Unless you were born after 1980, you probably are interested in maintaining the youngest appearance that you possibly can. Yesterday’s Oprah show was dedicated to just that.

Her friend and weight loss expert, Bob Greene, has written a new book entitled – ’20 Years Younger’. In it he advises four key areas to achieve ultimate youth and beauty. They are: exercise – 200 minutes per week to start increased to 300 after tolerance is maintained, nutrition – 1700 calories of super foods per day, skin care – proper polishes and scientific creams, and sleep. Not exactly rocket science to hear the first three categories, but how does sleep affect us I wondered.

He and his experts addressed this. According to them, we need 7 to 9 hours of sleep every night to achieve the REM stage that allows production of leptin – an appetite suppressing substance. And of course our skin needs sleep to rejuvenate itself, as well as some strong exfoliants and powerful new creams.

The sleep recommendation is where I seem to go off the rail. Last night I timed it out for seven hours. Knowing my alarm is set for 5:30 am, and allowing ten minutes to fall asleep, I made sure I was in bed by 10:20 pm. Everything went according to plan for about five hours. Then the storms rolled in – strong wind, rain, buckets of hail, lightening. Who could sleep through that? Then, as soon as I managed to fall back asleep, the phone started ringing. The communications center had received a call that a neighbor’s empty feed bin had been blown out into the road. Since their number is unlisted, would we mind calling them? Somehow we have become the go-to community advisers.

We can’t turn our phones off because of the agri-alert system at our farm. So I don’t know what we can do about that. All I know is, there will be no leptin for me today! Five hours is the best I could do in the sleep department. Maybe tonight will be better.

Any suggestions?

As for exercise – I pitched mulch steadily for about two hours yesterday. So I think I’m good in that department. I don’t count calories but looking back over the day’s consumption, I’d say 1500 was probably closer to it. They weren’t from super foods though, unless peanut m & m’s count as eating colors.

Skin care is something I always strive to do. I never sleep in makeup, regardless of how tired I may be and I’ve been using eye creams since I was twenty. Right now I have a prescription strength line of products that I got from a specialist. It’s called ‘Obagi’.

If I could get enough sleep, I’d be set for youthfulness!

Posted with WordPress for BlackBerry.

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