The new year is here, which means it time for some resolutions to be made! While we all have our own personal goals for this upcoming year, maybe some of us struggle with what we should strive for. When it comes to our seniors, New Year’s resolutions can actually be beneficial to maintaining a healthy lifestyle. We should try to encourage ourselves or our elderly parents and loved ones to take on a New Year’s resolution. Not so sure of what they should make their resolution? Take a look below, where we have outlined a few beneficial resolutions for our seniors.
Getting active is definitely a topic we have covered in a couple different of our blog posts. This is because it can have serious positive effects on our health! As we age, it is inevitable we become less mobile. This can lead to various different problems down the road and ultimately can become a problem for independence. Staying active, whether that be walking around the neighborhood, stretching, water aerobics, light biking, or any type of physical activity can help our elders keep a healthy lifestyle. According to Howard LeWine, from Harvard Health Publications, “older people who are physically more active and who exercise regularly are more likely to walk independently and do other activities of daily living on their own compared to sedentary elders.” Even if you are just starting out with maybe ten minutes each day and gradually being active for a couple more minutes each day can have its positive effects.
Limiting Alcohol Intake
It is no secret that alcohol can have serious long-term effects on health when too much is consumed over a long period of time. However, age does become a factor in this, alcohol affects us differently as we age. It can have negative effects on our brains, liver, immune systems, and can put our elders at a higher risk for falling. However, eliminating alcohol all together certainly does not have to be the answer. Practice moderation, a glass of red wine with dinner to promote antioxidants can definitely have a positive impact on health.
Workout The Brain
There are various different ways to keep our brains as sharp as ever. Challenging ourselves and our brains can be a great way to sharpen mental skills. Crossword puzzles, sudoku games, reading, memorization games are great ways to keep our brains engaged and thinking sharply. In addition, trying new things like cooking different types of cuisine or learning some words of a new language can also be beneficial. The key takeaway here is keep ourselves entertained in various different ways rather than just watching TV or playing mindless games.
Quitting smoking is probably something that many people make their New Year’s Resolution. For anyone, especially mom and dad, kicking this habit can have serious positive effects on the body. Make this the year that the smoking habit gets the boot!
While these resolutions can definitely be goals for everyone, they can be very beneficial for our elderly loved ones. Taking one or two of these and making them a goal doesn’t have to be taunting, in fact, it can be a fun to accomplish and work at every day. Maybe take one of these resolutions up with mom or dad or a good friend and work at it together for a good support system!
LeWine, M.D. Howard. “Exercise Helps Seniors Stay Mobile, Independent.” Harvard Health Blog, 29 May 2014, www.health.harvard.edu/blog/walking-exercise-helps-seniors-stay-mobile-independent-201405287173.
“Facts About Aging and Alcohol.” National Institute on Aging, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, www.nia.nih.gov/health/facts-about-aging-and-alcohol.