Thursday, July 26, 2018
Aging and Super-Aging
Aging is difficult to define, but you will know it when you see it or experience it yourself. In brief, aging is a steady decline in health, which is instrumental in shortening lifespan; and the aging process is the duration during which such changes occur.
Aging begins as early as from young adulthood (around age 20 to 40) to middle adulthood (around age 40 to 65), and continues to old age (beginning at the age of retirement, approximately at age 65). Aging occurs throughout most of lifespan. Such a process is an accumulation of changes, which may be subtle or even drastic, that progressively lead to disease, degeneration, and, ultimately, death.
Whether you like it or not, your biological clock is ticking, and this will happen to various systems in your body:
Your heart will pump less blood, and your arteries will become stiffer and less flexible, resulting in high blood pressure—a health problem that often increases with age.
With less oxygen and nutrients from the heart, your lungs will become less efficient in distributing oxygen to different organs and membranes of your body.
Your brain size will gradually reduce by approximately 10 percent between the age of 30 and 70. Loss of short-term memory will become more acute.
Your bone mass will reduce, making it more brittle and fragile. Your body size will shrink as you lose your muscle mass.
Your biological clock is ticking, whether you are conscious of it or not. Your mortality has been pre-programmed into your biological organisms and you body cells. Theoretically, you may have an indefinite lifespan through their division, rejuvenation, and regeneration—if they are still healthy and functional. Although your genes may have pre-determined the speed of your biological clock, you can still slow down the speed of aging—if you still have good health.
Slow down, if not stop, your aging process with good health. So, what is good health? Is being healthy synonymous with absence of disease?
According to the United States Public Health Service, good health is “preventing premature death, and preventing disability, preserving a physical environment that supports human life, cultivating family and community support, enhancing each individual’s inherent abilities to respond and to act, and assuring that all Americans achieve and maintain a maximum level of functioning.” This statement probably sums up what you need to do in order to be younger and healthier for longer; it says everything about aging.
The truth of the matter is that you age, just like everyone else. The point in question is how you can delay that aging process, making you younger and healthier for longer—or, at least, not making you age more quickly than you are supposed to.
Super-aging is the capability to live a happier and longer life as well as to defer, if not totally avoid, disease. Super-aging wisdom is living a stress-free life. Living in a complex and compulsive world, stress-free is difficult but not impossible. Stress originates from your perceptions of what you are experiencing; it is all in the mind—your mind. Stress stems from your attachments in the material world that define who you are, or rather your ego-self. Let go of your attachments to your ego, and you will have no stress to live as if everything is a miracle.
Copyright© by Stephen Lau