Healthy Aging

September is one of my favorite months as the weather begins to enjoyable again for outdoor activities and exercise and the trees begin their color changes. Autumn is a lovely time of year.

September also has many observance days! Some of the interesting, lesser-known observances for September include; World Beard Day, Salami Day, Chocolate Milk Shake Day, Grandparent’s Day, Positive Thinking Day, Constitution Day, Cheeseburger Day, Women’s Friendship Day, International Peace Day, Wife Appreciation Day, Comic Book Day, and Ask A Stupid Question Day. 

September is also Healthy Aging Month! The American Academy of Ophthalmology originally began this observance to encourage older adults to keep their eyes healthy and have regular eye exams. Since that time Healthy Aging Month has been utilized more broadly to include all aspects of health while we age. 

Healthy aging is important at any age. Whether you’re elderly or young adult or somewhere in the middle, everyone should be thinking ahead and loving their bodies. How do we love our bodies and age in a healthy manner? Proper diet and exercise are necessary for our physical health. We also need to be aware and practice proper self-care for our mental health. 

I’ve sent prior emails regarding diet and exercise and how it substantially reduces or eliminates almost all of the chronic diseases we see frequently in the United States. The easiest way of summarizing a good diet is to limit your high fat and calorie intake, and cut down or eliminate sodas, alcohol, and sugar. A proper diet doesn’t mean everyone will be a size 2 for women or 30” for men, some individual’s healthy is a little heavier and that’s okay. But a proper diet does limit your likelihood of obesity and the relating diseases that accompany it. 

Exercising, even if just a 20 minute walk around the neighborhood a few evenings each week is great for your cardiovascular health and will assist in maintaining your physical health. 

Self-care for your mental health is equally important.  The chaos 2020 has brought makes self-care even more critical, it is very important to do a regular self-check of your mental health to ensure your stress levels are being managed properly. Some things I’ve been doing that assists me with my stress levels have been home renovation projects, FaceTime with my sisters and mother since all of us reside in different states, family Board games and video games, and even walking around my neighborhood picking up litter. Perhaps you have some better ideas you’d like to share with me? 

Tagging along with the self-care and healthy aging would be insurance. This year has truly been one we’ll all remember. One of my coworkers sister just lost everything in the hurricane last week. She had suffered some terrible health last year and determined she could no longer afford her home owner’s insurance. Unfortunately her home took a direct hit from Hurricane Laura and she has nothing left. In her 50s she is starting over with only her vehicle and a suitcase she hurriedly packed during the evacuation orders. Truly devastating. 

Insurance is peace of mind for the unexpected. If you haven’t already obtained life insurance there are many options for both term and whole life that will suit your particular needs. (? You don’t even have to be a parent of six children to see the need for a half million dollar policy to cover needs should your passing come at an unexpected/inconvenient time. ?) Long term care insurance is very helpful should you ever require assistance with caring for yourself. Long term care insurance also has a variety of options to meet your needs. Lastly of course vehicle insurance and health insurance is mandatory and home owners insurance as well if your home isn’t paid in full (even still I recommend home owners insurance regardless of payoff status). These insurances can seem costly, but I again remind everyone this is for peace of mind should something unexpected happen which we know is inevitable, especially in 2020. 

I’ve added a few links below regarding healthy aging I found online that covers a few different topics.

Have a lovely final day of August and welcome to Autumn (almost).

By Jennifer Openshaw O’Brien

En Su Casa In-Home Caregivers