Can we prevent aging is a question many people, young and old, ask themselves. People are living longer with the average life expectancy in 2030 to be estimated at 85 years and older, up from 76 years in 2000. Unfortunately, we cannot avoid aging but we can prevent or delay the onset of diseases that greatly affect us as we age. Below are tips to aging healthy and ways to prevent or delay diseases.
- Physical Fitness - Regular exercise is even more important for seniors than other age groups since the risk of disease is greater and the positive effects are realized more quickly. Walking or swimming is an excellent way to exercise. Please consult your physician to find out what type of exercise is best for you.
- Healthy Foods – What we eat affects how we feel, how we look, and how healthy we are. Eating regularly, especially breakfast, will make us more alert and have more energy. Many times people think healthy foods are plain and tasteless but there are many tasteful, healthy foods that older adults can eat. Air-popped popcorn, fruits or vegetables, and cheese are just a few healthy snacks.
- Social Wellness – Research has shown health benefits of laughter ranging from strengthening the immune system toreducing food cravings to increasing one’s threshold for pain. So, getting together with friends or family and telling a few jokes can be a great avenue to staying healthy.
- Mental Wellness – Most of us experience memory loss as we age, but we can take steps to delay or even prevent serious memory loss. It is very important to continue to challenge our brains by doing crossword puzzles, playing games, or watching game shows.
Aging is part of life. There is no way around it but there are ways to age healthy. By staying physically fit, eating healthy, and being socially and mentally active you can reduce your risk of a serious health condition and age gracefully.