Hi, this is Dr. Jenny Sechler. Welcome to the Art and Science of Defying Aging. This is my first podcast. Now I’m going to lay the foundation and share some principles that I’ll be working off of and why I’m doing this, because the basic truth is that we’re all aging. If you’re anything like I was, I never even thought about aging and everything was pretty well. I never really was concerned about it. But now I’m in my 50s and I’m starting to see some signs of aging and I’m starting to have more curiosity, and I want to understand the aging process more and how I can optimize it.
0:52 I’m coming from a career in healthcare of over 30 years. I was an ER nurse for many years and I loved it, but I got burned out and I wanted to move on. I got two master’s degrees in nursing and a doctorate in chiropractic. My takeaway from all the education, because I’m kind of a knowledge junkie, was that I thought that we knew more than we did because the honest truth is that we really don’t know that much about health and healing. It kind of surprised me. I’m still spending days and weekends reading and learning because we really don’t know that much about our own health journeys.
I know that I myself want to age well. I want to put this podcast together to start a journey. I’m going to invite my family and my friends and my colleagues and other people that want to start aging well.
1:52 There’s four basic premises that I’m working off of. The first one is that many common issues are written off due to aging and completely ignored, issues like digestive problems, low energy. They’re just typically, oh, you’re just aging. They’re kind of falling into the beliefs that this is just expected illnesses or symptoms with aging, but contrary to popular belief, this isn’t true. By identifying the root causes of these symptoms, we really can find answers and provide solutions so we don’t have to feel like, “Oh, I don’t have enough energy today. My gut has to hurt.” I don’t believe these things are true.
2:31 The second premise is that the conventional aging model is outdated and full of myths. I call it through mother-father teacher-preacher that we learn from a young age what a typical aging process looks like. We watch our grandparents and others live it out.
I remember going to see my great-grandmother in the nursing home. I went with my mom and my grandma . I walked in there and there wasn’t anything going on. My great-grandmother was typically always laying on her bed. She had a dress on, she had hose on and shoes, but no one was really doing anything. I thought, “Is this really what your later years look like?” I just remember thinking, “Well, I don’t want this to be me. That really stuck in my head. Now as a geriatric nurse practitioner and chiropractor, I can tell you the aging model is full of lies. Aging does not have to be met with trepidation, chronic illness and a loss of independence.
3:29 The third premise is that lifestyle interventions are commonly dismissed by mainstream medicine to support healthy aging, interventions like identifying and addressing nutritional deficiencies, fine tuning dietary needs, finding and eliminating hidden infections. These things can help to reduce symptoms and actually improve functionality and energy as we age. They often just go ignored and again, written off, oh, that’s just you aging.
3:57 Lastly is that you don’t need to age like most people. There is a better way. Again, while it’s true the clock is ticking for all of us, it doesn’t have to be the same road that so many people that we’ve seen in the past, parents, grandparents, et cetera. I remember Jack LaLanne when I was growing up, his blue leotard and his chair, watching TV. I just remember thinking, “What an amazing man.” Well, he lived to be 97 years old and I just always admired him and the lifestyle that he chose to live. We’re not all going to be Jack LaLanne. We all do have opportunities to live I think a full and happy and productive life though.
4:43 The question really becomes is how well do you want to age? One of my favorite movies is The Wizard of Oz. When Dorothy and Toto come up to the yellow brick road and to that fork in the road, there’s two options. . I knew a friend and a colleague that told me recently, “Jenny, I got out of bed in the mornings and my back’s just kind of stiff and I just have some aches and pains now.” I talk to my brother, and talk to a couple of my friends and they all have similar things. I know it must just be aging and there’s nothing I can do about it.
I was really surprised and I kind of sat there and I wanted to say something, but I realized that’s her belief and there’s nothing that I can say or do now that’s going to change her beliefs or her actions regarding these symptoms. That’s one road that you can take.
5:35 The other road that I’m going to take is a road less traveled. It’s a road that, yes, things are going to come my way, symptoms, issues are going to come across my path, but I can stop and not just write them off. I can look at science, look at my lifestyle, go look at my emotional health. I can reach out to research,, my colleagues and friends, and really look at the issue and find solutions. I’m a very solution- orientated person. I do believe there are solutions to everything. Now, whether the issue goes away completely or I can improve the issue. I just know that I can make a positive change.
6:20 Instead of aging, being met with fear and uncertainty, I believe that I can meet aging and go down this journey peacefully, in harmony, with expectations of goodness. I invite you to come along the journey with me. Let’s walk the journey together, learn, laugh, and adapt and thrive as we age and learn more about the art and science of defying aging. Join me for my next podcast where we’ll actually dissect four myths of aging. I hope to see you there.