Don’t we all want to still feel youthful whilst cruising into old age? A lot of people have stereotyped ‘’old age’’ as a time when all manner of health conditions can arise without warning. While there might be some truth to this–experts suggest people in their 60’s should be alert to the possible onset of diseases and conditions that could threaten their health–this does not mean you cannot live a healthy and full life in your 60’s. In fact, it is necessary that you do live an active life in your 60’s, as this is one way to insure your body against the increased risk of health challenges. Here’s what you can do to achieve this:
1. Walk more, feel better
In one recent study, people in their 70’s, (mostly females) who walked 3 hours a week for a year boosted their oxygen uptake by 15%. Gains like that can ease almost all the problems you’re more likely to face in this decade— from lowering risk of lung cancers, strengthening bones, sharpening memory, reducing cardiovascular risks, to controlling blood sugar and improving joint function. It’s a robust cocktail of benefits you don’t want to miss!
2. Take the right supplements
Low levels of vitamin B12 have been linked to increased risk of pernicious anemia, cardiovascular disease, and Alzheimer’s disease, so you definitely want to see a doctor to direct you on how to keep them at optimal levels. Also ask about vitamin D, as deficiency in vitamin D can weaken bones and increase the risks of diabetes, high blood pressure, and breast and colon cancers.
3. Choose fiber-rich foods
Boosting fiber in your diet softens stool and reduces symptoms (and prevents complications) of diverticulosis. As much as possible, try to eat a lot of fibrous foods such as pears, apples, and beans.
4. Keep pelvic muscles strong
To do this, simply flex the muscles that control your urine flow and hold for up to 10 seconds, then release. Doing this 10 to 20 times at least 3 times a day can prevent incontinence or reverse it after 6 to 12 weeks.
5. Stay engaged to stay sharp
From taking courses to joining a book club, trying a new sport, or designing a garden, you should try learning some new skills to keep your brain sharp. In a recent study of more than 2,800 older people, those who exercised their minds more were better at handling daily activities, after 5 years, than people who were less mentally active.
6. Get essential check-ups
Want to remain as healthy as possible, for long as possible? Then you need these essential checkups:
- Eye exam: Every 2 to 4 years
- Blood pressure: Every 2 years
- Pap test and pelvic exam: Every 1 to 3 years
- Thyroid: Every 5 years
- Mole check: Every year
- Mammogram: Every 1 to 2 years
- Blood glucose: Every 3 years starting at age 45
- Fecal occult blood test: Yearly
- Colonoscopy: Every 10 years
- Sigmoidoscopy: Every 5 years starting at 50 (can skip on colonoscopy years)
- Hearing: Every 3 years
- Eye exam: Every 1 to 2 years
- Bones: Mineral density test at least once after 64