What does age gracefully mean?
Aging is a natural process however “aging gracefully” is often used as a euphemism for many reasons. Aging gracefully isn’t about looking like a twenty-something; it’s about living in your finest lifestyle and having all the physical and mental health to enjoy it. Mostly seniors who have past their prime ought to get on their life with some simple tips. It’s just like a bottle of wine; one can get better as its old with the right care. The vital key to aging gracefully is to take care of your body, while you are still young. As it is said that “we need to take care of our body now before it gets worse” so this is the significant step we can take towards aging gracefully.
While dreading some wrinkles and sagging isn’t unusual, there’s much more to aging well with grace and independence. We believe that it is more about being healthy and happy than keeping wrinkles at inlet. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle, surrounding yourself with your loved ones, and doing things that bring you joy are some of the factors to count upon. It’s quite natural to worry about the challenges that aging can bring, so don’t hesitate to speak to someone about your concerns. It’s just not looking a few magazines headlines about how to look younger; it’s about to find out the do’s and don’ts on your quest to age gracefully.
Why do Seniors Need Independence?
Not being independent can be gloomy to many seniors as they have spent their entire lives living independently, doing their jobs, raising families and children, and yes, making decisions! The natural effects of aging can sometimes cause independent living intricate and painful. There may be difficulties with mobility, emotional and behavioral issues such as isolation and loneliness, and financial strains that may create a sense of loss of independence in aging adults. As we cannot avoid these natural barriers to independence, however, we can understand its importance for elders and find out ways/opportunities for independent living.
Tips for Aging Gracefully and Independently
Here are some simple tips to help seniors age gracefully and independently.
- Take care of your Skin:
The most noticeable effect of aging is reflected in the skin. The elderly need to take care of their skin as they are more vulnerable to skin infection because of the visible changes in their skin like it becomes less supple, thinner and dryer. They may be battling fine lines, dark spots, or sagging skin. We believe that skin is our body’s most trusted organ and if it is treated with care, it can better protect the body from the outer elements. The following are some recommended skincare tips for the elderly:
- Bathe to relieve dry skin and leave your body a little wet to get moisten
- Avoid Hot Baths like Saunas
- Use Sunscreens and Protective Clothing when exposed to the sun.
- Go Fragrance-Free
- Use Moisturizers
- Get the Room humidifiers where the air feels dry
- Wears gloves when gardening or homemaking
- Visit your dermatologist regularly for your skin screening
- Use gentle skin products
- Stay hydrated
- Do Regular Exercise
The older we get; the more we become conscious to take care of our health. When people are young like in the 30s or early 40s, the most feel OK however when we get older, our lifestyles and habits will start affecting our health. People who did not exercise much earlier will start having aches and pains. Though it’s never too late; working on one’s suppleness and range of motion exercises is the key to fitness. Our posture plays a big part too in this regard.
Some regular exercises particularly lower the risk of having heart diseases or cancer. If you adopt a habit of doing regular exercise, it can help you lower your stress, improves sleep patterns, rejuvenate your skin and moods and improves overall health.
Some of the examples of exercises that can easily be adopted by the adults are:
- little dancing
- light aerobics
The seniors should also focus on activities that facilitate their balance and posture other than the above exercises in the routine. Some muscle and bone strengthening exercises are also recommended to age well. Meditation and Yoga may play an important role to stay active and get mindfulness.
- Have Balanced Diet:1
It is very important to have a healthy diet to age gracefully. It is recommended that the elderly should retool their diet and include some of the following foods into their dietary habits to get the required nutrients:
- Protein-rich foods can help promote muscle strength and bone health.
- Adding Fiber in your diet can help regulate your digestive system and lower the risk of heart disease and obesity.
- Calcium rich food can promote bone strength (milk, cheese, yogurt, cereals, and dark green leafy vegetables).
- Vitamin D helps the absorption of Calcium and it may protect against type II diabetes and rheumatoid osteoporosis. Vitamin D can be obtained from cereals, milk, yogurt, juices, eggs, and fish such as salmon and tuna.
- Vitamin B12 by taking meat and poultry dishes, and milk.
- Get your magnesium from fruits and vegetables, or nuts and grains.
- Take iron through red meats, fortified cereals, seafood, and more.
It is just not enough to simply aware of which foods to be added to your diet. A balanced diet is indispensable to stay healthy and fit as your body ages. Stay away from processed foods, refined sugars, and unhealthy fats.
- Peace of Mind
It is very important to remain happy and keeping your stress levels down as it helps you live and age well. To get peace of mind, it is recommended to spend time with your friends and loved ones. Engage in the activities you enjoy well and find new hobbies. It is observed that people who engage in hobbies, leisure and social activities get happier, experience less depression, and live longer.
- Sense of Purpose
Loss of independence can be isolating for many seniors. Adults who are isolated are more likely to develop feelings of hopelessness and depression and this can affect the mental and physical health of the elderly. Independence gives seniors a sense of purpose to live well. They can contribute to the lives of their families and friends, and can enjoy daily life activities. Independence allows seniors to take on the unique challenges of aging and it can boost their mental and physical health.