By MH Staff - Posted on 12th May 2014
Hit your peak in these areas now and you’ll be stronger, sharper and faster!
YOU PEAK AT 18. LIVE IT NOW: Eat beef liver once a week – cook it in a frying pan until it’s firm – to preserve iron and proteins. Your body’s ability to get blood to its extremities declines with age, so a diet rich in red meat and iron assists your heart and its romantic designs. “As you age, lipids in your blood vessels slow the flow,” says surgeon Dr Charles Clark, author of The Age Revolution: The Drug-free Plan to Stay Fit, Young and Healthy (R227, Kalahari). “Contrary to popular belief, those who eat the most red meat and saturated fats have the least cholesterol, meaning faster blood flow.” And he’ll steak his reputation on it.
YOU PEAK AT 19. LIVE IT NOW: Tackle 20 minutes of “fluid intelligence” puzzles daily (brainworkshop.sourceforge.net). Our fluid intelligence is our ability to reason quickly and think abstractly, and fresh neural networks means this comes easily at the end of our teens. “Younger men have better capacity for logic and deductive thinking,” says psychologist Dr Jane Prince. At 19 your neural pathways aren’t fixed, so your thought processes are more adaptable. Lateral thinking puzzles harness this skill at all ages.
YOU PEAK AT 22. LIVE IT NOW: “At this age, your maximum heart rate peaks, then begins to dec-line,” says physiologist Dr Valerie Gladwell. “The blood pumped in each beat reduces, so the oxygen uptake in your muscles decreases.” The key is to train your body to increase its oxygen uptake. Powerbreathe training boosts your respiratory muscle endurance by 27.8%, while high-altitude training forces you to produce more oxygen- carrying haemoglobin.
YOU PEAK AT 28. LIVE IT NOW: Work your memory using the Memory Trainer app at urbian.biz – “Research proves that recall peaks in your late 20s,” says Prince. The key to reigniting this is your short-term memory. “You can strengthen your short-term recall by putting your diary away for a week. Memorise appointments and important dates – if you forget one, work out what distracted you.” Another option is to practise memorising a new number from your phone every day.
YOU PEAK AT 30. LIVE IT NOW: Train for at least 75 minutes a week with floor exercises that target your core. “Your physical strength peaks at around 30, followed by a general decline in muscle mass as you age,” says Gladwell. “This can be countered by ensuring you work your core properly each week, in blocks of at least 10 min sessions.” Gladwell recommends you start with this: “On all fours, lift one arm and the opposite leg at the same time, before switching and repeating.” Just don’t drop off to sleep, grandpa.
YOU PEAK AT 32. LIVE IT NOW: Keeping her happy means bringing your ego down to size, says Prince. You do this best at 32 – psychological tipping point between youth and experience. “You become more confident in judgment, but still have lots of energy.” Prince suggests a thought exercise called outside overview. “Imagine yourself looking at your relationship and working out a solution that doesn’t end with you as the star,” she says. “Understanding the ego has to be subsumed is key to relationship success.” That and getting on her mother’s good side.
YOU PEAK AT 45. LIVE IT NOW: Banish sugar from your life to save your brain. Too much sugar destroys proteins in your neurons, which begin to die off at 45, and weakens cell walls, leading to faster sub-cranial self-destruction. “Nerve cells are essentially just protein and fat,” says Clark. “So replenishing your proteins and amino acids is the secret to mending damage brought on by ageing.” Also, you can satisfy your cravings with plant extracts like coconut milk. Use it in everything from cooking to your morning cuppa. A simple switch to natural extracts lets your brain fight back.