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Aging Made Healthy: Tips for Seniors

5 pieces of advice and tips for healthy aging

Follow advice and tips for healthy aging
Aging doesn't always come easy, even though it's an inevitable process. But with the right
attitude, some good advice and useful tips, healthy aging can be made easy.

The years keep ticking by, and there’s no way to stop the aging process. Unfortunately, with age comes various ailments. Things start to slow down physically and mentally, your metabolism may change, and aches and pains become more common. For this reason, it is important that you strive to age healthfully so you can thrive in your golden years.

Make Exercise a Priority

Gray hair isn’t the only physical change you will experience as you age. Your body weight fluctuates, muscle mass/strength diminishes, and bones become weaker. Fortunately, exercise is a way to fight back against these changes and experience plenty of benefits too, including improved strength, flexibility, and mobility, higher self-esteem, improved mood, lowered risk of depression, and increased socialization (if exercise is done in a group setting). Before you get started with any exercise routines, be sure to get a physical exam and the okay from your doctor. Then, explore the many options available, such as aerobics, yoga, walking, and swimming at home, a local gym, or a senior community center.

Keep Your Brain Sharp

Like your physical health, mental health is important too and can deteriorate over time if you don’t take steps to exercise it. There are plenty of ways to exercise your brain, and many of them you may do already. Reading and puzzles such as crosswords and jigsaw puzzles improve your memory, hand-eye coordination, and overall cognitive ability, as well as decrease your chance of developing dementia. Writing can stimulate your creativity, as well as light up the area of your brain that deals with thinking and memory. If you’re technologically savvy and have a smartphone or tablet, there are plenty of brain-training apps you can download for a mental health boost no matter where you are.

Get Enough Shut-Eye

There’s no reason why you shouldn’t wake up feeling well rested, but many seniors have sleep issues that prevent them from getting that good night’s sleep. Getting enough shut-eye not only leaves you feeling energized, but it can also lower stress and improve your memory. If you wake up feeling achy, have numbness in your limbs, or toss and turn throughout the night, your mattress may be to blame, and it’s a sure signal that it’s time to get a new one. Any serious problems with sleep, such as sleep apnea, snoring, and depression, should be addressed by a doctor. You may need to take a look at your nighttime habits, as well; that cup of tea and the blue light from the television could be disrupting your sleep-wake cycle. Blocking out light, reducing noise, decluttering, and lowering the temperature can set the mood for sleep.

Eat Right

As you age, a variety of factors can impact your eating habits and needs such as a loss of appetite due to medications, changes in taste and smell, and diminished oral health. However, eating right ensures you get the right nutrients, stay at a healthy weight, and lowers your risk for chronic diseases such as diabetes and heart disease. So, how can you find the right balance? Try to incorporate nutrient and fiber-rich foods such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein. If cooking or preparing foods is the issue, look for convenient alternatives such as canned or frozen fruits and vegetables, pre-cooked protein such as chicken and turkey, or healthy frozen meals. If you are concerned you aren’t getting the right amount of vitamins and minerals, talk with your doctor about the possibility of taking supplements.

Stay on Top of Preventive Care

A key piece to healthy aging is staying on top of preventive care. Doing so can prevent illness, as well as catch health conditions early before they become a serious problem. It is imperative that you stay on top of health screenings for diabetes, cholesterol, blood pressure, cancer, and thyroid function. Be sure to keep those appointments with the dentist and eye doctor as well.

Aging happens naturally, but doing it in a healthy way takes some effort on your part. Get started with an exercise routine, incorporate daily brain exercises, get plenty of sleep, and eat right. Keep up with your preventive care and you are on the right track to a healthier you.

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