Young people tend to slack off when it comes to consistently following healthy habits. However, even if you’re full of energy right now, you’re not meant to keep your youthful vibrancy forever.
Talk to any senior-aged adults and you’ll likely be at the receiving end of their rants about their heart problems, stomach problems, bone problems—the list goes on.
If you’re young, sticking to healthy habits is vital to minimize any future health problems.
However, if you’re past your youthful peak, don’t worry, as you can still reap the benefits of consistently following good habits that put your health at the forefront.
Need some inspiration? Read on for some formidable habits to improve your lifestyle, as well as the pertaining benefits you can reap from abiding by said habits.
What Are These So-Called Good Habits, Anyway?
To remain in peak condition, you should uphold a mindful balance between your physical and mental well-being. Keeping all facets of your personhood in tip-top shape is vital to overcome and minimize any future health risks that tend to afflict those who are more vulnerable.
Here are a couple of good habits that elders should strive to maintain:
- Exercise regularly: Unless your doctor is against it or if you’re physically unable to do so, you’ll benefit greatly from doing light cardio and lifting weights.
- Do brain exercises: Avoid getting gripped by neurological diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease by utilizing your cognitive abilities. Puzzles, crosswords, and even some mobile games can be a great help.
- Meet old friends: Age or distance shouldn’t keep you away from people who once kept you company. Make sure to keep in touch with them as much as possible, either by social media, phone calls, or an in-person meetup.
- Practice solid dietary habits: Older people should include more fiber in their diet, and eat more foods like fish, fruits, whole grains, and vegetables. Refrain from too many salty foods, processed food, or sugary foods.
- Stay hydrated: Water should always be your go-to option for thirsty moments, especially when you’re old. In contrast, try to avoid sugary drinks, alcohol, and too much caffeine.
5 Benefits of Healthy Habits For The Elderly
Now that you know the habits you should be doing, you may be wondering: what are the benefits of doing them anyway?
Let’s take a look at five of the advantages you’ll be able to enjoy when you follow through with your healthy habits.
1) Boosts Energy
Many senior-aged individuals spend their free time in their beds watching television or simply waiting for time to pass.
When this sedentary lifestyle takes up the bulk of their days, it can feel like a challenge trying to retain any energy to do anything else. Compound this with unhealthy eating patterns and worsening mental health, and the effort you need to overturn this lifestyle can be all the more insurmountable.
However, by slowly transitioning to a healthy lifestyle—one wherein you’re eating the right food, getting enough exercise, and meeting people—you can feel more pumped up to wake up in the mornings and get things done.
2) Improves Mental Health
It’s no secret that doing things that are good for you makes you feel accomplished. From a more scientific point of view, doing the above habits can help your body release endorphins, which are natural feel-good chemicals that elevate your mood.
When you start doing healthy habits, you can also become more mindful of your thoughts and emotions. This mindfulness, in turn, helps you to better self-regulate and identify your triggers for destructive thought patterns, minimizing any feelings of solitude, loneliness, and depression that could affect your mental health.
That said, improving one’s mental health can be difficult in environments that actively work to discredit and invalidate your feelings. That’s why it’s essential to seek out genuine people who will reciprocate your trust and understanding while providing professional guidance, such as those working in trusted aged care facilities such as Kew Gardens Aged Care.
3) Protects You From Health Conditions
If you’re taking proper care of yourself and have incorporated good habits into your lifestyle, you reduce the risk of coming into any life-altering diseases.
For instance, if you’re regularly eating nutritious foods, exercising, and doing mental exercises to keep your mind sharp, you can avoid any drastic health issues like diabetes, heart disease, and dementia.
These health conditions can be difficult to manage in the long run, so preventing them proactively is arguably the best course of action to get your body moving in the right direction, prolonging your lifespan and improving your quality of life as a result.
4) Enhances Sleep Quality
Inadequate sleep can accelerate the onset of various health conditions, such as diabetes and heart disease. Therefore, it’s essential to ensure that you’re getting enough rest—around 7 to 8 hours are considered optimal by most experts.
Regularly doing harmful habits like drinking caffeine in the dead of night or eating too much to the point of obesity—a common precursor to sleep apnea—can work against you in this regard.
Conversely, exercising, meditating, and eating nutrient-dense meals can be a superb way to help you achieve good sleep, promoting your body to repair itself and in turn, keeping your mind rested and muscles happy.
5) Live A Long Life
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, maintaining healthy habits can be the key to living a long and happy life.
By taking preventive measures like hydrating often, exercising regularly, and eating the right foods, you can set yourself up for a long, disease-free life, free of any major medical conditions.
Of course, some conditions are unavoidable despite all the best efforts. But more often than not, living a healthy lifestyle can be the best way to go all the way to 100, or beyond!