Common Sense Steps to healthy Aging
- Eat Right. Eating right can help you lower your risk of some health
problems that have been linked to poor diets, such as blood pressure, osteoporosis,
heart disease, and cancer. It is important to eat less fat, cholesterol, sugar,
and sodium and more fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.
Avoid eating too many candies, fried foods, and other fatty foods. Choose foods
made from whole grains, such as whole-wheat bread to get the fiber you need. Eat
a variety of vegetables regularly. In particular, try to have dark-green leafy
vegetables several times a week.
Eat fresh fruits, unsweetened fruit juice and frozen fruit or canned in water or
juice. Choose citrus fruits, berries, and melons regularly. Be sure to count
only 100 percent fruit juice as fruit. Punches contain little juice and lots
of added sugars. Orange and grape sodas are soft drinks, not fruit juice.
Choose nonfat yogurt and skim milk because they are the lowest fat dairy choices.
Choose lean cuts of meats, poultry without skin and fish. They have less fat and
are good sources of iron and zinc.
- Get moving. Exercise regularly to protect you from injuries, ease
arthritic pain, and help prevent some diseases. Exercise can include walking,
swimming, gardening, or even housework. Do it regularly and keep exercise as part
of your daily schedule.
- Get immunized. You may have immunizations to guard against
infectious diseases such as pneumonia and influenza. Talk to your doctor about
- Get regular check-ups. Regular check-ups can help your doctor to
compare changes over time and uncover health problems which don't have symptoms.
Most health problems can be treated easier when caught early. Having a physical
exam regularly is as important as when you are sick and need to see your doctor.
- Get involved. It is important to be involved in community or
religious activities to meet new friends and reconnect with today's world.
Don't become a couch potato. This is not good for your mental and physical
well-being. You might want to take lessons which you are interested in learning
for fun or hobbies. These various involvements will keep you feeling happier and
Nina Chen, ChenN@missouri.edu
Regional Specialist, Human Development
Jackson County, Missouri
University of Missouri Extension