When Having a Senior Moment Is a Good Thing

Good morning and welcome back!

I am saying that to myself as well as you, as I take up position at the keyboard in the name of creative writing after what has been a very long blog break.  My apologies for those who were periodically entertained by my healthy ramblings - I may have appeared missing in action but there has been plenty of action, some of which I wish I was missing from...but that's another story all together.

I am stunned by how fast a year goes, my last blog seems to be almost a year ago now - so many moments between that has marked their place in my historical events - but nonetheless to remind me that as I age, I tolerate less 'guff'and focus more acutely on what matters...and that is a great gift to have been given.  One of those traits I have become better doing the more senior I get (awesome senior moment #1).


Science shows us that during times of adversity, even acute stress, our brains will change in size and shape when it comes to numbers of neurons that are available for certain functions.  For example, the pre-frontal cortex and hippocampus which manages emotional context, memory, decision making and such - will shrink.  Conversely, the amygdala which controls circular thinking, aggression, worry and anxiety - will grow.  Have you ever had one of those horrible moments when you're under pressure for something quite stressful but you can't remember where you last put your keys and your already running late?

It would be rare that most of us in this situation would handle it well, with aplomb and calm.  We simply cannot access enough neural power to find those keys and go on our merry way. It is not until we calm down and take a moment to literally 'gather our thoughts'.  I like to think of it as gathering our neurons instead!  It is a good thing that your brain is neuroplastic and when things settle down again has the opportunity to remodel itself back to healthy sizes.  Or at least it will if given the opportunity and nutritional support to do so. Ongoing chronic stress without breaks of peace will most definitely challenge this process.  Long term stress, inflammation and dehydration may also contribute to early onset mental health decline - well before your golden years have started.


I have also noticed that my body likes to exercise differently - and after a year or two of recovering from a plethora of silly little time consuming injuries mostly generated by my active pursuits - I have finally arrived to the point of understanding fully how to respect my body in a more regenerative vs degenerative way.  I like to call it slow training - less heavy jerky movements, less heavy weight bearing but weight bearing more of my own body weight using different positions (I have a great personal trainer at http://beyondtransformation.com.au/).  This is awesome senior moment #2 - self actualization of my body's limitations.


My final wonderful senior moment has manifested itself into a digestive reminder that as I age, I need to eat less quantity and more quality of the foods I choose.  Although I have always known this, I love my food and sometimes I recognize there have been moments when I have over eaten and paid the price...my ageing digestive system won't let me do this anymore and that is a good thing!  In fact, there is ample research that shows that over eating is inflammatory to the body and slowing down the progression of an early death may well be found in eating less, not more.  I have also found it easier to kick poor habits as well when they try to creep back in - mainly because my ageing body tells me faster that it doesn't like them!

I love getting older...do you?


For more healthy habits tips and hints, see my contribution to mydeal.com.au healthy habits article...


*If you have relatives who would like to explore a FREE day out in the name of wellness and healthy ageing, please - invite them along to Wellness In The Golden Years in Brisbane - see below.  RSVP for catering purposes.