Now that we’re in the midst of summer, take advantage of all it has to offer by enjoying warm weather activities in the great outdoors.
A UBC study found that older adults are more likely to stick with a fitness plan if they exercise with people of a similar age. Group exercise classes offer the combined benefits of physical and social activities for healthy aging. These include a lower risk of disability, depression, heart disease, type 2 diabetes and premature death, improved balance, as well as better cognitive health and quality of life.
Gardening is an outdoor activity many older adults enjoy that offers multiple physical and mental health benefits. Research studies have shown that active hobbies like gardening reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke, increase endurance, and keep hands strong and nimble. Gardening also promotes good nutrition, improves cognition, relieves stress and reduces the risk of depression.
You may find that big changes in your life—like a move to a retirement residence— can stir up a mixture of emotions that can make you feel a bit off-balance, even when the change is a positive one. The degree to which a move or other change can feel disruptive varies greatly from person to person. Some of us regain our mental equilibrium very quickly, while others go through a longer process of adaptation.
Self-care is what people do to establish and maintain health, and it’s especially important to help older adults prevent or manage chronic conditions. For family caregivers who may sometimes neglect their own needs, self-care means taking breaks to enjoy life and look after their own health. Increasing health literacy and making healthy lifestyle choices also help you to maintain a healthy mind and body.
Older adults are at higher risk for traumatic brain injury (TBI) and falls account for over 60% of hospital admissions for TBI in seniors. Fall risks can be reduced by removing environmental hazards at home and older adults doing exercises to improve balance. If a family member is affected, it helps to be informed about the effects and challenges associated with a brain injury and know how to be supportive.
The good news is that with the right attitude, and a few pointers for those who feel a little shy, this could be one of the best times in your life to make new friends, revitalize old friendships and have a great time doing both.
The largest and most comprehensive study on Canadians aged 45-85 just released its first report on how we’re aging. The good news? Between 86% and 90% of the 50,000 participants self-reported good, very good or excellent health.
Canadian men have an average life expectancy that’s four years less than for women. Men are more likely to die from diabetes, kidney disorders and liver disease, and twice as likely to suffer a heart attack. Although over 80% of older men have at least one chronic condition, 70% of men’s health conditions are preventable with lifestyle changes such as healthy eating, being physically active, limiting salt and alcohol consumption, and social stimulation.
More than 400,000 Canadians are living with long-term disability from stroke. While similar numbers of women and men are living with effects of stroke, women suffer greater disability and more women die from stroke. Raising awareness about risk factors and warning signs, and more research on heart disease and stroke in women, can help to prevent stroke and improve health outcomes for women.