How Are You Aging?

September is Healthy Aging month, when we should all be asking ourselves: How are we aging today?

In the new millenium, Americans lifespans are longer than ever. Most of us will make it to our 70s or 80s, and many will reach 90 and beyond. It’s more important than ever to take care of our health from early on, to maximize our chances of staying fit and healthy well into our golden years.

Even if you’re already a senior, it’s not too late to take your health seriously. Every positive change you make now can impact your health in a big way.

There are four major aspects of good health as we age: Diet, Exercise, Mental Health, and Social Wellbeing. Today we’ll talk about diet and exercise.


Your diet plays an important part in your overall health and wellbeing. The things we eat can influence many health system in the body. They can even increase or decrease our risk of dying from heart disease, stroke, or type 2 diabetes.

A healthy eating plan includes:

  • vegetables
  • fruits
  • poultry
  • fish
  • lean meats
  • beans
  • whole grains
  • eggs
  • low-fat dairy products

Healthy diets also eliminate trans fats and added sugars, and reduce saturated fats and sodium. It’s important to eat food in its natural state as much as possible. For example, choose a bowl of porridge sweetened with raisins and cinnamon, instead of a cinnamon-flavored granola bar loaded with sugar and fats.

Seniors should choose heart-healthy fats such as olive oil, nuts—especially peanuts, cashews, and almonds, and salmon. Yogurt, milk, and cheese are also good choices for seniors who need calcium and vitamin D in their diets.


Exercising regularly is equally important as diet to your long-term health. A host of studies show that routinely exercising can decrease your chances of developing various medical conditions. Physical activity keeps your bones and muscles strong, helps your blood circulate better, stimulates your brain and mood, and prevent physical deterioration.

Here are the Center for Disease Control’s basic exercise guidelines for seniors who are generally fit and have no limiting health conditions:

At least:




For specific diet and exercise advice, consult with your doctor.

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