I want you to forget everything you’ve been taught about aging, life expectancy, and your waistline. Now imagine looking up to 10 years younger in one week and keeping a smaller waist for the rest of your very long life. What would that freedom mean to you?

Believe it or not, that is the future ahead of you. You will not find the cure to aging in a lotion, at the end of a Botox needle, or in expensive surgeries. The true key to aging more slowly begins in your kitchen. Give me a week in your kitchen, and I will show you how to look younger, feel younger, and lose up to 9 lbs. of belly fat with the most delicious food you’ve ever eaten! I want to empower you to live well forever.

In a recent article published by USA Today, industry analysts projected that anti-aging will become a $115 billion industry by 2015. That’s “billion” with a “b” . . . and that number represents the U.S. market exclusively. As a culture we’ve put a premium on looking younger longer.

Our nation is completely obsessed, and I’ll be honest: I’m not immune!
I turned 40 this year, and you’d think it was a mild tragedy. I found myself spending more time in front of the mirror meticulously evaluating my appearance.

I felt like Detective Jorge Cruise, on the case to uncover all evidence to acquit me of my age. I measured my waistline, took the magnifying glass to my face for skin clarity and wrinkles, and then interviewed possible accomplices.

A few of my close friends were lining up for cosmetic enhancements, skin peels, and hormone treatments. A handful of other well-intentioned friends sided on the theory of “aging gracefully” and the grin-and-bear-it technique.

“Age is just a number,” I kept hearing. It made me cringe.

In truth, I didn’t want to be “old news.”

My whole career has been about helping women and men effortlessly achieve optimal health by getting rid of their belly fat. I don’t believe looks are everything, but I know that people pay attention to appearance. The last thing I wanted was to get cast aside for someone who looked younger. My age was causing me a bit of panic. I had a growing fear of rejection.

If you’re like me, you’ve experienced a similar “crisis of aging.” Are we crazy?

Should we simply put our desire to look and feel younger on the shelf and “let the process happen”? Is it time to ignore the extra inches on our waistline rather than finally drop the belly fat once and for all? The answer to all those questions is no, and I’ll tell you exactly why.

The desire to look our best is biological. Humans equate beauty with true health. I discovered that waist circumference is not only the first gauge of someone’s attractiveness, it has also been a measurement of true health since the dawn of the human race. A woman could evaluate a man’s testosterone levels based on his waist size and determine whether or not he was a viable mate. Added inches on a man’s waistline convert testosterone to estrogen, resulting in a lower sperm count. Similarly men identified excess belly fat on a woman as an indicator of either pregnancy or hormonal imbalance. We are hardwired to associate external beauty with internal health.

Obviously, you don’t need to be living in a cave or to be in the business of finding a mate to understand the principle here: our biological instinct is to determine health and beauty based on physical indicators. If you think you’re crazy for wanting to look and feel young, let me assure you that you’re absolutely normal.

Additionally, many of the supposed “signs of aging” are actually the result of poor dietary health. The truth is there are two primary dietary components that will make you look older faster. The first component ages you more quickly because you’re getting too much of it, and the second ages you more quickly because you’re not getting enough of it.

As it turns out, the same supervillain responsible for extra inches on your waistline is also leading the assault against your appearance: hidden sugar. Time and time again I hear a new client say, “I avoid sugar,” “I enjoy my coffee without a packet of sweetener,” or “When I was a kid I ate lots of sugary foods, but I’ve stopped eating candy bars and ice cream now.” This is why I call it “hidden”—to help you realize that this sneaky little devil is not just in packets of added sugar, ice cream, or candy bars, but often in the common foods and products that you would least expect.

The second dietary component is something you need more of: antioxidants.
These microscopic miracle workers are found predominantly in veggies, herbs, and spices, and they help fight against dangerous free radicals and age-accelerating oxidation.

The truth is that you can have incredible years of life ahead of you in which
you look and feel your very best. I believe you can be healthy and active into your 80s, 90s, and even 100s! If you find yourself starting to think that the extra pounds, deeper wrinkles, and seemingly endless fatigue are natural pieces of the aging puzzle, then I’m here to guide you to the truth.

Jorge Cruise is the author of 4 consecutive New York Times best-selling series, with more than 5 million books in print in over 15 languages.