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When it comes to healthy living, people often talk about regular exercise and a healthy diet. Both are important components. But have you ever considered all the benefits that exercise can offer—especially for older adults?
While it can sometimes be hard to motivate yourself for a workout, consider that there are many different benefits of physical fitness:
Increase in energy. Exercise is known to increase blood flow and rid the body of stress hormones, leaving the body free to expend energy on other things.
Improvement in chronic conditions. Many who suffer from chronic illnesses, arthritis, Alzheimer’s and mental health issues find their symptoms to be more manageable after implementing a regular exercise routine.
Lower blood pressure. Regular physical activity promotes healthy blood pressure. This is true for those with normal blood pressure, but it’s also the case among those who have chronic high blood pressure.
Stronger immune system. Exercise increases overall immunity and makes it easier to fight off disease.
Decrease in falls. Fall risk is high among older adults, for many different reasons. But regular physical activity, including balance exercises, can help limit the risk and make falling less likely.
Increase in strength. Muscles and nerves get stronger with regular use, making day-to-day mobility easier.
There are a ton of physical benefits related to exercise, but exercise is also beneficial to the brain and our mental health:
Improved focus. Physical activity helps lower a person’s risk of developing dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease, and it’s also been shown to improve overall cognitive health.
Reduced stress. Exercise removes stress hormones in the body. This is great for our mental well-being, as well as decreasing blood pressure and heart issues.
Improved mood. Exercise is a general mood enhancer and can lessen symptoms of depression and anxiety.
Before your loved one begins a new exercise routine, he or she should check in with a doctor. But there are a number of exercises experts recommend for older adults, including:
Beyond these specific exercises, anything that promotes balance is a good option! As we mentioned earlier, fall risk is high among seniors, so exercises that promote good balance are a definite benefit.
At Executive Care of Montgomery County, we work alongside you to be sure your loved one is staying healthy and fulfilled in all aspects of life. Get in touch today to learn how our in-home services work.
Staying active is a crucial part of the aging process, but it’s not just staying physically active that is important as we grow older. One of the greatest things we can do is keep our minds active.
So how can you help your aging loved one keep his or her mind active? Check out some of the suggestions we have compiled in this blog.
Here are some brain-approved activities:
Reading. Did you know that the Mayo Clinic found that reading books, in conjunction with other cognitive activities, can lead to a 50% decrease in the chances of developing dementia? That’s plenty of reason to keep your loved one actively reading.
Playing an instrument. Recent studies have found that seniors experience improvements in areas of the brain that control hearing, memory and hand movement after just four months of playing an instrument for an hour a week.
Writing. The act of writing can help stimulate the areas of the brain that deal with thinking, language and memory.
Socializing. Maintaining a social life can help fight off isolation and depression, and it also has been found to heal aging brains and keep them young.
Exercising. Not only does physical activity help the body physically, but it can also help the brain combat the effects of aging.
Going back to school. With many colleges offering scholarships, tuition waivers or discounts for seniors, supplementing the golden years with the occasional class has never been easier.
Playing games and doing puzzles. If it works the brain, it’s a great activity. It has been found that playing games can help prevent Alzheimer’s or other types of dementia. Games and puzzles are also excellent for socializing with family and friends.
It’s assumed that memory will always fade with age, but that doesn’t have to be the case. There are ways that memory can be strengthened, no matter a person’s age.
Making some small lifestyle changes to diet and sleep has been shown to make quite a big difference for memory.
The brain can feel “foggy” after not getting an adequate amount of sleep as it does not allow for enough time to consolidate memory at night. Seven to nine hours of sleep is the recommended amount for our brains.
Boosting the intake of omega-3 fatty acids, berries and cherries, walnuts, cruciferous vegetables, and eggs can also benefit the brain and memory.
Making sure the mind stays active is essential in the golden years. The in-home care providers at Executive Care of Montgomery County can help make sure your loved one is keeping active—both mentally and physically.
I’d like to convey to you how wonderful the aide Afia is for my mother’s care. She has been with her since last January and has become more than just a caregiver. She truly “cares” and is skillful in her abilities. My mom has had several health situations and her current health has improved to the best she has been in several years. Both her doctor and my family attribute a large part of that to Afia’s care. She is diligent about her diet and sleep patterns, and her “toileting” issues. All of this has contributed greatly to my mom’s overall improved health and her peace of mind as well as our family’s peace of mind. We cannot say enough about her. We are also very satisfied with Executive Care all the way around, from the billing department and everyone we speak with on the phone, very courteous and professional.Cindi E
It’s almost five years since we have been receiving caregivers through Executive Care, and I would like to take this transitional period to express our appreciation for the services you have provided thus far. We are particularly appreciative of the special attention and care Lili has given to our case. Lili has been very sensitive to our particular needs and it has been and remains important to us to have consistency in the arrangements by having Lili as our go-to person in light of Dr. E’s special needs. It is apparent that Lili has many other important responsibilities, so we wanted to thank Executive Care and Lili for the efforts she has made on our behalf.Judge Naomi E
I have had business dealings with Executive Care for some time now and have invariably been very satisfied. The personnel have been considerate, trustworthy, capable and always responsive. They have provided a genuine physical and emotional lift to the patient, in my case an elderly, frail sister. I do not hesitate to recommend the organization for the services rendered.Samuel S
At Executive Care, our mission is to improve quality of life for our clients and their families, while focusing on service excellence.
To be the Home Care company of choice for clients, their families, caregivers and our community.
What makes Executive Care unique is our devotion to client experience. At Executive Care, providing our clients with peace of mind is more than a corporate mission statement; it is the sole reason for doing what we do.