Taking care of your body and your mind should be a priority, no matter what season of life you’re in. September is Healthy Aging Month a great time to check in on your health and think about ways to maintain a high quality of life as the years fly by.
Tip #1: Stay Sharp
As you grow older, changes in the body are expected, but changes in the mind are less predictable. Building and preserving brain connections throughout life and challenging your mind regularly can make your mind stronger. Harvard Medical Center suggests activities to engage the mind, like reading, doing crosswords and jigsaw puzzles and enjoying art.
Tip #2: Eat Right
While a healthy diet is a good idea at any age, certain nutrients and foods become more important and beneficial as a person ages. The University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health recommends that people over the age of 65 eat less sodium, as it can lead to high blood pressure and exacerbate other common problems. Other recommendations include drinking more water, eating softer foods, eating more protein, and eating foods high in fiber, vitamin b12 and vitamin D.
Tip #3: Get Moving
British researchers at the University of Birmingham and King's College London observed that adults who exercised consistently had the immunity and muscle mass of a much younger person. The study suggests that a lack of exercise, not simply getting older, causes a loss of immune protection. A study by UT Southwestern and Texas Health Resources found that exercise can reverse damage to sedentary, aging hearts and may help prevent risk of future heart failure. To reap the greatest reward, regular workouts should begin before age 65 and be performed four to five times a week. Starting with short bursts of exercise every day and working up to your goal can help your body fend off the physical and mental signs of aging.
Tip #4: Talk to Your Doctor
A Miami Herald article reported that 25 percent of people avoid seeking medical care due to high costs. While a small ache or pain can be easily dismissed, it could be the early stage of something more complicated. Visiting your doctor regularly can help prevent more serious, costly problems down the road. Being proactive about your health doesn’t need to cost an arm and a leg. By participating in prescription discount programs like Community Cares Rx, you can utilize free online tools to research drug prices and download a free prescription discount card that could help you cut down on the cost of medications.
Healthy Aging Month is the perfect time to make that doctor’s appointment you have been putting off, do a crossword puzzle, pick up some fruits and veggies at the grocery store and head outside for a walk. All of these small activities can contribute to your health as you age!
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