Two focuses of my blog are Athletics/Sports and Health/Wellness. Just because we age does not mean that we have to give up competition and physical activity which are very beneficial health wise. The following contributed post is entitled, How To Take Up A New Sport In Older Age.
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More and more people are realizing the benefits of being active and playing sports as they get into older age. But for some, it still remains a daunting challenge, even if they were actively playing sports in their younger years. If you’re looking to get back into sports and enjoying the rewards that come with it, there are lots of different paths that you can take, and the tips below should help you.
First of all, you should get into the habit of stretching before you start any exercise. As you get older, one of the things you start to struggle with is your flexibility. If you’re not sure how you can improve your flexibility, yoga can help. But simply stretching more often will do the trick as well. So warm up before and warm down after every game you play or activity you do.
Choose a Sport That Builds Endurance
When choosing the sport that you’re going to start playing, it might be a good idea to choose one that builds endurance. This is true of most sports, but it’s not of some such as golf. Being active in a way that promotes cardiovascular activity will help you to endure more and get fitter over time as your levels of activity increase week after week.
Ensure Your Diet is Appropriate
If you’re going to be playing sports on a regular basis, it’ll make sense for you to also think about your diet. You need to be fueling your body properly when you’re increasing your activity levels. That’s true at all stages of life, but even more important when you’re getting older. There are also some sports supplements that you might want to try out to give you an added boost.
Use Your Brain Too
For many sports, the physical part of it is just one aspect. There are also mental aspects of it as well. You need to make sure that your brain is properly active and being worked out if you want to enjoy the maximum benefits that come with playing sports. Thinking tactically and outsmarting your opponent is all part of the fun. And it’ll help to keep your brain active into old age as well.
Make it Social and Fun
Sports should first and foremost be fun. So as long as you’re having fun, you’re doing something right. And if you’re not enjoying it, maybe it’s time to find a different sport that you might be better suited to. There’s a deep social aspect to amateur sports too. When you join a team, you’ll meet new people and make friends; that’s an important part of it all.
There’s certainly no reason why you should let your age stop you from playing and enjoying sports. It’s something that more and more people in your age bracket are looking to do, and there’s nothing unusual about it these days. And your body will reap rewards for it as well.
A key focus of my blog is Health/Wellness. With a little it of luck and good fortune, we’ll grow in old age. That could be tricky though because a major goal will also be maintaining your health. The following contributed post is entitled, 11 Ways To Stay Healthy In Old Age.
No matter what age you are, it’s vital to prioritize your physical and mental health. As you age, looking after yourself becomes even more important. Your state of health can decline if you are not careful, luckily there are many preventive measures you can take to stay healthy as you get older.
1 . Keep active
As you grow older, it’s important to stay active. Regular exercise will help you to stay strong and flexible. Exercise is important to maintain a healthy weight, improve cardiovascular health, and raise endorphin levels. You don’t have to practice strenuous activities to access the benefits of exercise. There are plenty of low-impact exercise activities that are perfect for older people. To help you with a few ideas, check out these apps:
● Silver Sneakers: This app offers a great fitness program, aimed at older adults. Here you can access a program of 4-12 weeks, including a variety of home workouts. With the help of the app, you can book gentle fitness classes, set goals, and monitor your progress.
● Tai Chi For Seniors: Practicing Tai Chi has many health benefits. With regular Tai Chi practice, you’ll improve muscle strength and balance. It’s a great way to get moving and stay flexible.
2. Boost your immune system
To stay healthy in old age it’s important to keep the immune system healthy and strong. There are plenty of foods that boost the immune system, including citrus fruits, spinach, garlic, broccoli, kiwi, and almonds. Various supplements can be useful to boost the immune system including:
● Ashwagandha: This yellow flowering plant is native to North Africa and India. The roots and leaves are extracted to make herbal supplements. Ashwagandha can help to boost the immune system. It’s also useful to reduce cortisol levels (the stress hormone).
● Angelica Root: For many centuries, Angelica Root has been used as traditional medicine. Research suggests that the herb is useful to boost the immune system. The herb may also have anti-anxiety effects.
3. A nutrient-rich diet
To stay healthy as you grow old, it’s important to eat a nutrient-rich diet. Focus on plenty of nutrient-rich vegetables, including kale, carrots, broccoli, green peas, and spinach. Other nutrient-dense foods include salmon, sardines, blueberries, and nuts. To help you improve your diet, these podcasts are well worth a listen:
● Dishing Up Nutrition: This podcast offers lots of tips and ideas, to help you boost your nutritional health. By improving your nutritional health you can decrease inflammation, stabilize your mood and increase your energy levels.
● Nutrition Made Easy: With the help of nutrition made easy, you can learn how to eat better, and boost your mental health. Recent topics on the podcast include eating to protect the earth and top nutritional picks for the summer.
4. Keep your brain active
Our cognitive health can decline as we age, but there are plenty of activities you can do to keep your brain active. Focus on activities that are mentally stimulating, from maths problems and word puzzles to reading, or learning a foreign language. Creative activities can also be helpful, including arts and crafts or painting. Learning new things is the best way to keep your brain active and healthy.
5. Seek support
Some older people may benefit from extra support, to lead a healthy and active lifestyle. Adults who need help at home may consider In-Home Occupational Therapy. With the help of an occupational therapist, elderly people can get support with daily activities. Many adults need a little help to meet their physical and emotional needs. Occupational therapists can provide a personalized health program, depending on your state of health, and requirements. With the right healthcare solutions, elderly people can improve their independence and quality of life.
6. Grow your own vegetables
Growing your own veggies is an amazing way to improve your health and stay active. It’s also a fantastic way to reduce your carbon footprint. To get started, make yourself a healthy compost pile by recycling your food waste. The key to making a healthy compost pile is using equal brown and green materials. Brown materials include cardboard, wood chippings, or straw, these are all carbon-rich. Green materials are nitrogen-rich and include vegetable waste and grass clippings.
As a beginner, focus on veggies that aren’t too difficult to grow. A few great options include tomatoes, beetroot, cucumbers, carrots, lettuce, and green beans. Gardening is a therapeutic hobby that can help you to keep fit.
7. Take care of your mental health
It’s just as important to take care of your mental health. Stress can impact your overall health, and so you must have a few coping methods. To reduce stress levels, yoga and meditation are excellent activities. To improve your mental health in general, journaling is a great exercise. Studies show that writing down our thoughts and feelings can help us to release and heal negative emotions.
To enhance your mental wellbeing, you need a good self-care strategy. Focus on activities that make you feel relaxed and peaceful, whether it’s aromatherapy or massages. There are plenty of ways to improve your mental health.
8. Regular keep check-ups
You should stay on top of your regular health checks, to take good care of your health. Book in regular appointments with your doctor, for physical exams and blood pressure checks. Schedule dental appointments and eye tests, and communicate any issues you are having. With the support of health care professionals, you can identify any underlying health issues, and seek the help that you need.
9. Get plenty of sleep
Getting the basics right is so important, and that means getting plenty of sleep. If you struggle to sleep, the following sleep support apps may be useful:
● Sleepa: This app offers a large library of sleep sounds and sleep tracks. These calming tracks can help you to relax, and drift off quickly. Other features to take advantage of include a sleep timer, and an ambient alarm. Choose from binaural beats that are designed to match your brainwaves or white noise to soothe you to sleep.
● Nature Sounds: The Nature Sounds app is perfect for sleep or relaxation. Users can choose from plenty of different calming soundtracks including relaxing ocean, waterfall, mountain forest, or rain on grass. Whether you’re meditating or falling asleep, these tracks will help you to feel peaceful.
10. Stay social
To stay healthy as you age it’s vital to keep up your social connections. Plan regular social events with family and friends, or consider joining local clubs and communities. Trying new hobbies is a great way to make new connections, and enrich your quality of life.
11. Helpful organizations
Many organizations in the U.S can help seniors to stay healthy and happy. For a few starting points, check out these:
● Pets For The Elderly: This charity organization helps seniors to find pets, and connect with local animal shelters. Studies have shown that pet ownership is beneficial to improve cognitive, physical, and mental health. Dog’s in particular, are a great option for older adults.
● Second Wind Dreams: The SWD organization helps elderly people to fulfill a desire. It could be a trip to a special destination, starting a unique hobby, or reuniting with an old friend. Since back in 1997, Second Wind Dreams have helped many older people to improve their well-being. Many other charity organizations help seniors across the world.
As you can see, staying healthy doesn’t have to be complicated. There are so many simple steps you can take, to improve your physical and mental wellbeing.
The first principle of my blog is Creating Ecosystems of Success and a key focus is Health and Wellness. One of the biggest challenges we will all have is growing old into old age. The argument can be made that its genetics. The other argument is that it’s lifestyle and environment. The following contributed post is entitled, How To Stay Healthy Into Old Age.
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“My mother always used to say ‘The older you get, the better you get, unless you’re a banana’” (Betty White)
Aging is something that affects us all and is something that we, unfortunately, cannot run away from. Of course, we are all getting older with every day that passes, but the aging process really starts to kick in as early as our 20’s, with signs of aging appearing in our skin, and the gradual loss of brain cells. By the age of 35, our muscles, bones, and some organs such as our lungs are showing signs of age, and when we hit our 40’s, our senses start to decline. That is a really sobering thought! It is important that we look after our bodies to keep them healthy and working well until we reach a great age. Obviously, there are simply some things that you can’t prevent, but you can take steps to reduce the impact, such as stem cell therapy for knees when they start to ache and slow the process down a little, and that is what we are going to look at in this article.
One of the best things that you can do to keep yourself fit and healthy is to eat a healthy and balanced diet. It is thought that a Mediterranean influenced diet, rich in whole grains and nuts, heart-healthy fish, olive oil, and vibrant fresh vegetables and fruit is one of the healthiest diets that there are, keeping your heart healthy and blood pressure down. With 60% of both older men and women suffering from abnormal blood pressure, it is essential that you do what you can to reduce it. It also helps to keep your joints supple and working well.
As you get older, exercise can often seem like the last thing that you want to do, particularly when everything starts aching a little more, and recovery from a workout takes a little longer. However, it is important to make time for it as often as possible – a recent study found that only 30 minutes of exercise a day reduces symptoms of arthritis by 47%, anxiety by 48%, dementia and Alzheimer’s by 50%, and diabetes by 58%. It also releases feel-good hormones such as endorphins, which lift your mood and make you feel happier. If an intense workout at the gym seems a little too much for you, a brisk walk in the sunshine or a few laps at the swimming pool are excellent forms of exercise and a little more gentle on the body. You can also incorporate more physical activity into your day to day life – taking the stairs instead of the elevator, walking to the shops instead of driving, parking in a space further away from the grocery store and getting off the bus a stop earlier and spending an hour or two gardening or pottering around the house are all little things that can make a significant impact on your fitness levels.
Regular health check-ups
Many of us only visit the doctor when we notice that there is an issue, but quite often, this can be too late as the damage is already done. Make sure you visit your doctor at least once a year for an annual health exam to have your cholesterol levels, blood pressure levels and a physical check to keep an eye out for any problems that might be on the horizon, and at the first sign of anything not being quite right, get it checked. People of all ages should be aware of signs of cancer and diabetes, so educate yourself on the symptoms and get them checked if you are not sure. Not only should you be visiting your doctor regularly, but go to your dentist every six months to have a dental check and annual eyesight and hearing tests, as these can show signs of decline as you get older.
Elder proof your home
This one sounds a little patronizing but bare with us. Look around your home – the furniture with the sharp corners, perhaps the glass coffee table in the center of the room. There may be the odd wire trailing or a rug that you occasionally catch your foot on. It is not so bad when you are younger – if you do trip over, you are more likely to bounce back without too many injuries, but when you are older and perhaps a little clumsier, you are more prone to falls and when you do hurt yourself, it can be a lot more difficult to recover. Around a third of all people over 65 fall each year, and falls are the single largest cause of emergency hospital admissions amongst the elderly. Do not forget to check your smoke alarms and carbon dioxide monitors regularly as well.
Get plenty of sleep
Sleep is important for anyone of any age, but more so as you get older. It is recommended that you get around hours of sleep a night. Less than this puts you at a higher risk of depression, lack of attention span, clumsiness, memory problems, and various other issues. If you are struggling to drop off, speak to your doctor, but you can also practice good sleep hygiene: not watching TV or being on an electronic device too close to bedtime, a warm, milky drink, and a warm bath, and lavender pillow and bed sprays. Having a routine also helps – try to go to bed at the same time every night and get up at the same time every morning.
Vitamin supplements and hydration
Like all of the points we have mentioned so far, this is pretty important for all ages but especially so as you get older. Older people frequently have deficiencies in Folate, vitamin B12, Vitamin D, and Calcium, all of which are essential for proper heart, bone, and general health. In an ideal world, we would get all the nutrients we need from our diet, but this can sometimes be challenging. Supplementing your healthy diet with a vitamin supplement is often a wise solution. In addition, with water making up over three-quarters of our body mass, keeping hydrated is very important. Dehydration can lead to fatigue, headaches, confusion, and a loss of appetite. Everyone’s needs are different, so talk to your doctor about the vitamin supplements that are right for you.
Train your brain
Whether it’s Sudoku or crosswords, brain-training games or puzzles, keeping your mind sharp plays a critical part in helping ward off memory loss as you get older. Although brain training games and the like aren’t a guaranteed panacea to memory loss, they are certainly worth doing.
Stay socially active
Remaining socially active is one of the most important things older people can do to keep healthy, both mentally and physically. It is harder as you get older, particularly once you hit retirement age and leave your job and do not have a reason to leave the house and see people every day. Being part of a community and doing things that you enjoy helps to give you meaning in your life. It helps you to avoid loneliness and isolation. Make it part of your routine to reach out to someone you know every day, whether that means popping to the shops with your neighbor, having a coffee with an old friend, or volunteering in a charity shop or as part of a local group.