January 27, 2012


Being 75 and living alone with only a 95 year-old-mother as my nearest relative, I spend a good deal of time reading about the aging process and how to stay healthy. Like most seniors I know, I want to remain independent for as long as I can, and I’m certain that good health is the key. Most of the advice I’ve read is pretty routine: reduce fats and sugar from the diet; eat a variety of leafy greens and fruits; drink plenty of water and get lots of sleep and exercise. The formula is boring which may be why many people ignore it. 

Recently, the maintenance formula has had some refinements, however, based on new scientific discoveries. Not only is sleep important but sleep between 10 p.m. and 2 a.m. is critical as that’s the period when the body creates the most melatonin, a substance that relaxes and helps us sleep. (“Take a Break, Supercharge Your Cells,” Dr. Mehmer Oz, “AARP Magazine” 1/12). The author of “Take a Break” is a cardiothoracic surgeon and host of the Dr. Oz show which is popular on main stream television. Based upon what he’s learned, he advises us to add a few supplements to our diet: alpha-lipoic acid (400 milligrams daily); ginkgo (500 milligrams daily) and acetyl L-carnitine (500 milligrams twice daily).

Also of prime importance is the herb astragalus. Dr. Oz also writes that there are telomeres in our bodies, little chunks of matter imbedded in our cells that wear out and cause the organisms to die. To help cells live longer, he recommends 1200 milligrams daily of the herb to be taken with a caffeine drink like coffee or green tea. Apparently the caffeine activates the astragalus to do its work.

(courtesy: yahoo.com)

I’m passing the information along with no claims of expertise or knowledge but I admit, I’ve ordered a few of these supplements to see what happens. If a picture of me looking like Angelina Jolie appears on my blog in a couple of months, you’ll know the doctor’s advice worked.