Just as a healthy diet can help fend off chronic diseases, what we eat can help us keep our mental edge as we age. Approximately five million Americans over the age of 65 have Alzheimer’s disease, the most common form of dementia and a progressive disease that destroys brain cells. Second to Alzheimer’s disease is vascular dementia, which can occur when the blood vessels of the brain become damaged and adequate blood supply to parts of the brain is prevented. Studies have identified links between a heart-healthy diet and a healthy brain.
In their youth, baby boomers were well known for breaking taboos, especially with regards to sexual behavior. Easier access to birth control and changing moral values contributed to that. Now that this generation is approaching retirement age, it appears that some of these attitudes have survived and influence how sex among older adults is viewed today.
In our busy lives, getting enough rest can be challenging at any age. But for older people it becomes even more difficult, perhaps not so much because of stress-related sleep deprivation but because of changing sleep patterns. As we age, we not only need less sleep, we also don’t sleep as deeply and wake up more often during the night. While these changes are not always cause for concern, they can become problematic if they lead to persistent sleep disorders with potentially serious health effects.
Despite the fact that people live longer and are more active in their later years than ever before, aging is still associated with decline, loss, and debilitation. That’s nature’s way, like it or not. But does that mean older folks should despair over their impending fate? Perhaps, but few actually do, according to a series of studies on age and happiness. In fact, feelings of happiness, or at least contentment, seem to be most common among the maturing crowd.
Maybe you can’t stop the hands of time. But you can certainly slow them down with a healthy diet and lifestyle. Better food choices can affect your skin, brain cells, bone, muscles and heart, and help you look and feel younger, and protect you from chronic disease. Eating more whole plant foods, in particular, is a great way to reap many of these benefits. Here are a few foods that can help you age more healthfully.
Despite of the increasing prevalence of chronic diseases, a majority of older Americans find ways to manage life’s challenges and keep their independence, according to a study recently published in the American Journal of Public Health. Unlike most previous studies of this kind, this one tried to take a more nuanced approach to issues of age-related disability and dependence of assistance.