Getting older isn’t easy, particularly when staying healthy in the days of youth was hard enough. However, the importance of healthy living only increases with age as the problems that arise from an unhealthy lifestyle are much more severe for seniors. Fortunately, there are many simple, everyday changes seniors can make to maintain their health and put them on a path to better well-being.
Starting is one of the hardest parts of getting healthy. Seniors shouldn’t be afraid or ashamed to start off slow. Making small steps leads to more steps and pretty soon they can find themselves running. Here are five easy ways seniors can make a change for their fitness.
- Get Active
This seems like a no brainer, but it can be intimidating to think about. But getting active doesn’t mean lifting weights and running marathons, it can be something as small as walking the dog. Taking public transportation, going window shopping at the mall or helping out in the community can contribute to keeping the body moving and literally add years to life expectancy.
- Don’t Forget About the Brain
Getting active isn’t limited to the body. Exercising the mind is just as essential for fending off health problems. Even something as simple as working out a crossword puzzle or writing a newsletter can help keep the brain sharp.
- Stay Social
Maintaining relationships with others lowers stress and aids the body and mind. Getting more active in social circles or joining new ones can provide opportunities for growth and more content living. Moving into an assisted living community offers a support structure with an in-built peer group that benefits all involved.
- Make Dietary Changes
It goes without saying that the body changes with age, but some fail to realize that this includes the digestive system. Changes in the body’s ability to digest certain things necessitates dietary shifts that most diets don’t cover. For example, lower stomach acid production can lead to a decrease in nutrient absorption. Changes in diet or supplements can rectify this and other problems digesting with help from a dietician.
- Don’t Ignore Existing Problems
A lot of people can be stubborn about admitting to having a health issue, but the consequences for seniors can be particularly harsh. Before starting any of these new activities, careful consideration should be made as to how any chronic conditions might affect those activities and how risks can be mitigated.
Get the Right Information
In senior living especially, “use it or lose it” rings true. With advice from medical professionals and a little bit of drive, a healthy and active senior lifestyle can be within reach.