We know it’s not just about living longer, it’s about living healthily, ageing better and happily for longer. Follow these top 10 tips for ageing better.
Watch what you eat and drink
It sounds obvious, but having a balanced diet is crucial for good health, energy and preventing illness. An ideal diet should be low in saturated fat, with lots of fruit and vegetables, wholegrains, oily fish, and small amounts of low-fat dairy and lean meat.
Don’t forget to top-up with lots of water to avoid dehydration, which can make you feel tired and confused. Tea, coffee and fruit juice will also help you to stay hydrated, but avoid sugary fizzy drinks.
If you drink alcohol, keep at least two days per week booze-free to give your liver time to recover from the toxic effects of alcohol, and don’t exceed recommended daily limits for alcohol consumption.
2. Look after your teeth
Brush your teeth twice a day and floss daily. Floss helps to prevent gum disease by removing pieces of food and plaque from between the teeth.
If it’s left to build up you might notice sore or bleeding gums, and gum disease can also be linked to diabetes, strokes, heart disease and rheumatoid arthritis.
Have regular check-ups and, if you wear dentures or have a bridge, ask your dentist to check that they fit properly.
3. Stay active
Daily exercise helps you to stay strong and healthy. This will lower your risk of obesity, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and even cancer. If that wasn’t enough, staying active can boost your self-esteem, improve your sleep, and give you more energy.
Government guidelines recommend that older adults do 150 minutes of moderate intensity activity per week, as well as strengthening exercises twice a week.
If that sounds like a lot, start small and as you get stronger you will be able to work up to those amounts and start ageing better.
4. Make the most of your doctor
It’s a good idea to get some routine tests done at the doctors to check your blood pressure and cholesterol levels. High readings increase your risk factor for stroke and heart disease but any problems are completely reversible with medication.
Whilst you’re there, why not ask your doctor about the seasonal flu jab? It’s free once you reach 65, or if you have a health condition that puts you at risk of more serious problems if you caught the flu.