HEALTH ENCYCLOPEDIA

Diseases & Conditions A - Z
powered by Talix

Healthy Aging and Exercise for Seniors

What Do You Want to Know About Senior Health?

As health needs change with age, one thing remains the same. Healthy living is the best way to avoid disease, prolong life, and live happier. Living a longer, healthier life can be made easier with these simple steps.

Eat Natural Foods

Processed foods are often full of:

  • sugar
  • sodium
  • unhealthy fats
  • calories

Avoid the fake stuff and opt for:

  • fresh fruits and vegetables
  • whole grains
  • fiber-rich foods lean cuts of meat
  • fresh fish
  • poultry

Easy grocery shopping tip: Shop the perimeter of the store where the fresh foods are. Try to avoid the inside aisles where many of the boxed and processed foods reside.

Get Your Vitamins

You can get your vitamins with a daily multivitamin designed specifically for older adults, but eating vitamin-rich foods can serve extra benefits. Many foods full of vitamins also provide plenty of healthy fiber and minerals. Pack your meals with vitamin-rich foods, but keep taking the multivitamin for backup.

Get Moving

Physical activity is vital for developing the strong bones and muscles you need to help avoid falls or accidental injuries. Exercise is the best way to avoid obesity and many diseases in people of any age. If you haven't been physically active in recent years or have concerns about beginning exercise again, talk to your doctor before you start. They may suggest a structured or supervised exercise environment like a rehabilitation clinic. Many hospitals have this type of clinic for patients and those with health concerns. Aim for 30 minutes of physical activity each day. You can break it up into three 10-minute sessions and get the same benefits.

Stop Smoking

Dump the cigarette habit. And stay away from those who do smoke. Second-hand smoke can be almost as dangerous. Once you stop, your risks for heart disease and some cancers will begin decreasing right away. The longer you go without smoking, the better. The risks continue to fall over time.

Prevent Falls

The risk for falls increases as we age. Morbidity and mortality rates connected to falls are also much higher in the older population. Older adults are more prone to injuries from falls or accidents, so it's important to anticipate potential hazards in your home. These may include, stairs, high bathtub walls, and slippery floors. Also, exercise can improve your strength and balance. If you were to fall or have an accident, the fact that you are physically active may make recovery easier.

Have Regular Checkups

Seeing your doctor on a regular basis for annual screenings or to discuss your general health will help you stay on top of any potential problems. As an older adult, you may need to take a number of different medications. It's helpful to review your prescriptions regularly so that your doctor can keep abreast of any changes or side effects.

Be Realistic About Driving

Older drivers aren't always bad drivers. But things that come with aging like changes in vision and slower reaction times make driving trickier and may increase the chances of an accident. Don't ignore any new problems you notice. Talk to your doctor about your difficulties and see whether there are any solutions.


Content licensed from:

Written by: the Healthline Editorial Team
Published on: Nov 25, 2014
Medically reviewed on: Nov 25, 2014: Brenda B. Spriggs, MD, MPH, FACP

This feature is for informational purposes only and should not be used to replace the care and information received from your health care provider. Please consult a health care professional with any health concerns you may have.
health
TOOLS
Symptom Search
Enter your symptoms in our Symptom Checker to find out possible causes of your symptoms. Go.
Drug Interaction Checker
Enter any list of prescription drugs and see how they interact with each other and with other substances. Go.
Pill Identifier
Enter its color and shape information, and this tool helps you identify it. Go.
Drugs A-Z
Find information on drug interactions, side effects, and more. Go.
Advertisement

 

 

Discounts & Benefits

From companies that meet the high standards of service and quality set by AARP.

Member Benefits AT&T Wireless Cell Phone

Members save 10% on the monthly service charge of qualified AT&T wireless plans.

Member Benefit AARP Regal 2

Members pay $9.50 for Regal ePremiere Tickets purchased online.

Walgreens 1 discount membership aarp

Members earn points on select Walgreens-brand health and wellness products.

Member Benefits

Join or renew today! Members receive exclusive member benefits & affect social change.

Advertisement