People like to assign a number to what they consider as being “old.” For some it’s 40, for others it’s 60. Realistically, aging is very much in the mind and does not start at any particular time, year, or age. The body may show the signs of aging; wrinkles on the face, a changing metabolism, weakening muscles. While wrinkles may not be easy to avoid, many other symptoms of aging can avoided, delayed, or at least minimized.
First, eat well throughout life. A healthy diet can defend against a wide variety of health risks and diseases. Diabetes and heart disease can be better managed with a steady diet of fruits and vegetables combined with a limited amount of grains and fatty foods. Choosing fruit juice over a soda and an apple over salty snacks are great preventative measures and will improve health whether a person is 45 or 65.
Fats should not be completely avoided. A daily intake of 1,000mg of Omega-3 can help to delay memory loss, as can eating salmon or other cold-water fatty fish. If fish isn’t a preferred taste, fish oil tablets or pills can be taken as supplements.
Get outside! The Vitamin-D provided by the sun helps the body absorb calcium and bolsters the immune system. It goes without saying that the best way to get sunlight is to leave the house and get moving. A little bit of exercise can do the body a lot of good. Besides, as aging progresses, metabolism slows, and three pounds gained per year starting at age 40 can add up to a total gain of 45 pounds by age 55.
At this later age, that weight is much tougher to lose. Find an interesting physical activity to take part in, and embrace it. It can be salsa dancing, or even a 15 minute walk around the block. When taking on a new physical activity, the mental coordination combined with increased muscle flexibility is good for the mind as well as the body.
Seniors must be aware of controlling their risk factors. Everyone knows that smoking is bad for one’s health. If a senior hasn’t quit already it’s important that they try to do so. They say that laughter is the best medicine, and it really is true. Laughing aids in circulation, and it can increase respiration. Blood pressure is lowered, digestion is stimulated, and stress and/or negativity is decreased. Stress takes a toll on the mind and body, breaking them down. Embracing the current situation in life is important, and finding what can be done to aid in eating well, sleeping, and living is a must.
There’s no reason why aging has to be something that is anticipated with dread, and yet that is the case in America. The older a person is, the wiser they are, the more experience they have. Aging should not be feared. Setting an example for the younger generations can show that it really is never too late to start aging gracefully.