“Aging” is something we frequently think of as happening at some nebulous point after we “grow up,” signifying a dark descent after our prime where our mental, physical, and emotional capacities all start to decline. But this idea ignores the fact that our brains are always capable of learning, changing, and synergizing ideas together in new and intriguing ways. Experience can bring great wisdom, and while it is true that our bodies change and become more susceptible to illness and injury the longer we live, there is much we can do to keep ourselves healthy and vibrant. Still, living in a culture that places the highest value on keeping up the appearance of youth and vitality can be exhausting, stressful, and undermining to our feelings of self-worth. Finding new ways to live whole-heartedly is part of the joy of living a long life, and we can rely on those who have walked this path before us for inspiration.
Gil Jacobs turns 60 this year, but looks about 20 years younger. The reason for his unnaturally youthful looks? Not Botox or face lifts—he credits his ageless appearance to the raw food diet and detox regimen he developed to self-heal after a health scare in his 20s.