Age: the entire concept fills many of us with dread.  How many times have you heard phrases like “it’s just your age,” “you have to expect that, you’re older,” “I can’t do that any more, I’m old”?  More times than you’d care to count, I’ll bet!

            Is all this an inevitable consequence of the aging process?  Absolutely not!  While no one can promise you a fountain of youth, much of what we believe about “getting old” is just not true.  We all have to age, but we don’t have to get old.  In fact, we can live a life that actually allows us to be “chronologically advantaged,” not old!

            The big question, though, is how to go about “aging gracefully.”  There are some very important changes that people need to make in order to continue to enjoy their lives as they age.

            The first is to optimize the digestive function and increase the body’s pH from acid to alkaline.  An increase in alkalizing foods (primarily fruits and vegetables) can help shift the pH to the alkaline and in the process remove an important underlying cause of many disease conditions.  Some people may need assistance with intelligent nutritional supplementation in the form of digestive enzymes (to increase the availability of nutrients from food one eat), nutrients like beet root (to increase the availability of digestive acid in the stomach) or probiotics (like acidophilus, to maintain the proper floral balance in the gut track).  This can be accomplished with just a willingness to change one’s habits.

            The second change is to normalize the function of the endocrine system, i.e., the glands which produce the body’s hormones.  In most cases, this means normalizing the function of the adrenals, those glands which permit the body to deal effectively with stress.  As a result, we can better cope with the demands of daily life without the debilitating effects of hormonal imbalances.

            The third change involves something which becomes increasingly important as we age: we have to maintain our muscular strength.  This cannot be accomplished by just “staying active.”  The most straightforward way is to participate in resistance training exercise, usually in the form of weight training.  Strength training helps us not just tolerate aging, but enjoy it!

            Finally, one must replace the enzymes one loses over time.  Enzymes perform over 3,000 important functions in the body; from an anti-aging standpoint they are keys to the prevention of the buildup of fibrin in the organ systems of the body.  While this is a long term strategy, it is doable, and can actually result in an improvement in organ function if followed conscientiously.

            Obviously, our bodies are finite organisms, but we can do some simple but critical things to permit them to function at as high a level as possible, and for as long as Nature intended.  In the process, we will be able to enjoy longer, healthier, more active lives, fulfilling the promise of aging, but not growing old.  Let us show you how!


Peter M. McCarthy, ND

Martin's Wellness

Peter M. McCarthy, ND is a nationally board certified traditional naturopath, and a wellness consultant with Martins Compounding and Wellness Centers.  He is the author of Adrenaline Nation: Chronic Stress is Ruining Our Health and Bankrupting Our Economy – Discover What YOU Can Do About It NOW!  Trained in both functional blood work analysis and saliva hormone analysis, he is a former member of the Advisory Committee of the American Naturopathic Certification Board. He is available for individual wellness consultations by appointment at Dripping Springs Pharmacy, 100 Commons Rd., Suite 1, Dripping Springs, TX , Monday through Friday from 10 am til 4 pm.