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Aging Myths: Busted!

Does sex actually help fight aging? Should you resign yourself to pain as you age? WCH's family physician and Canadian Living columnist Dr. Danielle Martin lets us know which of the following statements are fact, and which are myths.

Aging Myths: Busted

1. There is nothing we can do about pain as we age, it's part of the process

Myth! Pain is usually related to undiagnosed conditions that can be prevented or treated effectively. It is not the norm to have substantial pain. Particular kinds of exercise, some forms of supplements, and a variety of medications will help in most cases. Staying healthy and fit is most important!

2. Having sex helps fight aging

Fact! Sex releases beta endorphins which helps protect skin's collagen, and oxytocin, which lowers the stress chemical cortisol. So get it on and get healthier!

3. I need to get used to forgetting things because it will only get worse as I get older

Myth! Of course there are days when we'll forget our keys or someone's name at a party, but significant memory loss is not the norm with aging. If that is the case, then you must go see a physician. There are many causes and most of them can be treated.

4. It's never too old to learn new things 

Fact! You can teach an old dog new tricks! Though learning patterns may change and speed of learning may diminish, the basic capacity to learn is retained. You can protect yourself from memory loss by trying to learn all the time. So keep those muscles sharp by rollerblading or keep your brains buzzing with a game of Sudoku. 

5. Hair loss comes only from your mother's side 

Myth! We've all probably wondered about this at some point in our lives but it's not only your mom's fault! You should examine both sides of your family tree in order to get an idea of what might be in store for your locks as you age. 

6. It will get harder to lose weight as you get older 

Myth! While our metabolism may plunge as we add years, losing weight is hugely dependent on your diet and physical routine. You must also be aware of the way your body distributes weight as you get older - but the key is to stay active! 

For more on Dr. Danielle Martin's columns, pick up your copy of Canadian Living


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