In the light of more news coming out about the Cholesterol and Statin conundrum, let me tell you a story.
Seven years ago, I found out that I have what the NHS considers to be high Cholesterol. 11.5 I was put on statins, and very quickly began to have such bad side effects that I had to leave them off.
Then, the GP sent me to the Lipid Clinic. I felt humiliated and angry to start with when a young student interviewed me to find out my background. She said that I was over the safe limit on the BMI table, (27) and that I had better do something about it. She was supposed to be asking me about my lifestyle, but never asked whether I had been “Doing Something About It!”
I had been doing something about it all of my life, and was feeling great that I was still only 27 on the BMI table! So you can imagine my anger. But that is another story.
However, the Lipid Consultant gave me some other drugs than statins, which I took. When I went back four weeks later, my Cholesterol had gone down. So she then gave me an added drug. To this day I cannot understand why she did that if the other one was working anyway. In my ignorance, I began to take them.
By now I was beginning to do a lot of research of my own. And discovered that this drug had NOT BEEN ENTIRELY PROVED TO BE SAFE!
The rest of the story, in brief, was that I wrote to the consultant, discussed it with my GP, (who was very open-minded) and left all the drugs off.
I had read two books which I highly recommend to you, and which the consultant said that she would be putting in an official complaint about the authors because they were damaging peoples health! She was bringing my case up at the conference she was attending on Heart research, and she was writing to my GP with a disclaimer notice.
My GP laughed when I went to her next, and put my head around the door before my body, and asked if it was safe to come in, seeing as she had had this letter from said Consultant. But she said that she had already written back to the consultant saying that her patient (me) had obviously done a lot of research and that she was entitled to make up her own mind.
Since then, my readings have gone down to 7.5 which is about right for someone my age. Without any drugs, but eating a balanced diet and NOT LOW FAT.
So, before you carry on believing all that is said about having to keep your Cholesterol Levels down, far too low for many of us, read these books. I don’t claim to be an expert, but I know enough to realise that I am a lot better off letting my body do as it thinks best.
The books that I read were The Great Cholesterol Con, by Dr Malcom Kendrick, whom I have now met and he gave me a signed copy in honour of the way that I stood up to these medical bullies. His book is informative, easy reading and funny in a tongue in cheek fashion.
Do you eat plenty of vegetables, especially the green ones?
Do you know how many people are blind in the UK?
Do you have parents or grandparents who have AMD?
Do you know what your risk is of getting AMD or any other visual impairment?
AMD (Age-related Macular Degeneration.) is becoming more common in the 21st Century because people are living longer.
Macular Degeneration as it is commonly known is the breaking down of the macula which is the part of the retina at the back of the eye that provides sharp central vision.
People with this condition can suffer increasingly blurred vision which leads to problems with reading printed or written text, colour, (particularly contrast) and difficulty recognising people’s faces. If you only have AMD and nothing else wrong with your eyes, you will not go completely blind. But you will lose your central vision.
There are other conditions with the eyes such as cataracts, glaucoma and Diabetic retinopathy. I recently heard a story about a chap who went for an eye test, and this was how he found out that he had Type 2 Diabetes. For an optometrist, our eyes are like reading a book. But as a friend of mine pointed out to me just today, you do need to be assertive and make sure that you ask the right questions, and what you can do about any conditions that they come across.
Also only today I heard of someone who had been scared by what the optometrist had said. That there is no cure for AMD and he was in the very early stages of the condition.
It did frighten me when the optometrist told me that I was in the early stages, but I put that fear into action by finding out what was available to help me. So don’t be put off by what they tell you, especially when they say there is no cure and there is nothing that can be done. They may be right that there is no cure, at least at the moment, but there is plenty that can be done to make life easier. I am afraid that many consultants and eye specialists have a habit of doing that, but they fail to point out that there is support available.
If you do find out that you have the early stages of AMD, you can take sensible precautions to take care of your eyes and help to slow up the process.
By wearing glasses or goggles and a hat to keep the sunlight out of your eyes. By learning what aids are available so that you stand a good chance of managing the condition.
So, the earlier you find out, the better. You may not notice anything wrong in your day to day life, except perhaps you may find that reading is blurred even with your reading glasses on. I found out from a regular eye check.
And don’t think that it is an old person condition, some people develop AMD in their twenties or thirties. I know someone who had junior onset AMD at the age of eight.
As a matter of interest here are some interesting facts for the UK. (You can google statistics or facts for your part of the world if you are not in the UK)
In the UK around 600,000 people currently have vision impairment caused by AMD, and around 70,000 new cases are diagnosed every year. (nearly 200 per day)
Over two million people in the UK live with sight loss.
Total sight loss in one eye is not counted against the legality of driving.
People with sight loss in one eye are not considered partially sighted.
Total sight loss is rare, only about 4% of people with vision impairment are totally blind.
Sight loss, in general, affects people of all ages but especially older people. 1 in 5 aged 75 and 1 in 2 aged 90. (This is in degrees of sight loss, from mild to being registered blind or partially sighted.
In the UK there are only 5000 guide dogs.
Every day more than 75 new people are formally registered blind or partially sighted.
75% of blind and partially sighted people of working age are registered unemployed.
There are plenty more statistics that you can find, and some of them are quite revealing. Many people, including myself for many years before I had this condition, get confused when observing people with vision loss. They cannot understand why the person can see some things and not others.
I cannot go into the details here, but I have written some of what I experience as an example here;
As far as the legality of driving is concerned, it is a minefield. The law may say that you are safe to drive with a vision impairment, in fact, some people with an impairment may be able to see the required reading of the number plate. But the insurance company’s may have something else to say about it.
For example, I was told twelve years ago that I could drive under the law. I have other things wrong with my eyes as well, and one of them is double vision when my eyes are tired. I was issued by the Eye Infirmary with a pair of glasses with one lens blacked out (don’t ask about the technicalities please!) and told that I could drive while wearing them. If I were in an accident, I would be covered by the insurance as long as I was wearing them. If I were not wearing them, then I would be liable.
No-one seemed to take into account that wearing them was a hazard for me because I could not see properly with them on. So I had to make a choice not to drive at all. Driving for me, just as it is for millions of people, was freedom and giving it up was painful. But not as much as if I had taken the risk and failed to drive safely.
The main purpose of this article is to point out how important it is to look after your eyes. The main cause of AMD is not known. But the contributing factors are genetic, diet and smoking.
It is a myth that we can get AMD from bad light or too much exposure to computers, etc. But UV light is a factor and another reason for protecting your eyes in the sunlight. The jury is still out on whether computer and smartphones can cause AMD, but there is evidence surfacing that you can suffer what is known as Digital Eye Strain. Eye strain, however, is not a contributing factor to AMD.
Looking at my earlier reference to contributing factors, let’s look at the genetic factor more closely. The genetic factor is only an increased risk. It is not a guarantee that you will get it. But, if you have someone in your family, particularly your parents, with MD, then you need to be extra vigilant with eye care. Get plenty of green leafy vegetables which contain lutein and zeaxanthin, which are two antioxidants stored in the macula.
As for the other two, diet and smoking; just give up smoking, and eat clean as well as including the green vegetables.
And last but certainly not least. GET YOUR EYES CHECKED REGULARLY. At least every two years. Don’t take your eyesight for granted.
One of the most difficult things for me as well as the other 600,000 people in the UK to come to terms with, is that except a miracle, my eyes are not going to get better than they are now, and they are going to get worse over time.
At the moment, because I have developed wet AMD, I am waiting for my eyes to get worse before I can begin to have injections to make them better. Don’t ask!
The only things that I can do are; to make sure that I get the nutrients I need; to shield my eyes from the sun; to eat clean and to take the supplements that I take, to try and slow up the progress.
It is important to stay positive and just let AMD be part of my life and not rule it! But that will take another article, and again let me refer you to the link for my other blogs on AMD.
Are you reaching the age of 50 and feeling uncertain and scared about what the future holds?
Or you maybe among women who are in denial, and saying that they refuse to think about themselves as ageing.
You may be holding back the grey, having surgery, dressing young, using expensive anti-wrinkle cream and so on.
But guess what? There is nothing wrong with you whatever you do!
I belong to a worldwide group called “The Silver Tent.” The purpose and vision of its founder Francesca Cassini are to have over a million women in this group.
At the moment “The Silver Tent” is being launched, and today 23rd April 2017, is day two of the Launch Summit.
I have just listened to the fourth speaker, Lynn McTaggart, author of “The Field” and “The Intention Experiment”, being interviewed by Francesca. Lynns experiments and writing are about how Intentions work. Or how our thoughts are strong enough to bring about intentions. Whether with negative or positive thinking.
We also heard about the power of collective intentions.
Francesca and Lynn and one of the speakers yesterday spoke about how “The Siver Tent” can be a power for change throughout the worldby joining up into one big group throughout, on the internet, or it could be called the innernet, and in local physical groups wherever you are.
This group and many others, for young and older women are showing how the Dalai Lamas words spoken nearly twenty years ago now, are coming into fruition.
“The world will be saved by the Western Women”
We are built up by women who want to see a change in the world. The over fifties in general have done their bit with children and no longer have to be bogged under with running the household. Many of them are looking for a challenge or a change.
Many of them are starting in business, or becoming writers, or even enjoying taking care of Grandchildren. Some of them have gained diplomas or degrees. In this group, you will learn that it is not too late whatever your intentions are.
You will also learn the way to remain vital, healthy and vivacious in mind, body and spirit.
You will learn the joy of knowing that because you are mature you are also wiser.
And you will learn that it is no cause for worry or upset when your body starts to show signs of ageing. If you are beginning to be limited in energy, movement or physical vitality, there is no cause for alarm.
You do not have to compare yourself to other older women that you see on the internet who are still able to sit in a difficult yoga position or can dance the night away, or can still do a hundred and one push-ups.
Fine if you can, and fine if you can’t. Most of them have been doing it all their lives.
Just as a little footnote I didn’t begin doing Kundalini Yoga until the beginning of this year. I also know someone the same age as me who started last year and it supported her in coming off anit-depressents. Now she has a new lease of life.
I love this community of women, all coming together under “The Silver Tent.” and I am blogging this because I feel so compassionate about the vision and purpose of it.
We are there for each other. Some discussions are funny and others are more serious. It’s fun to ask what others do in any given situation, and expect honest and open answers.
The blossoms are the essential part of the progession to the fruit; and the fruit is just as vital.
Have you noticed when you are filling in a form, they put the age brackets into such an order that when you reach 65, it just becomes 65+?
Society spends a lot of time, worrying, fretting and resisting the very idea of ageing.
But as we evolve as humans in the 21st Century, isn’t it time for us to embrace the idea? Especially as many of us are living for another thirty to forty years after retirement.
We still matter! Because as long as we have breath, we are still vital.
Illness and disease can occur at any age, so why do we think that old age has the monopoly on it?
Yes; our bodies do wear out and become weaker and frailer, and the chances of succumbing to degenerative disorders are stronger.
But being Vital in our older years is still as much a part of life as when we are younger. There are many younger people who don’t realise how vital they are to society, so why do we insist on giving old age the honour?
The word vitality is being used too loosely these days. It is used to promote products, and ironically anti-ageing foods and creams. Consequently, we think of vitality as something that is easily lost and associates that loss with ageing.
Some of the synonyms for the word vitality are; Liveliness, energy, animation, spirit, passion, sparkle and vibrancy; the power giving continuance of life, present in all living things; Vital force or energy.
If you study those words and bear in mind that we are all made up of Mind, body and spirit, you may realise that you can retain them.
Liveliness can remain in the mind and spirit, along with vibrancy and passion.
Every one of us, from birth to death, have something to contribute to the world. No matter where you are, where you live, the state of your mind or health, the state of your finances, whatever your intellect or culture you have a VITAL role to play. At any age.
You may not ever become rich, a writer, an artist, a teacher, a celebrity or earn lots of money. You may even be thinking at this moment that you are not successful because you haven’t reached a goal that you had in mind. You may have just been diagnosed with an illness or condition that you perceive as a road to failure.
You may even be thinking that you are already a failure, let alone when you get older.
You may have just retired or are coming up to retirement, and you see the future as bleak and that you will no longer be a vital part of society.
On the other hand, you may be looking forward to a bit of peace.
Do you have the thought at the back of your mind that it is downhill all the way after the age of 65? Do you think that you must do the things on your bucket list before it’s too late?
Too late for what? Perhaps too late to be able to travel freely, too late for certain activities, yes. But have you thought about what else it may be too late for? Are you seeing the time to come, the “too late” as a time when you are sitting like the proverbial cabbage?
The truth is that; As long as you have breath, you are still vital!
But how can I remain vital when I am too weak or helpless to do anything?
All of us have energy running through us as long as we are alive.
Most of the time we are unaware of it and only when we are active in some way, we become aware. But it is there; how else would your heart keep beating, your eyes seeing and all the other organs in your body stay working?
Collective energy is what you feel in a crowd at a football stadium or when the whole world stood still when we were witnessing 9/11.
We are part of the Universal energy, and what is more, it is Vital to every one of us, it is what keeps us alive. You are part of that collective energy.
Even people in a coma, or under anaesthetic have an energy running throughout their body. And they are still vital to the planet and in turn to society.
And even the person in a state of weakness, infirmity and very old age, have that energy and vitality.
People become “old” at any age. The physical process starts at age 27. But in many peoples minds, they begin to feel old as soon as they see the first grey hair.
We put people into categories or brackets. We have expectations of what we can do at any given age. We use the expression “I’m too old for that.”
The perception is different in all of us. Some may still be playing football or running at age ninety; others may need to stop being physically active at a much earlier age due to injury.
When we run upstairs and forget what we came up there for, we fear that it’s the ageing process setting in. Forgetting that most of us at any age do that. What about the schoolchild forgetting his sports kit, or losing his jacket? Do we ask if he or she is getting old?
We think of the darkest fear that we have with the process of old age as a line of events.
We retire; we travel or join things; take up mew hobbies.
Next; we expect we will start to suffer from disease which disables us from doing all the things that we like to do.
We then expect that it’s downhill all the way to becoming useless, a burden on society, and want just to die.
But guess what? That vital energy is still there.
Remember that the Universe does not centre around you, but that You are simply a vital part of it.
So as you become weaker and frailer, you can have either a positive effect on others or a negative.
Prepare for your older years with the thought in mind that you are vital to those around you at this time, and you are on the road to FEELING vital until the day you die.
Another synonym for vitality is spark or sparkle. Are you going to be the spark that lights people’s fire, even when you simply smile at people around you?
Don’t tell me that you can’t do that when you are old and frail. I know many who do.
Having the spark that lights people’s fire starts at any age. Think of the effect that even the youngest baby has when they smile for the first time.
Are your family and friends going to be drawn to see you? You can do this by staying energised while you can by listening, learning, reading, writing and creating new things.
If your niche is gardening or craft do it, while you can.
Stay informed, be active, eat well.
Research drugs before you take them. You do not have to just go along with what the doctor says and jump on the roundabout of taking one drug after another that dulls your brain and mind.
Make younger friends, don’t just join the local senior citizens club and talk about the weather or your latest illness.
You have a lot to offer younger people coming along. Only three days ago, I was lunching in the centre of London with a young student from Singapore. How did I get there? I was at a Seminar on making choices with people of all ages.
The turning point for me was when at the age of sixty, a friend of the same age commented that she hated this business of getting old.
I thought “I’m outta here!” No way was I going to join that bandwagon.
Yes, I am ageing, yes time is running away with me, but I changed my thinking to one of “My older years are going to be a time of learning, wisdom and supporting others to do the same.”
These illustrations show the progress of how a person with AMD can experience the decline in vision.
AMD (Age-related Macular Degeneration) is quite a common condition .
The macula is located at the back of the eye and is the most sensitive part of the retina. When it is damaged the centre of your field of view may appear blurry, distorted or dark.
I MUST EMPHASISE THAT IT IS THE CENTRAL VISION THAT IS AFFECTED AND PROVIDED THAT YOU HAVE NO OTHER EYE CONDITIONS YOU SHOULD NOT GO COMPLETELY BLIND.
Ageing itself can cause damage, and there are two types of AMD commonly known as Wet or Dry.
The dry type is slow advancing, and many people will have it for some time before they notice there is something amiss.
The first signs are that you may find yourself forever cleaning your glasses. Or you may simply put it down to needing new glasses or that you are putting poor sight down to part of the ageing process and ignore it. It is mostly picked up when you have an eye test. Generally speaking, it begins at the age of around 50, but since nothing happens at any certain age, that is not a given fact.
Dry MD can slowly develop and once diagnosed, it can be monitored and you can change your diet and lifestyle to help slow the process down.
However, 1 out of 10 cases develops into Wet MD and can have more serious implications. Although with wet MD there are injections to slow the process down, there is still no guarantee that it will work.
Let me tell you my story.
Nearly three years ago during a regular annual eye test, the Optician showed me the photos of the back of my eyes, and I could see white spots. (Drusen) He explained that these are signs of Macular Degeneration.
I felt quite alarmed because my Mother has it and I have seen her struggling over many years. But this optician told me about a nutritional supplement that would help to slow up the development. We shall discuss that supplement in the group that I hope to start on Facebook.
I already knew of a Guild in Plymouth which helped people with vision and hearing difficulties, so I went along and found a lot of information about the condition and also what aids there were available.
They also told me about Plymouth University having a department where you could go and have regular examinations and also be a guinea pig for students learning Ophthalmology. Not only that but if there was a serious development, they could contact the Eye Infirmary direct and I would not have to go through my GP.
I rather liked that idea, so I went. And for the past two years I have enjoyed talking to the tutors and students and finding a lot of information. They also have a scanner there, and it was fun to see the back of my eye laid out for interpretation.
They have been impressed with my tenacity and resilience to the situation, and how I stay so positive. But I must admit to being quite alarmed at times when I notice more severe symptoms such as distortion, even to the extent of seeing people’s head’s shaped like ET.
I have a couple of other issues with my eyes, such as double vision which manifests when I am tired and with the added complication of the 6th nerve damage. So, eleven years ago it stopped me from driving. Although I had the problem all my life, as I got older I could not control it so well. But that is another story.
The 6th Nerve damage was caused by the forceps at birth. Resulting in what is commonly called a lazy eye. So I am mostly reliant on my left eye, I often describe it as “I can see all right, but it feels like the brain will not tell me what it is I am seeing.”
Because of the problems with my right eye, the Eye Infirmary are keeping up regular monthly checks. If I lose the vision in that eye, I will be in trouble.
Last July I went along to the University because although the regular eye test at the opticians resulted in new glasses, I was still struggling to see. They did a scan and found that it had developed into Wet MD.
Wet MD is where abnormal blood vessels grow underneath the retina, and these vessels can leak fluid and blood, which can lead to swelling and damage of the macula.
The University fast-tracked an appointment for me at the Eye Infirmary (What a horrible name)
After numerous tests, the EI are monitoring me regularly because when it reaches a critical point, they can start with injections into the eye, which will slow up the progress.
The latest development is that peoples faces are distorted and have taken on a perculiar appearance. I have adjusted my own image here so that you can see what I am seeing.
You can read in a previous blog how this affects my everyday living.
Some people have claimed that there is a cure, but I have yet to come across any proven cures. The EI and the University certainly have not found any.
But I was asked the other day about whether MD can be prevented.
It is best to start as early as possible to make lifestyle changes.
Although none of us can guarantee to prevent any disease in our lives, there are things that you can do to strengthen your chances of not getting it. Or giving your body a better chance to deal with any disease at all.
It is no surprise to me that the answer is the same as with many other diseases of the Western world, such as obesity, cancer, Type 2 diabetes, and other modern diseases.
Eat a healthy diet rich in green leafy vegetables and fish.
I do all of these things and also take a special supplement called Macushield.
I am considering starting the Facebook group for this condition, both in helping people to try and prevent it and how to deal with it.
Would you please comment either on this blog or in the comments on Social Media if you would like to join us.
There are plenty of MD Facebook groups in the US, but because our health care systems are different in the UK, I think that it will be of benefit to many.
Also, of course, the nature of the condition prevents people from reading on Facebook, and I suspect that many don’t get the opportunity or are not aware of the advantages of it.
But it may be that you have a relative or friend that you could help by belonging to the group.
Would you please share this, because I would like as many people as possible to benefit from a good Facebook group on AMD.
The picture below is the scene without any eye problems!
God grant me the serenity to accept the things that I cannot change, Courage to change the things that I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.
For me today is a day, to gather my wits about me, and spend the day as a “Human Being”, and not a “Human Doing!”
Part of that, is to simply rest in knowing that all is well. Even though circumstances get difficult at times, just surrendering and not feeling that I have to battle my way through the day, over everything that seems to go wrong, is the key to staying sane.
Even simple things like having a converstaion with a GP over my Mother’s welfare, are not easy in the 21st century, in the days of Care in the Community.
So for today I have no great philosophical insights for you, because I am having a rest.
That is; I am resting in the knowledge that all is well, even when it does not seem like it.
I know that at the end of day, even in turmoil, I can just “Be” in peace and joy.
This is one of the keys to having Intention while ageing, and my Intention is to be a wise Elder. Wisdom for my own welfare as well as others eh?
God grant me the serenity to accept the things that I cannot change, Courage to change the things that I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.
An act or instance of determining upon some action or result.
Another definition of the word used by Wayne Dyer who was a great teacher of all things in mind, body and spirit are;
Intention is a field of energy that flows invisibly beyond the reach of our normal, everyday habitual patterns.
Both of these definitions will suit the purpose of this article, which is going to be about our intentions in our ageing process.
Yesterday we talked about surrendering ourselves to the process of ageing. That surrender needs to be done gracefully, with love to ourselves and others and peacefully.
This can be done by ageing with intention.
Intention is a field of energy just like love, determination, fear, and so on. If you look at the blogs on my website for July and August 2015, you will find several articles or blogs on using the Law of Attraction in our ageing process. The Laws of the Universe can be likened to these energies. In short, what you believe is what you get.
So we can use this energy of intention to age with purpose, peace, love and joy.
If we go into our older years, expecting trouble then that is what we will get.
Many of the problems of getting older are real, they are there, and we cannot escape them. It is what we do with these problems and how we deal with them that counts. In other words, it is our perception that is the key. Along with our intention.
I hear jokes from people saying that they are “going to make life as difficult as possible for my children as I age!” Another one-liner coming from many Baby Boomers these days is “I’m spending all the children’s inheritance!”
Whether you do or you don’t, let’s consider what difference having an intention can make.
My own intention is to be a Wise Elder to my children, friends, neighbours, grandchildren (if they give me a chance!) I also enjoy writing articles and sharing lots of positive stuff on Social Media. I love the internet and try to use it wisely.
I follow people who I know can teach me something. I do not pretend to know it all, we all learn something every day if we keep an open mind.
Did you know that learning is the best thing that you can do for the health of your brain?
We can also learn from our past. We are constantly told to forget the past, it’s gone, just look to the future.
I am not saying to dwell in the past, or even to blame our past for how we feel now. Some people go through life as the hurt or damaged child and just stay there.
My suggestion is that we can go into our past with a new intention.
Seeing our past as an experience that will help our children and younger people, is a lot different to dwelling in the past and calling the past “The Good Old Days.”
When young people see us “wrinklies” it is easy for them to dismiss us as past it, or too old to understand. But when I recently told a younger person about my experience of bringing up kids alone as a Naval wife, divorce, betrayal and bankruptcy, they were astonished. And realised that I had been there, and I know what it is like. I was able to identify with what she was going through, and although I would never completely understand, I knew enough to help.
Another intention of mine is to make my older years as full and enjoyable as possible. Starting with being grateful for everything I have, from being able to at least see most things, even though I have a sight problem. Being grateful for a roof over my head, even if it is not in a district that I would like to be. Being grateful that I could walk the extra mile this morning when the bus driver failed to stop at my usual bus stop. Yes, I was annoyed, but it did not take long for me to see the funny side of it, and I just said to her that she is obviously in another world, rather than complain to her.
There is so much to be grateful for. Have a look at this blog that I wrote twelve months ago for more on Ageing with Gratitude.
In my corner of the world, Ageing with Vitality is to age consciously.
Ron Pevny in his book “Conscious Ageing” says this;
Quote; It is about recognising, honouring, growing into, and working to embody the role of elder as a distinct life stage full of the potential for growth and service beyond midlife adulthood.
Recognising the fact that your body is ageing, even if you think that your mind is not.
Honouring the fact that older is wiser. You have a lot to offer those who are following behind. You are not yet in your grave and have a lot to offer. And honouring yourself for everything that you have learnt and dealt with in your life before now.
Growing into the beauty and wisdom of old age, gracefully and to surrender to that with joy, peace and love.
Seeing the older years as another life stage, just like leaving school, getting married, having kids and starting a new career. As an older person, you can be without the pressures of having to earn a living. You can relax and enjoy life and be as healthy as you can within the boundaries of a weakened and older body.
In the next series of blogs, I will be looking at these issues and also cover again some of the issues raised in my blogs from July 2015 about ageing.
Please enjoy. And to ensure that you get to see these blogs, please “like” my Facebook page. https://www.facebook.com/PatriciaCherryWriterandLifeCoach/
or apply to join the Ageing with Vitality group on Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/groups/113172222365276/
You will also find them on my website. http://www.patriciacherrylifecoach.com
Today we have a guest with us, who is an expert in Nutrition and all things to do with health at any age.
Her name is Jane Hutton. You will find her info in the article.
Thank you Jane for this very useful and down to earth advice. There is so much information about what is healthy and what is not, that it is good to have something to base our decisions on when we come to making healthy choices. Even more so as we get older.
So; Over to Jane.
“It comes to us all in the end.” Hearing those immortal words has become something of a cliche when we feel a twinge, forget why we went upstairs, or notice a new wrinkle when we look in the mirror. It can be easy to fall into a kind of resignation, viewing a gradual crumbling as inevitable once we cross that mythical line into the twilight zone of middle age. The good news? It’s not. There’s much you can do to protect your body and mind from the ravages of time.
Not surprisingly, the most potent weapons in staying fit and healthy well into our later years involve treating ourselves holistically. By that I mean that it’s no good cutting the fat off your pork chop if you’re going to sit in a chair all day. It’s pointless going for a daily constitutional stroll if your diet revolves around microwave meals because you never learned to cook.
We are what we eat, to be sure, but what about those common traits of getting older, like smaller appetite or less efficient digestion? Are they linked to increasing ill health? They certainly can be; in purely nutritional terms, your body uses the nutrients from your food to fuel the billions of processes and functions going on every day, so if you aren’t getting all the nutrients you need, cracks will eventually begin to show. Without the deficiencies being addressed, niggles become issues, irritations become illness.
Lack of nutrients can cause a lack of appetite, and mean that less digestive enzymes are produced to digest what food is eaten. These two aspects combined can result in a vicious circle where not enough is eaten to provide essential nutrients, the nutrients consumed aren’t all available to be used by the body, and the consequent deficiencies mean that appetite suffers. Indigestion or other gastric symptoms can also be an indication that you’re not getting enough of what you need.
Naturally, there is an element of wear and tear as we age, but if we prevent age-related decline by being aware of potential potholes, and put pre-emptive strategies in place, the effects will be minimised, and prevention is always better than cure.
So, how do you ensure that you are getting everything your body and brain need for firing on all cylinders? Try to implement these easy tips:
Eat fresh, unprocessed food – packaged, refined meals are stripped of nutrients. Remember, it’s not about calories, it’s about nutrients.
Buy your food from a local source if possible – if you don’t have a greengrocer and butcher within easy distance, there are many box schemes and local produce hubs. For instance, in Plymouth you could choose from Riverford, Joe Brown’s, The Cornish Food Box Company, and Tamar Valley Food Hubs, plus several more.
If you don’t know how to cook, make it a priority to learn. Look on it as an adventure, a creative outlet, and a way to maintain independence. Enrol in a class with a friend, or find a good recipe source and cook up a storm with a friend as a social occasion – cooking with and for others is fun as well as healthy.
Eat regular meals, whether you’re hungry or not. If your food is fresh and nutrient-dense, having more smaller meals is just as good as having three larger meals every day.
Optimise the digestion and uptake of nutrients – a plant-based digestive enzyme is a good way to do this, or you can take a teaspoon of organic apple cider vinegar in a little water just before meals to stimulate digestion. If you have had antibiotics, it’s also crucial to restore your gut flora with a good probiotic that contains several strains – in some countries, it’s common practice to prescribe probiotics along with antibiotics; not so here. The fact remains that our micro biome is essential to health.
Exercise daily – this is as important for appetite as your mineral balance. While zinc deficiency can cause reduced appetite and compromised sense of taste, not doing enough can impact on how hungry you feel. Regular exercise naturally has the added benefit of boosting metabolism and keeping muscles healthy.
There you have it: just a few quick tips that you can put into practice today to improve your health, prevent illness, and hold back the years. Just a few small tweaks can make a huge difference!
For more information on personal plans, targeted health advice, or any other ways I can help, you can find me at firstname.lastname@example.org, or on 07841 344934.
You can try my recipe hub at www.functional-foodie.com – the free membership allows access to some easy, delicious recipes, while full membership gives access to a growing collection; great for quick inspiration.
Many of you may remember this book with the title of “10,000 Years of Weight Watching.” It is still available under that title if you so wish. But here is some interesting news!
I have been thinking that title has done the book an injustice in a way because actually it is about the evolution of food. Baby Boomers and other younger people may enjoy learning how food reached the stage that it is in now, in 2016. And it is a good read anyway, not just for those watching weight.
AND IT IS ESPECIALLY INTERESTING READING FOR BABY BOOMERS AS MANY OF YOU WILL IDENTIFY WITH SOME MEMORIES FROM THE 50’S, 60’S AND 70’S.
It is now under the cover and title; “From Hunter-Gatherer to Baby Boomer. How Food Evolved.” in Kindle format or print on demand for a physical book.
I HAVE PUT IT ON FREE WITH KINDLE FOR FRIDAY 19th Feb to SUNDAY 21st Feb.
To save repeating myself here is the blurb on the back cover of the paperback;
This book is suitable for anyone who questions the link between the evolution of food, health and ageing.
Are they all linked? Knowing the history of how we reached this point in 2016 would help the reader to understand a little more of how to make a judgment.
The information is for the reader who may be a professional helping other people or they are just curious about the way that food has developed over the last 10k years.
Baby Boomers will be interested and will remember some of the processes during the 20th century.
The first two chapters cover ancient history, and with research, the author discovered some amazing ideas.
Awareness of food intake and what to do about being obese or overweight became apparent with the Roman and Greek civilisations around 2000 to 4000 years ago.
Patricia looks at the development of agriculture before this. Based on the result of Archeological digs and known history.
With the discovery of the Statuettes of goddesses from 10,000 years ago, it was apparent that being obese was the desired image for fertility and for times of famine.
But the Romans decided that they wanted their women to be shapely. The question is “Is that when dieting started?” We shall never know, but this book is a brave attempt to look at the possibilities.
The last 100 years are the bulk of the book. Because there are more known records, and the evolution of food became almost out of control, and much of it has become “Frankenstein Food.”
Patricia is a life coach, specialising in Ageing with Vitality. Her concern is for people to age in a healthy way and to see why they should just “Eat Real Food and watch your portions!”
Because she cares about the state of the Western Worlds way of eating.
Because she cares about how the Ageing body can stay healthy.
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