Put old on hold: How to reduce the physical and mental signs of aging

Aging isn’t a four-letter word, but it has a negative connotation just the same. It’s something most people don’t

want to think about — except maybe baby boomers.

The baby boomers are the generation most concerned with health, according to Barbara Morris, a septuagenarian pharmacist from Escondido. She wrote a book on the subject, “Boomers Can Really Put Old on Hold.”

“They don’t want to hear ‘old,'” Morris said. “As a pharmacist, I see how many drugs people take. Most people are on drugs for high cholesterol. I think they can stay ageless as long as they choose to.”

Morris’ book discusses how to reduce the physical and mental signs of aging and maintain a positive outlook on life.

“You have to take responsibility for health and life. It’s easier than you might imagine. There is so much information and so many ways to educate yourself. From my perspective, you’re still a baby at 50 and 60.”

In her book, Morris talks about a low-calorie diet, the benefits of water, how clothes you wear help you maintain your vitality and how baby boomers can find new jobs.

“I don’t believe retirement is all that good. We all look forward to it and think we’re free at last, but those are generally the folks that go downhill fast because everything changes. It’s also hardest on those who have been in a high-level position. If you don’t want to work, volunteer. The important thing is to remain active.”

Morris takes good care of herself because she wants to enjoy her life, but she also does it for her husband, daughter and grandchildren.

“Let’s face it, we all have busy lives,” she said. “The last thing my daughter needs is to have to worry about me. It’s the best gift you can give your children. People can have a fabulous life right up until they die. If you’re good mentally and physically, you can do most anything.”

Morris began thinking about nutrition and aging when she was a child growing up in New Jersey.

“My mother was my motivation,” said Morris, who was the fifth of seven children in the family. “Even when I was a young girl, she had white hair and seemed to be so old. Life was harder then. I remember her washing laundry in the sink. She never exercised and ate heavy German food. I swore I was never going to get old. I became very attentive to nutrition and exercise, but it hasn’t taken over my life.”

Morris still works as a pharmacist in Escondido and doesn’t plan to retire.

“If I were retired, I would miss helping people,” she said. “This gives me a great opportunity, and I’m thrilled to death to share this information with people.”

“Boomers Can Really Put Old on Hold” by Barbara Morris (Image F/X Publications, $16.95)