As people get older, healthy aging is important to prioritize. You may have ignored your health when you were younger, but once you hit your golden years, everything changes. Pains that didn’t used to be there, all the old habits catching up to you and more doctor visits and tests. So why not slow down aging by being proactive with your lifestyle? Here are some things you can do to ensure healthy aging.
Use Your Phone to Eat Healthy
Yes, you read that right. Your phone can help you eat healthy. Thanks to technology, it’s now easier than ever for homebound seniors to eat nutritiously at home. Smartphone apps can help seniors make and stick to healthy grocery-shopping lists. You can even have your groceries delivered to your home or use a meal delivery service. The latter provides you with ingredients to make fresh, wholesome meals. Some services deliver ready-made, healthy options right to your door. You’ll never be stuck with a surplus of unused groceries, and you won’t have to think about what to buy for any recipes.
Join a Senior Center
There are many benefits to being part of a senior center. You can participate in fitness programs that help you stay fit and recreational activities that keep you active and social.
Exercise goes hand-in-hand with eating healthy for overall physical health. Although anyone can join a gym to exercise, senior centers have fitness groups led by instructors who understand seniors’ needs. Fun exercises for younger folks might not be suitable for seniors. Senior groups offer safer exercise programs for your age group such as tai chi, yoga, low-impact Zumba and dancing. Beginners can follow along, and you’ll never be pushed to go beyond your limits.
Besides fitness, there’s an abundance of activities at senior centers. Go on non-strenuous outdoor adventures to get some fresh air and sunlight. Play Wii or sing karaoke. Complete jigsaw puzzles or play Monopoly with your friends. Learn to play chess. Attend special events and live entertainment. Take classes in computer literacy or join book clubs. Go on group field trips in town. And of course, there’s always the senior mainstay: Bingo.
Activities allow seniors to exercise their brains and interact with their peers. Mental stimulation is a must in your elder years because your mental faculties need to stay sharp. As long as the motor keep running, the battery will stay on longer. Since loneliness and disconnection affect 40 percent of seniors, socializing is another element of aging that you don’t want to ignore. You might not be around your family as much or see your old friends anymore, but you can meet other like-minded seniors and forge new friendships. There’s always something to do and someone to hang out with at a senior center.
Reconnect With Loved Ones
Each time we transition into a new phase in life, we tend to shed some of the old. We’ve inevitably lost touch with childhood friends, schoolmates, colleagues, and former neighbors. People move, move on, and change priorities. We typically see more of the people that require little effort for us—the neighbor next door or the lady in aerobics class. Our friends are those who make the most sense in our lives at the time. But the old friend in another town? Maybe it’s been three years since you last saw them. Your sister’s granddaughter? You haven’t seen her since her wedding in 2012.
This is the time in your life to have no regrets or missed opportunities. Reconnect with old friends and distant relatives that you treasure. If they ever mattered to you in the past, they should matter to you now. By putting effort into reconnecting, you’ll get the benefit of emotional fulfillment and socialization.
Some seniors are finally caring about their health for the first time. Others were healthy throughout their entire lives, and now they’re in great physical and mental shape as a senior. If that’s you, don’t stop the momentum now. If you’re new to a healthy lifestyle, now is a great time to start. Give yourself a fruitful and enjoyable retirement by keeping yourself lively everyday, beginning now.