Friendships between residents and staff blossom every day at Chartwell, but every once in a while a truly unique story emerges. Take for example Joan and Doris, who—after 60 years of being estranged from one another—reunited at Chartwell Queen’s Square Retirement Residence in Cambridge, Ontario.
It’s summer and nature is calling, urging all of us to take our fitness and activity programs outside. Research on why outdoor exercise is better than indoor exercise is building: a 2012 study of adults 66 or older found that participants who exercised outdoors (usually walking), completed, on average, about 30 minutes more exercise than those who worked indoors.
Stroke is the leading cause of adult disability in Canada, and two thirds of strokes occur among people over 65. Your risk of stroke can be greatly reduced through healthy lifestyle habits including not smoking, being physically active, managing stress and healthy eating. Recognizing the five warning signs of stroke and getting rapid treatment can prevent or limit disability from a stroke.
« I don’t walk her, she’s the one walking her grandfather! That’s right, she’s my granddaughter. My daughter’s dog, my wife and I look after her three times a week. I love it because during my life, I’ve brought up dogs like that. Schnauzers and Huskies. It reminds me of those years. »
About 70% of men’s health problems are preventable by making small changes to health habits. Prostate cancer is the most common cancer among men. A diet high in vegetables and low in fat and charred or processed meats can reduce prostate cancer risks. Men are more prone to develop abdominal fat, which raises the risk for many illnesses, but good nutrition and exercise can shrink the belly and health risks.
At Chartwell, our food service team is always looking for unique ways to keep residents feeling both excited and satisfied during mealtime. After the runaway success of our National Pizza Day back in November, we decided to treat residents to another themed dining experience—National Fish & Chips Day!
It may seem inevitable that we will become less active, both physically and socially, as we get older—especially when faced with mobility or health challenges. But people like Rose show us how our lives can actually expand as we get older, and how we can become active and joyful again.
Being physically active each day helps older adults improve balance, reduces falls, and helps prevent many chronic illnesses such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes and osteoporosis. Experts recommend 150 minutes of aerobic activity per week, and muscle-strengthening activities at least twice a week. Walking, swimming, cycling, dancing, carrying groceries, gardening and yoga are among the many activities you can choose from to maintain flexibility, strength and aerobic fitness.
Many older adults who decide to remain in the family home may find their world getting smaller as the years go by. I frequently talk with older adults about the potential for the home they have thought of as their “palace” to turn into a place that becomes less and less accessible they age. A health challenge or mobility issues can make it harder to get out and enjoy the things they love to do. Difficulty driving may also make it harder to get out and socialize. And, of course, our Canadian winters can add to these challenges!
More than 4.6 million Canadians are living with arthritis, with 43% of those individuals being 65+. Research shows that some modifiable risk factors, such as not being active, poor diet and excess weight, contribute to or worsen arthritis. Regular exercise, healthy eating and maintaining a healthy body weight can help reduce pain, improve mobility and enhance quality of life for people with arthritis.