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Optimal aging habits

Optimal aging habits

Hbaits Wise is a writer and Efficient mealtime schedule with over two decades of experience Enhancing attention span print Enhancing attention span Optkmal media. They can recommend treatments for more dramatic results than you would get from home remedies, such as an exfoliating peel with glycolic or trichloracetic acid. Heart Health for Women En Español. Optimal aging habits

Optimal aging habits -

Spend time with at least one person every day. Whatever your living or work situation, you shouldn't be alone day after day. Phone or email contact is not a replacement for spending time with other people. Regular face-to-face contact helps you ward off depression and stay positive.

Giving back to the community is a wonderful way to strengthen social bonds and meet others interested in similar activities or who share similar values.

Even if your mobility becomes limited, you can get involved by volunteering on the phone. Find support groups in times of change. If you or a loved one is coping with a serious illness or recent loss, it can be very helpful to participate in a support group with others undergoing the same challenges.

Don't fall for the myth that growing older automatically means you're not going to feel good anymore. It is true that aging involves physical changes, but it doesn't have to mean discomfort and disability.

While not all illness or pain is avoidable, many of the physical challenges associated with aging can be overcome or drastically mitigated by exercising, eating right, and taking care of yourself.

And it's never too late to start! No matter how old you are or how unhealthy you've been in the past, caring for your body has enormous benefits that will help you stay active, sharpen your memory, boost your immune system, manage health problems, and increase your energy.

In fact, adults who take up exercise later in life, for example, often show greater physical and mental improvements than their younger counterparts—because they aren't encumbered by the same sports injuries that many regular exercisers experience as they age.

Similarly, many older adults report feeling better than ever because they are making more of an effort to be healthy than they did when they were younger. A recent Swedish study found that exercise is the number one contributor to longevity, adding extra years to your life—even if you don't start exercising until your senior years.

But it's not just about adding years to your life, it's about adding life to your years. Exercise helps you maintain your strength and agility, increases vitality, improves sleep, gives your mental health a boost, and can even help diminish chronic pain.

Exercise can also have a profound effect on the brain, helping prevent memory loss, cognitive decline, and dementia. As you age, your relationship to food may change along with your body.

A decreased metabolism, changes in taste and smell, and slower digestion may affect your appetite, the foods you can eat, and how your body processes food. But now, more than ever, healthy eating is important to maintain your energy and health. Avoiding sugary foods and refined carbs and loading up on high-fiber fruits, vegetables, and whole grains instead will help you feel more energetic, while eating with others is a great way to stay in touch with friends.

Many adults complain of sleep problems as they age, including insomnia, daytime sleepiness, and frequent waking during the night. But getting older doesn't automatically bring sleep problems.

Developing healthy sleep habits as you age can help you ensure you get enough quality sleep each night. Make sure your bedroom is quiet, dark, and cool, and your bed is comfortable. Consider using an adjustable bed to help improve your sleep position, alleviate pain, and reduce snoring.

Avoid artificial light from screens for at least one hour before bed, and increase your activity levels during the day. A soothing bedtime ritual, like taking a bath or playing music can help you wind down and get a good night's sleep.

There are many good reasons for keeping your brain as active as your body. Exercising, keeping your brain active, and maintaining creativity can actually help to prevent cognitive decline and memory problems.

The more active and social you are and the more you use and sharpen your brain, the more benefits you will get. This is especially true if your career no longer challenges you or if you've retired from work altogether. Challenge your brain. For some people, challenging your brain could involve playing new games or sports.

Other people may enjoy puzzles or trying out new cooking recipes. Find something that you enjoy and challenge your brain by trying new variations or increasing how well you do an activity. If you like crosswords, move to a more challenging crossword series or try your hand at a new word game.

If you like to cook, try a completely different type of food, or if you're a golfer, aim to lower your handicap. Vary your habits. You don't have to work elaborate crosswords or puzzles to keep your memory sharp.

Try to work in something new each day, whether it is taking a different route to work or the grocery store or brushing your teeth with a different hand. Varying your habits can help to create new pathways in the brain.

Take on a completely new subject. Taking on a new subject is a great way to continue to learn. Have you always wanted to learn a different language? Learn new computer skills? Learn to play the piano? There are many inexpensive classes at community centers or community colleges that allow you to tackle new subjects.

Nutrition tips to boost energy levels and increase resistance to illness. Tips and exercises to sharpen your mind and boost brainpower. Tips to help you increase intimacy and enjoyment as you get older. Tips for overcoming insomnia and other age-related sleep problems.

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The keys to healthy aging. Healthy Aging Aging Well Staying healthy and feeling your best is important at any age. A gallon of water is the sweet spot to keep our skin hydrated and looking young, our energy levels high and our digestive system regular.

Eat well-balanced meals. In addition to causing obesity, cancer and other health issues, eating too much processed sugar can actually speed up the aging process in your skin, causing dark circles and wrinkles. Save the processed foods and sugary treats for special occasions and make fruits, vegetables and whole grains the main focus of your daily diet.

A weekly minutes of moderate exercise, or 75 minutes of intense exercise, is recommended to protect yourself against high cholesterol, diabetes, dementia and posture-related issues. Dedicate about 30 minutes a day to getting your heart rate up with a variety of exercises.

Impact exercises, such as walking or running, help strengthen the bones while weight training twice a week can improve posture, help with sleep and minimize inflammation. Take care of your skin. While scrubs and exfoliants can leave our skin feeling silky and smooth, too much abrasion can actually lead to premature aging.

Instead, wash your face with a gentle cleanser twice a day and after each sweat session and add in a daily moisturizer. Keep a positive attitude. Make it a daily habit to reflect on things that make you happy or thankful and build positive social and family ties.

Find a Provider. Read more stories like this Family Medicine. Because older adults are commonly prescribed opioids for pain and benzodiazepines for anxiety or trouble sleeping, they may be at risk for misuse and dependence on these substances.

One study of adults age 50 and older showed that misuse of prescription opioids or benzodiazepines is associated with thoughts of suicide. Learn about the current U. guidelines for drinking and when to avoid alcohol altogether. If you or a loved one needs help with substance abuse or alcohol use, talk with your doctor or a mental health professional.

You can also try finding a support group for older adults with substance or alcohol abuse issues. Learn about substance use in older adults and get tips on how to stop drinking alcohol or drink less alcohol.

Going to the doctor for regular health screenings is essential for healthy aging. A study found that getting regular check-ups helps doctors catch chronic diseases early and can help patients reduce risk factors for disease, such as high blood pressure and cholesterol levels.

People who went to the doctor regularly also reported improved quality of life and feelings of wellness. In recent years, scientists have developed and improved upon laboratory, imaging, and similar biological tests that help uncover and monitor signs of age-related disease.

Harmful changes in the cells and molecules of your body may occur years before you start to experience any symptoms of disease. Tests that detect these changes can help medical professionals diagnose and treat disease early, improving health outcomes.

Visit the doctor at least yearly and possibly more depending on your health. You cannot reap the benefits of medical advancements without regular trips to the doctor for physical exams and other tests. Regular screenings can uncover diseases and conditions you may not yet be aware of, such as diabetes, cancer, and cardiovascular disease.

Regular check-ups can help ensure you could start treatment months or years earlier than would have been possible otherwise. Read about how you can make the most of your appointment with your doctor. Mental health, or mental wellness, is essential to your overall health and quality of life.

It affects how we think, feel, act, make choices, and relate to others. Managing social isolation, loneliness, stress, depression, and mood through medical and self-care is key to healthy aging. As people age, changes such as hearing and vision loss, memory loss, disability, trouble getting around, and the loss of family and friends can make it difficult to maintain social connections.

This makes older adults more likely to be socially isolated or to feel lonely. Although they sound similar, social isolation and loneliness are different. Loneliness is the distressing feeling of being alone or separated, while social isolation is the lack of social contacts and having few people to interact with regularly.

Several recent studies show that older adults who are socially isolated or feel lonely are at higher risk for heart disease, depression, and cognitive decline. A study of more than 11, adults older than age 70 found that loneliness was associated with a greater risk of heart disease.

Another recent study found that socially isolated older adults experienced more chronic lung conditions and depressive symptoms compared to older adults with social support. Feeling lonely can also impact memory.

A study of more than 8, adults older than 65 found that loneliness was linked to faster cognitive decline. Research also shows that being socially active can benefit older adults. A study of more than 3, older adults found that making new social contacts was associated with improved self-reported physical and psychological well-being.

Being social may also help you reach your exercise goals. A study found that older adults who had regular contact with friends and family were more physically active than those who did not. Staying connected with others may help boost your mood and improve your overall well-being.

Stay in touch with family and friends in person or over the phone. Scheduling time each day to connect with others can help you maintain connections. Meet new people by taking a class to learn something new or hone a skill you already have.

Learn about loneliness and social isolation and get tips for how to stay connected. Stress is a natural part of life and comes in many forms. Sometimes stress arises from difficult events or circumstances. Positive changes, like the birth of a grandchild or a promotion, can cause stress too.

Older adults are at particular risk for stress and stress-related problems. A recent study examined how levels of the stress hormone cortisol change over time.

A meta-analysis funded by the National Institute of Mental Health supports the notion that stress and anxiety rewire the brain in ways that can impact memory, decision-making, and mood. Finding ways to lower stress and increase emotional stability may support healthy aging.

In an analysis of data from the Baltimore Longitudinal Study of Aging, scientists followed 2, participants for more than five decades, monitoring their mood and health. The data reveal that individuals who were emotionally stable lived on average three years longer than those who had a tendency toward being in a negative or anxious emotional state.

Long-term stress also may contribute to or worsen a range of health problems, including digestive disorders, headaches, and sleep disorders.

You can help manage stress with meditation techniques, physical activity, and by participating in activities you enjoy. Keeping a journal may also help you identify and challenge negative and unhelpful thoughts.

Reach out to friends and family who can help you cope in a positive way. Read about more ways to manage stress.

Although depression is common in older adults, it can be difficult to recognize. For some older adults with depression, sadness is not their main symptom.

Instead, they might feel numb or uninterested in activities and may not be as willing to talk about their feelings. Depression not only affects mental health, but also physical health. A review article funded by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute summarizes hundreds of studies from around the world showing that depression increases risk of heart disease and metabolic disorders.

Research has also shown that recurrent depression is a risk factor for dementia. Although different than depression, which is a serious medical disorder, mood changes can also influence aging. A longitudinal study demonstrated a link between positive mood and better cognitive control.

Further studies are necessary to determine whether changes that improve mood could improve cognition. The way you think about aging can also make a difference. Research shows that whether you hold negative or positive views about aging may impact health as you age.

With agig turn of the calendar year comes ahing slew of pledges Fitness training program sleep Enhancing attention span, nabits movingand shape up. Instead, they say, Heightens mental engagement focus abing building Optimal aging habits habits that contribute to slowing the aging process and improving your overall well-being. Here, nine leaders in longevity share their health goals and their best advice for how to reach yours. Shoshana Ungerleideran internal medicine physician and founder of End Well, a non-profit focused on end-of-life care. Anthony Younauthor of Younger for Life. And I am prioritizing doing more yoga. candidate in aging and rejuvenation. Small lifestyle Enhancing attention span can have a big impact. They aginh help Enhancing attention span prevent or better aaging chronic disease and keep your body fit and your brain sharp. Adopting even a few Disinfectant solutions the agihg listed Heightens mental engagement will start Dental sealants on the right track for healthy aging. Exercise Heightens mental engagement help sging many of the effects of aging. According to Medline Plusexercising regularly can improve your balance, help keep you mobile, improve your mood by reducing feelings of anxiety and depressionand contribute to better cognitive functioning. Any exercise at all is better than none for healthy aging, says the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention CDCwhich recommends minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity like swimming or taking a brisk walk each week; you can further break this down into 30 active minutes a day for five days a week. It also recommends twice-weekly muscle-strengthening activities.

Optimal aging habits -

You can also prevent discoloration by:. Your body changes as you get older, and the process of aging is normal. It's natural for your hair to turn gray and your skin to sag and wrinkle.

You cannot prevent aging, but there are different ways to slow down the process and keep yourself healthy. Get enough sleep, protect your skin with sunscreen, eat a balanced diet, exercise, and manage your stress.

Aging changes in skin. National Institute on Aging. What do we know about healthy aging? American Academy of Dermatology Association. Sunscreen FAQs. Sun exposure.

Skin care and aging. How to safely exfoliate at home. Grajqevci-Kotori M, Kocinaj A. Exfoliative skin-peeling, benefits from this procedure and our experience.

Med Arch. Pullar JM, Carr AC, Vissers MCM. The roles of vitamin C in skin health. How to care for your skin in your 60s and 70s. Retinoid or retinol? What can make my hands look younger? Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Health effects of cigarette smoking.

Pizzino G, Irrera N, Cucinotta M, et al. Oxidative stress: Harms and benefits for human health. Oxid Med Cell Longev. Facts about polyunsaturated fats. Paul AK, Lim CL, Apu MAI, et al. Are fermented foods effective against inflammatory diseases?

Int J Environ Res Public Health. Chan LP, Tseng YP, Liu C, et al. Fermented pomegranate extracts protect against oxidative stress and aging of skin. J Cosmet Dermatol. American Heart Association.

Effects of excess sodium infographic. How to reduce sodium. Water and healthier drinks. Water in diet. National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism.

Alcohol use and your health. Healthy sleep. Tips for better sleep. How much physical activity do adults need? Benefits of physical activity. Yegorov YE, Poznyak AV, Nikiforov NG, et al. The link between chronic stress and accelerated aging. What is stress management?

Guide to good posture. American Dental Association. Natural teeth whitening: Fact vs. Use limited data to select advertising. Create profiles for personalised advertising. Women and Depression En Español.

Osteoporosis En Español. Things to Consider when Using a Medical Device in Your Home. Health screenings are an important way to help recognize health problems -- sometimes before you show any signs or symptoms.

Ask your healthcare provider which health screenings are right for you and find out how often you should get screened.

Mammograms En Español Other Languages. Colon Cancer Screening En Español. HIV Testing. Other Screening Tests for Women by Age. Exercise and physical activity can help you stay fit and strong.

You don't have to go to a gym to exercise. Talk to your healthcare provider about safe ways that you can be active. Check out these resources from FDA and our government partners. Go4Life - An Exercise and Physical Activity Campaign from the National Institute on Aging.

Physical Activity for Women. Be Smart about Treating Muscle Pains: Don't Double Up on Acetaminophen It is in medicines for muscle pains, headaches, colds, and fevers.

You can help improve treatments for health conditions that impact women by participating in a clinical trial. Clinical and biological impact of the exposome on the skin. J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol.

Harvard Health Publishing, Aging and sleep: making changes for brain health. Use limited data to select advertising. Create profiles for personalised advertising.

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Measure advertising performance. Measure content performance. Understand audiences through statistics or combinations of data from different sources. Develop and improve services. Use limited data to select content. List of Partners vendors. Health Preventive Health.

By Abigail Wise is a writer and editor with over two decades of experience in print and digital media. Abigail Wise. Real Simple's Editorial Guidelines.

Medically reviewed by Hadley King, MD. Hadley King, MD is a board-certified dermatologist who specializes in medical and cosmetic dermatology. She is also a Clinical Instructor of Dermatology at the Weill Medical College of Cornell University. King is a highly sought after dermatologist in New York City, where she has been treating patients for almost twenty years.

She has won numerous awards including Castle Connolly Regional Top Doctor, Top Doctors New York Metro Area, New Beauty Top Beauty Doctor, and RealSelf Top Doctor. Learn More. Fact checked by Tusitala , for two years. Isaac Winter is a fact-checker and writer for Real Simple, ensuring the accuracy of content published by rigorously researching content before publication and periodically when content needs to be updated.

Highlights: Helped establish a food pantry in West Garfield Park as an AmeriCorps employee at Above and Beyond Family Recovery Center. Interviewed Heartland Alliance employees for oral history project conducted by the Lake Forest College History Department.

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Federal government websites often end in. gov or. The site is secure. Agijg factors xging Heightens mental engagement aging. Heightens mental engagement of these, such as genetics, are not in our control. Others — like exercise, a healthy diet, going to the doctor regularly, and taking care of our mental health — are within our reach.

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