A lot of the customers enjoyed the residents talking to them. We asked resident Tera Ekman what she enjoyed the most and she replied “I enjoyed being with the group and having fun. Just because I’m 90 doesn’t mean I don’t like to have fun.” The group ended the outing with lunch in the food court at the mall. While we were ordering our food, the fellow taking our order said to us “Hey I remember you, you gave me a free doughnut at Tim Horton’s last month.” That made all of us feel good, knowing that some stranger remembered what we did for them. Just a small reminder that little things do go a long way.
Did you know that your heart beats over 100,000 times per day? Since the most important muscle in your body is working that hard for you, don’t you think you owe it a little TLC? Here are five things you can do to make your heart happy.
You’ve heard this one a million times before, but it’s really true. Stay away from too much salt and processed sugar. Focus, instead, on lean protein and unsaturated fat. Stay away from too many carbohydrates commonly found in processed fast food and sugary cereals and focus on whole grains instead. Eat plenty of natural fruits and vegetables, especially leafy green veggies. Of course everyone loves a little dessert, but just remember to eat it in moderation.
Manage your blood pressure
High blood pressure is one of the heart’s mortal enemies. It can damage artery walls and create scar tissue, which makes it difficult for oxygen to get to and from the heart. If you are over 40, have your blood pressure checked yearly. In addition to maintaining a healthy diet, you should consider cutting back alcohol consumption to one or two drinks per day. Exercise regularly – anything from a brisk jog to a neighborhood stroll is great for the heart if it is done on a regular basis – and it also helps to relieve stress which is an added bonus.
Find more time for yourself
It is naturally relaxing to do the things you enjoy and spend time with the people you love. If you find yourself too busy to get away, take a step back and re-examine. There is a time to work and a time to play and the body’s natural rhythm can be disrupted when there is not a good balance between the two – and this can have a bad impact on your heart.
Noted holistic Dr. Andrew Weil pioneered a breathing technique involving breathing in through the nose for four seconds, holding the breath for seven seconds, and then breathing out through the mouth for eight seconds. Doing this four times in a row, twice a day, can reduce stress, help improve your sleep, and lower blood pressure. Try doing it before bed and right away when you wake up.
If you have questions or concerns about your health or that of a loved-one, Primrose would be honored to help. Just visit www.primroseretirement.com for more information or to contact the Primrose closest to you.
As you grow older you may find that, even though your diet has not changed, you are gaining weight or feeling sluggish. Part of this has to do with the fact that your metabolism slows as you age. This means that, while your body may require an increase in specific nutrients to keep things running smoothly, it may actually need less food overall. Here are some things you can do to ease the process of making healthy food choices as you age.
Remember to think “rainbow”
The best way to get the nutrients you need is to think about making your plate look like a rainbow. You need a balance of foods that are high in fiber and low in salt. Low fat dairy like skim milk or almond milk is great. Whole grains like brown rice and wheat pasta, lean protein like seafood, lean meat and eggs, and fruits and vegetables will give your plate the color it needs to be healthy for you.
Don’t forget to hydrate
It is important to stay hydrated by drinking regularly throughout the day. Liquids like tea, coffee and water are best. Stay away from sugary juices and soda pop, and go easy on the alcohol consumption as well – too much of these liquids can actually result in dehydration. Proper hydration aids in proper digestion of foods and also helps regulate body weight.
Always read the label
It is easy to buy something that you think is good for you but, in reality, is filled with ingredients that are bad for you. If you aren’t already in the habit, make a point of looking at the labels on the food you buy. Look for things that are low in fat, added sugars, and salt. Look for organic produce, which is grown with natural fertilizers, as opposed to conventionally-grown produce which uses synthetic or chemical fertilizers. Shop for organic meat that is fed with hormone-free and GMO-free food as opposed to meat that comes from conventionally raised livestock that are given hormones for faster growth.
Let someone else cook for you
Another option involves making a move to a senior living community where some or all of your meals are prepared for you by a dietary manager who is committed to providing healthy, fresh dining options. Communities like Primrose will even offer meals customized to specific health needs. Utilizing an option like this takes all the hassle out of trying to figure out what you should be eating, and they even clean up your dishes for you when you are done!
If you have questions or concerns about your dietary health or that of a loved-one, Primrose would be honored to help. Just visit www.primroseretirement.com for more information or to contact the Primrose closest to you.
As we age, it is important for us to do all we can to ensure that our brains stay healthy enough to help us preserve as many of life’s memories as possible. Regardless of your age, your brain is capable of remarkable feats. It can form new pathways for neurons to travel when old ones die and it can change its existing connections to transfer information more eﬃciently. It is constantly adapting and changing throughout your life – regardless of your age or physical condition. Like any other part of the body, though, the brain beneﬁts from regular exercise. Here are three things you can do to help yours perform at its best.
Stimulate your brain
Your brain is made up of a superhighway of neural pathways. These pathways help you understand and remember things. They help you solve problems and perform regular tasks. As you age, it’s important to keep your brain active by challenging yourself to learn new things. No matter what you learn – violin, painting, golf, a foreign language, or the art of dancing – any of these things will keep your brain challenged and help you create a new set of memories to cherish.
Physical exercise provides oxygen to your brain and can reduce your risk for illness that can lead to memory loss, like diabetes and cardiovascular disease. It also reduces stress and helps develop new neural pathways in your brain that can help improve your memory function. Activities that utilize hand-eye coordination are especially helpful. Sports like golf or tennis are great as is learning to play piano or guitar. You may also notice that a good walk in the afternoon may help you feel more awake and alert later in the day when many people’s brains begin to slow down.
Spend time with friends and family
Relationships are great for stimulating our brains. We experience all diﬀerent types of emotions when interacting with other people, and all of them are good for enhancing brain function. In fact, the Harvard School of Public Health found that people who are active socially have the slowest rate of memory decline. You may want to consider volunteering, joining a club, getting involved with church groups, adopting a pet, or really anything that helps you to stay connected with other people.
If you have additional questions for yourself or a loved one, Primrose would be honored to assist you. Just visit www.primroseretirement.com for more info or to contact the Primrose closest to you.