It takes moxie to turn an unhealthy lifestyle into a healthy lifestyle – especially for people over 60.
Dr. Dana King chairs the Department of Family Medicine at West Virginia University. He added that most baby boomers were approaching the retirement age and were not willing to follow the basic goals of a healthy lifestyle set by the American Heart. Association.
Kaiser Health News has asked three aging and health professionals about how seniors can find the will to adopt better habits.
"People are planning their finances for retirement, but what about health planning for retirement?" Said King.
Motivated seniors can start by following KHN's 10-step program:
1. Buy good sneakers. Buy a pair of high quality trainers designed for walking, said Carolyn Rosenblatt, founder of AgingParents.com. Rosenblatt started participating in triathlons at age 63 and continues to do so at age 70. Start by walking around the block. Install steps of 30 minutes at least three times a week or set yourself the goal of increasing your walking distance by 10% per week.
2. Practice your balance. The best way to avoid falls is to maintain a good balance, says Rosenblatt. Train on one leg with your eyes closed for at least 30 seconds.
3. Improve your breakfast. Stop eating the bun with coffee. Consider replacing a homemade smoothie with a banana, seasonal fruit, almond milk and protein powder or a sugar-free protein slab. And cut off excess sugar in all your meals, says Rosenblatt. Replace the soda with seltzer water.
4. Relax sensibly. Find ways to manage your stress by avoiding food, alcohol or smoking, says Rosenblatt. There are many meditation programs that you can download to your phone and listen for 10 minutes.
5. Train to the resistance. To prevent your muscle mass from going away, explains Kay Van Norman, do resistance training with dumbbells, dumbbells or weight machines. "Your muscles are incredible," says Van Norman, owner of the consulting firm Brilliant Aging. "But if you do not use them, you lose them," she said.
6. Hit the ground. Aging adults should regularly practice getting on the ground and getting up. "If you do not lie on the ground, you will not be able to do it after a while," says Van Norman.
7. Challenge your speed. It does not seem that people over 60 need to worry about exercise that involves speed and intensity, says Van Norman, but that's the case. "Most people do not even think about speed to stay healthy," she says. "But tennis players do it all the time, you need to do something to put your speed to the test, not just your power." That's why sports like tennis can be great as you get older, she says. .
8. Believe in yourself. Sharon Sultan Cutler, author of doubt and depression after several tragic and difficult events, turned to therapy. "The first person you have to believe is yourself," says Sultan Cutler, 71. "People like to be surrounded by other people who believe in themselves."
9. Approach a project. Choose a project that makes sense to you. Sultan Cutler co-wrote "Kiosk Newspapers: The Philadelphia Years, 1956-1963", an inside look at Dick Clark's favorite television show, Dick Clark's "The American Bandstand." She is now at her third: "Your new you after age 65: valuable tips to inspire your beautiful aging." "It's like having a daydream that you can really create," she said.
10. Embrace personal improvement. Some call it continuous learning. Living a healthier lifestyle requires constant learning and self-improvement, says Sultan Cutler. Look for local learning resources such as community colleges, where classes are often heavily discounted for seniors. "Self-improvement is not just physical," she says. It's also mental. "
Kaiser Health News (KHN) is a non-profit news service covering health issues. It is an independent editorial program of the Kaiser Family Foundation which is not affiliated with Kaiser Permanente.