As the decade is coming to an end, it is time to reflect back on previous years and ring in the New Year with new hopes and dreams! Every year, people celebrate the New Year with specific resolutions such as traveling to Europe, working out more, or receiving a promotion. For seniors, it may not seem as beneficial to create resolutions; however, a study conducted by Rush University in Chicago showed that seniors with a sense of purpose are two out of four times less likely to develop Alzheimer’s.
6 Senior New Year Resolutions
According to statistics from the Alzheimer’s Association, every 65 seconds, someone in the United States develops Alzheimer’s disease and one in three seniors dies with Alzheimer’s or another form of dementia. Although there has yet to be a cure or treatment found for Alzheimer’s or dementia, there are ways to lower the risk of the devasting disease and improve your overall state of health.
Here are six senior New Year resolutions to help reduce the risk of dementia:
- Eat Healthily – As we age, we still need healthy foods, but not as many calories. Following the Mediterranean Intervention for Neurodegenerative Delay (MIND) diet can reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s by as much as 53%. This diet is high in healthy fats, whole grains, and omega 3’s.
- Stay Active – Even if you have heart disease, diabetes, or arthritis, staying active is a great way to your overall health! Exercises such as water aerobics, stretching, tai chi, and walking can help build muscles, control weight, and improve balance which prevents any potential falls. These cardiovascular exercises increase blood flow to the brain which potentially decreases dementia.
- Check-in with Your Doctor – As we age, doctor visits become more and more frequent, however, only 16% of seniors receive regular cognitive assessments during their routine check-up. Schedule doctor visits at the beginning of the year to discuss health screenings and medication. This is also a great opportunity to receive any new or booster shots.
- Exercise Your Mind – More games are being developed to improve our cognitive state. Brain-boosting games such as Lumosity or Sodoku are great ways to keep the mind engaged and fight Alzheimer’s. Another great way to keep the mind active is by taking a class at your local community center or local college!
- Get Enough Sleep – Washington University School of Medicine conducted a study that states sleeping can improve memory, even for people living with Alzheimer’s disease. Getting an adequate amount of sleep (7 to 8 hours) and avoiding daytime naps is a great and simple resolution to help overall health.
- Make New Friends – Senior loneliness and depression are more common than most people may think. A great way to beat depression this New Year is by making new friends. For example, become a regular at the local senior center or plan activities with current friends or acquaintances.
Adopting healthy senior New Year resolutions such as these can help improve your loved one’s cognitive and physical health. If you believe your loved one can benefit from having additional care, contact 24/7 Nursing Care to learn more about hiring caregivers or companions that can assist with these New Year resolutions. We can be reached at 786-518-3622 in Miami or 954-949-1332 in Broward.
Top 10 Healthy New Year’s Resolutions for Older Adults. Retrieved December 20, 2019 from https://www.healthinaging.org/tools-and-tips/top-10-healthy-new-years-resolutions-older-adults
Cirillo, A. (2018, December 27) The Importance of New Year’s Resolutions for Older Adults. Retrieved December 20, 2019 from https://www.healthinaging.org/tools-and-tips/top-10-healthy-new-years-resolutions-older-adults