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A Senior's Guide to Managing Your Physical and Mental Health

1 month ago

1602  0
Posted on Mar 13, 2024, 4 p.m.

Investing in your health becomes even more important as you age. People are at a greater risk of certain ailments as they get older, from diabetes to high blood pressure. To minimize the risk and ensure you can live your healthiest, happiest life, it's important to take care of yourself. Here are some practical and cost-efficient steps you can take to safeguard your well-being throughout your golden years, courtesy of the Western Antique Aeroplane and Automobile Museum (WAAAM) in Hood River, OR. 

Stay fit with senior-friendly exercises

Regular physical activity can help prevent age-related issues like hypertension. That said, not all exercises are suitable for seniors. For example, jogging may put too much stress on delicate joints. Don't stress: Senior Lifestyle notes that there are plenty of senior-friendly exercises, like chair aerobics, water aerobics, and resistance band workouts. To make your workouts more fun, do them with a friend who can help you stay motivated.

Low-impact exercise can include something simple – and free – like walking. Look for pedestrian-friendly areas with high Walk Scores of 70 and above and work in a walk around the block or a stroll around a nearby park.

Make healthy eating fun

Nutritious eating also becomes more important with age. This is because seniors tend to have a slower metabolism and eat less. As a result, you have to pack in more nutrients with less food. If you struggle with healthy cooking, consider trying a meal kit delivery service. Having cooking taken care of also leaves more time for other self-care habits, like exercise.

Commit to maintaining an active social life

A thriving social life is important to healthy aging. Research suggests that regular socializing can help minimize the risk of dementia. If you've lost touch with old friends, try to reconnect via social media or class reunion sites. You can also meet new people by attending courses or learning a new hobby. Aim for at least one meaningful social interaction per day. Visiting museums, such as WAAAM or your local museum and/or science center, is another way to have fun, get in some light exercise, learn, and socialize.

Practice gratitude

Practicing gratitude significantly enhances one's well-being by fostering a positive mindset, which helps in appreciating life's blessings and reduces stress and negative emotions. It strengthens relationships by encouraging expressions of appreciation and kindness towards others, thus improving social bonds and support networks. Moreover, gratitude and mindfulness practice has been linked to better physical health, including improved sleep and immunity, as it encourages healthier lifestyle choices and psychological resilience.

You can start by using a free online card maker to create thank you cards. Simply choose from thousands of templates and customize your card with your own message, font types, and graphics to show how much you appreciate others.

Pick up a new hobby to learn

Learning a new hobby helps to keep your brain active and gives you a reason to get out of the house. This is especially critical if you're already retired. Life Connect 24 offers a list of fun hobbies for elderly individuals, including hiking, jigsaw puzzles, and reading. You can also make your hobbies a social event, killing two birds with one stone. For example, don't just read; join a book club!  

Consider starting your own business

Another great way to stay active as a senior is to start your own business. Ideal businesses for seniors include tutoring, pet care, and consulting. Start by writing a business plan detailing how your business will be run. A business plan should include a clear and detailed outline of the company's goals, target market, marketing strategy, financial projections, and operational plan.

Get regular checkups

Annual checkups are an important preventative care step. Your doctor can detect symptoms of potential issues before you notice them. Verywell Health explains the type of checkups you can expect as you age. Routine tests will include checking your height and weight, doing blood work, and running an EKG. Depending on your age and health history, your doctor may also order extra tests, like a colonoscopy for colon cancer screening.

Do your best to keep the home clean

Uncleanliness and clutter can get in the way, making it less enjoyable to be in your home – and can even lead to accidents. So, it’s a good idea to keep your home as clean as possible. Look into replacing store-bought chemical cleaners with safe and natural cleaning alternatives with ingredients like lemons and baking soda. Remember, you don't have to do it all yourself as you get older. If you're struggling with day-to-day tasks, it’s okay to ask for help. Professionals can assist you with things like cooking, cleaning, and laundry, allowing you to comfortably age in place at home.

Getting older comes with unique challenges. You can't afford to ignore your mental or physical health. However, with a bit of extra care, you can enjoy a thriving, active life well into your golden years. From starting a business to keeping your home clutter-free, follow the above pointers to make sure you're feeling your best!

This article is courtesy of the Western Antique Aeroplane and Automobile Museum which has one of the largest collections of still-flying antique aeroplanes and still-driving antique automobiles in the country. Contact us today to learn more about creating a unique viewing experience at the WAAAM museum. The aircraft, automobiles, motorcycles, tractors, military jeeps, and engines on display are full of history and life!

As with anything you read on the internet, this article should not be construed as medical advice; please talk to your doctor or primary care provider before changing your wellness routine. This article is not intended to provide a medical diagnosis, recommendation, treatment, or endorsement. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. 

Opinion Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy of WHN/A4M. Any content provided by guest authors is of their own opinion and is not intended to malign any religion, ethic group, club, organization, company, individual, or anyone or anything.

Content may be edited for style and length.

References/Sources/Materials provided by:

https://waaamuseum.org/

https://www.worldhealth.net/news/its-never-too-late-simple-healthful-lifestyle-changes-can-make-difference/

https://www.zenbusiness.com/blog/living-a-healthier-lifestyle-with-smarter-choices/

https://www.seniorlifestyle.com/resources/blog/7-best-exercises-for-seniors-and-a-few-to-avoid/

https://www.redfin.com/how-walk-score-works

https://www.worldhealth.net/news/eating-health-and-longevity/

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https://www.lifeconnect24.co.uk/blog/top-15-hobby-ideas-for-older-people/

https://www.verywellhealth.com/your-annual-checkup-2966782

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https://www.worldhealth.net/news/trying-exercise-more-do-something-you-enjoy/



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