Steps To Healthy Aging
Prevention and Treatment Overall trends show that boomers and seniors are living longer and healthier lives.
While aging does have health impacts, there are many steps one can take to enhance their chances of healthy aging. Health Canada suggests the following five factors play a key role: healthy eating, injury prevention, oral health, physical activity and smoking cessation.
What you can do
Eating less processed foods, more fruits and vegetables, and more meals with friends and family all add up to healthier eating. And if you are over 50 years of age, Health Canada recommends you take a daily vitamin D supplement, too. To prevent injuries, be sure to take precautions at home, outdoors and when you travel. You may not have heard, however, one easy way to keep your heart healthier is by regular flossing. Another is by simply sitting less and moving more. Regular physical activity really does make a difference. And, if you are still smoking, now may be the time to give it up for the good of your health.
“Cultivating positive psychological and social assets in life has potential for leading to happier, more meaningful, and healthier lives.”
In addition, several studies have shown having a positive attitude helps with aging well. Eric S. Kim, Ph.D. in the American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine says: “It is clear from research that experiencing frequent positive emotions, having sense of life purpose, paying attention to what is positive in life, and living a more socially integrated life is linked to one’s quality of life across the lifespan.” Kim goes on to say: “cultivating positive psychological and social assets in life has potential for leading to happier, more meaningful, and healthier lives.”
Looking into your retirement options
If you are like many Canadians, you or your parents may be thinking and talking about “aging in place.” Aging in place means having the health and social supports and services needed to live safely and independently at home. Staying at home may be the best option for you or your parents, especially if you assess what will be needed and tap into the services and supports that are available.
Alternatively, an independent or assisted living retirement residence may prove to increase rather than decrease independence, when day-to-day needs are looked after. Exploring options well in advance often allows better choices to be made than if left to the last minute.
Taking care of your health, having a positive attitude and looking into the best places to live, all raise the likelihood you will enjoy healthy aging. What steps will you take?