5 Things That Will Age You

People have searched for the fountain of youth for centuries. And, while it remains elusive, there are things you can do to slow the aging process, or speed it up. Oprah's favorite doc, Dr. Mehmet Oz, discusses the five things that age people most.

High Blood Pressure

By the time you're age 50, 70 percent of how you age is going to depend on your lifestyle, things that you do.

The No. 1 driver of aging is blood pressure. That seems tedious, boring and a humdrum problem. But blood pressure is so important because it's like a fire hydrant.

It's squirting blood against the arteries of the body, which scrapes and erodes their lining; with the thin layer of protection gone, the arteries begin to scar.

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The result is hardening of the arteries, as well as strokes. For guys, it leads to one bigger issue, which is impotence.

Men are lucky because they have a dipstick for health. It's called the penis.

When it's not working, it means that those little arteries in the penis aren't functional. That means the blood can't get in there.

And guess what? If it's not working there, those same arteries aren't working in your brain or your heart or your kidneys, or all the other critical organs.

Normal blood pressure is 140 over 80. But the optimal blood pressure is 115 over 75.

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The higher number is the maximum force with which the heart pushes the blood out. The lower number is how much your arteries can relax. So you don't want too much force because you're wasting energy. You're also destroying arteries. But you also want to know that you're relaxed.

So 140 over 90, a little bit more than your recommended, is actually hypertension. So you don't want to be even close to that.

Belly Fat

Belly fat is the main reason that Americans get high blood pressure and even a little bit of it could be too much for some people.

The ideal waist size is half your height in inches. So if you're 40 inches around in, in your girth, you've got to be 80 inches tall.

Stress

It's critically important to recognize that belly fat is a barometer to how you cope with stress in your life.

You've get this big joint called the temporomandibular. It's the joint of the jaw that comes under too much stress when you clench your jaw all the time. And you stretch it out, and you relax it. And by doing that, you begin to take all your joints, and remind them how it feels not to be tensed up.

That's why deep breathing is so important for us to learn about. Deep breathing, which is the foundation of all Eastern practices for meditation, is the foundation for stress management in so many cultures. And we never do it.

You don't want to use your chest wall to pull up the lungs. The big muscle in the body that moves the lungs is the diaphragm. So you've got to do belly breathing.

Smoking

Although it seems it's adaptive, and that it's helping you cope, for almost all smokers who I really have gotten down to on this thing, it makes you feel like you're pathetic because you're addicted to the thing you don't want to be addicted to.

Eating Bad Food

There's a lot of food advice out there. Food is a sacred topic for me. Food is not to be feared; it's not to be counted.

So, I want you to pay attention to one basic concept. You want the food you eat to look the way it looked when it came out of the ground.

Avoid the white foods because there are very few white foods in nature. The white bread, the white pasta, the white flour, the white sugar, which gets hidden into our food, are all out.

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