“Is this the right time for a spa vacay in the middle of the desert in the summer?”

Annie glanced in the mirror at Nat as she confidently guided her electric car to the front entrance of the Canyon Ranch Spa in Tucson, Arizona. “For my money, this is the perfect time. First, it won’t be as crowded as it is in the fall and winter. Second, desert heat isn’t so bad; it beats humid heat. I think we’re going to have a fun time. Just look at the surroundings. This place is beautiful.”

From the cool interior of the car, Annie, Kathy, Nat, and Carol stepped out onto the sun-washed grounds and were astounded by the vast beauty of the surrounding landscape. The sky was a vivid deep blue, dotted with puffy white clouds. Mesquite, Ironwood, Palo Verde trees, and spiny cacti were scattered across the terrain, interspersed with desert flowers of brilliant oranges and pinks. All around them were birds melodically chirping while cotton tails and jackrabbits hopped about. For the next four days, Annie and her friends planned to bask in the unique beauty of the desert and take advantage of the various amenities and luxuries the spa offered.

“Let’s check in, settle, and meet at the daily nutrition lecture. I hear they have a great healthy eating program, and I want to learn how a clean diet can help promote anti-aging,” said Carol.

Annie smiled. “Yes, their lectures and workshops teach us how to create positive changes in our diet and lifestyle. We’ll also learn anti-aging secrets from experts on healthy living.

Kathy held up her phone. “I came prepared to record notes and take photos. I don’t know what a clean diet is, but I’m sure it doesn’t include sugar, which I’m eating way too much, and it is damaging my skin.”

Nat put her arm around Kathy. “Don’t be so hard on yourself. You look better than you think you do.

Clean eating is a diet and lifestyle focusing on whole, natural, and nutrient-rich foods.

It’s simple, but let’s not spend time here chatting. I’ll meet you at the lecture.”

An hour later, the foursome was seated around the outdoor kitchen, watching Patty put the final additions on a Halloumi Salad with Nutty Tomato Vinaigrette.

“Welcome to lunch and learn. Today I’m going to talk about clean eating and its anti-aging benefits,” she said as she passed around plates.

Clean eating supports anti-aging in many ways, including avoiding internal inflammation caused by processed and refined foods. Internal inflammation can lead to a variety of health issues, including weight gain, cardiovascular disease, depression, and premature aging.

“This salad is delicious,” remarked Carol. “Can you explain internal inflammation?”

“Sure, and have some more salad. There’s plenty.

Inflammation can be classified into two types: acute and chronic. Acute inflammation is short-term and generally caused by an injury or illness. Chronic inflammation is persistent and is often linked to an individual’s lifestyle and dietary habits. Clean eating promotes physical health and aids in the prevention of internal inflammation. A clean diet includes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, healthy fats, and other nutrient-rich foods.”

“Thanks, Patty. So, I can reduce internal inflammation by eating these nutrient-packed foods instead of processed, sugary, or calorie-laden foods?”

Patty nodded. “Those and others like green leafy vegetables, apples, pears, blueberries, strawberries, fish, nuts, beans, and miso. These foods are nutrient-dense and provide the body with various vitamins and minerals. They help protect against heart disease, cognitive decline, and other age-related conditions by reducing levels of inflammation.”

Kathy looked at her notes. “To summarize, clean eating is an effective way to support and promote anti-aging from the inside out. By consuming nutrient-rich, anti-inflammatory foods and limiting sugar, processed, and refined foods, we can reduce the risk of health complications associated with aging and lead a healthier, happier life.”

“That’s correct.” One of my favorite quotes says,

“No one ever said, I really regret eating healthy today.”

“Wise words from a wise woman. Thanks, Patty, and thanks for the Ginger Lemonade. It’s refreshing.” Annie turned to her friends. “Let’s go check out the climbing wall and zip line.”


Annie and LJ are a fictional couple. Their storyline promotes healthy eating and earth-friendly practices.

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