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Men's Healthy Aging Tips

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8 Healthy Aging Tips for Senior Men

By the time they’ve reached their sixth decade, most men know what they should do to age in good health: exercise, eat right, don’t drink too much, and keep their minds active.

The trick is to put those healthy lifestyle choices into practice. The good news is that it’s never too late to start making good choices. Follow these healthy aging tips to reduce the risk of many conditions common in older men, such as heart disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes.

1. Be physically active.

The Department of Health and Human Services recommends older adults get at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise a week (about 20 minutes a day) and do muscle-strengthening activities two days a week.

Aerobic activities such as brisk walking, dancing, swimming, and bicycling all qualify as moderate-intensity exercise. You want to increase your heart rate but don’t overexert yourself. Stop if you’re struggling to breathe. Lifting weights or using a resistance band can help strengthen muscles and bones. Balance training should also be part of your exercise routine.

Making exercise a priority can make you feel better, function better, sleep better, and reduce the risk of chronic conditions, such as heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, and cancer of the colon and lung. It can also reduce your risk of falling or becoming seriously injured if you do fall.

2. Eat a healthy diet.

As you grow older, your metabolism slows down, so you need fewer calories than before. Your body also needs certain nutrients to stay healthy, including protein, fiber, calcium, vitamin D and vitamin B12. To make healthier food choices, start with these healthy aging tips:

● Eat fruits and vegetables. Eat more dark green vegetables such as collard greens, mustard greens, or broccoli, and orange vegetables such as carrots, pumpkin, butternut squash and sweet potatoes.

● Choose lean protein sources such as fish, beans, lentils, nuts, soy, white-meat chicken, or turkey.

● Eat at least three ounces of whole-grain cereals, breads, crackers, rice, or pasta every day. Choose whole grains whenever possible.

● Have three servings of low-fat or fat-free milk, yogurt, or cheese to help keep your bones healthy.

● Make the fats you eat polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats. Switch from solid fats to oils when preparing food.

● Stay hydrated. As you age, your sense of thirst diminishes. Drink plenty of water throughout the day.

3. Limit your alcohol intake.

If you drink alcohol, drink in moderation. Excessive drinking can make you feel depressed, increase your chances of falling, cause trouble sleeping, interact with your medications, and increase your risk of cancer, liver damage, immune system disorders, and brain damage. The recommended limit for older men is no more than two drinks per day.

4. Get regular health screenings.

Skipping annual physical exams gets riskier as you get older. To help detect health issues at an early stage, schedule a checkup with your doctor and discuss any health screenings your doctor recommends. These may include blood pressure, cholesterol, prostate cancer, colon cancer, hearing and vision tests. Also, make sure you’re up to date on your vaccinations, including a yearly flu shot, shingles, and pneumonia vaccinations after age 65.

5. Get enough sleep.

Older adults need as much sleep as younger people — at least 7 to 8 hours of sleep a night. If you’re tossing and turning every night, try these healthy aging tips to improve your sleep:

● Go to bed and get up at about the same time every day.

● Exercise daily but not close to bedtime.

● To help regulate sleep patterns, go outside for at least 30 minutes every day.

● Avoid caffeine late in the day.

● Don’t take naps after mid-afternoon.

● Avoid alcohol and large meals before bedtime.

● Limit electronics before bed. Try reading a book, listening to soothing music, or engaging in another relaxing activity instead.

6. Give your brain a workout.

Regular exercise and a healthy diet help keep your brain healthy. But it’s also important to challenge your mind. Learning something new encourages the growth of new brain cells and stimulates the connections between them, which can improve cognitive function. Taking a class, learning a new skill, or engaging in creative art activities are great ways to challenge your mind. If you like doing crossword puzzles, sudoku, or other brain-stimulating games, keep it up. Meditation may also improve concentration, as well as reduce stress — a risk factor for developing Alzheimer’s.

7. Quit smoking.

Smoking is the leading cause of preventable death and disease in the U.S. The sooner you quit, the sooner your body can start to heal. Don’t lose hope if you failed to quit in the past. On average, smokers try about four times before they quit for good. Ask your healthcare provider for help. The National Cancer Institute also has helpful resources.

8. Spend time with others.

If you live alone or are feeling disconnected from others, it’s important for your health to do something about it. Find an activity you enjoy or take a class to learn something new and expand your circle of friends. Volunteer to deepen your sense of purpose and help others. Call a friend or visit someone. Or check out faith-based organizations for spiritual engagement. Staying connected and engaged can help you thrive and prevent the negative effects of isolation and loneliness, such as heart disease, a weakened immune system, depression, and dementia.

Wellness is a way of life in our communities.

Every Retirement Center Management community is designed to help residents Live Life Well®. By promoting a healthier lifestyle, we help residents enjoy a higher quality of life. To learn more about our approach to health and wellness, explore our independent living options. Or contact us for answers to any questions you may have. We’re here to help you live healthier and happier.

Retirement Center Management

281-819-1029

6363 Woodway Dr Ste. 300 Houston, TX 77057