Often, when I happen to tell people how old I am, it is amusing—and I must admit, flattering—to see their disbelieving reactions. I am blessed with what people call a “baby face,” and until now, I liked those compliments for the simple reason that they lifted my mood.
Today, I chanced upon a study that makes me realize that my heart should quite literally be glad that I look younger than I am. The study says a “young” face could be an indicator of longer life.
Dutch scientists conducted this interesting study on 514 adults with an average age of 63. This was the first-ever study that tried to establish a possible link between the rate at which skin ages, and the possibility of heart disease. They found that men and women who have a “baby face” tend to have lower blood pressure, which is directly linked to a higher risk of heart disease.The study, published in the Journal of Gerontology, affirms that women who look more than two years younger than they actually are can take comfort in the fact that their heart is healthier than their older-looking contemporaries.
The study underlines the fact that it is not the number of wrinkles on your face that affects your resistance to cardiovascular problems. Those with high blood pressure have a certain “sag” to their skin, and hypertension is largely triggered by an unhealthy lifestyle. In addition to affecting the heart, high blood pressure can also cause kidney problems, memory loss, poor vision, metabolic syndrome and strokes.
So what does this mean for those of us who have older or more mature-looking skin? Scientists who conducted the study say this should encourage these individuals to start following a healthier lifestyle. By making simple changes such as getting adequate sleep, eating balanced meals, and exercising daily, it is possible to shed extra weight, let go of pent up stress, and acquire a fresh, young face!