Aging gracefully, anti-aging, healthy aging, and longevity – while these may be terms we’ve heard before, navigating what this means and understanding how we can live a longer, better life is half the battle. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the percentage of us over 60 will almost double by 2050, from 12% to 22%. As we get older, it’s becomes more important to understand a few keys to healthy aging and longevity. We can make minor adjustments to our daily routine to improve our quality of life and, with a little luck, afford us more time to live healthy and independent for longer.
Here are nine useful tips for aging gracefully, including being physically active, eating well, and socializing.
1. Stay physically active
Remaining active and exercising is important for many reasons, including maintaining a healthy weight, balance, endurance, and strength. Those who exercise regularly may not only live longer but may enjoy more years of life without pain or disability.
According to a study, people over 40 who walk more than 8,000 steps per day have a 51% lower risk of dying than those who take less than 4,000 step
2. Choose to eat healthy foods
Eating fresh fruits and vegetables, proteins, healthy fats becomes more important as we get older. Healthy eating habits reduces the chance of metabolic diseases like diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity, and others. Diet can be controversial. It’s encouraged to do your own study to find the best diet for your lifestyle.
3. Get enough quality sleep
Don’t neglect the amount of sleep you get. Mature adults should aim to get seven to nine hours of sleep nightly. Developing dementia becomes more likly for people who sleep six hours or less in their 50s and 60s each night, a study found.
4. Refrain from smoking
Quitting smoking improves your blood circulation, sense of taste and smell, and your capacity to exercise not to mention decreases your chance for cancer and heart disease. A study found that those over 45 who quit smoking between that age and 54 lived about six years longer than those who didn’t.
5. Limit consumption of alcohol
Alcohol dependence and heavy drinking affect every organ in the body. The act of aging can lead to social and physical changes that may make it challenging to deal with, therefore, older adults should especially limit or avoid alcohol consumption.
6. Regularly visit your doctor
Healthy aging involves being diligent with regular checkups and recommended health screenings. Appointments with doctors and specialists increase the chances of catching early onset of chronic diseases and other health issues.
7. Stay engaged and connected
Staying engaged with your circle of trusted communities helps offset social isolation. With age, comes changes to the body such as loss of hearing, vision and memory, oftentimes making it difficult to maintain social relationships. The feeling of loneliness and isolation can snowball and affect mental health.
8. Reduce stress.
Practicing meditation and engaging in other calming, stress-reducing activities can benefit overall health. Stress at any age has negative health effects but older adults are particularly susceptible.
9. Fight off depression.
Depression lurks amongst the older population and hides in the feelings of sadness and disinterest. Get out and do things that make you happy like walking and bird watching. Doing those things can improve your health and boost your overall feelings of well-being.
Incorporating nutraceutical grade supplements with targeted health benefits into your daily routine can also support overall physical health as we age.
As health aging and longevity are important to you, remember, leading a life of healthy behaviors such as a well-balanced diet, regular moderate exercise, no smoking or drinking, and cognitive activities reduces the risk of Alzheimer’s by 60%. And just by practicing two or three of those activities lowers risk by 37%.