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Coming of age: 40 of the most surprising and inspiring tips

 
by Kristina Grish 
 
 
(11-15)
 
 
11. Learn how to feel full
 
Trimming calories can help reduce cellular inflammation, which drives the aging process by causing disturbances in hormonal signaling between cells, thus decreasing the efficacy of every organ in the body. "Reducing excess calories is only possible if you're not hungry between meals," says Barry Sears, M.D., president of the Inflammation Research Foundation. Reach for at least 3 ounces of low-fat protein at breakfast, lunch and dinner, which increase the release of satiety hormones that stop hunger.
 
12. Confide in a friend
 
"We know regular social interaction has a significant effect on long-term brain health and function," says Michael Roizen, M.D., a Cleveland-based internist and co-author of the bestselling You series (Rodale). "But you must also have friends with whom you can be intimate and vulnerable. You need to connect with your confidantes at least six times a month." In a landmark Harvard University study of more than 56,000 women, the absence of a single confidante, as measured in physical decline, was equivalent to being in the highest category of obesity and being a heavy smoker.
 
13. Snack your way to good sex
 
Sex is a powerful anti-aging tool: Some studies say it can prolong your life up to 20 years, and others insist gettin' busy reduces your mortality rate by half. So how can you get in the mood for more action? Eat strategically, says Eric R. Braverman, M.D., author of Younger (Sexier) You (Rodale). Foods with phytoestrogens, such as soy and fish, keep sex hormones at younger levels; lean proteins like turkey and duck contain tyrosine and phenylaline, which boost desire; healthy fats like low-fat yogurt and eggs are packed with choline, a precursor to the brain chemical that controls arousal and lubrication; and high-fiber vegetables, fruits and whole grains are high in glutamine and inositol, which are precursors to the brain chemical that helps you relax so you can climax.
 
 
14. Get a massage
 
A good rubdown does more than lower stress and mare you feel like a million bucks: A 2010 study at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles found that Swedish massage can improve immune function, helping your body fight off everything from the common cold to cancer.
 
15. Replace your morning buzz
 
Reach for that sweet morning latte and you'll pay for it later, says Jacob Teitelbaum, M.D., author of Beat Sugar Addiction Now (Fair Winds Press). Excess sugar increases your risk of diabetes and autoimmune illnesses, which accelerate aging. Instead of coffee, make a smoothie with a good vitamin powder (like Enzymatic Therapy's Energy Revitalization System) and healthy sugar (D-ribose). In a recent study, D-ribose increased energy an average of 61 percent after three weeks.