There is no doubt that healthy eating and exercise is good for you, but researchers have recently discovered that there's another reason to motivate you to choose veggies over fast food – it actually slows down the aging process at a genetic level.

Scientists discovered that telomeres, which are the little caps on the end of the chromosomes that carry the DNA, are longer in people with a healthy lifestyle. That means slower aging. As you age, the telomeres get shorter. Eating healthy literally makes you younger from the inside out.

Study participants were eating a diet high in whole foods, fruits, vegetables, and unrefined grains and keeping fat to 10 percent of calories. The average American gets more than a third of calories from fat in comparison. They also exercised, walking at least 30 minutes a day, six days a week, did yoga-based stretching and breathing exercises, practiced relaxation techniques and went to weekly one-hour stress-reduction group sessions. 

Blood tests confirmed that in the first three months, the telomeres increased by 30% – that means it isn't too late to reverse the signs of aging by eating right! (Today)