Healthy habits are important throughout life and provide the foundation for a healthy future. Eating healthy, regular exercise, seeing your network provider for wellness visits and avoiding tobacco are the most effective ways you can manage your health during all stages of life. As you grow older, the effects of habits like poor eating and lack of exercise can take a toll on your health more quickly. September is Healthy Aging Month and here are some important tips to remember as you grow older.
Older adults are among the fastest growing segments of population in the U.S., with the first of the “baby boomers” celebrating their 65th birthdays this year. Older adults are more likely to develop conditions like diabetes, arthritis, heart disease and dementia and by year 2030, more than 37 percent of this group of people will manage at least one chronic health condition. Preventive health screenings and regular visits with your network provider can help manage or prevent any health conditions.
Regular exercise can also help prevent or treat many health conditions and help you remain mobile and less prone to injury. Exercise is beneficial to building, maintaining and preventing loss of muscle and bone tissue.
The benefits of a healthy diet include increased mental sharpness, higher energy levels, a more robust immune system, faster recuperation times, and better management of chronic health problems. As you age, eating well can also be the key to a positive outlook and staying emotionally balanced. Choose nutrient-dense foods like fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean protein to be sure you get the right balance of nutrients to meet your health needs. Your daily calorie needs often decrease so keep this in mind to avoid extra weight gain. Women over age 50 need between 1,600 and 2,000 calories each day depending on activity level. Men over age 50 need between 2,000 and 2,800 calories each day depending on activity level. These recommendations should be a guide, but always discuss any specific dietary concerns with a nutritionist or your network provider.
The risk of Alzheimer’s disease and age-related memory loss increases as you age. Keep your mind sharp with stimulating activities like crossword puzzles, trivia games and other activities that make you think.
Take care of yourself and your health today and continue to enjoy life throughout your golden years. To learn more about aging healthy, visit the National Institute on Aging’s Website, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or the Healthy Aging website, a national initiative developed to help individuals think more positively about growing older.