Aging gracefully

Published May 26, 2019, 12:09 AM

by Charissa Luci-Atienza & Bernie Cahiles-Magkilat



Nelly Favis Villafuerte
Nelly Favis Villafuerte

Many of us wonder why so many, despite the lapse of many years, look young while others look old. Remember our class reunions? Some classmates whom we have not seen since our graduation 20 or 30 years ago looked the same as we remember them during our school days. On the other hand, our other classmates looked so old and different from our recollection of them 20 or 30 years ago. One may ask: Why is this so?

Let me share some interesting information about aging:

  • Aging is an inevitable part of our life. We can have an anti–aging regimen based on exercise, nutrition, dietary supplement, and/or other lifestyle factors to slow down the aging process. However, we cannot stop the process of aging.
  • The good news is that we can have longer life spans than our parents and grandparents because today we are more informed and have better access to better medical treatment; eat more healthy food; and have the health benefits of physical activity and exercise. It is no longer a surprise that we see eighty or even ninety-years-old people who are still energetic and in good health who are enjoying life, And more. They look as if they are in their forties or fifties.
  • Today, many scientists say that the maximum life span of human being is 120 years. Other scientists say that this longevity record can be broken anytime in the same way that runners break earlier speed records of winning runners.
  • There is a case of Frenchwoman Jeanne Louisse Calment who smoked French cigarettes until she was 122 years old. Indeed, this is an amazing record. Considering too that she is a smoker. Probably there must be something in the life of this French lady that resulted in her long life span.
  • Many of us are familiar with the fabled Fountain of Youth that the Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de Leon was looking for. Sadly, to date there is yet no fountain of youth or elixir of youth or a so-called Youth Pill that will immediately remove or erase the symptoms of age.
  • There is a story on aging about a 72-year-old French neurologist who said that he had concocted an anti-aging elixir derived from dog and guinea pig testicles. The neurologist injected himself with his anti–aging elixir in 1889. Five years later, the doctor died.

Suffice it to say that no single anti-aging plan is good for everybody. We all have different and distinct physical make up, needs, and goals.

Today, there are many theories on why we age. On why our bodies and minds deteriorate on a day-to-day basis. Whatever theory we adhere to, we should always remember that the aging process begins the moment we are born and continues until we die. Our human bodies function like a machine, with the difference that the human body operates every second of every minute of every hour.  In the end, the human body eventually wears out – the change in our physical bodies as we grow older as well as the deterioration of our internal organs.

The simple message that I am trying to convey is for us to enjoy life and age joyfully, gracefully, and happily. Like vehicles, our bodies should be “tuned up” through exercise, proper nutrition, and a joyful attitude.

Finally, what would be the world without the old? Everyone wants to live long. And the only way to live a long life is by aging.

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This column continues to give out copies of the Holy Bible for free to those who cannot afford to buy their own copies. If interested, please send your letter-request to Ms. Nelly Favis Villafuerte, 5233 LRV Building, Fahrenheit St., Palanan, Makati City. Kindly mention if it is the Tagalog, English, Cebuano, or Ilocano Bible that is preferred.

Be joyful and forgiving!

(Comments may be sent to Ms. Villafuerte’s E-mail: [email protected]