Tuesday, October 29, 2019

3 Surprising Ways to Improve Your Health After 60

We all know the importance of eating well and going to the doctor for our annual checkups, especially as we get older. However, that’s not all that’s required for optimal health in your 60s and beyond! Here are three other things you should be doing to stay healthy as you age.

Take the Right Supplements

The best way to give your body the nutrients it needs is by eating a varied diet and spending plenty of time outdoors. Of course, sometimes that’s not enough. Seniors with limited diets, who live far from the equator, or who don’t spend a lot of time outside may struggle to get the nutrients they need to maintain a strong body and mind.

Your health shouldn’t suffer because your lifestyle isn’t perfect. Supplements like these can fill in the gaps so you achieve your best health:

     Omega-3 fatty acids: If you don’t eat much fatty fish, add omega-3 supplements with EPA and DHA to your diet. Usually sold as fish oil, omega-3 fatty acids improve heart health and moods and may reduce the risk of breast, prostate, and colon cancers.
     SAMe: S-adenosylmethionine, or SAMe, may help with depression, osteoarthritis, and liver disease. SAMe supplements interfere with certain medications and health conditions, so talk to your doctor before taking any.
     Vitamin D: Vitamin D from sunlight and fortified foods can strengthen your bones and immunity, but many seniors don’t get enough. The International Osteoporosis Foundation recommends 800-1000 IU of vitamin D per day, or more if you’re obese, housebound, or have osteoporosis.
     B vitamins: Your body becomes less efficient at absorbing vitamin B12 as you age, especially if you take certain medications. A B-complex vitamin with B12, B6, and folate helps you prevent a dangerous nutritional deficiency.
     CBD: If you have chronic pain, CBD oil could reduce inflammation so you live a more pain-free life. With less pain, it’s easier to find the motivation to exercise, cook healthy meals, and do all the other things you enjoy. There’s a lot of variability in CBD products, so research CBD and talk to your doctor before adding CBD oil to your regimen.

Have a Rainy-Day Workout Plan

A sedentary lifestyle has disastrous consequences for your health. However, as you age, getting out to exercise grows a little more difficult. Older bodies are more sensitive to temperature extremes, and you may not be able to exercise outdoors on especially hot, cold, or rainy days like you could when you were younger.

Luckily, heading outside isn't the only way to stay active. There are lots of exercises you can accomplish in the comfort of a temperature-controlled environment. You can head to the mall or museum for a long walk, or swim at an indoor pool for a low-impact, head-to-toe workout. Whatever type of exercise you choose, the most important thing is to keep moving.

With the latest fitness trackers, you can measure and track your movements as well, so you’ll know exactly how many steps you take and calories you burn. Many of these devices can measure your heart rate, as well as track how well you sleep. And some have safety features as well, including the Apple Watch Series 4 which has emergency SOS and fall detection, and it can notify you if your heart rate is too high or low. Or the Fitbit Blaze smartwatch has GPS, measures heart rate, and has a long battery life.

Keep Your Social Connections Strong

Your friendships have a surprisingly big impact on your health. We all know our friends affect the lifestyle choices we make — if your friends and family adopt healthy habits, you're more likely to do the same. There's another way that social connection affects your health: If you don't have a supportive community of people to call on in good times and bad, you're more likely to experience mental health issues and physical decline in your senior years.

Old age can be a socially trying time. People we love pass away and physical ailments make getting out of the house harder. However, it's never too late to forge new connections. When you join social groups in the community or connect with like-minded people online, you bolster your social health and your overall well-being.

Good health in your senior years is a blessing. When you feel physically and mentally strong, you’re able to enjoy your newfound free time to the fullest. But good health doesn’t come easy! If you’re not already doing these three things, make them a part of your healthy senior lifestyle.


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