Do you make New Year’s resolutions? As one year ends and a new one begins it’s a chance for a fresh start. Many people set goals such as starting new diets and exercise routines, however, they’re often restrictive and unsustainable. This can lead to quitting your resolutions just a few weeks into the new year.
The good news is there are ways to prevent that from happening. And that starts with setting realistic goals that you can follow long term. If you’re ready to start the new year off healthy and happy then check out these healthy New Year’s resolutions seniors can actually keep!
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Sit Less, Move More
Regular physical activity is one of the most important things you can do for your health. Unfortunately, by age 75, one in three men and one in two women engage in no physical activity. The goods news is it’s never too late to start. So this year, why not make it a goal to sit less and move more!
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states that older adults need about 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity per week. This can be broken up into 30-minute workouts five days a week. If you’re ready to get moving check out these easy exercises for seniors!
Stimulate Your Mind
The brain is an important organ that is responsible for everything we do from emotions and motor skills to vision, breathing, body temperature, hunger, and memory. This is why taking care of your brain health is so important. Incorporating brain exercises can be easy and is a sustainable and healthy New Year’s resolution you can make.
You can start slow by spending 10 to 20 minutes a day playing games such as crossword puzzles, Soduko, or even making a jigsaw puzzle. Other ways to stimulate your mind include reading, writing, and learning a new skill. Check out these senior exercises that can help improve memory!
Good quality sleep is important at any age. It benefits your physical and emotional health from improving your concentration and memory to helping your body repair cell damage and more. If you feel like you could get better sleep make it a resolution to work on that this year.
The good news is there are things you can start doing now to get a better night’s rest. For starters, you’ll want to create a relaxing and inviting environment, unwind before bed, and stick to a sleep schedule. For more ideas, check out these sleeping tips for seniors.
Take Time for Self Care
You’ve spent your entire life taking care of others and now it’s time to really take care of yourself. In fact, self-care is an essential part of maintaining your health and can even help prevent chronic illnesses. This year dedicate time for self-care.
The first step is to make sure you view self-care as taking care of yourself and not as being selfish. Keep in mind, it doesn’t have to be complicated nor time-consuming. You can start small by enjoying a walk every day, getting a little extra sleep, or taking a bath. Choose to do things that bring you happiness.
Eat Whole Foods
Instead of dieting this year, focus on nourishing your body with more whole foods. Diets are hard to follow because they can be restrictive and unsustainable. If you focus on healthy lifestyle changes like consuming more healthy foods and enjoying unhealthy foods in moderation you may find it more sustainable.
Some great examples of whole foods include vegetables, fruits, whole grains, fish, nuts, and seeds. These foods are full of nutrients that your body needs. Studies show that a diet rich in whole foods may help reduce the risk of heart disease, as well as other diseases such as type 2 diabetes.
Focus on Gratitude
Focusing on gratitude instead of focusing on the negative aspects of your life can have positive effects on your health. In fact, a study showed those who wrote about gratitude were more optimistic, felt better, had fewer visits to the physician, and exercised more.
So this year why don’t you make it a goal to focus on gratitude. An easy way to start doing this is to keep a gratitude journal. Every day spend five to 10 minutes writing down things you are grateful for. A year from now you’ll be able to look at all the positive things that have happened.
Use Cleaner Products
What you put on your body is just as important as what you put in your body. The products you use in your home can impact your health too. That’s why this year you might want to make it a New Year’s resolution to switch to cleaner products.
You can start by switching your beauty and personal hygiene products to natural products. These products typically go on your skin and are absorbed into your body which is why you’ll want to make the switch to cleaner options. Next, go through your household cleaners and laundry detergent and look for natural or environmentally friendly products.
Keep Up With Medical Checkups
This is the year to start taking care of your health! Visiting your doctor regularly is essential to diagnosing potential problems before they become more serious. Make sure you see your primary care physician at least once a year.
Oral health is important too! Make it a resolution to stay on track with brushing and flossing regularly as this is important for preventing oral conditions like gum disease. Also, make sure you don’t skip your dental checkups and see your dentist at least once a year.
If you don’t volunteer already this might be a good year to start. Volunteering can be great for seniors and offers plenty of health benefits. Research shows that volunteering can help reduce stress and may even lead to lower rates of depression.
Further, volunteering also helps you stay physically and mentally active. It can also give you a sense of purpose. Finally, it also helps you stay socially active as you’ll get to meet new people and develop new relationships.
Try a New Hobby
It’s common to let go of hobbies especially when life gets busy. But what better way to spend retirement than to pick up a once-loved hobby or to try a new one! In fact, research shows that enjoying hobbies can help you live longer and healthier!
This year make it a resolution to set time aside to enjoy a hobby that excites you and brings you happiness. If you’re not sure where to start, check out these healthy hobbies seniors should try!