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Keep your Folks Active, Fit and Happy

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How do you keep elderly people robust and active? The problem is that diseases and respiratory inspections can make your parents or grandparents sedentary which is not a good sign. You need to teach them how to be full of life despite their advanced years. It is also essential to maintain good quality of life. An older person requires adequate physical, psychological and social motivation. These can be achieved through a flexible lifestyle.

Learn and Practice the Fundamentals

happinessOld folks who stay at home, nursing facilities or assisted living residences must receive the right amount of stimulus. These will keep their mental faculties active, bodies moving and spirits high. Convince and assist your elders to become more familiar with the internet. The web is a vast resource for reading materials, videos and instructional CDs. Provide them with their favorite melodies because these help kindle their brain cells. Senior citizens can also indulge in community activities provided these will not affect their health negatively.

Exercise and other physical activities will surely help an older person remain healthy, full of life and self-sufficient. It is not advisable to spend eight hours or more just lying down or sitting around. This will only make you sick and probably shorten your life. Idleness contributes to increased rate of falls, cardiovascular ailments, high blood pressure, and obesity. Working out is also a means of enjoying life. Continue with your daily routine such as walks to the park, shopping around, meeting friends, and having fun with your grandchildren.

There is substantial clinical evidence that active elders are not easily susceptible to heart diseases, hypertension, diabetes mellitus, dementia, depression, and some forms of cancer. Doctors will advise you to keep moving to remain free from pain and psychological conditions. There are many ways to do this aside from engaging in exercise.

Physical Activities

These are leisurely pursuits that help people get their bodies moving a lot. There are many of them such as strolling, biking, gardening, controlled sports, cooking, and cutting grass using a lawn mower. You should spend a minimum of three hours of normal activity each week. This can be distributed in stretches of 15 minutes daily. Muscle-building is also a recommended effort. It can include some weight training and carrying heavy but manageable loads.

For those who are 65 years and above, try daily exercise as long as you are not suffering from serious ailments. This can consist of regulated aerobics of 150 minutes like walking and cycling. Strength exercises are also recommended for the back, legs, hips, stomach, arms, and shoulders. An hour or more of spirited aerobics like singles game of tennis on a weekly basis or running is also good for you.

The cardinal rule is a minute of vigorous exercising offers the same amount of health benefits just like two full minutes of restrained activity. You can engage in light activity rather than sit down the whole day. Sitting for long periods can be bad for the health.

Common Diseases of the Elderly: How to Avoid Them

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Here are some ways aged people can prepare for the common health issues they may encounter.


Obesity is associated to diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer, and high blood pressure. As you grow heavier, the risk for the disease increases. Adults ages 65 – 74 are overweight due to inactivity or mobility. Also, women in menopause accumulate fat at the waist & hips and the men at the gut. Fight obesity by regular exercise, reducing alcohol and calorie intake. Additionally, you must totally eliminate trans fat but increase healthy fat intake like omega-3 fatty acids. Also, avoid sweetened food and eat naturally prepared food instead.


Arthritis in the knees is caused by wearing high heels over the years and having injuries from playing sports. To prevent this, avoid overuse, do regular exercise instead of going on weekend spurts, manage your weight and if you feel pain, stop.


This disease affects around 44 million adults over 50, women in general. Treatment and healthy behaviour can minimize the condition or can prevent it. Stop smoking, decrease alcohol intake, have plenty of calcium, and avoid sodas. The body maintains calcium, and if fail to have enough of it from our diet, it will come out from the bones. Also, it’s important to get enough sunshine vitamin and weight-bearing exercise.

Cardiovascular Disease

Cardiovascular disease, known as the heart disease affects 1/3 of men & women ages 45 – 54, and the incidence elevates as you age. Switching to a healthy lifestyle can lower down the risk of this disease – manage your weight, don’t smoke, do regular 30 minute or more exercise, eat low-fat fiber-rich diet. If you already have high blood pressure, you must get it under control. With your physician, choose medications that are right for you. Also, limit your salt intake. Avoid eating fast food and other prepared food for they’re loaded with salt. As much as possible, eat food which is prepared naturally.

Vision & Hearing Loss

Cataract, muscular degeneration, glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy are known age-related eye diseases which affect adult ages 40 and older. What can help in reducing loss of vision caused by degeneration is eating food rich in antioxidant and taking eye health supplements. You also need to have a regular eye exam including glaucoma screening. This disease can possibly be arrested, however when loss of vision is caused by glaucoma, vision can no longer be restored.

Incidence of hearing loss elevates with age. Most of 45-65 aged people have hearing loss. It’s common to older adult to have high-frequency hearing loss which is made worse by our lifestyle. People ages 40-50 who still goes to rock concert and those who work at a noisy environment like the factories and airports have high risks of having hearing loss. Here’s a good advice to prevent this disease: do not use ear buds and earphones and keep the volume of your gadgets at low level.

Health For The Elderly

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Senior woman in a nursing home, with a caring nurse.

Senior woman in a nursing home, with a caring nurse.

In Australia, maintaining the good health of the elderly is one of the top priorities as evidenced by the fact that today’s older Australians live generally healthier and longer lives than previous generations. During 1960’s, life expectancy at birth was 74 years old for girls while 67 years for boys. Based on the latest mortality data indicate that girls born in 2013 can expect to live in the age of 84, and boys to 80. Life expectancy is positively increasing as most Australians enjoy greater standards of living and better access to high-quality healthcare.

Such also implies that the proportion of older people – 65 years old and above – in the Australian population is increasing. But on the other hand, while longer lives are a positive result for individuals, at the population level, increased life spans and older age generally result in increased ill health. Many health conditions and impairments, like arthritis, dementia and hearing loss become more common as people get older. However, on the positive side, most Australians consider themselves to be in good health. This enables senior citizens to enjoy a good quality of life longer and to participate in the community. It also reduces the demand for health and aged care services.

Here are some studies summarizing the health conditions of the senior citizens in Australia:

  1. According to Australian health survey, 7 out of 10 Australian elders rated their health as excellent or nearly excellent. The survey does not include people living in the institutions.
  2. 2 out of 5 hospitalizations in 2013 to 2014 were people aged 65 and over.
  3. Half of older Australians reported disability in 2012.
  4. 3 out of 10 deaths in older Australians were either due to coronary heart disease, cerebrovascular diseases or dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
  5. 4 out of 10 Australians aged 65 and above in 2014 were born overseas 14% in main English-speaking countries while 23% in non-English speaking countries.

Indeed, family members and caregivers have a variety of health concerns especially when it comes to their elders. Topics to maintain the good health condition of the elders are of great importance.

It will be of great help to consider the following essential health tips for senior citizens:

  1. Quit smoking. Smoking causes cancer, strokes, heart failure and erectile dysfunction to men. Taking this critical step will improve health and combat aging.
  2. Stay active. Physical activities help you stay at a healthy weight and stay fit. It also helps you look and feel better.
  3. Eat well. Many illnesses and health problems can be controlled by eating nutritious foods.
  4. Maintain a healthy weight. Extra weight increases the risk of heart disease, diabetes and high blood pressure. Replace sugary drinks with water – water is calorie free!
  5. Prevent falls. People become vulnerable to fall as they age. Be extra cautious and wear shoes with good support to reduce the risk of falling.
  6. Stay up-to-date on immunizations and other health screenings. By age 50, women should begin mammography screening for breast cancer while men should be checked for prostate cancer. Many preventive screenings are available.
  7. Prevent skin cancer. As we age, our skin grows thinner; it becomes drier and more elastic thus making it more prone to skin cancer. Be sure to protect your skin from the sun.
  8. Get regular dental, vision and hearing check-ups. By age 50, people notice changes in their vision as well as experiencing hearing loss. Thus, regular check-ups must be done. Teeth and gums also need proper care.
  9. Manage stress. Try some exercise and other relaxation techniques – meditation or yoga can give great ways to manage stress. Also, make time for friends and social contacts and fun.
  10. Fan the flame. When it comes to sexual intimacy, age is not a reason to limit your sexual enjoyment. Learn about physical changes that come with aging and get suggestions to help you adjust to them, if needed.

Health for the elderly is indeed a big concern not just by the society but most importantly by the family members of the elders themselves. Senior citizens should be entitled to enjoy a rich and dignified life after years of contribution to society. They have the right to enjoy life, be part of the activities of the community and be given importance most especially by their loved ones. Above all the physical, mental and other ways to maintain the good health and long life of our seniors, it is of great factor that we show them proper attention, care and love. For in the end, all of us will grow old. Nurture life; maintain good health and live life by being a blessing to others.

Ways to Keep Active and Busy

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Elders should keep busy since boredom has serious adverse effects on their physical and emotional wellbeing. Looking for the right mix of activities should not be too difficult. Children can help parents find recreational activities and fun things to do. Likewise, there are many daycare facilities for adults that offer development programs for seniors.

Formal Programs and Centers

Active seniors in the gym

Active seniors in the gym

These traditional procedures consist of work-out sessions, excursions and serving of nutritious food. Non-profit senior organizations manage this type of activities and charge minimal fees. On the other hand, majority of senior facilities are supervised and subsidized by local or national government agencies together with private sector groups. These centers conduct minor activities like picnics, walks, dances, health clinics, and massage therapies. Many hubs for the elderly are listed in websites or community directories.

Social groups also conduct activities like indoor games, reading and story-telling sessions or writing workshops. Library access, physical fitness equipment such as stationary bikes and exercise machines and exercise sessions are often offered free of charge by these groups to older individuals. Senior folks can raise domestic pets for a change. Dogs, cats, birds, or hamsters will make great buddies and serve as reliable companions for them.

Fitness programs are ideal social events for those who are past their prime. Some of these exercises include walking groups and aerobics classes. This is a chance for them to catch up as well on recent news, developments and social happenings. Senior citizens with good social lifestyles generally have a positive outlook on life. Exercise can make their moods better while improving mobility, healing, mental faculties and strength. In other words, it helps enhance all the elements of an older person’s life, cognitive functions and social dealings

Importance of Socialization

Old-folks-exerciseSocializing or interaction is also essential to old folks. It helps neutralize depression which contributes significantly to health issues such as immune system deficiency, exhaustion and loss of memory. Adults (60 years old and above) need to maintain social calendars because these promote interaction and motivation. The tendency of senior men and women is to become lethargic. Social engagements are often limited. This is where the properly managed retirement community comes in to provide assistance. Social activities and programs undoubtedly entice the elders to participate actively.

It is also advisable to maintain day to day responsibilities and routine tasks. At first, this may seem to be a liability for old persons. Gardening, cleaning their rooms and walking back and forth look like a liability for someone in his or her golden years. The truth is these can be enjoyable and seniors will feel duty-bound to perform these chores.

Family members and peers can help them understand the benefits. It is a matter of understanding what all these things will ultimately do for their loved ones. These organized errands can be enjoyable instead of being burdensome. In short, the active lifestyles and responsibilities should turn out more of a boon than a bane for senior persons.