As you get older, you may start notice some changes in yourself. You may be experiencing menopause, retirement, newborn grandchildren, or all the above! When you are in your golden years, you have to start making changes, mentally and physically. Many adjustments can be made, but here are the top six lifestyle changes to adopt in your golden years.
1. Exercise more
Exercise is excellent for your health, regardless of age. However, when you are a senior, physical activity is needed to help improve strength, balance, and flexibility – which can help lower the risk of falls, slips, and fractures. Staying active will ensure all your systems function as usual, which will improve your overall health.
When you exercise frequently, you may see a boost in self-confidence and mood. Exercise is a natural stress reliever that generates endorphins that can reduce the feeling of depression and anxiety. Exercise can do amazing things to the brain, such as help prevent memory loss and dementia.
There are many exercises that can be beneficial to you; However, Yoga is a holistic approach to exercise. Yoga can help improve balance, mobility, build muscle, and increase your energy. With that said, physical activity can be hard if you are limited due to health problems. Consult your doctor for exercise recommendations to ensure you are exercising safely.
2. Money management
When you enter retirement, you will quickly realize you will need to alter your money management skills. One of the significant perks of retiring is having an abundance of free time, which usually results in traveling, early-bird lunch specials, or trips to the museum. There is nothing wrong with this, but you must budget wisely, or your retirement savings will dwindle.
In your golden years, you will want to keep track of where your money goes. If you sit down and look over your bank statements, you might find that you spend a lot of money on unnecessary products/services.
Each month set a budget for yourself and set aside money for certain things, such as utilities, gas, groceries, entertainment, and so on. When you create a budget, you will limit your spending for only necessities and can save a substantial amount of money throughout the year.
3. Cut down smoking
Regardless of age, smoking can create significant health problems that could eventually lead to death. According to National Institutes of Health (NIH), smoking causes around one of every five deaths in the United States each year. Smoking can shorten your life while also causing heart disease and vision impairment.
In your golden years you might think, “I have smoked all these years! Why should I stop now?” No matter the age you quit smoking, when you stop smoking, it will likely add years to your life and improve your overall health.
When you quit smoking, you will find that you can breathe better, improve your sense of taste and smell, and save money. There are many ways to quit smoking, such as talking with your doctor, asking a friend for help, or group counseling.
4. Improve sleep patterns
It is common for you to experience a change in your sleeping schedule in your golden years. Sleep is essential for your physical and emotional health. Therefore, you must make changes to ensure you are improving your sleeping patterns, such as exercise and daily habits.
When you receive a good night’s rest, it can improve your memory and immune system, while also repairing cell damage from the previous day. If you have insomnia, you may experience symptoms in depression, exhaustion, and memory problems. Lack of sleep can also alter your health by causing diabetes, weight problems, and an increase in cardiovascular disease.
You can improve your sleep by determining what is causing your insomnia. Your sleep environment can be a probable cause, as well as emotional issues and lack of exercise. Every person is different; therefore, you may have to consult a doctor to break down and identify what the cause of your insomnia may be.
5. Work on self-care
Self-care is when you take time to focus on your physical, mental, and emotional health – which is highly important in your golden years. Your mental health is one of the essential components of aging well. About 20% of adults over the age of 55 experience some sort of mental health concern, according to the Centers for Disease Control.
With that said, it is essential to make self-care a part of your daily routine. When you spend time solely focusing on yourself, you may find yourself more relaxed and create a deeper connection within yourself. Self-care can range from many things such as gardening, drinking your favorite tea, or hanging out with a friend or family member.
Studies have found that nature can have calming effects on the mind. If you take a walk on the beach or in the woods, you may find peace of mind and see positive changes to your mood. Your golden years are your years to focus on bettering yourself, so enjoy what makes you happy.
6. Better eating habits
According to the National Resource Center on Nutrition, one in four older Americans has poor nutrition. A well-balanced diet is critical in your golden years to stay healthy. A nutritious diet can help you stay energized, maintain a good weight, and lower the risk of diabetes.
You should eat foods that are rich in vitamins, minerals, and fibers. You should steer clear of any foods that contain a high amount of processed sugar, salt, and trans-fat. When you are trying to better your eating habits, you should aim for fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean meat, fish, eggs, and nuts.
Proper nutrition will help you live longer and can boost your immune system. A healthy immune system is necessary to fight any illnesses, reduce the risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, strokes, and cancer. A healthy diet will make you overall feel better. When you eat right, you will look and feel good.
Your golden years can be the best years of your life and can be even better when you make some lifestyle changes. Many components must be in line to ensure a safe, healthy, long life. If you are the best you each day and implement these six lifestyle changes, you may find yourself living a longer and more vigorous life.