Even a small amount of increased physical activity can benefit your functional health. This means getting in and out of your home to attend church, going for a walk, and getting your own mail without the assistance of someone else.
Benefits Of Regular Exercise For Senior Citizens
—–Improved Overall Health
—–Lowered Risk of Bone Fracture Including Hips
—–Lower Risk of Lung, Breast and Color Cancers
—–Stabilized Blood Sugar Reducing Type II Diabetes
—–Better Balance and Bone Strength
Levels of Senior Citizen Exercise Workouts
There are three basic levels of activity to discuss when thinking about exercise for Senior Citizens, the first is sedentary. This is where many senior citizens fall unfortunately. This means you are getting little or no regular physical exercise. Sedentary individuals take less the 10,000 steps a day and their risk of falls, illness and disease are much greater than seniors in the next group.
The second group of seniors we want to discuss are those who get moderate physical activity each day. Moderate activity should be the goal of most seniors to keep them healthy and independent. Brisk walking, dancing, bicycling, swimming, dance and exercise DVD’s are excellent examples of exercise that will raise the heart rate, but allow you to breath and talk normally.
The final level of activity for the more active seniors is vigorous activity. This level means you heart rate has increased to the level that you are not able to talk and exercise at the same time. Some examples might include running, tennis, Zumba dance or other high intensity exercise.
Senior Exercise the Answer to Anti Aging
Aging and lack of physical activity are often associated with health issues like: loss of balance causing falls, forms of arthritis causing stiffness and pain, breathing problems and sleep apnea, stroke, heart disease and even some cancers. These conditions are attributed to the limited activity and excess weight from a decrease in your muscle tone and RMR from not getting enough movement as we age.
How To Increase Your Physical Activity Level
Increasing your activity especially if you fall into the sedentary level of seniors may seem like a daunting task. The good news is that is not necessarily true. Starting an exercise program can be fun and easier to start than you might think.
The most important issue is to find some activity you enjoy. Remember you don’t need to spend a fortune on a home gym to reach your peak fitness level. Some ideas that cost little or nothing are walking, dancing or water aerobics. Start slowly and increase your time and intensity each week or so. As always it’s a good idea to visit with your doctor, especially if you have health issues already.
Incorporate friends and make it fun. You can help others reach their peak fitness and improve their health as well.
Learn more about exercise for senior citizens and how it can improve your health and save your life. More fitness information is available on my website at http://www.yourweightlossanswers.com
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Renie_M_Rutten
Healthy Eating and Lifestyle
While it is important for people of all ages to stay healthy, it is especially important for senior citizens to maintain healthy eating habits as well as to stay active which is important in the prevention of chronic illnesses like diabetes, heart disease, and cancer. By practicing healthier living practices, senior citizens can maintain a healthy weight, avoid depression, and stay mentally sharp. Those participating in caring for the elderly should be aware of these healthy living practices and work to both encourage and facilitate them.
According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the U.S. Department of Agriculture, a healthy diet includes many different types of food that are rich in nutrients. They have outlined specifically what this eating plan entails at the website.. Because this eating plan is designed specifically for senior citizens, it focuses on the types of foods that are important for preventing common ailments of older Americans like obesity and serious chronic illnesses.
Healthy Eating 101:
By following some of the tips listed, senior citizens can start a healthier lifestyle today:
- Don’t skip meals. It is important to eat regularly in order to maintain normal metabolism and not become tempted to eat higher fat foods when food is consumed.
- Eat a diet that is high in fiber. By eating foods like whole-grain breads, beans, vegetables, and fruits, you can lower your susceptibility to diabetes and heart disease.
- Senior citizens especially should begin to adjust their diet to one that includes less calories and fat because the body will need less as it ages.
- Calcium and Vitamin D are very important for nutrition and keeping bones strong. You can get this by either getting in at least three servings of dairy every day, or substituting these with soy-based beverages and proteins.
- Senior citizens will have a harder time absorbing adequate amounts of the B12 vitamin. For this reason, it is important to eat cereals fortified with this nutrient or taking vitamin B12 supplements with meals.
- Snack the smart way. Senior citizens will want to limit the amount of unhealthy snacking they do which involves foods high in calories and sugars. Instead, keep small portions of dried fruit, peanut butter, or crackers at hand to keep the appetite under control while remaining healthy.
- Drink plenty of water. Although senior citizens often feel less thirsty then they used to, it is important to stay hydrated by either drinking water or water-based beverages like tea, coffee, soup, and skim milk.
Planning and Preparing Meals
Sometimes people find it hard to eat healthily because eating is often a social event which involves many people with different eating preferences and goals. While it is important to be able to enjoy a meal with family and friends, it is also important to maintain your own eating integrity by making sure everyone is on board with your personal healthy eating goals. Friends and family, as well as those providing elder care should facilitate healthy eating, not detour from it. The following tips address ways that senior citizens can maintain the healthy eating habits without sacrificing the social aspect of sharing a meal with others or learning to adjust to a lifestyle that involves eating with less people on a day-to-day basis.
- Grocery shopping with others. This can be a fun and smart way to control the cost and quantity of food that you consume. If you don’t live with many people, this is a good way to split large-quantity items like potatoes and eggs which you may not be ableto use before expiration.
- A time saving a smart way to eat healthy is cooking large quantities of food ahead of time and portioning for heating on later dates.
- A quick way to prepare meals for yourself or for guests involves keeping frozen or canned fruits and vegetables on hand. Draining and/or rinsing canned foods is a good way to lower sodium or calories in foods that are kept in high sugar or high salt fluids.
- Eating or preparing a meal shouldn’t always be a chore. Trying new recipes or eating outside can be a fun new twist on a meal with someone special.
- Try to eat with people you enjoy to be around.
- Some senior citizens have difficulty preparing meals, which is why it is important to become informed about home health care agencies or eldercare facilities that can aid in providing meals. The Eldercare Locator number is 1-800-677-1116.
Loss of Appetite or Desire to Eat
There are various reasons for why some senior citizens may not eat as well as they should or lose the desire to eat completely.
If you find that it is difficult to eat well, then it is best to speak with a healthcare provider or someone involved in your elder care about what can be done to help you eat better.
Some senior citizens are unable to eat well due to issues involving the condition of their teeth or issues with dentures. Checking with a dentist about physical pain that occurs when eating or other issues can help with these issues that lead to poorer eating habits.
When senior citizens lose family and friends or become depressed about events in their life, they may lose the desire to eat. In these instances, it is of the utmost importance that these individuals seek help from people they trust like their family, friends, church community, or those assisting with their elder care that will happily help them in finding ways to continue a healthy lifestyle and eating plan.
Some senior citizens complain that the flavor of foods change when they begin to take certain medications. While it is best to consult with a physician about issues surrounding medication, people can also take vitamin supplements with food that will help them stay healthy.
If you have someone who assists with your in home care, ask them to be vigilant about helping you eat healthy. Have them remind you to eat, and ask them to lend you a hand in preparing meals that are good for you.
Maintaining a healthy weight is important for being able to function in day-to-day life as well as stay mentally sharp. Senior citizens often lose or gain weigh as they age. If you are unsure about what weight you should maintain, consult your physician.
Health Risks Associated with Being Underweight
- poor memory
- compromised immunity
- osteoporosis (weak bones)
- decreases strength
- hypothermia (lowered body temperature)
Health Risks Associated with Being Overweight
- type 2 diabetes
- high blood pressure
- high cholesterol
- heart disease
- stroke (lack of oxygen transported to the brain)
- some cancers
- gallbladder disease
Because healthy weights will differ for everyone, it is important to verify with a physician whether it is healthy for you personally to lose or gain weight.
Participating in regular healthy amounts of physical activity can not only make you feel better, but it can make you less prone to diabetes, heart disease, and colon cancer. Staying active can be difficult for senior citizens, still it is an important part of a healthy lifestyle.
The following are some tips for maintaining a lifestyle that incorporates physical activity:
- Know what amount of physical activity is appropriate for you. Everyone has different levels of activity that is safe for them, and while remaining active is important, always consult a health care provider about what is right for your lifestyle.
- Take time to warm up, cool down, or take breaks when participating in a session of increased physical activity.
- Take it slow. Always start slowly and build up to more intense levels of physical activities.
- If you experience any pain, dizziness, or shortness of breath during exercise, stop the activity immediately.
- Drink water.
- Dress appropriately if you decide to exercise outdoors. Wear warmer clothes during the winter and wear lighter clothes during the summer while applying sunscreen or wearing sunglasses.
- Wear the correct shoes for the activities that you participate in.
Types of Activity
Aerobic activities include activities that increase the heart rate and work the larger muscle groups. You may be able to speak a few words, but would not be able to carry on an entire conversation due to breathing patterns. Some examples of aerobics include:
- brisk walking
- water aerobics
- house work
- active play with children or pets
Begin incorporating small periods of this activity into your schedule during the week while slowly increasing the duration and frequency as time progresses. It is also important to incorporate different types of exercise that focus on balance and flexibility. Becoming used to a lifestyle with regular patterns of aerobic activity can reduce the effects of aging, control weight, lower risk of heart disease, improve flexibility, increase mood and energy, and expand social networks by meeting new people while doing various activities.
Strengthening activities involve the use of muscle groups against resistant forces like when lifting weights or doing yard work that involves lifting, digging, or pushing a lawn mower. This type of activity can keep muscles strong, reduce the need for a cane, reduce risk of bone injury, and help maintain a healthy weight.
Balance activities focus on muscles in specific areas of the body that encourage control as you move through space, reducing the likelihood of falls. This kind of activity could include walking heel to toe, standing on one foot, getting out of a sitting position without the use of the hands, and standing on the tip of your toes. Balance activities can help you stay steady on your feet and reduce the risk of fall and subsequent injury.
Flexibility activities increase the length of the muscles and can include stretching, yoga, and popular exercise programs like pilates. These activities can maintain the felxibility of joints, prevent stiffness, prevent injuries, and lower stress levels in general.
Weight-bearing activities require the muscles to work against gravity where the arms or legs bear the weight of the body. Activities like walking, tennis, and climbing stairs can build and maintain bone mass or reduce the risk of bone fractures.
Some activities incorporate multiple types of strengthening addressed above. What is important is that senior citizens find an enjoyable and do-able activity that will help them incorporate as many benefits as possible which will have far-reaching benefits to their health.
It’s Easy to Stay Healthy
A common misconception is that it takes an excessive amount of time and extra energy to maintain a healthy lifestyle. However, by just taking short walks for ten minutes a time or cleaning the house regularly can be practical ways to incorporate different physical activities into your daily schedule. And remember, staying healthy as a senior citizen will have increasing benefits as you continue to age.
Staying Motivated to Take Care of Yourself
Just because we age doesn’t mean that we are any less stressed by occurrences in life that may make us feel bad about ourselves or decrease our motivation to be good to ourselves. If anything, many of the challenges senior citizens face add stress. Losing loved ones and friends or having trouble being independent with the added stressed of disease and functioning due to aging can cause depression or lifestyle changes that contribute to bad health. Here are some important tips for being good to yourself when you may not feel motivated due to circumstances out of your control:
- Get plenty of sleep
- Stay connected with family and friends
- Join clubs or other social groups that you enjoy
- Spend time with people that you enjoy
- Volunteer at organizations in your community
- Work a part-time job that isn’t too stressful or demanding
- Watch a funny movie or find a way to laugh
- Take up a hobby that you enjoy
Most importantly, senior citizens should remember that it is relatively easy and worth-while to maintain a healthy lifestyle as they age. Be sure to keep family, friends, and those involved in your elder care informed of your goals as they can help assist you. And remembering to eat healthy meals regularly, getting in physical activity, getting enough sleep, and being good to yourself are critical for maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
The Caring Space http://www.TheCaringSpace.com
David Crumrine at the Caring Space We are an organization that connects caregivers and care seekers, providing an easy and affordable resource for families seeking care for friends/loved ones and caregivers seeking employment.
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=David_Crumrine
Left untreated, this little-known foot injury can lead to serious long-term problems
Elite athletes like NFL quarterback Matt Schaub and wide receiver Santonio Holmes had productive seasons ended by the little-known and often overlooked Lisfranc injury, a serious foot injury that few have heard of and no one wants. But foot and ankle surgeons at the Annual Scientific Conference of the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons (ACFAS) this week are evaluating how to effectively diagnose and treat this injury, which can result in severe long-term complications like chronic pain, osteoarthritis and even foot deformities.
Relatively uncommon, found in only 1 of every 55,000-60,000 people annually, Lisfranc injuries occur in the midfoot – where the long bones leading up to the toes (metatarsals) connect to the bones in the arch (tarsals). “The Lisfranc complex is a critical joint in propulsion during walking and running. Unfortunately, injuries there are easily overlooked. As many as thirty percent of Lisfranc injuries are missed at initial diagnosis by providers who are not foot and ankle specialists. The long-term effects can be debilitating,” observes Cleveland, Ohio foot and ankle surgeon Mark Hardy, DPM, FACFAS, and a conference presenter.
Diagnosis can be difficult because the signs, even during examination and imaging, can be extremely subtle. Injuries most often occur to car accident victims where the foot is jammed into the floorboard or to athletes when the foot is planted and twisted. Direct trauma injuries can result when a heavy object is dropped on the foot. “Most people don’t have an appreciation of the amount of force required to disrupt the Lisfranc complex. Whether you’re an athlete or a laborer, early and appropriate treatment is mandated,” says Hardy.
Lisfranc injuries can also result simply from missing the last step on the stairs; even a minor slip and fall can cause serious injury. Symptoms of a Lisfranc injury may include swelling of the foot, pain throughout the midfoot upon standing or during examination, inability to bear weight, bruising on the bottom of the foot in the arch area, and an abnormal widening of the foot, possibly signaling dislocation.
Lisfranc injuries fall into three categories; sprains, fractures and dislocations. Sprains typically do not require more than rest and recuperation time, as they are comparable to ankle sprains. In a fracture, a break in a bone in the Lisfranc joint occurs. In a dislocation, the bones are forced from their normal positions. In severe cases, both fractures and dislocations occur. In fractures and dislocations, surgery is often the best option. Patients hope for a non-surgical response, but foot and ankle surgeons are well aware of the dangers associated with putting off necessary surgery.
“A number of factors impact the surgeon’s decision on treatment options; the patient’s age, overall health and activity level,” says Hardy. “Because of the possible long-term impact of this injury, our chief objective is ensuring a positive outlook for the future.”
Wires, pins and even surgical buttons can be used to stabilize the joint, both permanently and in some cases temporarily. Some promising studies have focused on the effectiveness of a minimally invasive technique that can help reduce the recuperation period.
“Lisfranc injuries can be successfully treated when properly diagnosed and treated in a timely manner. If you have experienced any sort of foot trauma and symptoms appear, it’s time to see a foot and ankle surgeon,” urges Hardy. “Especially in the case of Lisfranc injuries, the earlier someone visits a foot and ankle surgeon, the greater the likelihood of a positive outcome.”
For more information on foot and ankle injuries and conditions, visit the ACFAS patient education website, FootHealthFacts.org.
The American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons is a professional society of over 6,800 foot and ankle surgeons. Founded in 1942, the College’s mission is to promote research and provide continuing education for the foot and ankle surgical specialty, and to educate the general public on foot health and conditions of the foot and ankle through its consumer website, FootHealthFacts.org.
Two Health Screening Events Offered Through Renown
RENO, Nev. (Oct. 23, 2012) – Renown Health Institute for Heart & Vascular Health is pleased to host the life-saving services of Life Line Screening, the nation’s largest provider of preventive screenings, to help local residents identify their risk of stroke, vascular disease and osteoporosis before the life-changing effects of these conditions can occur.
The event is open to local residents and will be held Thursday, Nov. 8, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., at Renown Regional Medical Center, 1155 Mill Street., in the Mack Auditorium, and Friday, Nov. 9, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. at South Meadows Medical Center, 10101 Double R Blvd., in the Capri Conference Room. To pre-register for a screening contact Life Line Screening at www.lifelinescreening.com, or call 1-800-690-0295 to make an appointment. For directions, please dial 775-982-4100.
Offering these preventive services can help save lives and are painless and affordable. Symptoms are rarely present, and if they are, they are generally subtle, almost unnoticeable. In fact, half of all stroke victims don’t have any symptoms prior to their stroke. A simple screening may save you or your loved one’s life.
Screenings provided will include:
• Carotid Artery Screening – painless, non-invasive Doppler ultrasound used to visualize the carotid arteries, the arteries that bring blood to the brain. The majority of strokes are caused by plaque build up in these arteries.
• Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm Screening – Ultrasound is used to visualize the abdominal aorta, the largest artery in the body, to measure the diameter of the aorta. This measurement can indicate if there is a weakening in the aortic wall which can cause a ballooning effect known as an aneurysm. Abdominal aortic aneurysms can burst. When they do, it is usually fatal.
• Peripheral Arterial Disease Screening – PAD is also known as “hardening of the arteries.” Individuals with PAD have a 4 to 6 fold increased risk of heart disease. Risk is evaluated through a measurement called the “Ankle-Brachial Index,” which is obtained by reading the systolic pressure in the ankle and arm.
• Osteoporosis Screening – Ultrasound is used to estimate the bone density of the heel. This can indicate if there is a reduction in bone density, which may indicate the presence of osteoporosis. The heel is used because it is similar in composition to the hip, where disabling fractures often occur.
• Atrial Fibrillation is an abnormal heart beat (arrhythmia) that affects the atria – the upper chambers of the heart – and is the most common form of sustained arrhythmia. 2.5 million Americans have been diagnosed with atrial fibrillation, and for those over age 40, there is a one in four chance of developing the condition.
Worldwide: Rates of vitamin D insufficiency are higher among women than men with older women being at most risk for developing osteoporosis.
The International Osteoporosis Foundation (IOF) has launched an interactive global map of vitamin D status, which presents a snapshot of vitamin D levels worldwide. The map and accompanying publication1 confirm that vitamin D insufficiency is a major public health issue in both the developing and industrialized world, with more than one third of all the populations studied, showing insufficient levels of vitamin D2.
Osteoporosis is a serious chronic disease which affects hundreds of millions of people worldwide. Vitamin D improves bone mineral density, which lowers risk of fracture, while also improving muscle strength, balance, and leg function which decreases the risk of falling and sustaining a fracture in the first place. As a consequence, vitamin D insufficiency has been linked to a higher risk of osteoporotic fractures. Studies show that adequate vitamin D intake can reduce the risk of falls and fractures by around 30 percent3.
Additional key findings include:
„h Older people are especially at risk for vitamin D insufficiency, including older women who are a risk group for osteoporosis, and those living indoors in institutionalized care;
„h Overall, insufficient vitamin D levels were detected in more than one third of the study population4;
„h Vitamin D insufficiency affects both the developing world and industrialized world;
„h The main source of vitamin D is sunlight, but even in sunny countries, vitamin D levels are generally low and below recommended levels (taking India as example: a sunny country; yet, with low vitamin D status);
„h It is estimated that 50-70 percent of the European adult population have insufficient levels of vitamin D.
1 A Global Representation of Vitamin D status in healthy populations, Wahl et al. Archives of Osteoporosis, August 2012
2 Understood as mean 25 (OH)D values below 50 nmol/l
3 A pooled analysis of vitamin D dose requirements for fracture prevention. Bischoff-Ferrari HA et al New England Journal of Medicine. 2012.
4 Blood levels below 50 nmol/l considered as insufficient
In the U.S., approximately 30 percent of the study population had sub-optimal vitamin D levels, rising to around 70 percent among participants with darker skin color, highlighting skin color as a risk factor for vitamin D insufficiency. Overall the U.S. vitamin D status was significantly higher compared to other regions, which may in part, be attributable to the routine fortification of foods with vitamin D (such as milk, juice and cereals).
The map has also created a very clear picture as to where the vitamin D insufficiency knowledge gaps exist and where further research is required. Dr. Eggersdorfer added, ¡§There is far too little data available, for example, in relation to adolescents and young people, and across the developing world in general. These maps are an important starting point, but it is essential that research continues to better understand the scale of vitamin D insufficiency.¡¨
DSM joins IOF in calling on healthcare policymakers to raise awareness of vitamin D insufficiency and to take action to ensure intake of recommended vitamin D levels, including through safe and effective measures such as food fortification, access to proper supplements and better consumer education.
Additional country findings include:
„h In Germany 57 percent of men and 58 percent of women had vitamin D status below recommended levels, rising to 75 percent among 65-79 year olds
„h U.K. studies focused on older people reveal that nearly two thirds of women (57 percent), and half of men (49 percent) are not getting enough vitamin D
„h In the Netherlands, around half of all study participants had sub-optimal vitamin D levels
„h The Middle East revealed lower vitamin D status compared to Europe which could result from cultural factors such as clothing and lifestyle
„h Asia showed a widespread insufficient vitamin D status across different countries, with a few exceptions (vitamin D status was ranked desirable in Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam)
„h Most regions offer some data, however no information was available for Central America, South America (except Brazil) and much of Africa
„h The most striking data gaps were found in children and adolescents
DSM ¡V Bright Science. Brighter Living..
Royal DSM is a global science-based company active in health, nutrition and materials. By connecting its unique competences in Life Sciences and Materials Sciences DSM is driving economic prosperity, environmental progress and social advances to create sustainable value for all stakeholders. DSM delivers innovative solutions that nourish, protect and improve performance in global markets such as food and dietary supplements, personal care, feed, pharmaceuticals, medical devices, automotive, paints, electrical and electronics, life protection, alternative energy and bio-based materials. DSM¡¦s
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