As we age, we are not only more susceptible to illness and injury, but our bodies take longer to recover. If you or a senior who you provide care for has suffered a major health incident, here are some tips for improving and maintaining health during the recovery phase.
Examine Your Perspective
I know a lot of people, both young and old, who believe that living a healthy lifestyle cannot be enjoyable. They don’t want to watch what they eat, refuse to regulate salt intake or cut back on sugar, and won’t entertain giving up “bad” habits like smoking and drinking.
I’m all for living life to it’s fullest, but having ongoing health complications isn’t an enjoyable way to live life. Yet, it’s very possible to enjoy our lives while still acknowledging that certain behaviors lead to heart conditions, diabetes, and other chronic and terminal illnesses.
Taking practical steps to avoid these diseases — or bouncing back with a bout of ill health — doesn’t have to mean living a pleasure-free life. It simply means being intentional in how you care for your body.
Though healthy living shouldn’t wait until the last minute, if you’ve already experienced a major health incident, now’s the time to examine your lifestyle and weigh what’s worth adjusting to avoid spending more time in the hospital.
If you’ve had an injury due to mobility, it’s time to make improvements to your home. It may not be the most fun way to spend time and money, but having a safe bathroom and adequate space to move around will greatly improve your daily life.
If you’ve suffered a heart attack, stroke, or other health ailment, it’s time to examine your diet. This doesn’t have to mean giving up everything you love, but it should involve seeking out whole, healthy foods that provide your body with the nutrients it needs. If you need to cut back on sodium due to a heart condition, experiment with other seasonings that add flavor. Don’t think of it as depriving yourself, think of it as broadening your food horizons.
Multitask Your Wellness
Focusing on health might not seem like an enjoyable way to spend your time, but it absolutely can be! Look for healthy activities and lifestyle changes that improve your life in multiple ways. Have you always loved the water? Start going swimming on a regular basis! This type of exercise is gentle on your body, but has significant health effects! Do you love animals? Volunteer with a humane society to walk dogs! Or start a dog walking service to earn a bit of money. This will allow you to get exercise while doing activities you enjoy.
If eating healthy is a hang-up for you, find ways to make it enjoyable. Experiment with cooking new meals with friends and family. This can be a great bonding experience with grandchildren or young mentees. Not only will you have fun cooking new meals and learning what you like and dislike, but you’ll be instilling knowledge of healthy food in a younger generation! Great job having a lasting impact.
A lot of times, a major health incident can be a wake up call. It’s never too late to make positive life changes to improve your health. Share your experiences in the comments below!
About the Author: Jeriann writes about finances, wedding planning, and general life issues. You can check out more of her writing at dairyairhead.com.