A National Institute on Aging report states that creating a positive, healthy lifestyle can help seniors better manage chronic pain and illness, lower depression, improve sleep, enhance memory and achieve greater mobility. Healthy living cannot be achieved by medication or diet alone; it requires an overall approach to mental and physical stimulation.

Older adults can live fulfilling lives as they age if they take initiative and are encouraged to live in a healthy way. Three areas of focus will help seniors’ live a healthy lifestyle.

NUTRITION: Eating right is a fundamental part of overall wellness

Proper nutrition increases mental acuteness, boosts immune systems, helps people recover from injuries faster, and better manage chronic health problems.

For a healthy diet, include protein, carbohydrates, fiber, fats and fluids each day. Visit http://www.choosemyplate.gov/ for more information.

EXERCISE: Seniors who exercise regularly live healthier lives

Physical activity reduces the risks associated with many chronic conditions, prevents falls and decreases depression in older adults. The National Institute of Health reports that daily exercise increases the capability to perform the activities of daily living, elevates mental health and improves the chances of living longer.

Engage in an exercise program that includes the four basic exercises for seniors: balance, strength, endurance, flexibility. See: http://go4life.nia.nih.gov//try-these-exercises

SOCIAL PARTICIPATION: Older adults who are socially active and involved in the community report more positive feelings about their overall health and wellness

Seek fellowship in the community; get involved in senior centers, churches, neighborhood organizations, or activities that you may enjoy with others.

CICOA’s Aging & Disability Resource Center can provide more information on how to follow healthy living guidelines, call 317-803-6131.