Many seniors make New Year’s resolutions, which are very similar in nature to the vows made by younger people. A variety of these promises involve making lifestyle changes that enhance personal health. Encourage your elderly loved one to add the following goals to his or her New Year’s resolutions.
1. Eat Healthy Meals
Healthcare providers and nutritionists suggest seniors should eat five servings each of fruits and vegetables every day. Seniors should choose lean beef or pork along with chicken and turkey, and they should eat salmon, shrimp, or tuna at least twice a week to get heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids. They also need two servings of low-fat or skim milk, low-fat or fat-free cheese, and yogurt. Switching to a nutritious diet helps seniors boost their cardiovascular health.
If your elderly loved one needs help maintaining healthy habits, consider hiring a professional caregiver. Toronto families can rely on Home Care Assistance to provide dedicated and compassionate in-home caregivers who are trained in our holistic Balanced Care Method, which was designed to encourage seniors to exercise often, eat nutritious foods, maintain strong social ties, and focus on other lifestyle factors that promote longevity.
2. Get More Exercise
Whether seniors are healthy or living with various medical conditions, they may be able to engage in some type of physical activity. In fact, many musculoskeletal diseases can be treated with increased exercise. Mild options include walking, stretching, and performing tai chi. Jogging, hiking, cycling, and swimming are moderately intense activities. Exercise enhances overall strength, increases balance and posture, and boosts cardiovascular health.
3. Limit Alcohol Consumption
Excessive alcohol consumption may cause depression, interrupt sleep, and adversely interact with medications. Inebriated seniors are at risk of falling and becoming seriously injured. Older men should limit alcohol to no more than two drinks daily. For women, the limitation is one drink per day.
4. Stop Smoking
Smoking tobacco products impairs cardiovascular health by increasing heart rate and constricting blood vessels. The pressure put on the cardiovascular system could contribute to heart attacks or strokes. The pollutants and toxins in the smoke and chemicals in tobacco products permanently damage lungs. Without sufficient oxygenation, cells do not receive the nutrients needed to function properly.
5. Get Plenty of Sleep Each Night
Contrary to popular myth, seniors need seven to nine hours of sleep each night. Sleep deprivation causes mood changes, cognitive impairment, and general fatigue, which could lead to accidents, falls, cardiovascular diseases, and other issues.
6. Exercise the Brain
The brain needs regular exercise to maintain or enhance function. Seniors can exercise their brains by socializing with family or friends, working number or word puzzles, making time for a favorite craft or hobby, and taking a class to learn new skills.
Socializing on a regular basis is one of the best ways seniors can exercise their brains and boost their cognitive skills. For families living in Toronto, ON, respite care can be a wonderful solution when their aging loved ones need companionship and socialization a few hours a week or just need minor assistance with daily household tasks. At Home Care Assistance, we thrive on helping seniors maintain their independence while living in the comfort of home.
7. Take Steps to Prevent Falls
According to the Public Health Agency of Canada, falls are the second leading cause of injuries that require hospitalization. Up to 25 percent of older adults experience serious injuries due to falls. However, most falls are preventable. Older adults can gain strength by exercising, and they should also learn the side effects and possible drug interactions associated with their prescriptions. Seniors can also reduce their risk of falls by using safety devices in the home and removing clutter.
8. Share Concerns About Personal Health
Seniors are at a greater risk of experiencing anxiety or depression when they resist sharing their concerns with family members, friends, or other loved ones. In time, anxiety and depression can lead to physical symptoms and medical conditions. To prevent depression, seniors should consider sharing their concerns with family members, caregivers, and physicians.
Making and sticking to New Year’s resolutions is one of the many ways seniors can enhance their quality of life. Seniors who need help making healthy lifestyle choices that promote longevity can also benefit from professional in-home care. Not every senior has the same care needs, which means they don’t all need the same home care services. Toronto families can rely on Home Care Assistance to provide individualized care plans to meet your elderly loved one’s unique care needs. Our holistic Balanced Care Method was designed to help seniors focus on healthy lifestyle habits such as eating nutritious foods, exercising regularly, and maintaining strong social ties, and our Cognitive Therapeutics Method offers mentally stimulating activities that can stave off cognitive decline and delay the onset of dementia. To learn about our revolutionary in-home care plans, give us a call at (416) 488-8777 today.