biological age.
Here are five simple tips to start lowering your internal age and increasing your longevity.
Move your body every day
You don't need to join a gym or hire a personal trainer to reap the benefits of regular exercise. Just get moving, especially in ways that increase your heart rate and breathing. Studies have shown that regular aerobic exercise, even over a short period of time, can effectively lower aortic stiffness while improving type 2 diabetes, reducing high blood pressure, reducing cholesterol levels, and lowering your internal age.¹
Getting enough exercise is as simple as finding an activity you love and doing it as often as possible. Whether that’s a brisk walk, running around the yard with the grandkids, tennis, swimming or yoga – the options are endless. Try to get your heart pumping every day and your lungs taking in full, deep breaths.
Eat foods high in protein
There are a number of benefits to eating a high protein diet, especially when it comes to heart health. Research shows that eating foods high in amino acids may be as beneficial for your heart as giving up smoking or increasing your physical activity. In particular, one study found that people who ate a diet high in particular amino acids from meat and plant-based protein had notably lower blood pressure and less arterial stiffness.²
Rather than filling up on one type of protein, though, we recommend incorporating a variety of protein sources into your diet. That’s because the study found that lower blood pressure was linked to those who consumed more amino acids from plant-based sources, while reduced arterial stiffness was found in people who consumed more amino acids from animal sources.
Next time you head to the grocery store, consider grabbing a few different kinds of protein-rich foods to diversify your weekly meal plan.
Make sure you’re getting enough Vitamin D
You probably already know about the importance of Vitamin D and its health benefits. But hear us out – did you know that having low levels of the “sunshine vitamin” has been linked to aortic stiffness and vascular dysfunction?³ That’s right! Vitamin D is essential to heart health, too.
If you’re concerned you’re not getting enough Vitamin D, here are a few ways to increase your intake:
- Consume more fatty fish and seafood
- Add egg yolks to your diet
- Eat more mushrooms (the only vegetarian source of Vitamin D)
- Take a Vitamin D3 supplement
- Get more sunlight or try a UV lamp
Getting enough Vitamin D from diet alone can be tricky. We recommend speaking with your doctor about getting your Vitamin D levels tested and listen to their advice about the best way to increase your levels.
Reduce your coffee consumption
If you’re keen on improving the health of your heart, it might be worth considering cutting down on that daily cup (or three) of coffee. Studies have shown that chronic coffee consumption has a detrimental effect on aortic stiffness, increasing the risk of cardiovascular disease.⁴
What appears to be the real culprit behind coffee’s negative effects is the high amounts of caffeine. If you look forward to your daily cup of coffee, consider switching to decaf, or try swapping coffee for something lower in caffeine (and higher in other health benefits) like green tea.
Find healthy ways to manage your stress
No one enjoys feeling stressed, but it’s important to realize that stress is more than just an unpleasant state. Studies have shown that acute stress can actually contribute to increased aortic stiffness.⁵
That’s why finding healthy, effective ways to cope with stress is so important to your health. While we can’t remove every difficult situation from our lives, knowing how to work with and manage our stress can keep it from wreaking havoc on our bodies. Practicing proper breathing techniques, meditation, exercise, seeking counseling, and cultivating a positive outlook are all ways to keep your stress at a reasonable level and your insides feeling as youthful as possible.
How do I find out my internal age?
Ready to learn how old you are on the inside? The convenient, non-invasive iheart Device and Internal Age app accurately measures your aortic stiffness to determine your internal mobility and tell you your internal age. We recommend taking your readings regularly as you incorporate these age-lowering tips into your life to see the positive difference over time.
If you’re ready to become your most youthful, energized, and resilient self, remember that lowering your internal age is the key! If you don’t know your internal age yet, you can still follow the advice in this post to promote your heart health and overall wellbeing.
Get the free eBook How to Lower Your Internal Age
Want even more tips on how to lower your biological age and add years to your life? In the free eBook How to Lower Your Internal Age, we’ll teach you all about what your internal age means for your health and go over the steps you can take to start lowering it in as little as three weeks.