Getting older is a natural process, and as you age, you will experience changes within yourself. Aging is no picnic, and you will go through many different things, from changes in your appearance to changes in the way you physically and emotionally feel. Although getting older may feel unsettling, it isn’t all gloom and doom. In fact, there are ways you can grow older gracefully. Here are a few top tips that will help you improve your quality of life as you age.
Challenge Your Brain
Research shows that older people can preserve mental functions by challenging their brains regularly. Working out isn’t just about hitting the gym and exercising the body. Working out the brain with mental exercises can help activate certain processes that can maintain and trigger brain cells. You can exercise mentally with brain games such as crossword puzzles, sudoku, and word recall games. There are also mobile brain training apps that are specially designed to challenge the brain. Furthermore, you can engage the brain by taking up a hobby and learning new things.
Do Something That Piques Your Interest
Speaking of learning new things, doing something that piques your interest will not only challenge your brain, it can also give you a new sense of purpose too. Whether you take up a new hobby or continue with an activity you know you love, doing something you enjoy can improve your quality of life. Not to mention, it can place you in a social setting where you can meet like-minded people. You could try volunteering your time for something you are passionate about or joining a local social club. Laughter is the best medicine, and by combining a common interest with friendship you will feel happier and content.
Keep in Touch With Loved Ones
Humans are naturally social creatures. Maintaining meaningful relationships with family and old friends has a wonderful impact on emotional health and wellbeing. Creating bonds and connecting with others provides the brain with a stimulus that can increase cognition while slowing the rate of memory decline. Furthermore, studies show that loneliness can be as harmful as smoking 15 cigarettes a day. As you age, it can be difficult to stay in touch with people who used to be dear to you. Don’t be afraid to make the first move. Chances are, old friends and long-lost family will be happy to hear from you after all these years. In addition, studies have shown that animal interaction can have a beneficial impact on health too. In fact, a pet companion can reduce feelings of stress and loneliness in older people.
Eating healthily should be a way of life, and packing your diet with nutrient-rich foods can have a positive impact on your body as a whole. In addition to this, studies have shown that certain foods can also help with cognition and memory too. For example, leafy, green vegetables have the potential to reduce age-related cognitive decline, while food with anti-inflammatory properties can allegedly improve memory. Anti-inflammatory foods include turmeric, fatty fish, and dark chocolate, and studies show that eating these types of food can lower the risk of cognitive decline and dementia. In addition, berries are packed with antioxidants, like flavonoids and anthocyanins, which can stop the loss of memory.
Consider Your Living Options
Thinking about your living situation in the future can be daunting and make you feel uneasy. No one wants to think about a time where they could potentially be less well and able. However, considering your options now can empower you to make these big decisions for yourself in the future, and this will help to ensure your wishes are met when the time comes. If you are currently enjoying life completely independently, then perhaps you will want to age at home or choose an independent living community to spend the rest of your days. People who require some help with everyday activities can benefit from assisted living facilities such as Brandywine Living at Haddonfield. Residents receive round-the-clock assistance, should they need it, and they will still be part of a wider community of older adults. They have access to enriching in-house programs and events. When the time comes, Brandywine Living can provide you with different types of senior living options to suit your needs.
Don’t Neglect Your Sleep
Sleep experts state that adults require 7 to 9 hours of restful sleep each night in order to function well. A bad night’s sleep can lead to mood changes, slower thinking, and reduced concentration. Altogether, this can raise the risk of trips and falls in older adults. Not to mention, chronic sleep deprivation is associated with serious health issues like high blood pressure, stroke, heart failure, and diabetes. In order to feel and be your best, make sure you catch your zzzs.
Regular exercise should be part of everyone’s lifestyle, no matter your age. In particular, staying active has numerous benefits for older adults. This varies from improving balance and strength, which can reduce trips and accidents, to reducing the risk of certain diseases. Physical activity can also improve memory and cognitive performance. Every week, adults should try to fit in 2.5 hours of moderate-intensity exercise or 1.25 hours of vigorous-intensity exercise. Exercises include cycling, jogging, and yoga. As you age, it may become more difficult to find exercises that suit your needs and abilities. However, everyday activities such as walking and gardening can also count towards your weekly goal and are beneficial for your health.
Thinking about the negative effects of aging and how it is affecting you personally can keep you awake at night. However, it is vital to remember that aging is a natural process, and there’s simply no escaping it. It is important to accept your age and view it with a positive outlook. Some experts suggest that acceptance gives you peace of mind, and it can also help you recover from disabilities better too. A positive association with age can be beneficial for both emotional and physical health.