Healthy Aging Month
This September is Healthy Aging Month! As we all know, we all inevitably age (both mentally and physically) as we progress through our life. Unfortunately, society sometimes enforces myths of what it means to age. We tend to believe that as we get older, it is inevitable that we will grow frail, that we will face cognitive decline, that depression and loneliness are expected, or that we can’t pursue new things. Because of these myths, many negative attitudes and feelings of sadness/fear have formed around the idea of getting older. This is why this event was created in the first place. September is the month where many organizations get together to annually raise awareness on the positive aspects of growing older. Just because one grows older does not mean that we must neglect our health- or fall into these negative stereotypes.
At AlzWell, we believe that it is crucial for many people to recognize the importance and beauty of aging. We also believe that it is essential to remind people to take this time to look within their lives and reassess some things. It is never too late to reinvent yourself, take control of your health, or start a new hobby/adventure in your life. Take this time to focus and/or improve your overall health and well-being. Pursue a goal that you always dreamed of achieving. The main idea is that you take a proactive approach to ensure that you follow and live a healthy, happy, and vigorous life.
Here are a few activities you can take up in celebration of this month:
Start an Exercise Routine
Whether it’s doing yoga in the comfort of your home, going to the gym, joining a class, following a YouTube video, or simply taking a walk around your neighborhood, it is never too late to begin a new exercise endeavor. Make sure to choose something that piques your interests. The overall goal is to find ways to move your body in ways that bring joy to your life (thus increasing the chance that you will stick with this new routine). In doing so, you would be improving your overall physical and mental health.
Schedule Some Time for Self-Care
Taking care of your mental and emotional health is just as important as taking care of your physical health. It doesn’t have to be something elaborate. It can be as simple as making sure you have good food, regular physical activity, keeping yourself hydrated, brushing your teeth, or getting plenty of sleep. You can even simply take the time to recite affirmations, journal, listen to music, take a relaxing bath or shower, or take a break from technology. The point is that you make time (daily or even just weekly) to focus on yourself and release all the stress of life.
Start a New Hobby
You can begin drawing, painting, playing an instrument, knitting, embroidering, gardening, hiking, cooking- the possibilities are endless. It is never too late to learn and start a new hobby. Choose something that interests you (or something you have always wanted to learn and never had the time or courage) and get started!
Learn How to Make New Healthy and Exciting Meals
Healthy eating does not only mean diet and restriction. Learning how to cook new meals can be very fun and can lead to you discovering various nutrient-dense foods that you enjoy. In the long run, the quality and variety of food you incorporate into your diet can help improve how you feel overall. Cooking can also be a fun activity that can help pass time or open an opportunity to socialize with others.
Keep Connected With Friends and Families, or Join Different Groups for Certain Activities
Sometimes our responsibilities in life keep us from spending time with friends and family. Thus, it is fundamental that you take this moment to plan out time dedicated for your family and friends. The pandemic has even made it easier for us to use various technologies to keep in touch with others. You could also volunteer somewhere or take a class to learn a new skill/hobby. Find and plan different ways to ensure that you engage in social activities with others. It can do wonders for your mental health!
Find Activities That Stimulate Your Brain
It is important that you find ways to stimulate your brain. Finding activities to keep your mind active can help improve your memory, help you learn a new skill, improve your problem-solving skills, and it reduces the risk of Alzheimer’s disease and cognitive decline. Exercise is a great way to stimulate the brain, but you can also engage in brain-training games. This includes activity books such as crossword puzzles, sudoku, adult coloring books, word search puzzles, and more. Also, you can go into the app store and download a few apps that interest you. Thus, you can conveniently use any free time you may have to quickly play a brain-training game on your phone. Select a time in the day where you have free time to sit and complete at least a page or a game round!
Make Sure That You Are on Top of All Your Appointments
Staying on top of your health is very important. Take this time to discuss with your health care provider to ensure that you are on top of all your annual checkups and health screenings.
No doubt- as we age- we may face a new set of challenges within our life. However, it is wrong to assume that everyone’s quality of life will inevitably diminish. We encourage you to take control of your life and take action in finding ways to live a healthy and positive lifestyle. It is never too late to engage in new activities or to make positive changes towards your health. Don’t believe all the myths you hear about aging, and don’t let them instill fear or weariness. There is beauty and strength in the journey of getting older, don’t allow the myths to close the doors on the enjoyment you can create in your life.
Brought to you by AlzWell