How often do you think about the future? What would you see if you looked into a crystal ball and saw yourself 10 or maybe 20 years older?? Would you like what you see? Your crystal ball could provide some valuable insight regarding quality of life in later years. Perhaps you can control your destiny much more than you think.
Would your crystal ball show someone vibrant and active; enjoying life to the fullest?
or would you see someone sick, overweight, and living on the sidelines?
I love the quote ” We are our choices.” The daily decisions we make regarding our health have a way of sneaking up on us. Before you know it; you are 15 to 20 lbs heavier, pre-diabetic and have high blood pressure. You wake up one morning wondering what happened and where did all the time go?
Unhealthy eating habits and inactivity affect quality of life and cause disabilities
Few recognize that unhealthy diet is a leading cause of disability. Yet unhealthy eating habits and physical inactivity are leading causes of loss of independence:
- Diabetes is a leading cause of blindness and amputations. Roughly 73,000 people have lower-limb amputations each year due to diabetes.8
- Bone injuries due to osteoporosis are most likely to occur in the hips, spine, and wrist. Even just a slight fracture in these areas can result in loss of independence. Twenty percent of seniors who break their hip die within just one year. Those who survive often require long-term (nursing home) care.
- Heart attack or stroke can result in difficulty with everyday activities—such as walking, bathing, or getting into or out of bed—or cognitive impairment.
But it’s not too late. You have the opportunity to change your future. All it takes is the decision to start making better choices today.
Although hereditary factors can play a part in some diseases, you have more control of your health than you might think. Your body is an amazing machine designed to heal, but continual unhealthy food choices and inactivity can lead to permanent damage. There comes a point where your body gives in and stops fighting.
Once this occurs there is often damage that can’t be reversed. Diabetes can lead to blindness, loss of limbs, and even coma. Heart disease and hypertension can lead to heart attacks and strokes. Your choices could leave you dependent on others for your care.
But the good news is you can change your future. You have the the choice everyday to make better decisions regarding your health.
Don’t wake up one day and regret the opportunities you had to create a healthy lifestyle and live a better quality of life. Read the rest of my article here:
FOLLOW THESE FIVE STEPS TO PREVENT WEIGHT GAIN AS YOU AGE:
- Monitor your weight- Although it’s important not to obsess over the scales and weighing yourself daily, you do need to check your weight periodically. Gaining just a few pounds each year can increase your risk of cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes. Make a point to weigh yourself once a week and log your results. If you notice a slight gain of a couple of pounds, then simply increase your activity and cut back on portion sizes. Tracking your weight weekly will help you avoid unwanted pounds that can creep up over the years.
- Clean up your diet- As you get older you may find yourself more relaxed about your appearance and the pressure of maintaining a certain image. Retirement often brings a more relaxed lifestyle without the pressures of a career and children. This is a wonderful time to explore life, travel, and experiment with delightful new restaurants and foods you’ve always wanted to try. The key is to eat a healthy diet of fresh fruits and vegetables and to limit your food splurges to one meal a week.
- Remain active– Staying active is a key factor in maintaining an optimum weight as you age. Many people become more sedentary after retirement when they no longer have the pressures and activities of a daily job. It’s important to remain active so you can enjoy a good quality of life as you age. Brisk walking is a great cardiovascular exercise or join a gym and become involved in group fitness classes. Many gyms offer programs specifically for seniors and offer discounts for memberships. You may want to consider trying aqua aerobics or a senior yoga class. It’s important to find an activity you enjoy and can adhere to on a consistent basis.
- Avoid processed foods- Processed foods are typically high in calories and contain chemicals and toxins that can lead to weight gain. If you frequently eat out, try to select grilled lean meat without sauces. Select a salad, baked potato, or steamed vegetables as a side dish. Try to cook and eat most of your meals at home. Purchase organic fruits and vegetables when possible and experiment with healthy new recipes you’ve always wanted to try.
- Do resistance training- Weight training is vital as you get older. Studies show that muscle mass declines with age. Muscle mass peaks around the mid-twenties; starts to decline in our thirties, and picks up speed as we age. Weight training helps you maintain a healthy metabolism and helps combat the loss of muscle tone as you get older. Lifting weights 2-3 times a week can play a major role in maintaining your strength and muscle tone. Therefore, if you are already strength training, you are on the right track! If not, it’s never too late to pick up a set of weights and get started.
Take control of your health starting today! Begin by making better choices so that the future (what you see in your crystal ball ) is someone happy, healthy, and full of life.
Check out these wise words from Ben Franklin:
“I guess I don’t so much mind being old, as I mind being fat and old.”