Lifestyle Changes: Healthy Aging, It’s Never Too Early To Start

Create a Balance Lifestyle

Create a Balance     Lifestyle

Recently I attended a Healthy Aging conference presented by the American College of Lifestyle Medicine.  I am really excited and hopeful with this movement that finally there may be some true integration with holistic approaches for improved lifestyle. Recognition for the benefits of exercise, nutrition, stress management and happiness in one’s life are seriously important.  Lifestyle is finally being recognized as a major player in how we age; are you going to age gracefully with your best quality of life or are you going to give into the rigors of medications and a compromised living and dependence on others.  Advocation for yourself and taking charge of what you can do for yourself, is critical. Some of the most prescribed medications are for high cholesterol, blood pressure, diabetes and stress/anxiety. Start thinking about how you may change this if you are on them, or you have been told you may need to go on them.  Statins can cause liver problems and muscle weakness over time.  Learn how to wean off of them if you can by changing your lifestyle behaviors*, the same is true about high blood pressure medications. If you are pre-diabetic, take action to change your blood sugar levels and A1C levels to avoid metformin or other blood sugar regulation drugs.  Many of these drugs don’t fix the problem, they mask the underlying reasons.  They help you manage it.  The most useful prescription would be to address the cause for the need for a drug and learn how to make changes.  I know it is not good for the pharmaceutical companies- but it is good for you!

(*never go off medications without your doctors’ guidance)

Integrating information with your healthcare medical provider, a nutritionist, a personal trainer or exercise class along with some MBSR(Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction) classes and you will be on top of your game.  I have assisted countless of clients to make small changes to avoid certain medications or get off of them.  There are other options.  Many times we are not aware of our options that can help prevent disease through lifestyle changes or how being on medications may resolve or possibly cause different concerns.. Ask questions as well as ask for alternative approaches.

What other components were presented about Aging well?  Here are the top Healthy Behaviors for many people living in their 90’s with minor disabilities and disease:

  • Attitude- optimism and positivity play a big part
  • Genetics- what have you inherited?
  • Exercise- 150 minutes a week
  • Interests- learn a new language, music, hobbies, art, games
  • Get rid of smoking and excessive drinking
  • Sleep ( 6-7 hours a night)
  • BMI – 24 of less
  • 5-6+ fruits and veggies a day

There are studies of many centurians who are thriving. Would you want to be one of them?

To find out more about what you can do to improve your lifestyle and healthy aging- give me a call.

Be Well,

     Mary

 

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