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How to Stay Fit and Healthy and Hold Back The Years

Updated on January 5, 2016
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Jo has been an ITU nurse at the London North West NHS Trust for 14 years. She obtained her RN at University College London Hospital.

Eat Healthy, Live Longer

Get more anti-oxidants
Get more anti-oxidants | Source

The Benefits of Eating Cherries are Many

Cherries contain vitamin C  which helps to reduce inflammation in gout and other types of arthritis
Cherries contain vitamin C which helps to reduce inflammation in gout and other types of arthritis | Source

An Apple A Day Can Keep The Doctor Away

An Apple A Day One Apple provides 1/4 of the body's requirement of Vitamin C
An Apple A Day One Apple provides 1/4 of the body's requirement of Vitamin C | Source
Well Maybe not..
Well Maybe not..

Forever Young, The Search For Immortality



Cute but not a good look
Cute but not a good look




For a Longer Healthier life

Scientists believe, that technically; human beings can potentially live to the ripe old age of 120 years or more. As we go boldly into the future, it would seem that holding back the years is not an impossibility.

Most of us currently live to 70 to 80 years, ravaged by disease and ill health as we approach those later years. To be able to hold back the years by another 3 or 4 decades would be remarkable, but can we live longer and still maintain good health?

If possible, this would truly be some achievement, but only if holding back the years also mean not simply longer life but also a good quality of life.

The thought of an army of 80 something workers Zimmer- framing their way across the London Underground on a busy Monday morning doesn't bare thinking about. Spending 20 or 30 years in a nursing home does not fire my rockets either.

The future is a foreign land, we have an idea of what we will find when we get there, but invariable, the reality can be some what different. Who could have predicted at the turn of the century, that NASA would have placed a man on the moon, that science would map the human genes, or the world wide web would be this phenomenon we now take for granted.

It would be incredible to be able to live just a few years longer, holding back the years. If we could go further into the future, what wonders will be awaiting us? Living longer will allow us the privilege to see our grandchildren grow and have children of their own, each generation getting fitter and healthier and living longer.

Alexander Graham Bell would most probably smile if he could see what has become of his invention. iPhones, smart phones, ipads and tablets, we've become so dependent on these small communication devices, leaving home without them is unthinkable.

For better or for worse technology keeps us moving forwards, surgeons can replace worn out joints as a matter of course, they are always learning and improving their knowledge and skills to learn and understand more. We see improved results for organ transplant, artificial limbs are amazing. By exercising, eating health nutritious diet and body building we can change our body shape and mass to unbelievable levels.

Plastic surgery and botox gives the illusion of youth, but health and longevity, must start on the inside to truly hold back the years. The easiest way to look younger is simple, just lie about your age, however, lying doesn't really get the job done, much better to get off the couch and become proactive.

We can do this by ensuring we only take the best food and nutrition into our bodies, the right nutrition appropriate for our time of life, nutrition that enables us to stay fit and healthy as we hold back the years.


The world health organisation, (WHO) define health as " a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being, and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity".

Health is something we all aspire to, no one is in a state of complete physical, mental and social well being all of the time, but we all know when our bodies are in good physical health, that can also affect our mental and social well being and vice versa.

The ability to achieve and maintain good physical health becomes harder as we grow older. The ageing body needs certain micro-nutrients which can become depleted due to our diet and lifestyle, this can lead to progressive metabolic imbalance and physiological disorder. A lack of nutrients can reduce the body's ability to repair itself to slow down the rate of degeneration.

However, with modern advances in science and technology, improved health care and education we can be empowered to make the right lifestyle choices. We can make choices to better enhance our quality of life to the extent that most of our extended years can be productive years.

If like me, you are at that certain age, you've lived a full and active life, for some of you, the kids have grown and flown the coop, and your body is telling you its time to slow down. Then this is probably a good time to take stock, grab the reins and hold back the years.


As we mature and grow older our body's requirement changes, our immune system that provide protection from bacteria, viruses and some form of cancers may become compromised. Our hormonal balance is changing, these changes are traditionally dismissed as disease of ageing, it is believed that we die of old age. However, it is not old age as such that causes death; it is the disease associated with old age that finishes us off.

To live a long and active life, and to slow down the ageing process, we need to become well acquainted with anti-oxidants.

Antioxidants protect the body from free radicals, which are produced in the body during oxidation.

Oxidation occurs in the body continuously; it is a natural process, but the free radicals can have a detrimental effect on the cell function, leading to premature ageing and disease.

Antioxidant mops up free radicals and neutralizes them to protect the cells. However; the antioxidant needs to be constantly replenished, it can be taken in the food we eat or as vitamin supplements.

The best known anti-oxidant is Vitamin C, it is a water soluble anti-oxidant that fights free radicals inside the cells, and can be found in citrus fruits, fruit juices, kiwi, broccoli, squash, carrots, yams, and apples.


The apple is one of the top ten super food, it is packed full of anti-oxidants for healthy skin and gums. One apple provide 1/4 of the body's daily requirements of vitamin C and contains soluble fibres known as pectin which can help lower blood cholesterol levels while maintaining a healthy digestive system.

Apple is also an excellent source of carbohydrate with a low glycaemic index ( GI), low GI food is digested slowly, and when broken down in the intestine they are absorbed into the blood stream as glucose with a gradual rise in blood sugar levels. Yes, the adage, 'an apple a day keeps the doctor away,' still holds true.


The underestimated baked beans, like apples, baked beans contain carbohydrates with low GI, protein, fibre, iron, and calcium. The tomato sauce which coats the beans are a good source of lycopene, which is a powerful antioxidant shown to help in the prevention of heart disease and prostate cancer.

The soluble fibre in beans are not digested but goes to the large intestine where bacteria act on it to produce short chain fatty acids. These fatty acids nourish the intestinal lining protecting it from carcinogens.

Broccoli contains Vitamin C anti-oxidant and is an excellent source of folate (folic acid) of significant benefit in preventing heart disease.

Broccoli also contains the anti oxidant lutein that can delay the progression of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) which effects 10% of people over the age of 60 and is one of the leading causes of impaired vision and blindness. It is also an excellent source of sulforaphane with anti-cancer properties.

Olive oil helps to lower bad cholesterol and increase the good cholesterol levels. It is rich in antioxidant and is thought to be one of the key protecting elements in the Mediterranean diet. Unfortunately, it is also high in calories, containing 120 calories in 1 tablespoon of oil.

Wholegrain bread, bread with large whole grains and seeds have a low GI, which can protect against heart disease, reduce pangs of hunger and help in controlling weight.

Oily fish such as Salmon, are a good source of omega 3 fats which can reduce blood clotting and inflammation, also a good source of quality protein, vitamins and minerals.

Studies show that even in older people, eating oily fish can drastically reduce the risk of having a heart attack.

Omega 3 fats can also help in the prevention of depression, and protects against the onset of dementia.

Cherries are listed as another super fruit, they are delicious and a good source of vitamin C, cherry juice is marketed and used in natural food outlet as a remedy to reduce pain and inflammation of gout and other types of arthritis. However, when crushed, chew or scrape, the pip and leaves of the cheery can release prussic acid, a component of hydrogen cyanide. The cyanide content of the cherry pit is small and accidental poisoning is rare, so enjoy the cherries but do not chew the pips.

Tea," good news for us Brits who love our cuppa" green or black, tea is rich in anti-oxidant known as catechins, this is thought to protect the artery walls against damages which helps in the prevention of heart disease. Studies show, as little as one cup of tea per day can give some protection.

Yogurt provides an easily absorbed source of calcium, as well as a good way to top up friendly bacteria in the gut; the friendly bacteria fights harmful bacteria such as Clostridium difficile which can cause diarrhoea after taking antibiotics.

Bananas are high in energy, calories are in the form of carbohydrates very good for providing fuel when exercising, contain high levels of potassium which can help to lower blood pressure. also contains vitamin B6 for healthy hair and skin

Brazil nuts, studies suggest that a handful of nuts four times a week can help to reduce heart disease and food cravings. Brazil's are one of the few good sources of selenium which may protect against cancer, depression and Alzheimer's, also contain large amounts of essential vitamins, minerals, and fibre.

Other good sources of antioxidant are, dried apricots, peanut butter, sweet potatoes, black currents, blue berries, celery, radishes and curly kale to name but a few.


Hydration plays a major part in keeping the body fit and healthy. Fluid accounts for 60% of the body's weight, all system depends on it, water help to flush toxins out of the vital organs and carry nutrients to the cells and also provides a moist environment.

The amount of fluids we require depend on several factors, including:

  • General health of the individual

  • Levels of activity

  • The temperature and climate of the area.

Food usually accounts for about 20% of total fluid intake per day. We lose approximately 1 liter of fluid through insensitive loss, through sweating, breathing and the bowel. Urine accounts for 1.5 litres in adults, by replacing 2 litres of fluids per day we can replenish the lost fluids, but the key is to know your body.

Over hydration and excessive exercise can lead to hyponatremia, or depleted sodium level, also known as water intoxication, this occurs in rare cases and can result in coma and death.


Exercise will help to reduce the bad cholesterol; studies shows that 20 to 30 minutes of exercise three times a week can reduce the chances of coronary heart disease by 50 per cent. Make use of treadmills, skipping ropes and even trampolines at home.

Yoga is an excellent way to loosen up, optimize breathing, lose weight, meditate and relax. Please see the accompanying video.

Excessive intake of alcohol, obesity and smoking are all factors that can contribute to hypertension, stroke and heart failure.

The healthy body is superb at maintaining itself with little help from us. However, as the body age, it requires a bit more intervention and maintenance to stay fit and healthy as we endeavour to hold back the years.

© all rights reserved. copyright. J. A. Hagues 28 October 2011 For more Health Articles see my profile @



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    • tobusiness profile image

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 5 years ago from Bedfordshire, U.K

      erinb62, welcome, and thank you so much for the visit and comment.

      best wishes to you.

    • erinb62 profile image

      Erin Buttermore 5 years ago from Laconia

      Wow! Great writing and very useful too. Thanks!

    • tobusiness profile image

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 5 years ago from Bedfordshire, U.K

      Integrity, thanks for the kind comment, you write pretty well too.

      Take care now

    • profile image

      IntegrityYes 5 years ago

      You write so well. You are thoughtful. I definitely voted up.

    • tobusiness profile image

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 5 years ago from Bedfordshire, U.K

      Rahul, always good to see you, many thanks for the visit and comment. All my best to you, my Prince, sorry can't resist. :-}

    • rahul0324 profile image

      Jessee R 5 years ago from Gurgaon, India

      Very useful indeed! I like the idea of living longer but in a healthy way, not laying on a bed and being a burden.

      Improvements in eating habits and regular activity like you mention in detail will surely tend to increase the lifespan

      Great hub Jox

    • tobusiness profile image

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 5 years ago from Bedfordshire, U.K

      Angel, well may be just a little sin, after all we will be here for a long time. Thank you for dropping in,. always nice to see you. God bless

    • Angelme566 profile image

      Angelme566 5 years ago

      A great hub ! How i wish to reach that even 80 years old. One secret to hold back years is to have a healthy living , sinless life and to stay happy though loaded with so many problems.

      Voted Up !

    • tobusiness profile image

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 5 years ago from Bedfordshire, U.K

      Thank you unknown, this is an old hub, I just thought it was time to give it a new list of life and jazz it up a little.

      Thank you for checking it out, and Best regards.

    • unknown spy profile image

      IAmForbidden 5 years ago from Neverland - where children never grow up.

      This is very useful. WE must always stay fit and healthy inside and out. Well written Jo.

    • debbie roberts profile image

      Debbie Roberts 6 years ago from Greece

      It is so important to look after ourselves and to try to stay as fit and healthy as we possibly can, especially as our life expectancy is getting longer. A well written, informative hub.

    • rambansal profile image

      Ram Bansal 6 years ago from India

      Very useful tips indeed for persons like me, still healthy, active and creative at 63 and aspire to be so for another 60 years like this. Thanks for sharing the information.