seniors shopping for healthy food

seniors shopping for healthy food

Longer life and greater health are things humans have been searching for since the beginning of time. Thankfully, we have been able to find some incredible results. While there isn’t a magic pill that makes us immortal (yet…), there are plenty of tools that we have at our disposal. These tools can help us stay mentally, physically, and emotionally fit as we age.

By understanding our bodies and creating a life-long plan that features mindfulness, a healthy diet, effective physical fitness routines, and plenty of rest, you’ll be able to maintain our health and happiness for life.

Understand Your Body

The human body is a complex system and for it to function at its greatest efficiency, each individual part needs to be working at full capacity. The organs and systems within your body all work together as a team. If one part of the team is injured, the rest of the team must work harder to make up for that injured teammate.

When this goes on for a long time, it is more than likely the whole team will become injured because the added stress can harm your body. The health of the team relies on everyone staying healthy and in shape.

Create Your Own Personalized Health Plan

Once you’re armed with detailed knowledge of your body and all of its exceptional attributes, you’ll be able to create a plan based on that information. Having a strategy will help you to have a plan you can build off of, a firm foundation.

Areas to focus on include your diet, physical fitness, rest, and mindfulness. When each of the parts work together at peak efficiency, you’ll see great results.

Diet

When you eat a balanced diet, you are improving the health and longevity of your life. But figuring out what the best diet for yourself is can be a bit tricky. This is mainly because the amount you should eat is based on factors like your age, current weight, and level of activity. 

There are many foods you can eat that can help combat any onset of diseases you may be more susceptible to when you look at your family history and other genetic factors. The Mediterranean diet, for example, is mainly associated with how much it helps reduce the risk of developing heart disease.

Physical Activity

After our 20’s, our body doesn’t get oxygen to our muscles while exercising as quickly as it used to. Because of this, we begin to experience a slow physical decline. But there is good news. Regular, physical activity has been shown to slow down this process.

The benefits of a regular physical fitness routine are endless. 30 minutes a day, a few days a week can help you sleep better, improve your mood, and prevent the onset of health conditions. These conditions include type 2 diabetes, hypertension, stroke, and certain types of cancers. You can spread these exercise sessions throughout the week to fit your schedule.

Regular exercise doesn’t necessarily mean doing the same thing. In fact, people who change up their physical fitness routine have a higher likelihood of exercising consistently, in part because they are less prone to get bored from doing the same thing over and over. So, try something new that you find exciting! 

It’s a good idea to consult your doctor if you do plan on starting a new fitness routine. Be sure to tell them about any past injuries and points of weakness. This way, you’ll be able to develop a fitness routine that works for you and doesn’t risk injury. If it’s been a while since you’ve worked out, try starting off with long walks and slowly start to mix in strengthening exercises like Pilates and weight training, especially before tackling a run. Hikes instead of weekend mimosas is a great way to explore nature and get your heart rate up.

Rest Your Body

Sleep is also important for leaving a healthy and long life. For adults, we need to be getting around 7 hours of sleep each night. Getting the right amount of sleep can help you greatly reduce the risk of stroke, heart disease, depression, diabetes, obesity, and more. When you get a good night’s sleep, you’re allowing your muscle tissue to rebuild, strengthening your immune system, and improving mental sharpness. 

As we get older, it becomes harder to get a good night’s sleep. From stress, busy work schedules, and several family obligations, this can have a negative impact on how well we sleep. In addition, the older we get, the more interrupted sleep patterns we have because of certain medications, bladder issues, or a common one, pain from lying in the same position for too long. 

If you think you may have a sleep disorder or would like some help achieving a better night’s rest, don’t hesitate to talk to your doctor. There are many treatments, therapies, and supplements available that have been shown to improve patients’ quality of sleep.

Mindfulness

On top of getting a good night’s sleep, improving your mental agility and mood is also a great way to maintain your health. When you’re generally unhappy, your health can seem worse. According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary defines mindfulness as, “the practice of maintaining a nonjudgmental state of heightened or complete awareness of one’s thoughts, emotions, or experiences on a moment-to-moment basis”.

Essentially, mindfulness is all about living in the moment and heightening your state of awareness. Learning skills digital photography, knitting, or playing an instrument or reading every day, are great ways to help preserve your memory. When you participate in intellectual activities, it has been shown to reduce the risk of dementia. Meditation is also a great way to help lower blood pressure, ease anxiety, and combat insomnia.