As we mature many changes take place in our bodies. While the fine lines, wrinkles, aches, and pains become more and more noticeable, the changes that go unnoticed may be much more serious as they increase our vulnerability to disease and disability. Webster’s New World Dictionary defines “aging” as “the process of growing old or showing signs of growing old.” However, in this day and age, we need to look at two distinct aging concepts: chronological age and biological age. The birth date indicated on a driver’s license is an example of chronological age, whereas biological age is related to vitality level and youthfulness regardless of birth date. For example, we have all met someone who may be seventy years old (chronological age) but acts, looks, and has the health of a fifty-five year old (biological age). What is your biological age and why does it matter?
Aging plays a key role in 90% of disease. All diseases fall into four categories; the first three include 1) inherited genetic disease, 2) trauma, and 3) infectious disease; they account for only 10% of the cost for treating all disease in America. The fourth category of disease relates to aging and accounts for ninety percent of all health-care dollars – it is extraordinary care in the last two to three years of life. To address the slowing or reversing of the aging processes, we must look to lifestyle patterns and changes. Nutrition, detoxification, exercise, sleep, and stress reduction are simple steps that assist in changing the aging processes.
The good news is that aging can be easily and inexpensively addressed with essential oils. Essential oils can be considered the lifeblood of the plant that support the body and can even be used for medicinal purposes. While the benefits of essential oils are extensive, I will be covering five key areas related to aging.
1) Nutrition – This includes consuming and assimilating the right food to maintain a healthy weight, thrive, and extend your life-span. Keeping to a diet rich in organic vegetables and fruits, omega fatty acids, and limited in meats, similar to the Mediterranean diet, has proven to be the easiest and most productive diet program.
Essential oil recommendations to support nutrition:
In my opinion, the best packaged product for a daily supplement program is the doTERRA Lifelong Vitality program. doTERRA’s Lifelong Vitality supplements are formulated with potent levels of essential nutrients and powerful metabolic factors for optimal health, energy, and longevity. Coupled with doTERRA’s CPTG Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade essential oils and a lifelong commitment to doTERRA’s wellness lifestyle, they naturally support a lifetime of looking, feeling, and living younger, longer.
2) Detoxification – This includes releasing the toxins and moving them out of the body. There are several avenues of elimination (sweat, bowels, bladder, breath, and saliva for example) and programs to assist in the toxin release (far infra-red sauna, colonics, adequate hydration, deep breathing exercises, and positive mental attitudes).
Essential oil recommendations to support detoxification: doTERRA’s Slim & Sassy Metabolic Blend (they also have Slim & Sassy Trim Shakes to assist with calorie reduction).
3) Exercise – This is critical to keep the body young. After age thirty, each of us experiences a decline in functional capacity of 0.75 percent to 1.0 percent per year. More than 48 million adults in the United States, who are otherwise healthy and able-bodied, can be classified as sedentary. The fluid motion of the joints and stretching of the muscles assist not only in strength and motion but to help in the detoxification processes. The old adage “If you don’t use it you will lose it,” can be changed to “If you don’t move it you will lose the ability to move it.” As we age, heavy exercise may not be the best for everyone; however, gentle stretches on a daily basis or walking can do wonders for keeping the joints and muscles limber.
Essential oil recommendations to support exercise: Deep Blue blend (available as liquid, roll on or crème) to the muscles and/joints.
4) Sleep – This is a necessary and integral state that permits mental and physical restoration. Adequate restful sleep, like diet, exercise, and nutritional habits, is critical to good health. Lack of restful sleep can result in mental and physical health challenges. The National Sleep Foundation report that America is on the verge of a poor sleep epidemic. As a society, we are having more difficulty with getting to sleep, staying asleep, and waking refreshed. Research has shown that people who slept less than six hours each night were more likely to gain weight, have a decreased immune response, increased inflammatory response, and increased stress responses/depression/anxiety.
Essential oil recommendations to support sleep: Serenity behind the ear, on the bottom of the feet, or on the pillow.
5) Stress management – Stress is probably the most powerful of the aging factors. “A hormone produced by the body when under stress, cortisol, is associated with a dozen or more serious degenerative diseases and has been found in some studies to be present in elevated levels in the last days of life.” (Klatz & Goldman 2003). Stress in itself is not necessarily a negative thing. The term stress simply refers to any situation—physical, emotional, or both—that requires any bodily response more active than balanced. There are so many various evaluation systems available to become aware of the stressors and techniques to reduce the stress effects.
Essential oil recommendations to support stress management: Serenity to the back of the hand (to smell or on the collar of the shirt).
Not all essential oils are the same quality, and it is critical to use superior quality oils to insure the results described above.
Dr. Thompson is a licensed Chiropractor and also holds Doctorates in Naturopathy and Homeopathy. She can be contacted at 715 456-6734 during regular work hours.