WRINKLED skin, a hunched back and a slow stride—this is the sad picture that comes to mind when one thinks about growing old. While aging is inevitable, one can grow old gracefully even without having exceptional genes. Most mere mortals can live through old age gracefully and healthily, by opting for these simple lifestyle changes.

Stay positive. Staying positive is one tip that most people take for granted. Negative vibes can cause stress and in turn can disrupt the body’s processes, opening risks to lifestyle-produced diseases. Staying positive is a way to train one’s body to manage the stress.

Opt to be active. Staying active and engaging in physical activities train one’s body for endurance. Staying fit doesn’t mean engaging in heavy, strenuous activities. In fact, training one’s body with simple and easy activities like regular walking or even dancing can already do so much for one’s health.

Get enough sleep. Sleep is the body’s natural process to relax, shut down and gain more energy. A study shows that an unstable and disturbed sleeping pattern could lead to serious health problems such as heart disease and diabetes because sleeping also gives one’s body time to process glucose and balance his blood pressure.

Socialize. Social interaction contributes to cognitive development. As one ages, his mind weakens, but bonding with family and friends helps keeps one’s memory strong.

Drink lots of water. Drinking water has a lot of benefits as it can help relieve fatigue, flush out toxins and lessen headaches—among many other benefits. However, the sensation of thirst decreases as you age, which is why older adults are at more risk of dehydration than other age groups.

Opt for a balanced meal. As one ages, getting more high-quality protein in one’s diet prevents him from being at risk of health problems such as cancer and heart disease. Given that aging results in muscle loss and resistance to build new mucles, protein requirements increase with age as it improves one’s muscle built and bone health.

Support the body through supplements. Nutritional supplements specially formulated for older adults are essential to sustain the required nutrients your body needs. Ingredients such as whey protein, probiotics and prebiotics are essential among aging people, as it enhances the body’s defenses and prevents the risk of attaining serious health problems.

Start early. Taking a crack at doing the things above is only the first step towards a healthier lifestyle. Simply put, the best secret to aging gracefully is to start taking care of one’s self as early as possible.

Nestlé Health Science is the health science arm of Nestlé, the leading global nutrition, health and wellness company. Formed in 2011, Nestlé Health Science is an innovative and fundamentally different type of health science company that is focused specifically on advancing nutritional therapy to change the course of health—for people, patients and their partners in healthcare. PR