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Healthy Aging Month
Posted by Scott filed under Aging
September is Healthy Aging Month. Observed annually for nearly twenty years, Healthy Aging Month was created to provide inspiration for adults 45 and older to improve their overall wellbeing. It’s never too late to reinvent yourself and strive towards a healthy lifestyle, and Healthy Aging Month hopes to convince older adults everywhere to achieve healthy goals.
It’s never too late to reinvent yourself, no matter how old you are. Even if you didn’t have the healthiest lifestyle when you were young, you can still start making healthier choices to for healthy aging, like:
- Staying physically active. Exercise is incredibly important for your body’s overall health. To keep moving, you can start going for daily walks, using stairs instead of elevators, biking, and more. Try to find something you enjoy, so exercise is a fun activity instead of a chore.
- Maintaining a healthy diet. Eating well is important for people of all ages. A healthy diet should include a wide variety of fruits and vegetables, as well as plenty of whole grains and lean proteins. You should try to avoid eating too much sodium and foods high in fat.
- Getting enough sleep. Sleep is important to our body, but a lot of people don’t get as much of it as they should. To sleep better, you should turn off any electronics at least an hour before you lay down, and you should try to have a “wind down” routine before bedtime. This means doing something relaxing before bed such as reading a book or taking a hot bath. If you find you have a lot of difficulty sleeping, talk to your doctor.
- Work your brain. Cognitive stimulation through active learning can prevent mental decline as you age. You should never stop learning and trying new things; learn a new language, learn to play the piano, take dancing lessons! Find something fun to keep your brain up and working.
- Talk to your doctor. You should see your doctor regularly for checkups, as well as preventive testing for things like blood pressure and cholesterol.
- Try to reduce stress. A little stress is a normal part of life. A lot of stress is serious, and can cause mental and physical damage. It’s impossible to completely cut stress out of your life, but to limit it and to cope with it, you should ensure you’re getting enough sleep and eating well. Talking to family and friends can also be a great way to vent out stress and help you feel better.
- Don’t smoke. Smoking has been linked to a number of diseases and chronic conditions, including lung cancer and heart disease. It’s never too late to quit smoking, even if you’ve been doing it your entire life. For tips and advice on learning to quit, visit the American Lung Association here: www.lung.org/stop-smoking/i-want-to-quit/
- Socialize. Staying connected with your friends and family can keep your mind active and your spirit up. If you feel like it’s too difficult to go out with friends, or you start losing interest in activities that used to bring you joy, you should talk to a professional, and you may be showing signs of depression.
- Keep positive. Try to keep a positive attitude in your everyday life. If you notice yourself complaining a lot, try to change the conversation to something positive. Focus on your virtues and what you’ve accomplished, rather than amplifying any perceived flaws or limitations. A positive attitude can go a long way in making your life more enjoyable.
American Lung Association. (2019). “How To Quit Smoking.” Retrieved from: https://www.lung.org/stop-smoking/i-want-to-quit/
Kagan, Stephen. (2016). “Tips for Healthy Aging.” Retrieved from: https://www.gethealthystayhealthy.com/articles/healthy-aging
DH. “Ten Tips for Healthy Aging.” Retrieved from: https://www.dartmouth-hitchcock.org/aging_resource_center/ten_tips_healthy_aging.html
Homestead Senior Care. “Ten Tips for Healthy Aging.” Retrieved from: https://www.homeinstead.com/blog/10-tips-for-healthy-aging
Healthy Aging. “September is Healthy Aging Month.” Retrieved from: https://healthyaging.net/healthy-aging-month/september-is-healthy-aging-month/