Just because you are in your senior years doesn’t mean you can’t still lead an enjoyable and fulfilling life. The key to getting the most out of later years is staying healthy, so it goes without saying you need to look after yourself. Here are some key ways older people can help themselves stay healthy and happy.
Foods high in fiber will help keep your bowels in good order and can help with heart health, too, so choose wholegrain options when it comes to bread, pasta, and rice. Ensure you also pack your diet with fruit and veg so that you are getting good servings of calcium, potassium, and vitamins B12 and D every day.
A great way to squeeze more vegetables into your meal is with soup, where pretty much anything can be thrown in and blitzed up. In older age, dysphagia can be a problem for some, making swallowing liquids a problem but adding a thickener can help to solve this. SimplyThick is a Xanthium gum-based thickener that doesn’t impair flavor or texture.
Just because you are advancing in years, it doesn’t mean you still shouldn’t remain active. There are many ways to include activity in your day but just remember to talk to your doctor before beginning any new exercise regimes.
The first step to getting more active is to avoid sitting or lying down for too long. Break it up by getting up to make a cup of tea, doing some housework, or simply taking a walk around your home. It’s important to include some exercise that raises your heart rate and some which work on strength and flexibility each week, too, but aim for low-impact activities.
Taking a brisk walk, swimming, or going on a bike ride will all raise your heart rate if carried out to the right intensity for your level of fitness. Yoga and Pilates are gentle on the joints and are great for increasing strength and flexibility. They can also improve balance too which is important for avoiding falls.
There are many reasons why your mental health might suffer in later life. Loneliness, bereavement, worries about your children or other loved ones can all cause mental health problems.
A good diet and keeping active will have a positive impact on your mental health. In addition, make sure you spend plenty of time with other people, doing things you enjoy, and when that’s not possible, stay in touch over the phone. Video calling is on the rise among older people and is a great way to keep in contact with family and friends.
If you do feel yourself getting low, it’s really important to talk to someone about it.
There are many reasons older people might not get enough rest, from finding it difficult to get to sleep to medical conditions affecting the quality of sleep.
However, lack of sleep can lead to more health problems, so it’s important to get a good night’s rest. Older adults still need around seven to nine hours of sleep per night, and getting into a regular nighttime routine is important.
Avoid screens for at least an hour before you plan to go to sleep. Read a book, write a letter, or do some craft such as knitting or sewing. Just make sure you switch off the TV and put away your cell phone.
Lavender oil in a diffuser can help you feel relaxed and white noise or sounds of nature can also be soothing and drown out other sounds, which might make it difficult to sleep. If you do continue to experience poor sleep, it is important to talk to your doctor about possible causes and remedies.