The happy holiday guide to less stress

Christmas family traditions

As the song says, holidays are “the most wonderful time of the year.” Enjoying the company of family and friends, indulging in delicious holiday fare, and simply reflecting on this joyous time, all make this a special season. But when a too-busy schedule overwhelms you, consider these five stress-busting strategies to restore wonder and joy to your holiday celebrations.

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8 tips to stay healthy during the holiday season

Old woman walking at winter park

The holiday season can be a wonderful time to gather with family and friends, but it can also be busy and sometimes stressful. Take care of your health by keeping physically active, washing your hands regularly and enjoying your favourite holiday foods in moderation. Manage stress by taking restful breaks, and connect with family, friends and your community to share positive feelings and boost your mood.

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Recognize and treat sleep apnea for better health and sleep

Senior Couple Sleeping In Bed

Obstructive sleep apnea affects one in four Canadians and an estimated 45% to 60% of people over 60. It’s important to recognize possible symptoms like daytime sleepiness, morning headaches, pauses in breathing during sleep and loud snoring. Treatments such as a CPAP machine, oral appliance and losing excess weight can greatly improve your sleep, quality of life and overall health.

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6 ways seniors can help prevent pneumonia

Doctor examining senior patient

Pneumonia is a leading cause of death and hospitalization among seniors in Canada. Older adults are more susceptible because it’s harder to clear bacterial secretions from their lungs and their immune systems are often weaker. Fortunately, the risk of developing pneumonia can be substantially reduced by getting vaccinated against pneumonia and the flu, washing hands often, and through healthy eating, regular exercise and good sleep habits.

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5 ways to ease chronic pain and boost quality of life

Instructor performing yoga with seniors

More than 30% of Canadians 75 and older experience chronic pain, which can limit activities and contribute to unhappiness. New national guidelines for treating chronic pain recommend using evidence-based non-drug therapies as a complement or alternative to pain medications like aspirin and ibuprofen. Tai chi, yoga, mindfulness-based stress reduction and moderate exercise have been shown to help ease chronic pain.

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Tips for staying socially engaged all year long

How socializing brings much more than smiles

As the days get shorter and the weather turns cooler, it’s important for older adults to stay socially engaged with friends and family and not let factors like inclement weather foster feelings of loneliness—especially as such feelings are shown to be detrimental to our health, even more so than smoking, obesity and inactivity!

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New guidelines favour plant-based foods and discourage processed foods

woman with basket of apples at autumn garden

The proposed guiding principles for a new version of Canada’s Food Guide follow a nutrition-based approach, which advises people what to eat, what not to eat and how to eat. The emphasis is on eating more plant-based foods, while allowing for healthier, leaner animal foods. It’s important to limit reliance on processed foods high in sodium, sugars or saturated fat, and enjoy meals with family and friends.

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Social connections are good medicine for your mind and body

Sunday afternoon with friends

Studies show that older adults who are socially isolated have a higher risk of developing depression and anxiety. People who are socially connected are less likely to develop physical and mental health problems, and they live longer on average than those who are socially isolated. Retirement communities offer older adults, whose social networks often get smaller, many ways to socialize each day through activities and broaden their social networks.

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