Obesity is an epidemic that is on the rise in the United States. Children and senior citizens make up the largest categories of people who are obese. For senior citizens it can be difficult to maintain a healthy diet and exercise regimen. There are numerous benefits to being healthy and many different ways to get there. It is never too late to get on track with a regimen that just might save your life.
It is important for all people, especially the elderly to take a complete multi-vitamin. While multi-vitamins are often huge and the idea of taking one seems like a daunting daily task, they are the one way you can obtain all the vitamins and minerals your body needs. Normally, we get our nutrients from the things we drink and eat. However, it is nearly impossible to give our bodies everything with food and drink alone. The human body needs vitamins, minerals and nutrients to help combat sickness, heal us, keep bodily processing functioning accordingly and help us grow and maintain our body. Paired with diet and exercise, a multi-vitamin will help keep your body running smooth and keep you healthy.
Be Careful What You Eat
There is a popular phrase that goes “you are what you eat.” This is true for all of us. When you put bad things in your body, it feels bad, you feel bad and the end result is often bad. Elderly people should consider consultation with a nutritionist to figure out the best diet plan for them. What we eat effects how our body functions and can be a trigger to other medical problems. Greasy, processed foods that are high in fat and sugar increase the risk of a heart attack, bowel obstruction, fatigue and diabetes. Of course that is only the tip of the iceberg. Studies have proven that high amounts of wheat products are connected to mental fogginess, chronic fatigue, digestive disorders and memory problems. The best diet for seniors should include foods high in protein (dark leafy greens, eggs, fish, meats, nuts) and high in vital nutrients and antioxidants (fruits and vegetables). Antioxidants work to fight off free radicals in the body. Free radicals come from what we eat, where we live, what we drink and our stress levels. Internally they work to tear down our cells making us weak and vulnerable to sickness. Free radical damage has also been linked to various forms of cancer. Fruits and vegetables are important for the body because they are packed with vitamins but also because they help the body naturally detoxify itself of waste that has built up over time. Eating healthy is a natural way to cleanse the body. This will increase energy, appearance, decrease mental fog and increase your appetite for good foods. All in all, you do not need to give up everything you love, but cut back on those items that are unhealthy and swap them out for nutritious foods.
Many assisted living centers for seniors keep personal trainers on staff. There are a variety of low-impact fitness programs that are beneficial to building lean muscle and burning fat. Muscle strength is important, especially for seniors. It protects bones and joints and offers support during injury. One of the reasons that many older people break bones is because they are lacking bone strength from poor diet and lacking muscle strength from lack of exercise. Light cardio workouts are also important to help keep heart and lung functions intact. Studies show that 30 minutes of light cardio daily makes a drastic difference in whether or not a person will experience a heart attack or other heart problems. Here is a quick list of easy to do, common exercises for seniors:
- 30-minute walk
- Tai Chi
- Water Aerobics
- Light weight lifting
Each of these activities and more are available to assisted living centers and retirement communities. You can work out with a friend or enlist the help of a personal trainer to keep you focused on your goals and your health.
Diet and Fitness Programs
Keeping track of diet and exercise is another way to increase productivity with health and fitness. Many people are comfortable tracking their activities in a food journal. This is a simple notebook where you write down what you eat, portion size, what type of exercise you did and time frame under each date. There are also many free editions of this available online. One popular website for free diet and exercise tracking is EverydayHealth.com. Here you are able to log in your daily activities. There is a calorie counter that lets you know if you are “over budget” on your daily intake as well. To make it even easier, the program already has many foods and exercises configured with the calories and nutrition information.
Proper diet and exercise will not only increase your physical health, they can also increase your sexual health. Ensuring that your body has the proper nutrients means that all internal systems are operating at optimum level. Daily light exercise will increase stamina and longevity during sexual acts without the need of prescription drugs. Vitamin B and Zinc are both recommended to increase sexual drive and fight off prostate and ovarian cancer.
Fitness plans are available no matter what your age. With the never-ending list of health issues associated with poor diet, lack of exercise and obesity it is essential for everyone to take the best care of themselves. Not only will you feel better on a day to day basis when you maintain a healthy diet and exercise regimen, you will also find that you are sick less often, increase your chances of fighting off disease and infection and therefore visit the doctor less. As part of any healthy living plan you should always consult your doctor before starting an exercise routine and diet and maintain regular checkups. Preventive medical care enables doctors to catch warning signs of potential health problems before they become serious and life threatening.