In 2016, Gallup-Healthways released a study that threw light on the fact that US senior citizens are much happier than younger Americans. The wellbeing index of older Americans is also quite high. However, senior citizens’ lifestyles can determine how they fare in the remaining years of their lives. Living long enough to see your grandchildren is on the wishlist of most older people. But if you don’t put in the work to live your best life, you may not be able to enjoy your senior age. So, here are a few things you can do to live your best life in the latter phase of your existence.
- Be physically active
According to the Gallup study, senior citizens’ well-being depends on various factors such as physical activity, social ties, financial situation, and purpose. Among these factors, physical activeness stands out as a big challenge that threatens the older generation’s well-being. Therefore, to increase your overall fitness, you need to work on your fitness goals and desist from sedentary lifestyles. Engage in basic work-outs like brisk-walking and swimming to stay physically active. Even if you are in a wheelchair and you have low mobility, there are some exercises for you. You should also consider installing wheelchair ramps for when you want to go outside for some fresh air but are afraid of the front stairs.
- Fast if you can
Intermittent fasting has proven to be a healthy diet for both the young and the old. Going by the 5:2 diet popularized by Michael Moses, you can increase your lifespan as a sexagenarian. The diet plan is believed to effectively fight Alzheimer’s diseases, excessive weight, and type-2 diabetes. Find a form of fasting that’s convenient for your nutritional requirement as a senior citizen. When in doubt, talk to your doctor and a dietitian as they will be of great help.
- Build your muscles
When you cross 40 years, your muscles diminish by 1% every year. But somehow, WWE billionaire owner Vince McMahon is 75-years-old but looks younger than his age. His secret — training. Fitness experts believe that resistance training is beneficial to the aging population. So, do aerobic exercises, eat lots of veggies, and of course, sleep like your life depends on it. These activities help you lower the rate at which your muscles degenerate and also keep health issues such as heart attacks, osteoporosis, etc. at bay. In fact, recent research studies have shown that older people who do strength training twice a week are healthier than those who do nothing at all.
- Don’t stop learning
When you hit 60 years, your brain may trick you into believing that its capability has reduced. While this is not always true, your cognitive abilities may not be as sharp as when you were younger. But one way to maintain it is to keep learning. And even though it may be challenging to teach an old dog new tricks as they say, it’s not absolutely impossible, and the little things matter. So, read a book, play games, and also sing and dance to keep your brain active. If you’re up for it, learn how to play an instrument just for fun.