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5 Easy Ways to Boost Your Immune System

Things tend to slow down a little as people age, and the immune system is no exception. Older people tend to get sick easier and take longer to recover from illnesses.

Although the immune system can decline with age, there are steps people can take throughout their lives to keep their immune system going strong. In general, a healthy lifestyle will benefit the immune system, from eating right to sleeping well and getting your shots. Read more

Are You Protected from Bone Loss? Important Tips to Reduce Your Risk of Osteoporosis

Breaking a bone isn’t anybody’s idea of a good time. But when a simple sneeze could break a bone, it is more than just a painful inconvenience. More than 50 million people in the United States have osteoporosis or low bone mass, and an estimated 50 percent of women and 25 percent of men over age 50 will break a bone due to the disease. Read more

Signs You Are SAD: Understanding Seasonal Affective Disorder

The cold winter season can get dreary fast. Fall ends in a heartbeat, followed shortly by freezing temperatures and hazy skies. When the cold forces people indoors, some people may feel more like hibernating for the rest of the winter than others.  Read more

Don’t Let the Risk of Blood Clots Stall Your Holiday Plans

It’s the start of another holiday season! Before you hit the road with a trunk filled with presents and Bing Crosby queued up, let’s list some of the other important things to remember: Healthy snacks—check. GPS—check. Avoid drowsiness when driving—check. Know the signs of blood clots, huh? Read more

Here Are Four Reasons Why Music Therapy Is a Hit in Treating Some of Today’s More Common Illnesses.

I’ve been known to carry a tune (or two) with my family. As a spectator of the music business, I witnessed early on the impact a song can have on a person. Whether it brings about smiles from memories past or tears from a haunting loss, the response to music is immediate. Read more

A Little Exercise on Car Trips Can Help Prevent Blood Clots

It’s road trip season! Before you hit the road with a bag of Corn Nuts and the Hamilton soundtrack queued up, let’s list some of the other important things to remember: Healthy snacks – check. GPS – check. Avoid drowsiness when driving – check. Know the signs of a blood clot – huh?

When we think of potential dangers on the road, most of us don’t consider blood clots. According to the National Blood Clot Alliance, “On average, 274 people die every day from blood clots, and one person dies every six minutes from a blood clot.” Read more

5 Ways Owning a Pet Is Good for Your Health

We have a dog named Rocky. He’s a 1-year-old maltipoo who will cuddle us whenever we want, can jump his entire height, and runs faster than any little dog we’ve seen. (He also still pees on the floor, but that’s another story.)

Since bringing Rocky home, I’ve noticed the benefits this fuzzy addition has brought to my family. Now, experts are discovering that owning a pet is not only good for our mood; pets are good for our health.

If you are considering adopting a pet, here are five ways your health would benefit. Read more

8 Ways to Commit to a Healthy Lifestyle

“People often say that motivation doesn’t last,” said Zig Ziglar. “Well, neither does bathing — that’s why we recommend it daily.” Most of us have things about ourselves we’d like to improve. A healthy lifestyle is no exception. This desire can come from wanting to change the way we look or feel, or heeding a doctor’s warning.

“Practicing preventative measures for maintaining good health is a habit you never outgrow,” said Liz Jacobsen, team lead at Lake Ridge Senior Living. “Whether it is getting regular checkups, adjusting diet, increasing exercise or eliminating harmful habits, healthy living starts with adopting healthy habits.” Read more

5 Surprising Reasons Swimming Will Increase Happiness While Aging

It’s no surprise that taking the plunge at the local pool has been a favored form of exercise for older adults. It’s easy on joints, reduces the risks of injury and improves cardiovascular strength. But there are other advantages to swimming as we age.

Studies show that hitting the pool is just as beneficial to the mind as it is the body. Here are five reasons why you could feel happier if you swim for exercise. Read more

Bouncing Back from Accidental Falls

We do a lot for the people we care about, especially those who spent their early life caring for us. We make sure they eat right, exercise, spend quality time with friends and family, and visit their doctor. We do what we can to handle their changing needs, but one slip or misstep can make their world come crashing down. Accidental falls, or unintentional injuries, are the fourth leading cause of death in the U.S. The reasons vary, but experts attribute these injuries to diminished balance brought on by medications, poor vision, and the lack of exercise, namely strength training.

There are a number of safety measures a caregiver can take to reduce the risk of injury within their loved one’s home, such as lighting and removing clutter, but older adults can also use daily exercise to improve their sense of balance to better navigate the bumpy road ahead.

Here are five everyday tips to practice and implement to prevent falls:

  1. Squats
  2. Leg lifts
  3. Regular eye check-ups
  4. Simplify your home
  5. Take your vitamins

Squats

Did you know that squatting is the most primitive movement pattern known to mankind? In fact, our ancestors used to perform this type of movement in daily activities such as harvesting, hunting, gathering, cooking, eating, etc.

Scott Dagenais, rehab director at Palm Terrace Healthcare and Rehab Center, advises grabbing a chair to hold onto for balance when performing this movement. The first step is to stand shoulder width apart and simply lower yourself down while engaging the core. Make sure to squeeze the glutes, keep your head up, and hold for a couple of seconds. To take the exercise up a notch, raise your toes up and then back down. Repeat this 10 times for three sets. This exercise helps with independent balance as it increases quadriceptive and glute strength.

Single leg stance

Movement can become a bit shaky as we age and especially as we move from side to side or reach up to grab something. The single leg stance is another exercise to improve balance to prevent falling in the elderly. This movement begins in the same stance as the squat, however, instead of dipping down, you lift your leg up to the side and then bring it back. Make sure to squeeze the glute, hold it for a few seconds, repeat, and alternate legs. As you become more advanced, try to close your eyes!

Regular eye check-ups

The Vision Council of America reports that approximately 75 percent of adults use some form of vision correction. According to the American Foundation for the Blind (AFB), “A rapidly increasing proportion of the aging population experiences eye problems that make simple daily tasks difficult or impossible, even when wearing glasses or contact lenses. Severe eye problems are not just a matter of ‘getting older.’ The risk of severe eye problems has been found to increase significantly with age, particularly in those over age 65.”

Make sure your loved one has a current prescription as directed by a doctor. Remember that tint-changing lenses can be dangerous, so be aware of the changes in the environment from a darkly-lit building to a bright, sunny day. By pausing and waiting for the lens to adjust, a bump or fall can be avoided.

Take your vitamins

By keeping your bones strong, you stay standing. The two key nutrients to defy osteoporosis are Calcium and vitamin D. Calcium is important because our bodies cycle calcium through the bones to keep them strong, while vitamin D aids your body in absorbing calcium and encourages bone growth. Health.com advises that adults up to the age of 50 should get 1,000 milligrams of calcium and 200 international units (IUs) of vitamin D a day. Adults over 50 should get 1,200 milligrams of calcium and 400-500 IUs of vitamin D.

 

 

Simplify your home

The older we get, the more items we tend to accumulate and sometimes it can be incredibly difficult to part with items that hold sentimental value. One of the things you can do to help your loved one clean up his or her home is to remove things that could easily be tripped over. This includes a throw rug, low-sitting bench, room heater, or a raised doorway threshold. Another risky item would be an electrical cord or any other kind of clutter, such as shoes.

 

Sometimes it takes a good fall to really know where you stand, except when you’re 65! By encouraging a daily exercise routine, monitoring vision, eating right, and removing dangerous clutter and other hazards from the home, your loved one will be ready to tackle whatever lies on the road ahead by staying on the path to good health and avoiding accidental falls.