One of the most common travails, drawbacks, and general feelings of dread related to aging is loss of independence. We rejoice in our freedom the minute we learn to walk and revel in growing independence with each passing year of our teens. We then of course enjoy the wherewithal to do most anything we physically are able to for five decades or so, but then things begin to slow down. We lose the ability and sometimes even the desire to do the things we used to and age gradually takes its toll.
However, healthy lifestyle choices are highly effective in helping older people hold on to more of their hard-earned independence. People today have a generally longer life expectancy than generations past and a great deal of research confirms much of that is due to living healthy. In fact, some studies reveal that people who maintained healthy lifestyles not only enjoyed longer lives but also endured far fewer years of illness.
Stay fit and live well
It’s no secret that proper nutrition and regular exercise are essential for keeping our bodies fit and healthy, while sedentary habits greatly increase the risk of a host of diseases and debilitating medical conditions. In addition, poor lifestyle choices can boost the severity of mobility issues or other already established conditions. An active lifestyle, on the other hand, is a formidable defense against such maladies and is a key ingredient for older adults to stay healthier and more independent.
In fact, exercise is the top contributor to a longer life and it is never too late to start. Even people in their 70s starting exercise for the first time can see incredible rewards including prevention of dementia, increase in endorphins, reduced chronic pain, higher metabolism, better quality sleep, and better immune system.
Those are attractive life benefits indeed and best of all, they can be obtained through a variety of flexible activities to suit individual needs and tastes. Yoga is very popular, as is walking, golfing, cycling, golfing, swimming, and even gardening. Start small and gradually build up, and exercising with a friend is a great way to stay motivated and can impart a touch of competitive spirit as well.
It is important throughout your life to eat well but even more so in your “golden years.” Slower metabolism and changes to sense of smell and taste can affect appetite, for example. As a rule, be sure your diet is loaded with fiber, fruits and vegetable, meat protein, and whole grains. This lineup of power food will help keep your energy up and slows digestion.
And always remember to drink lots of water, even when you’re not thirsty. Water is an energy booster, helps keep you looking young, and does wonders in keeping your body’s overall “engine” purring like a kitten. Eating right is also key to maintaining a healthy weight and defends against diabetes and arthritis.
If you or your family member is considering in-home care as part of a plan to age in place, contact Family Matters In-Home Care today for a free consultation. Our team is dedicated to supporting your family and helping older adults enjoy life in the comfort of their own home for as long as possible.
Some of the services offered by Family Matter In-Home Care include: Alzheimer’s & Dementia Care, Bed & Wheelchair Transfer Assistance, Companionship, Housekeeping & Meal Preparation, Personal Care, Recovery Care, and Transportation.