Aging Backwards: Secret #7 – Gratitude is Beautiful

Column by Jackie Silver This is the last in Jackie’s 7-part Aging Backwards series. And in the spirit of this final post, for all your wisdom, tips and insight, on behalf of Spa Week Daily and all our readers, we say a sincere and gracious thank YOU.

You’ve probably heard the old cliché, “Beauty comes from within.” Newsflash, it’s not old – it’s timeless – and it’s not cliché. Beauty definitely radiates from the inside, out. Have you ever met someone you thought looked beautiful at first, but after talking to him or her for just a few minutes, you wonder why you thought this person was so beautiful? If you have, it could be because you were noticing that the individual did not radiate beauty from within.

One way to cultivate and reveal inner beauty is to appreciate the world around you and the riches in your life, weather material or not. Grateful people are happy people. Happy people smile more. Smiling makes you look younger and prettier. It’s a beautiful cycle.

Here are some Aging Backwards gratitude exercises to help you show off your inner glow:

Focus on the positive.

Happiness is a choice and I choose to be happy daily. According to psychological research, positive emotions are associated with greater creativity, increased problem-solving ability and greater overall success in life. Why not make a conscious decision to have a great day when you wake up in the morning? See what can happen…

Give back.

Studies show that people who volunteer on a regular basis are the healthiest and live the longest. There are sure to be organizations in your area that need volunteers year-round. Don’t know where to start? Check out VolunteerMatch to find a worthy cause in your local area. All you do is type in your zip code and VolunteerMatch will find organizations near you that would love your help.

Meet The Gratidudes.

These fantastic young men are spreading the word worldwide that an attitude of gratitude is cool! You won’t want to miss their Gratidude Dance!

Start a gratitude journal.

Writing down all the reasons you have to feel grateful every day or even just once a week can really lift your spirits. Seeing it all in one place always reminds me of how fortunate I am. It’s also handy on days when you might be feeling blue. Any time you need a little pick-me-up, you can get cozy on the couch, pick up your gratitude journal and be reminded of all the positives in your life.

Tell someone how you feel.

We’re so busy being productive individuals, which is a good thing, but sometimes we can take for granted those closest to us. Any time is the right time to express your appreciation for your loved ones and all the joy that they bring into your life. If you don’t feel comfortable telling someone face-to-face, why not buy or make a nice card or write a letter? In this digital age, most people don’t receive many cards and hand-written letters, so one from you would most likely be well-received.

Jackie Silver is Aging Backwards and she shares her secrets, tips and shortcuts in her book, Aging Backwards: Secrets to Staying Young, on her website agingbackwards.com, on TV, on radio, in print and in person. She is a frequent television news guest, one half of The Ageless Sisters radio show, a columnist with The Tampa Tribune and contributor to numerous websites. In addition, she is the National Anti-Aging Beauty Examiner, New York Beauty Products Examiner and NY Charity Examiner for Examiner.com. Silver is a New York City based speaker and coach and is sought-after as an anti-aging and beauty expert by the media.

Aging Backwards: Secret #6 – All About Avocados

Column by Jackie Silver

Cue music – Ole, gimme some guacamolay! The poor avocado has been misunderstood in the past because of its high fat content, but avocados provide more than 25 essential nutrients. A serving of avocado, which is one-eighth of the fruit, has only 5 grams of fat per serving, but that fat is the monounsaturated kind, which is heart-healthy and may help to lower cholesterol. Avocados are also rich in omega-3s, another heart-healthy ingredient.

Perhaps the most impressive thing about the avocado (besides its inherent sexiness) is the potassium content. Compared to bananas, avocados have 60 percent more potassium, which helps regulate blood pressure. Adequate intake of potassium can counteract some of the effects of salt on blood pressure. Remember, though, everything in moderation. A whole avocado has 520 calories and 40 grams of fat. Even though it’s “good” fat, it can still add up to weight gain.

The avocado (Persea americana) originated in south-central Mexico, sometime between 7,000 and 5,000 B.C. But it was several millennia before this wild variety was cultivated. Archaeologists in Peru have found domesticated avocado seeds buried with Incan mummies dating back to 750 B.C. and there is evidence that avocados were cultivated in Mexico as early as 500 B.C. Avocados From Mexico are in season year-round. When shopping for avocados, looks for a pebbly skin. Ripe avocados will look almost black and will be soft when gently pressed. To ripen a green avocado, keep it at room temperature for three to seven days. To hasten the process, you can put it in a paper bag (never plastic) and loosely close the top. For more tips on becoming an “avocado expert,” check out Avocados From Mexico.

Here are some creative ways to enjoy avocado:

• Instead of slathering mayo on your sandwich, why not mash up some avocado and spread it on your sandwich? One tablespoon of mayonnaise has about 110 calories of pure fat. One-fifth of a medium avocado has about 50 calories, with 35 calories from fat, but remember – it’s the “good” fat.

• In a food processor, mash one half of an avocado with a half cup of organic cottage cheese, squeeze a bit of fresh lemon juice on top, sprinkle with black pepper and use it as a dip with cut vegetables for a protein-rich, tasty, healthy meal or snack.

•  Make an avocado boba drink. Boba drinks usually contain soft, chewy tapioca balls in the bottom of a drink such as tea or coffee, but here’s a creative twist: Using a tiny melon scoop, make avocado balls and add them into tomato or vegetable juice for a new, healthy spin on boba.

•  Cut up avocado chunks and put them on top of gazpacho, the cold Spanish tomato soup, for a filling snack that’s nutritionalicious!

•  Add avocado on top of any omelet for a burst of extra flavor.

• Put it on your face! Try this hydrating honey avocado face mask.

Jackie Silver is Aging Backwards and she shares her secrets, tips and shortcuts in her book, Aging Backwards: Secrets to Staying Young, on her website agingbackwards.com, on TV, on radio, in print and in person. She is a frequent television news guest, one half of The Ageless Sisters radio show, a columnist with The Tampa Tribune and contributor to numerous websites. In addition, she is the National Anti-Aging Beauty Examiner, New York Beauty Products Examiner and NY Charity Examiner for Examiner.com. Silver is a New York City based speaker and coach and is sought-after as an anti-aging and beauty expert by the media.

Aging Backwards: Secret #5 – Don’t Ignore Your Earlobes

Column by Jackie Silver

If you’ve ever gone to a carnival and played or witnessed the “guess your weight or age” game, you might have marveled at how those guys do such a great job at guessing someone’s age within two years. Here’s one way they do it: they look at the hands and earlobes. Earlobes? Yes, you probably don’t associate earlobes with aging, but they can show your age.

Decades of wearing heavy earrings – pierced or clip-on – can do some damage to those tender spots. Have you ever noticed that young women have plump, juicy earlobes and older women tend to have long, flat, wrinkled and lined earlobes? If the lobes are pierced, the young ones usually have a little dot for the piercing, while older women’s piercings can resemble a long slash. In fact, the writers of the hit show Two and a Half Men did a whole scene about earlobes. Charlie Harper was complaining that a blind date he was being set up with was over 40, commenting specifically that he was worried her earlobes could look old. (Not so #winning.)

Here are some Aging Backwards tips for youthful earlobes:

• Extend your skin care. Whatever you’re already using on your face and neck can be used on your earlobes – they have skin, too. So, when you’re applying your morning and nightly products, be sure to include the earlobes as well.

• Carefully select earrings. Whether pierced or clip-on, heavy earrings can weigh down the delicate skin on earlobes, so opt for very light-weight earrings at all times. I only wear earrings when I’m out in public and immediately take them off in private to take the pressure off.

• Ask your doctor about “earlobe rejuvenation.” Doctors can use injectable fillers to plump up earlobes – removing wrinkles and lines and making them look fuller and more youthful.

• Learn about lasers. You could also ask your doctor about laser treatments for earlobes. Lasers, when used by a qualified professional, cause a contraction of the skin, which plumps the earlobe and smoothes wrinkles.

• Try concealer. Concealer isn’t just for the under-eye. It’s for any problem area on the skin. Dab a tiny bit of concealer on “aging” earlobes, then blend your foundation from your face and neck right onto the earlobes for a smooth transition.

Jackie Silver is Aging Backwards and she shares her secrets, tips and shortcuts in her book, Aging Backwards: Secrets to Staying Young, on her website agingbackwards.com, on TV, on radio, in print and in person. She is a frequent television news guest, one half of The Ageless Sisters radio show, a columnist with The Tampa Tribune and contributor to numerous websites. In addition, she is the National Anti-Aging Beauty Examiner, New York Beauty Products Examiner and NY Charity Examiner for Examiner.com. Silver is a New York City based speaker and coach and is sought-after as an anti-aging and beauty expert by the media.

Photo via BellaSugar and here

Aging Backwards: Secret #4 – It’s Called “Beauty Sleep” For a Reason

 

Column by Jackie Silver

What if you could look younger and prettier for free? You can! It’s called beauty sleep for a reason. Lack of sleep can definitely show on our faces, manifesting itself as a lackluster complexion, dark under-eye circles and bags, and wrinkles. Experts say that our hormones “tune up” when we’re sleeping and guess what? Those hormones help to increase collagen, you know, that stuff that makes your skin look “plump and juicy.” Not only that, but our immune systems also “tune up” while we’re sleeping, adding natural killer cells to fight off disease.

Seven to eight hours of sleep a night is what the sleep experts recommend. If you have trouble falling asleep and/or staying asleep, look into Melatonin, a hormone our bodies made naturally (available at your local health food store.) Some health care practitioners recommend doses as large as 5 mg, but Dr. Rubin Naiman, author, teacher and sleep expert, told me personally that “less is more” when it comes to Melatonin. I take less than 1 mg. Check with your doctor before using it – children and pregnant women should not use Melatonin unless a doctor advises it. Also, take it JUST before you’re ready to go to sleep and “do not operate heavy machinery.” :)

Here are some Aging Backwards tips for getting the best beauty sleep:

• Keep your room dark – light tells the brain that it’s not yet night time and we shouldn’t be tired. This causes us to stay more alert and awake at a time when we should be feeling tired and ready for sleep. Whatever you do, don’t ever open the refrigerator in the middle of the night and expose yourself to that bright light! That light ceases your body’s production of the hormone melatonin, which studies show guards the nervous system against degenerative diseases – such as Alzheimer’s disease and stroke – and could even prevent migraines.

• Keep your room cold – according to the National Sleep Foundation, temperatures above 75 degrees Fahrenheit and below 54 degrees will disrupt sleep in most cases, but even sleep researchers fail to agree on the ideal temperature for sleep. The point at which sleep is interrupted due to temperature or climate conditions varies from person to person and can be affected by bed clothes and bedding materials selected by the sleeper. A room that’s too hot can also be disruptive. In fact, research suggests that a hot sleeping environment leads to more wake time and lighter sleep at night.

• Try ear plugs – studies show that nighttime noise can raise your blood pressure while you’re sleeping, even if you’re unaware of it. So, it you live in a big city with sirens blaring or airplanes landing at all hours, try sleeping with ear plugs. You can find them at almost every retail pharmacy or big box store on earth and they’re a ridiculously affordable way to improve your sleep.

Still awake? Read these 6 sleepless stats.

Jackie Silver is Aging Backwards and she shares her secrets, tips and shortcuts in her book, Aging Backwards: Secrets to Staying Young, on her website agingbackwards.com, on TV, on radio, in print and in person. She is a frequent television news guest, one half of The Ageless Sisters radio show, a columnist with The Tampa Tribune and contributor to numerous websites. In addition, she is the National Anti-Aging Beauty Examiner, New York Beauty Products Examiner and NY Charity Examiner for Examiner.com. Silver is a New York City based speaker and coach and is sought-after as an anti-aging and beauty expert by the media.

Aging Backwards: Secret #3 – Skin Matters

Column by Jackie Silver

Think of your skin as kind of like your permanent “party dress.” You want to keep it in the best condition possible because it goes with you everywhere and helps you look your best for any occasion. A lifetime of over-tanning or smoking can wreak havoc on your skin and make you look older than you actually are. In fact, studies were done with identical twins and the results showed that the smoking twin looked significantly older than the non-smoking twin.

Here are a few of my best-kept skin secrets for Aging Backwards:

Skin Defense Complex supplement from the Japanese company Astavita – keeps your skin young from the inside, out. I have been taking this little powerhouse for about three years and not only do people guess my age as low 30s (I’m over 50), but my hands look ridiculously young, too. It’s not sold on the company’s Web site, but it is sold in some stores and we’ve found it on Amazon.com as well.

Stemulance – skin care based on science using adult stem cells. This product really works to keep skin young and supple. The key is getting your hands on it because it’s not so widely distributed. It’s sold by cosmetic surgeons and skincare professionals at this time, but you can find a list here.

Brazilian Peel – a must-have for weekly exfoliation. You’ve probably heard that we get a “whole new skin” just about every 30 days. The old cells on the top die off and new, fresh cells form underneath. Here’s the important part – you need to get rid of those old, dead top cells or your skin is going to look gray and dry. Not only that, but all those expensive skin care products your using won’t penetrate your skin and instead will soak into your pillowcase, ugh. Brazilian Peel is a 30 percent glycolic acid facial product for exfoliating that’s five times stronger than any other glycolic product available in retail. Don’t get scared, though, it’s not going to have you looking like a lobster and hiding at home for days.

It’s actually very gentle because it has a patented dual chamber dispenser that keeps the glycolic separated from a patented neutralizer that’s only activated when the two are mixed together in your palm at the time of use. Here’s how it works: squeeze the entire amount of product into your hand, mix, apply a thin layer to the face, neck, chest and hands, wait ten minutes, wash it off. Seriously, it’s that easy. It’s available at Sephora stores nationwide and at the company’s website.

Jackie Silver is Aging Backwards and she shares her secrets, tips and shortcuts in her book, Aging Backwards: Secrets to Staying Young, on her websiteagingbackwards.com, on TV, on radio, in print and in person. She is a frequent television news guest, one half of The Ageless Sisters radio show, a columnist with The Tampa Tribune and contributor to numerous websites. In addition, she is the National Anti-Aging Beauty Examiner, New York Beauty Products Examiner and NY Charity Examiner for Examiner.com. Silver is a New York City based speaker and coach and is sought-after as an anti-aging and beauty expert by the media.

 

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