1. Eat Healthier As You Age
Switch up your diet this year to look and feel better than ever!
Fruits (2-3 servings a day) - Focus on eating whole, fresh fruit rather than juices or smoothies. Untouched fruits provide more fiber and vitamins. The richer the color, the more vitamins, so try eating more berries and melons instead of the usual, apples and bananas.
Veggies (2-3 cups a day) - Try eating more dark, leafy greens like kale, spinach and broccoli. They're rich in antioxidants which keep you from getting sick! Also incorporate orange and yellow vegetables like carrots, squash and yams into your diet to help with digestion.
Calcium (1,200 mg a day) - Maintaining bone health is one of the most important tasks as you age. Adequate calcium intake prevents osteoporosis and bone fractures. Get your proper calcium intake through dairy products like milk, yogurt or cheese. Non-dairy sources like tofu, broccoli, almonds and kale are also calcium-rich.
Grains (6-7 ounces; 1 ounce = 1 slice of whole grain bread) - Choose whole grains this year instead of white bread products for more nutrients and fiber. Many pasta, breads and cereals in the store are labeled "whole" in the ingredients list or on the packaging.
Protein (68-102 g a day for a person weighing 150 lbs) - This year, try to divide your protein intake equally among meals to help improve digestion and provide long-lasting energy. It's important to vary your types of protein as well, so try to include more fish, beans, peas, eggs, nuts, seeds, milk and cheese into your diet this 2016.
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2. Work Your Body & Brain
Just as it is important to get in the recommended 150 minutes of exercise per week, keeping your brain active is equally important. Try challenging yourself daily with puzzles, card games, or word searches to increase brain function and help reduce your risk of developing dementia symptoms down the line. Some seniors are even returning to school to further their education and many local community colleges offer free, fun electives designed for those 65 and older -- Something to keep in mind for the New Year!
3. Reconnect with Old Friends
It's easy to lose contact with old friends and family members, but if you love and enjoy spending time with that person, it's worth it to make an effort to reconnect with them. Make 2016 the year that you go out on a limb and contact your missed loved one. With social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, they're only a instant message away from catching up with you. Post more on your social media to update loved ones with what's going on in your life and you'll definitely have a shot at rekindling your relationship with old pals. If they're too far away, you can video call them with apps like Skype for face-to-face conversations no matter where you are.
4. Stay Safe - Work to Prevent Falls
Do all that you can this 2016 to reduce your risk of falling. Even if you don't think it could happen to you, everyone is at risk of falling. So stay fit by exercising regularly to improve your strength, balance and endurance. Even taking a short walk in your neighborhood every day can reduce your risk. If this makes you nervous, ask for assistance from a family member, friend or neighbor for support. Inside the house, set up mats and railings in the bathroom to avoid slipping or tripping when exiting the shower. Also, see your doctor regularly for sight and hearing check ups.
5. Thank Your Family More
Remember, your family will always be there for you. Even when they can no longer care for you, they will set you up with Attentive Home Care's in-home care service because you deserve nothing but the best. Share the love this year and you will receive nothing but good things in return.