Aging gracefully is not just about avoiding wrinkles or keeping lean. Staying healthy as you age means that you are taking care of your whole self. This means taking the time to care for both your physical and mental health. Here are five tips to help you to stay healthy as you age.
Eat the Right Foods
The cornerstone of healthy living starts with what you put into your body. When it comes to eating right, it is all about balance. While the occasional indulgence is fine, you need to make it a priority to nourish your body with a wide array of healthy foods.
The building blocks of a quality nutritional plan include plenty of fruits and vegetables, lean proteins, whole grain food products, and low-fat dairy offerings. You should also include healthy fats in your regular diet. Those worried about high blood pressure as they age would be wise to limit salt intake by staying away from processed foods. Refined sugars should also be consumed in moderation.
Keep on the Move
There is no end to the benefits of regular exercise throughout the entirety of your life. Consistent exercise will reduce your risk of diseases such as cancer and heart disease. A regular exercise program will also improve your mood and mental wellness as it lowers stress levels and encourages healthy sleeping habits.
Many people are intimidated by the idea of getting a workout in, going into a gym where everyone seems to know what they are doing and using all the complicated machines is not very encouraging. But that is not necessary to begin a healthier journey, you can get your body moving by just going on a stroll around your neighborhood or at the park.
You should aim to engage in moderate physical activity at least five days of the week. Good aerobic exercises to consider include jogging, walking, hiking, cycling, and swimming. In addition to cardiovascular exercise, it is a good idea to put an emphasis on weight-bearing exercises to boost bone strength. As you age, you should include balance training in your exercise routine.
Look Into Vitamins and Supplements
Even the best healthy eating plan may fall short in some areas. A solid vitamin and supplement plan will ensure that nothing is falling through the cracks with your nutritional goals. Start with finding the best multivitamin for your needs. A vitamin that covers all of the basic nutritional requirements for your age will give you peace of mind that you are covering all of your bases.
From there, you can begin to look at vitamins and supplements for your specific health and wellness needs. For example, dedicated eye vitamins will give you the assurance that you are protecting your vision in the years to come. There are also supplements that address specific health conditions that you are at risk of developing.
Stay Socially Active
Many people focus on eating well and working out without paying attention to the health of their social life. Countless research has demonstrated that those individuals with active social lives tend to live longer and healthier lives. For example, signing up for a group exercise class with friends will deliver you both physical and mental health benefits.
While it may take time and effort to nurture the relationships in your life, it will be well worth it to do so. A strong social network of family and friends will boost your mental health and improve your mood. Simply being around others will give you purpose in life. Not surprisingly, those people who report an active social life also report higher satisfaction with life in general.
Make Sleep a Priority
You cannot expect to achieve optimal health and wellness without getting enough sleep. Making sleep a priority in your life will have a vital impact on how you age. A lack of sleep will obviously leave you feeling tired and cranky throughout the day. Not only will this affect your performance physically, but it can also cause you to lose your mental sharpness.
Individuals who do not get enough sleep tend to put on weight faster than those who report feeling well-rested. A sleep deficiency may also put you at a higher risk of developing certain diseases and other long-term health conditions. While the occasional restless night is not a cause for concern, the effects of sleep deprivation can quickly add up over time.
These five tips will help you to live the healthy life that you have always wanted. It is never too early nor too late to make health and wellness a primary focus in your life.