Senior Health Home > Senior Healthy Living -- A Guide to Living a Healthy Lifestyle
Living a healthy lifestyle is not necessarily hard, but it can mean making certain lifestyle changes. For some people, this may mean quitting smoking; for others, it may mean exercising more and getting down to a healthy weight. Making proper food choices also helps -- try eating more fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and lean meats. By engaging in activities that promote healthy living, you'll feel better and live longer.
Healthy Living for Seniors: An OverviewGetting older is inevitable. And there is a lot of company. In fact, within 25 years, almost one in five Americans will fall into the "older" category. With an increasingly older population, the number of people suffering from chronic diseases, disability, and death are rising.
Just because your age is increasing, however, this does not mean that you need to give in to the effects of age or to these conditions. Poor health is not a consequence of age. To a large extent, the major chronic disease killers -- heart disease, cancer, stroke, and diabetes -- are an extension of what people do, or not do, as they go about their daily lives. You can choose to do things in your daily life to live healthier and decrease the chances of developing these conditions.
Living healthy begins with education, and we don't mean schooling. We mean education about these conditions that can have a negative impact on your quality of life or lifespan. For example, everyone should be knowledgeable about heart disease risk factors because heart disease is the number one killer of both men and women. Understanding the common cancers (including breast cancer, cervical cancer, prostate cancer, and colon cancer) and screening for them is also important.
Healthy living also involves practicing a healthy lifestyle. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), nearly 40 percent of deaths in America are related to smoking, physical inactivity, poor diet, or alcohol misuse. You can begin (or continue) living a healthy lifestyle by:
- Watching your weight
- Eating healthy
- Staying physically active
- Quitting smoking (if you smoke)
- Preventing injury.
By adopting these behaviors, you may be able to control or prevent many of the problems that occur as people age.