Like taxes, growing older is an inevitable part of life. However, the way you feel as you age is largely under your control. While genetics play a big role in senior wellness, lifestyle choices can have a huge impact as well. If you’re determined to greet your golden years with energy and vigor, here are some disease prevention tips you should try implementing now.
Did you know your body requires regular movement to function optimally? There are many diseases and health risks linked to an inactive lifestyle, including obesity, stroke, type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol and high blood pressure. To avoid these types of conditions, make it a goal to move more and sit less each day.
Getting daily physical activity can be simpler than you think. To start, try taking a couple of 10-minute walks per day or weeding your garden for 15 minutes at a time. Even doing housework is considered physical activity. If you’re used to sitting for long periods of time, try setting a timer every half hour to remind you to get up and walk around.
Go to the Doctor Regularly
Don’t wait until you’re sick to go to the doctor. Preventative services are very important for staying well and identifying diseases early on. The earlier you detect a disease, the better your treatment outcome generally is. Talk to your doctor to determine how frequently you should schedule checkups for optimum health as you age.
Make Healthy Food and Drink Choices
You know the old saying “you are what you eat”? It turns out there’s a lot of truth to it. If you eat foods that are known to contribute to inflammation and disease, you’re more likely to become inflamed and diseased. That’s why it’s important to analyze your diet and make sure you’re eating a variety of healthy foods.
Eat plenty of colorful fruits and vegetables and consume lean meats, whole grains and low-fat dairy products. You should also avoid acidic drinks such as sodas. These drinks can contribute to common senior problems such as acid reflux and joint pain.
Don’t Use Tobacco
Tobacco products can cause a variety of diseases, from lung cancer to heart disease. Whether you smoke tobacco or chew it, you should take steps to stop. With a quick online search, you can find free resources to help you quit your habit. Once you stop using tobacco, you’ll increase your chances of living disease-free in your senior years.
Pay Attention to Your Brain Health
It’s natural for the brain to change as you age. However, issues such as dementia are not a natural part of aging. Instead, they are diseases that affect some people. Your family history can play a large role in your propensity for brain diseases. However, early intervention may help you stave off diseases that affect brain health. Talk to your doctor if you have a family history of dementia or if you’ve noticed troubling changes in your memory or brain health.
Know Your Family Health History
Chronic diseases often run in families. That’s why it’s important to know your family health history and be aware of health conditions that your family members had. The more prevalent a particular health condition is in your family history, the more likely you are to develop it. Write down your family health history and bring it to your doctor. He or she will then know what chronic diseases you’re likely to develop and will be in a better position to detect and treat them early.
Growing older doesn’t have to be synonymous with pain or disease. By following these helpful tips, you can ensure your physical and mental health as long as possible into your senior years.