Everyone knows that aging is out of our control. It’s simple. As time moves forward, we get older. But you don’t have to be resigned to a future of declining health as you get older. Aging might be out of our control, but we CAN control how healthy we are as we get older. Think about it. Why can some people live good lives well beyond age 100, with relatively few physical and mental problems, while others suffer from countless diseases and cognitive troubles that rob the golden years of their life?
The answer is, in part, exercise. Exercise is best way to slow down the side effects of aging and cognitive decline. It is a preventive medicine and a cure for seniors. Below we will examine how exercise keeps your cells healthy, a practice that can prevent diseases like Alzheimers and depression. Let me explain how exercise helps slow the effects of aging. As we get older, our cells gradually lose the ability to adjust to physical and emotional stress. While our genes play a major role in how well our cells age, our lifestyles and the emotional stresses we have endured for many years also have a major influence on how we age.
But seniors who exercise have, in effect, stronger cells. Their cells are not as susceptible to the stresses of the daily grind, or the emotional ups and downs of life. Our body produces protein factors, known as macrophages, which are supposed to clean up waste and dead cells when needed. But as we get older, it is harder for our cells to produce the macrophages that clean up dead cells. This quickly puts a person on a “cellular death spiral,” known as apoptosis.