|1. Lack of sleep. Too little sleep has proven to be detrimental for your health. Research links it to high blood pressure, diabetes, weight gain, and looking tired and older.
|2. A soft spot for sweets. A sugar-packed diet can take its toll on your waistline, and experts also now believe it can make your skin dull and wrinkled.
|3. Stress. Over time, constant anxiety caused from work or personal problems can delay healing, harden your arteries, and shrink areas of your brain involved in learning, memory, and controlling your mood — talk about feeling older!
|4. Only exercising when trying to lose weight. Research shows that vigorous exercisers have longer telomeres — cellular biomarkers that shorten as we age — compared with healthy adults who rarely work out.
|5. Blasting your iPod. Hearing loss develops slowly, the result of prolonged exposure to thousands of high-decibel insults to the ear, many of which come from exposure to everyday gadgets, like iPods or hair dryers.
6. Not eating fruits and vegetables every day. Antioxidants contained in fruits and vegetables remain active for only a few hours and need to be continually replenished, so don't think you're set for the week after eating a big salad for lunch on Monday.
(China.org.cn May 3, 2011)