Getting older is inevitable and involves changes in all realms of life, from the physical to the mental to the social, emotional, sexual, and more. Some of these changes you may regard positively and others negatively, but the challenge is to enjoy the good parts of getting older while taking proactive steps to maintain your health and minimize the negative aspects. When it comes to ageing gracefully, it isn’t just about trying to look like your younger self; it’s about embracing the beauty on the inside and the outside and living your best life while doing so. It’s also about having the physical and mental health to enjoy it.
Continue reading for some tips on what to do and what not to do on your quest to age gracefully.
Watch What You Eat and Drink
When it comes to ageing gracefully, although it may seem obvious, having a balanced diet is crucial. Not only is a balanced diet beneficial for good health, energy and preventing illness, it also makes you feel good and can affect your outward appearance too. An ideal diet is generally low in saturated fat, with lots of fruit and vegetables, whole grains, oily fish, and small amounts of low-fat dairy and lean meat. Avoid using solid fats for cooking and use oils instead. Stay away from processed foods, refined sugars, and unhealthy fats, and be mindful of your salt intake, as consuming too much can increase your blood pressure.
Ensuring that you stay hydrated is also essential, as dehydration can cause side effects such as sleepiness and confusion. Tea, coffee, and fruit juice will also help you stay hydrated, but avoid sugary fizzy drinks. If you drink alcohol, make sure that you don’t exceed the recommended daily limits and keep at least two days per week booze-free to give your liver time to recover.
Look After Your Teeth
Brush your teeth twice a day and floss daily. Floss helps to prevent gum disease by removing pieces of food and plaque from between the teeth. If it’s left to build up, you might notice sore or bleeding gums, and gum disease can also be linked to diabetes, strokes, heart disease, and rheumatoid arthritis. Have regular check-ups and, if you wear dentures or have a bridge, ask your dentist to check that they fit correctly.
You can schedule these routine check-ups with a dentist; if you’ve recently moved or are looking for a new practice, you can search for a new dentist in Brisbane here. You can find more details of dentists in Brisbane by using the previous link, where you can find tons of different information about treatments relating to changing teeth and even book online.
Make Sure You Stay Fit
Keeping physically active and eating well is another essential factor for ageing gracefully; as daily exercise helps you stay strong and healthy, plus it helps reduce the risk of severe health conditions such as obesity, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and even cancer. If that wasn’t enough, exercise can also boost your self-esteem, improve your sleep, and give you more energy during the day. Australian guidelines recommend that older adults do at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity like walking or swimming on most days and strengthening exercises twice a week.
Older adults should also focus on activities that include balance training, such as exercises like tai chi which have been shown to improve balance, in addition to aerobic and muscle strengthening exercises. It may sound like a lot, but if you start small, you will be able to work up to these amounts as you get stronger.
Socialise and Stay Connected
Belonging to a community and staying connected with people you love is a big deal. Spending time with friends and relatives isn’t just fun, it can help you live longer. Data suggest that at least 13% of older adults over 65 experience loneliness, unlike those of us with strong social ties, who are also shown to have a higher chance of living longer than those with poor or insufficient relationships.
If you don’t have an active social life, look for opportunities to reconnect with old friends or make new ones. You could look for like-minded others at your retirement community, your book club, your exercise class, or any other group that corresponds to your interests. On the other hand, if joining a community isn’t of interest to you, you could always try volunteering at your local library or charity shop in order to meet more people.
Make Sure You’re Getting Enough Sleep
Another essential factor to ageing gracefully is managing your sleep schedule and ensuring that you’re getting enough. The National Sleep Foundation recommends that adults over sixty-five get between seven and eight hours of sleep each night. As you age, you may notice that you are sleepier in the evening and ready to wake earlier in the morning; this is not unusual, nor does it pose an issue so long as you continue to meet the recommended seven to eight hours of sleep per night.