5 Ways Older Adults Can Improve Physical Health

No matter how old you are, you need to take care of your body. If you’re older, something simple like the flu can lead to all kinds of complications. This can even include secondary infections, like bronchitis, ear infections, or pneumonia. If you have a chronic condition like asthma or diabetes, a respiratory illness can make these worse. Because of this, it is important to make healthier choices to strengthen your immune system and reduce the likelihood of getting ill. Physical health can support your mental health too. 

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Get Active

Physical activity is an immune system booster. The more you are able to move, the better able your body is to fight infection and inflammation. It doesn’t matter what exercise you do, and it doesn’t have to be strenuous. Low impact exercises are just as effective at maintaining your health. 

You could try biking, walking, swimming, or low impact aerobics. If you can, try out some moderate intensity exercise for about 20 to 30 minutes a day to reach the recommended total of 150 minutes a week. You can strengthen your muscles by lifting weights or doing something gentle like yoga. Try a few different exercises to find what suits you. 

Take Supplements As Necessary

Some supplements help support a healthier immune system and can support other goals like keeping your hair or teeth whitening. Before you start taking a new supplement, make sure to ask your doctor first to make sure it will be safe for you, especially if you are already taking any prescription medication. Some supplements that can benefit you are calcium, vitamin D, vitamin B6, or vitamin B12. Take some supplements or multivitamins, always as instructed, to boost your immune system. 

Eat A Healthy Diet

Diets that are rich in fruits, vegetables, and lean meats also give your immune system a boost and better protect yourself from harmful viruses and bacteria that can cause illness. Fruits and vegetables are a good source of antioxidants. Antioxidants help your cells to avoid damage and will keep your body healthy. You should also aim to minimize your consumption of sugary and fatty foods, which can lead to inflammation in the body and cause problems for your immune system. You should also reduce your alcohol intake. Ask your doctor about what amount of alcohol is safe to drink per day or per week. 

Wash Your Hands

Hand washing is an easy way to stay healthy. Viruses can live on surfaces for up to 24 hours. You can then get ill if you touch a virus-covered surface that contaminates your hands and then touch your face. Wash your hands with warm, soapy water, for at least 20 seconds. Try to avoid touching your nose, face, and mouth with your hands. You can also use antibacterial hand sanitizer when you’re unable to wash your hands. Disinfect surfaces around your home and work area on a regular basis.  

Manage Stress

Chronic stress will increase how much of the stress hormone cortisol that your body produces. Too much cortisol disrupts several body functions, including your immune system. Physical activity, plenty of sleep, setting reasonable expectations for yourself, and relaxing activities can all ease stress.

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