September is “Healthy Aging Month" it is a time to highlight the importance of aging healthy. Healthy aging month raises awareness about the positive aspects of growing older and encourages everyone to focus on maintaining their physical, mental, and emotional well-being as they age. Aging gracefully involves adopting a holistic approach to health and well-being every day. Did you know that no matter what age you are today you can begin to start aging gracefully now if you choose to do so? You see it is never too late to do anything you put your mind to. Everything always starts with a decision. What will you choose to do?
In 1992, Healthy Aging Month which was formed by the National Council of the Aging (NCOA) emerged to educate and empower people 50 and older that life was not over because they hit a certain milestone and things may have been feeling differently in their bodies or life. This same year taught people that it was okay to get older because it is a natural process of life, but that they can do gracefully and feel good about it. They had more life in them and needed to find ways to continuously learn how to be open-minded so that they could improve or maintain good health.
Fast forward over 30 years later, Healthy Aging Month is now celebrated in many countries around the world. The NCOA chose September for Healthy Aging Month because it is the month when the United Nations celebrates International Day of Older Persons. The International Day of Older Persons was established in 1990 to promote the well-being of older people and to raise awareness of the issues they may encounter daily.
Healthy Aging: 20 Tips to Help You Aging Gracefully:
1. Eat a healthy diet.
a. A healthy diet includes consuming plenty of nutrient dense foods like fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean protein, and low-fat dairy products. It is also important to limit your intake of saturated fat, trans fat, sodium, and added sugar.
2. Stay physically active.
a. Aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic activity each week. You should also do muscle-strengthening activities that work all major muscle groups on two or more days a week.
b. Consult with a healthcare professional before starting a new exercise routine. Only work with certified or licensed professionals to insure your safety.
3. Get regular checkups.
a. See your doctor for regular checkups, including blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood sugar checks.
4. Manage chronic conditions.
a. If you have any chronic conditions, such as high blood pressure, diabetes, or heart disease, work with your doctor to manage them effectively.
b. Always know and understand your health numbers.
5. Stay mentally active.
a. Healthy Aging Month encourages a mindset of lifelong learning and personal growth. It emphasizes the value of acquiring new skills, trying new activities, and embracing opportunities for self-improvement. Challenge your mind by learning new things every day, playing games, or socializing with others. Cognitive engagement can help prevent cognitive decline.
6. Stay socially engaged.
a. Stay connected with friends and family and get involved in your community. Engaging in social activities can boost mental well-being and provide a sense of purpose.
7. Take care of your emotional health.
a. Manage stress, find ways to relax, and practice positive self-talk.
b. Practice gratitude, engage in activities that bring joy, and surround yourself with supportive and positive people.
8. Get enough sleep.
a. Adults need 7-9 hours of sleep per night. If you are doing so, prioritizing sleep so you can feel rejuvenated each morning is a must. Sleep helps improve health and cognitive thinking.
9. Quit smoking.
a. Smoking is harmful to your health at any age, but it is especially harmful as you get older.
10. Limit alcohol intake.
a. Excessive alcohol intake can increase your risk of health problems, such as liver disease, heart disease, and cancer.
11. Protect your vision.
a. Get regular eye exams and wear sunglasses that protect your eyes from the sun's harmful rays.
12. Take care of your hearing.
a. Get regular hearing exams and wear hearing protection in noisy environments.
13. Take care of your teeth.
a. Brush and floss your teeth twice a day and see your dentist for regular checkups.
14. Stay hydrated.
a. Drink plenty of fluids, especially water, throughout the day. To keep toxins flowing out of the body and blood circulating and flowing freely to the heart liquids like water are imperative regularly. Water is also helpful in making your skin look youthful, while staying plump vs. wrinkly or sagging.
15. Manage your weight.
a. Aging causes metabolism to slow down, making it more difficult to lose weight and easier to gain weight. Additionally, some chronic diseases that are more common in older adults, such as diabetes and heart disease, can be made worse by obesity, therefore it is imperative to maintain a healthy weight. Get some exercise in most days of the week if not all the days and do not overeat or eat when you are not hungry. Stop eating when you are 80% full to avoid feeling stuffed or bloated.
16. Get enough sun exposure.
a. Sunlight helps your body produce vitamin D, which is important for bone health. However, it is important to protect your skin from the sun's harmful rays by wearing sunscreen, sunshades, and protective clothing.
17. Stress management.
a. Stress is a normal part of life, but it can be especially harmful as we age. Chronic stress can contribute to premature gaining and several health problems, including heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, and depression.
b. Practice stress-reduction techniques such as meditation, deep breathing, yoga, or spending time in nature.
18. Be mindful of your surroundings.
a. As you age, it is important to be aware of your surroundings and take precautions to avoid falls and other accidents.
b. Be aware of younger people being over kind or trying to take advantage of you, you have close trusted family members make sure they investigate those who are hanging around your person and always have your money protected and out of easy reach from perpetrators and spammers.
19. Maintain a Sense of Purpose.
a. Stay engaged in meaningful activities, whether through work, volunteering, or pursuing hobbies. Having a sense of purpose can contribute to overall well-being.
20. Adapt and Embrace Change.
a. Embrace the changes that come with aging and find ways to adapt and adjust. Accepting these changes can lead to a more positive outlook on the aging process.
Aging is a natural part of life, and everyone's journey is unique to their life's story. No two people go through life the same journey no matter what environment they live in. In essence, "Healthy Aging Month" aims to reshape attitudes towards aging and inspire people to approach the aging process with optimism, vitality, and a commitment to maintaining a high quality of life as they continue to grow older so that they can do so gracefully. It's an opportunity to recognize the potential for personal growth and well-being throughout the lifespan and to celebrate the wisdom and experiences that come with age. This September, do yourself a favor by prioritizing your self-care, maintaining a positive mindset, and continuing to learn and grow as you navigate the different stages of life you have walked through and continue to as you grow older. We, at Earthy Naturals have provided you with 20 tips to help you age gracefully on your healthy ageing journey through life. If you have specific health concerns or questions, it's always best to consult with your healthcare provider who can provide personalized advice based on your specific needs and circumstances.
In the meantime, after reading this post, you have a choice to make. What will you do to make sure you age gracefully? What healthy routines will you add to your lifestyle to improve your life right now and tomorrow? Remember, if you have life, you have options and you can change if you want to. You must be willing not just to say words, but to act and keep doing so continuously if you want to see different, new results. This month we have launched our new company and next month, we will start meeting with new clients who are interested in improving their lives holistically with health and wellness & life coaching, courses, workshops, and consulting; stay tuned. In the meantime, do something to help yourself stay healthy so that you can age gracefully. Getting out in nature for a brisk walk is one of our remedies; and it is so easy to do if you are able. If not, sit in nature and watch the creatures of the earth and sea play or just be in that moment and do nothing for a few minutes.