5 Things That Can Help You Age As Gracefully As Possible

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autumn leaves on deck

Age ain’t nothing but a number, now with scientific backing!

For starters, let’s get away from the phrase “aging well.” It usually calls to mind vanity and insecurity -- like a celebrity gossip rag complaining that an actress over the age of 40 dared to leave the house without being camera ready.

This isn’t a competition, but there are little things you can start doing to make sure that the natural course of aging that affects everyone goes a little easier on you. It all comes down to, not surprisingly, a general sense of mental and physical well-being. So the minute you’re done reading this, you can start making sure nature has to work overtime to show its impact on your mind and body.

Walk

It’s literally the easiest thing you can do, and it has wide-ranging impact on your overall health and wellbeing. Just take a look at the visual lecture by Dr. Mike Evans, where he explains how the simple act of walking can lessen the impact or likelihood of arthritis, dementia, diabetes, and a broad range of other ailments that can weigh heavily on your body as it gets older. Eliminating your risk and upping your fitness at the same time is the holy grail of looking and feeling good into your advanced years….and all you have to do is get up and move for at least 30 minutes a day.

Be Positive And Social

drawing a smiley face

A 2010 study published by PLOS Medicine showed that people with active social lives showed a 50% increase in the likelihood that they would live longer than people with less social contact. But that’s not all. It’s one thing to improve your chances for survival, but another to have social interaction actually live better, not just longer. Sorry, but grousing with fellow misanthropes doesn’t really count as “being social” in a helpful sense. You need to surround yourself with positive people. Numerous studies have shown a link between positive mental states and physical health -- even something as simple as smiling or laughing can improve your overall health.

Prep Your House

tripping on stairs

There are a lot of intangible, mental switches you can make to improve your quality of life, but let’s not forget the practical, too. How many times have you heard that a person in fine health quickly deteriorated after a big fall? Do you best to avoid this by assessing your home. All those stairs are fine now, but should you consider moving things around so you don’t have to climb as much? Conducting an annual “safety review” of your house -- check bathtub conditions, heater safety, and overall accessibility -- and make changes now so you’ll have an easier time later. [Dig Deeper: A Complete Overview Of In-Home Care]

Go To Nature

nature stretch

The natural world affects our well-being in profound ways, mainly offering a feeling of restoration and peace. So whether your walk includes chances to literally stop and smell the roses, or your hospital room has plenty of plants and greenery -- the impact can help you recover and thrive.

Go To Bed

sleeping smiley face

The National Sleep Foundation says all you have to do is seven to nine hours of sleep a night and you’ll be amazed at the results to your mental clarity and joints. The body uses this sleep time to heal itself, so you’d be wise to let it have some time to do it. Sure, it may mean binge-watching a little less, but that’s not a bad thing for myriad reasons. StartSleeping.org offers a comprehensive list of tips from researchers on how to start sleeping better. So switch off, and let your body work on itself while you catch necessary Zs.

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