Janice Lorraine is 75 years old and a grandmother of three. It may sound like a fairly common story but this grandmother, from Granville Australia, is anything but average. Over the past 20 years, she has accumulated some 23 bodybuilding titles. She started at the age of 55 with Weight Resistance Training because she wanted to fight the signs of the aging process.
Lorraine got started on this path after observing an elderly woman with mobility issues. She was determined that she would stay as active as possible and for her, it involved training at the gym 3 days a week. On alternate days, she follows a personal regimen, including 5-mile walks.
In order to maintain the highest level of fitness possible, she eats ‘natural, nude food’. It includes salads, sweet potatoes, fish, chicken or steak. There is no processing and nothing is added, including condiments or sauces. She does allow herself to enjoy a glass of wine when she eats dinner and she also eats a square of sugar-free chocolate that has a high cocoa content.
Lorraine says that she feels fantastic but along with being fit and strong, she has a higher level of self-esteem. She enjoys standing out in the world of bodybuilding and changing people’s views of what ‘old’ should look like.
“My aim is to show what’s possible and to motivate and encourage women of any age, to live the life they want to live and not be bound by traditional stereotypes and roles and the expectations of others.”
Janice Lorraine is living a healthy life but she is also avoiding some of the issues that are common in those who are aging. Science backs up her lifestyle and says that eating healthy and staying active really benefit your body in the following ways:
1. Prevention of Muscle Loss
Muscle loss (Sarcopenia) affects 10% of adults over 50. Issues such as a protein or calorie deficient diet, sedentary lifestyle, stress, and inflammation can lead to this difficulty. You can fight Sarcopenia in the following ways:
Exercise – you can prevent or even reverse muscle loss by exercising with fitness training, resistance training and walking.
Diet – eating enough protein and sufficient calories can slow the rate of muscle loss. 25-30 g of protein at each meal is recommended by some scientists.
Supplement – adding vitamin D, omega-3 and creatine can help in your battle against muscle loss.
2. Loss of Bone Density
Your bone mass will likely peak by the time you reach 30 years of age. At that point, the reversal of bone material increases and the formation slows. Low bone mass, also known as osteopenia can lead to osteoporosis. This is a structural deformation of the bone tissue that can lead to fragile bones with a high risk of fracture.
Some issues associated with bone loss are inherited. Your gender, age, build and family history are things you must live with. There are preventative measures that can increase your risk of osteoporosis and they include smoking, excessive alcohol consumption, and inactivity. You can combat bone density loss in the following ways:
Exercise – exercising regularly can add to your strength and bone density. Weight-bearing exercises are the best choice but walking, jogging, hiking, dancing and playing tennis are also things to consider.
Diet – eat a proper diet that has foods rich in calcium, magnesium and vitamin D.
3. Cardiovascular Health
The number one risk factor for cardiovascular disease is your age. Changes take place in your body as we get older and it can lead to issues with atrial fibrillation and heart failure. You can support your cardiovascular health in the following ways:
Cardiovascular Exercise – moderate or vigorous cardiovascular exercise helps to improve your heart health. Walking briskly, jogging, Zumba or running can be considered according to your current health.
Muscle Strengthening Activities – perform muscle-strengthening activities at least two days per week, focusing on the larger muscles of the body.
Diet – eat a diet rich in fruits and vegetables, fiber-rich green’s, legumes, fish, nuts and seeds. Lower your sodium and sugar intake.
4. Brain Health
As you get older, risks to your brain’s health increase. Many people experience memory loss but head injuries can cause additional problems.
Taking certain medications or drinking too much alcohol can affect how your brain works. Smoking leads to narrow arteries and if a blood clot forms, it could result in a stroke.
The Alzheimer’s Association states that one out of three seniors die with Alzheimer’s or another type of dementia. You can prevent your risk of Alzheimer’s in the following ways:
Mental Activity – keep your mind active by reading, taking courses or doing puzzles, such as Sudoku. Scientists have found that nerve cells are stimulated by those types of activities and when you engage in those stimulating tasks, it can help your brain to generate new cells.
Diet – be sure to eat plenty of fruits and vegetables, grains and lean meats. Reduce your consumption of sugar and salt.
Stay hydrated – Be sure you drink enough water every day.
Exercise – engage in physical activity according to your health level.
It seems as if Lorraine is heading in the right direction. Eating a balanced diet and getting enough exercise are the keys to growing old in a healthy and happy way.