We can’t help to stress over and over again that health is wealth because if you think about, you only have one body that will last you a lifetime. You die the moment it stops working but it does not happen without any warning signs. As you age, your body degenerates and gradually stop working as efficiently as it did in your youth. Over the years, you start to experience various body aches and pains or you may even get diagnosed with some chronic condition if you are unfortunate enough or perhaps you weren’t really taking good care of your body at all.
Once you reach your senior years, it is inevitable for your health to fail and you requiring special assistance because even doing simple activities of daily living have become unbearable for you. And we see this as the new norm these days with more and more of the elderly requiring carers. However, they can simply do away with all these hassles and still live independently if they are just healthy enough to at least look after themselves and their needs.
In order to age well and maintain independence, staying healthy is important.
A 2014 report on seniors healthy aging found at canada.ca/en/health-canada/services/healthy-living/seniors says that “Canadians are enjoying longer life spans and better health than ever before.”
The site suggests that if you are looking for ways to keep yourself healthy, strong and flexible there are five key areas to look at: healthy eating, injury prevention, oral health, physical activity and smoking cessation.
There are many other factors which can ensure that seniors age well including maintaining social connectedness, good hearing, moderate to low alcohol intake and lowering stress levels.
Staying healthy was the focus of the second annual North Shore Seniors’ Health Expo held at West Vancouver Seniors’ Activity Centre and West Vancouver Community Centre on Sept. 9.
Well, you can’t deny by now that healthy aging is the key to a quality and long life. Not all elderly require a carer’s assistance in doing things around the house or for them to be left in nursing homes if they can still very well feed and care for themselves. But you can only age healthily if you take care of your body throughout your lifetime starting from your youth. There is no shortcut. The consequences of our habits (good or bad) build up over time and contribute to cell degeneration. So, what can you do to ensure you live as an independent senior in the twilight of your life? Eat healthily and lead an active life. They may sound so cliché but nothing works as great as these two practices.
After making it through the maelstrom of middle age, many adults find themselves approaching older age wondering “what will give purpose to my life?” now that the kids have flown the nest and retirement is in the cards.
How they answer the question can have significant implications for their health.
Over the past two decades, dozens of studies have shown that seniors with a sense of purpose in life are less likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease, mild cognitive impairment, disabilities, heart attacks or strokes, and more likely to live longer than people without this kind of underlying motivation.
Now, a new report in JAMA Psychiatry adds to this body of evidence by showing that older adults with a higher sense of purpose tend to retain strong hand grips and walking speeds — key indicators of how rapidly people are aging.
To live means to be free to do the things you want, something many seniors aren’t able to do so because of the various disabilities and ailments limiting their thinking and movements. Aside from physical health, living a life full of purpose also contributes greatly to a person’s overall well-being, thereby allowing them to age better than their counterparts. The bottom line remains that if they have a healthy body, seniors won’t easily be vulnerable to minor infections or conditions that can predispose them to more deadly and debilitating conditions like a heart attack, stroke, or even Alzheimer’s, which is common among the elderly.