Are you proactively protecting your health as you get older? September is Healthy Aging Month, a great time to review your overall lifestyle — or that of a loved one — and take steps to improve.
Healthy Aging Month brings attention to the positive aspects of aging, including opportunities to take stock of your experiences and build your ideal lifestyle in the future. It also offers inspiration for boosting your well-being in a number of areas, including the physical, emotional, spiritual and social.
Prioritizing Your Health as You Age
What are some of the key health challenges for older adults, and what positive steps can you take for yourself or an elder family member?
Loss of bone density and muscle mass. Include weight-bearing exercise — such as strength training — in your weekly routine, and speak to your doctor about whether you should consider supplementing calcium and vitamin D. Food sources of these important nutrients include egg yolks, fortified dairy products, fatty fish and green vegetables like broccoli and kale.
Cardiovascular problems, including high blood pressure. With your doctor’s approval, enjoy regular physical exercise, including swimming and walking. Avoid smoking, get plenty of sleep and keep stress under control with meditation, yoga and hobbies that help you unwind and relax.
Memory loss. If you don’t already engage in regular exercise, try to get moving more often; physical activity improves blood flow, which can help keep your brain healthy. Connect with other people as often as you can, and enjoy mentally stimulating activities, including puzzles, games and hobbies.
Reduced vision and hearing. Be sure to see your doctor for regular eye and ear screenings, and follow medical advice about hearing aids, glasses and contact lenses. Protect your vision and hearing from further harm by wearing a hat and sunglasses when you spend time outside, along with earplugs around machinery and other sources of noise.
This Healthy Aging Month, why not take some steps to protect your well-being — both now and in the future?