It takes a bit of planning to forestall something, meaning stop it from happening. To forestall the effects of aging, exercise and take care of your health all your life.

You can break the word forestall into parts to figure out its meaning. The prefix fore is one you've seen in words like forewarn, which means "to warn in advance." And you probably know that stall means "delay." So to forestall is to stall in advance, or put another way, to try to prevent or put off something you don't want to happen.

Definitions of forestall

v keep from happening or arising; make impossible

forbid, foreclose, preclude, prevent
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make unnecessary, save
make unnecessary an expenditure or effort
avert, avoid, debar, deflect, fend off, forefend, forfend, head off, obviate, stave off, ward off
prevent the occurrence of; prevent from happening
block, blockade, embarrass, hinder, obstruct, stymie, stymy
hinder or prevent the progress or accomplishment of
baffle, bilk, cross, foil, frustrate, queer, scotch, spoil, thwart
hinder or prevent (the efforts, plans, or desires) of
block, halt, kibosh, stop
stop from happening or developing
obstruct or hinder any discussion
disappoint, let down
fail to meet the hopes or expectations of
prevent commerce
obstruct deliberately by delaying
block or impede (a player from the opposing team) in ice hockey
prevent from reaching a verdict, of a jury
slow down or impede by creating an obstruction
destroy or break
hamper the progress of; impede
destroy or cause to fail
stop a judicial process

v act in advance of; deal with ahead of time

anticipate, counter, foresee
Type of:
act, move
perform an action, or work out or perform (an action)

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