They say age is just a number. And it’s true to a certain degree. If you have maintained a healthy lifestyle, advanced age doesn’t hit you as hard as it does, say, a chain-smoker who’s been at it for 20+ years.
However, as your body gets older, it may develop a few age-related changes – some natural and some not. Understanding what’s natural as you age will help you delay or lessen the changes.
High Blood Pressure and Other Heart Conditions
As people get older, their arteries and blood vessels become stiffer. An aging heart has to work a lot harder to pump blood. This may result in heart problems such as high blood pressure.
One of the best ways to ensure a healthy heart is to stay active. Try to incorporate moderate exercise such as walking, running, swimming, or bicycling every day. It will help you get in a good shape and keep your BP down.
Also, eat lots of fresh vegetables, fruits, and good fats (like coconut oil or olive oil). Getting sufficient sleep and managing your stress can also work wonders in healing your heart and blood vessels.
Tooth Loss and Gum Diseases
Your teeth can develop one of the first age related diseases. You may feel your mouth getting drier due to certain prescription medicines you take.
Try to brush twice and floss once each day to stop the buildup of plaque and food particles in your teeth. You should also see your dentists for regular cleanings and checkups.
It’s not only the organs that grow old. Your skin can also feel drier and less supple as it stops making natural oil with growing age. You also lose some of the fatty tissue under your skin and you sweat less. You may notice that your skin is getting thin and developing age spots, wrinkles, or skin tags.
In order to get the glow back, make sure you use a tremendous moisturizer (that doesn’t contain parabens) every day. Also, avoid too much sun exposure by wearing sunscreen and protective clothing whenever you are outdoors.
Difficulty in Hearing and Sight
If you are finding it hard to focus on objects that are too far or too close, get your vision checked. Your doctor may prescribe reading glasses. If you are outdoors, wear sunglasses to protect your eyes.
If you are having a hard time hearing at high frequencies or following conversations in a crowded room, get your hearing checked as well. You can also wear earplugs to block loud noises (such as construction noises in the neighborhood).
Age-Related Muscle Loss
No matter how many supplements you take in your 20s and 30s or how many marathons you ran in your 40s, you lose muscle mass as you grow old. Even if we can’t completely avoid it, we can definitely slow it down.
If you are experiencing difficulty in getting around or getting up in the mornings, it means your muscles are weak.
To remedy that, get some moderate exercise every day. You can take brisk walks every morning or even lift light weights. Weight lifting – even as light as 5 pounds – can help you gain muscle strength and function. Daily physical activity has also proven to be effective in preventing age-related memory loss.
We recommend checking with your doctor first to determine how much activity would be suitable for you.
In addition to the exercise, eat lots of lean proteins such as chicken and fish. Avoid foods that are high in saturated fat (like fatty beef and lard) and sugar.
Nothing would make us happier than turning the clock backward for you. Until we figure out a way to do that, you should make smarter and healthier lifestyle choices. With patience and care, you can make the most out of your golden years.
Let Magellan Medical Navigators Help with Age-Related Changes
Magellan Medical Navigators are your South Florida health-keepers. We offer assistance with everything you need: from medical appointments and specialist care to transportation and family communications. Call us today at (336) 403-1593 to see how we can help.