People who used to follow healthy diets and a healthy lifestyle at their young age, are likely to live a healthy life when old.
Growing old doesn’t only increase our age but also brings numerous issues with it.
Even a simple flu can lead to complications as you start aging. Besides, illnesses like dementia, arthritis, or Asthma in seniors can make lives extremely difficult for them. Thus, the fear of getting old is a legitimate feeling.
People who used to follow healthy diets and a healthy lifestyle at their young age, are likely to live a healthy life when old. But it is never too late to follow seniors guide to staying healthy. This is one of the most important factors that can make a huge difference once you start independent living or assisted living.
Today begins your journey towards healthier life at an old age. We will take you through the concept of healthy aging and provide you with all the necessary tips to staying fit and healthy.
Defining Healthy Aging
Every person in the world should be able to live a long, healthy life. The environments in which we live, on the other hand, can either promote or impair our health. Our behavior, exposure to health dangers (such as air pollution or violence), availability to high-quality health and social care, and the opportunities that come with aging are all influenced by our surroundings.
So, if you want to know how to overcome the fear of aging, it is important to define healthy aging. So, what is healthy aging? Healthy aging comes with the acceptance of being old. It’s all about providing conditions and opportunities that allow people to be and do what they care about all of their life.
WHO defines healthy aging as the ability to function daily tasks on our own and to our complete capacity. It is a matter of healthy lifestyle that will enable seniors to believe on their ability to function despite their age.
An 80-year-old senior can possess the same mental and physical strength to perform daily tasks similar to a 30-year-old adult. And the most crucial thing to do that is maintaining healthy diets and exercises daily. Healthy aging entails discovering new interests, remaining physically and socially engaged, and feeling connected to your community and loved ones, in addition to learning to adapt to change. But unfortunately, aging affects senior mental health by causing anxiety and fear among many.
How Life Changes as You Get Older?
The actual issue with aging is how it is portrayed in a negative perspective rather than the rising number of years. The fact that we live in an era when we’re all supposed to live longer adds to the problem. It’s hard to imagine someone wanting to live longer after reading about all the issues that come with being older.
You’re probably aware that wrinkles and grey hair are likely to appear as you get older. But do you realize how your teeth, heart, and sexuality will be affected as you get older? Learn about the changes you can expect as you get older and how to stay healthy at any age.
The hardening of blood capillaries and arteries is the most common change in the cardiovascular system, requiring your heart to work harder to pump blood through them. To cope with the increasing workload, the cardiac muscles alter. As a result, your heart rate will remain relatively constant at rest. Still, it will not increase as much during physical activity as it did previously. Hypertension (high blood pressure) and other cardiovascular disorders are more likely due to these alterations.
Constipation can be worsened in elderly persons due to structural changes in the large intestine. Lack of exercise, insufficient hydration, and a low-fiber diet are among the other contributing causes. Constipation can also be caused by medications like diuretics and iron supplements and certain medical disorders, including diabetes.
As you become older, your brain changes that can affect your memory and thinking abilities. Healthy older folks, for example, may forget common names or terms, or multitasking may be more challenging for them.
Metabolism and weight issues
As you become older, the rate at which your body burns calories slows down. So you’ll gain weight if you cut back on your activities as you get older but keep eating the same way. Keep yourself active and eat well to maintain a healthy weight.
Seniors Guide to Staying Healthy: 10 Tips that Will Change Your Life
Any improvement in life takes time, effort, and patience. Sometimes progress is hard to see or feel. Have faith that the effort you make will eventually have a positive impact on your life.
1) Take stock of where you are
To the extent possible, evaluate the areas of your life that need improvement. This will help you prioritize your goals and provide direction. For example, you may have a good diet, but need to incorporate more activity into your day.
2) Set realistic goals
Doing too much, in the beginning, is likely to be self-defeating. Most people abandon exercise programs because it is too painful or difficult. By setting small, achievable goals, you are much more likely to stick with the changes you want to make. Write your goals down. Tell someone what your plan is to keep you on track.
3) Make time
Improving your health should be a priority. That means it will take time and commitment. Think of this effort as your part-time job.
4) Start low and go slow
Avoiding injury is critical. Before increasing activity of any kind, or changing your diet, check with your doctor. Once you have received clearance, start changes slowly.
5) Focus on activity and exercise
Exercise can be an intimidating word. Images of aerobics classes or marathon runners can instill fear. Think more in terms of activity. The activity can mean walking, or housework, or gardening. When you park your car to go shopping, park further away so that you have to walk more. Take the stairs when possible. Look for older adult exercise classes that have a gentler approach. Incorporate gentle stretching to increase flexibility.
6) Follow a plant-based diet
To say that there is conflicting information about diet is a vast understatement! To avoid confusion, adhere to a plant-based and Mediterranean diet. The research has been consistent in demonstrating that this is the healthiest approach.
You can check out intermittent fasting. Whichever you choose, make sure to consult with a dietician to avoid any health concerns.
7) Drink enough water
Dehydration in seniors is a serious concern. As people age, their thirst mechanism decreases. This means that you may not feel thirsty. Unless otherwise directed by your doctor, drink enough water to equal about eight, eight-ounce glasses a day.
8) Include balance work
Falls are the leading cause of death and disability for people over the age of 65. Fall prevention includes working on balance. A good way to start is to work with a physical therapist who can teach safe balance exercises.
9) Keep track of your progress
Keep a journal of your efforts and progress. Without this, it is hard to assess where you have been and where you need to go.
10) Be flexible and expect set backs
Don’t be afraid of changing your approach. You may find that you have taken on too much, or need to focus more on another area. There is no such thing as failure! Only re-adjustments.
Health and Fitness Tips for the Elderly
Seniors over 60 are likely to have more chronic illnesses, and aging is a significant risk factor for cancer. Physical activities can prevent cancers such as postmenopausal breast cancer, colon cancer, womb cancer, and chronic diseases like type 2 diabetes and heart diseases. Unfortunately, physical activity declines as you get older, so stay active and attempt to resist the trend.
Exercise throughout your 70s and beyond can help you avoid frailty and falls while also improving your cognitive function. If you’re sick, try to stay moving as much as you can. If you are bedridden or sedentary, your strength and fitness will quickly deteriorate, making it challenging to regain former levels.
The most incredible method to begin a new routine is to put one foot in front of the other. Whether outside or on a treadmill, Walking is a fantastic low-impact activity.
Exercise with machines
Stationary cycles and elliptical machines are easy on the joints and allow you to ease into it gradually. Work at your own pace and intensity. As you gain strength, extend the time and resistance.
Pools provide safe, low-impact chances for moving your body. This includes lap swimming and group exercise programs in the shallow end.
Strength training is essential for maintaining muscle tone and bone density, which helps to reduce the risk of falls and injuries. According to Iannetta, strength training should be done twice or three times each week. Lifting weights or utilizing weight machines are also examples of this. You can also use stretchy resistance bands for strength-building workouts.
Exercise for the brain with foods
Eating well is recommended at any age, but with over nine million cases of dementia in Europe (according to Alzheimer’s Europe research), safeguarding the brain becomes increasingly important as we age. Simple dietary choices such as consuming lots of fish, olive oil, fruit, vegetables, and omega-3 fatty acids will help nourish your grey matter and provide you with plenty of energy to stay fit as you age.
Laugh to stay in good mood
It’s no joke: having fun is arguably the most straightforward lifestyle modification of all. The idea that laughter is good for you isn’t new; scientists have been demonstrating for years how it might help us live longer. It increases blood flow, lowers stress hormones, and boosts infection-fighting antibodies, all of which help to protect the heart. So sign up for a dance class to get those endorphins flowing; you’ll have fun, feel more energized, and live longer.
How to Eat Properly for Your Age
Creating a healthy senior diet is key to living healthy. The emphasis should be on minimally processed and natural foods that your body requires as you become older. Because our bodies react to different foods differently based on heredity and other health variables, it may take some trial and error to find the healthy diet that is right for you. Here are a few pointers to get you started:
Vegetables and fruits
Instead of regular fruits like apples and bananas, try berries or melons for a more colorful option. 2 to 3 servings each day is an excellent goal to shoot towards. Choose dark, leafy greens like kale, spinach, and broccoli and colorful vegetables like carrots and squash for antioxidant-rich vegetables. Drizzle olive oil over them, sprinkle goat cheese on top or cook them with garlic or chili flakes to make them more appealing. Every day, aim for 2–3 cups.
Calcium for bone development
In order to avoid osteoporosis and bone fractures as you get older, you need to consume enough calcium. Milk, yogurt, cheese, tofu, broccoli, almonds, and kale are all excellent sources of calcium.
Good fat instead of no fat
Instead of eliminating fat from your diet, focus on eating healthy fats. For example, Omega-3 fatty acids can protect your body from disease and improve your mood and cognitive function.
Consume more fiber
Fiber-filled diet might help you with a lot more than just staying regular. It can help you lose extra fat from your body and reduce the risks of heart disease, and diabetes. As you age, the digestion system slows down. As a result, eating enough fiber is critical.
Be smart with protein consumption
Eating enough protein can help you think more clearly, enhance your mood, and increase your resistance to stress, anxiety, and depression. Include more fish, beans, peas, eggs, almonds, and seeds in your diet rather than relying solely on red meat as a source of protein.
Staying healthy as you grow old is probably the toughest challenge. Most of us don’t want to accept that we’re aging. But acceptance is key to getting into a healthy lifestyle filled with regular exercises and dietary nutrition.
Change your life starting now. There is no better time to begin the journey to better health!