Healthy Aging Tips for Older Adults
What does “healthy aging” look like? Everyone is different and a lifestyle is not one size fits all. It’s not as simple as a miracle drug or lucky genetics. However, small changes in habits can lead to big improvements for the body and mind. Let’s take a look at a few areas where you may consider lifestyle changes as you age.
Sleep Think about your bedtime routine. Do you generally wake up feeling well-rested? Adults need between 7 and 9 hours of sleep each night and older adults tend to go to sleep earlier and wake up earlier. There are many small changes that can make a big difference with your sleep schedule. Such as decreasing screen time before bed, changing the air temperature, or getting new comfortable bedding. Consider consulting a doctor if you are having difficulty settling into a sleep routine.
Nutrition This can be a tricky one because there are so many factors that are involved. As we age our bodies change and so do our diets. You may consider meeting with a nutritionist to discuss your diet and come up with a plan based on your health goals. Following a diet is a marathon and can take a while to adjust to. It is wise to make small adjustments over time to build healthy habits. Hydration also plays a key role in our well-being and nutrition.
Fitness It is very important to stay active as we age for our minds and bodies. Consider trying something new and finding what works for you as an enjoyable exercise routine. Swimming is a great low-impact activity that is gentle on joints and has many physical and mental benefits. Invite a friend to get involved or join a fitness group to help keep it fun, social, and to stay motivated. According to the CDC, it is recommended to get at least 150 minutes of physical activity a week (30 mins/5 days).
Mental Check-in with yourself and your loved one’s mental health. Try starting a journal or diary about your thoughts and goals. If you find you are struggling with something consider talking with a counselor to work through it. Therapy does not mean failure, it means you are taking a positive step to success.
These are just some of the many elements that we can work on as we age. Remember that it is never too late for self-improvement. Life is a journey and positive change can take time as we build healthy lifestyle routines. Try getting outside your comfort zone and finding what you enjoy!
A Good Night’s Sleep https://www.nia.nih.gov/health/good-nights-sleep