It is of vital importance to stay active even as you age. Otherwise, a sedentary lifestyle among senior citizens may eventually lead to a variety of health ailments. Exercising regularly ensures the supply of an adequate amount of oxygen to the brain, which, in turn, prevents senility from setting in.
It is essential to make time for physical activity. However, as you age, staying active becomes even more important. It helps boost your energy levels and increases your immunity, thereby allowing you to fight against deadly diseases.
Over the internet, you will find many websites advertising ways to minimize caloric levels by following diet plans. They will boast how beneficial their diet plans are. Well, it is true. Older people can get lean by following these diets. But will it be healthy for their body?
No! No matter how delicious and nutritious the diet is, it will all be in vain without proper exercise. Exercises can help to improve both your physical as well as mental wellbeing as you grow older.
There are numerous benefits of staying active as you age. Some of them include:
1. Improves Mental Health
As people age, they tend to become more thoughtful. Their introspection leads them towards melancholia and depression. Staying active by exercising regularly improves their mood and keeps their mind diverted from worldly sorrows. As a result, they’re more cheerful.
It is easy for older people to brood over the past, especially if they lead a sedentary lifestyle. Pensiveness, regretting past mistakes, the economy of the country, and political idiosyncrasies lead to depression. An active life keeps certain feelings in check. So, exercising leads to a better mood. Mood swings are also kept in check.
Exercise produces endorphins, also known as the happiness hormone. So, senior citizens who exercise regularly feel less stressed out. They feel happier and more satisfied. Regular exercise is much better than over-the-counter antidepressants.
2. Better Physical Health
The older people become, the weaker they feel. The less they move, the greater the fluid retention level (or edema) in their body. As people grow older, their digestive system weakens. Bowel movement is also affected and leads to constipation. The restricted diet plan suggested by their doctors also has certain side effects on health.
Physical activities prevent fluids from accumulating in any particular part of the body. Regular physical exercise strengthens the bones and keeps your weight in check.
Most elderly people rarely go out. During retirement, it’s easier to put on more and more weight. This excessive weight results in obesity and a lot of other health-related problems. Exercises help keep those problems at bay. Frequent exercise also keeps the motor skills in check. Exercise also improves hand-eye coordination.
Exercise also increases motor movement, thereby increasing the balance in the senior’s body, which reduces their risk of falling.
3. Improved Cognitive Function
Research has repeatedly proven that physically active people are at a lesser risk of developing dementia. Regular exercise improves motor skills, which in turn impacts cognitive skills.
4. Staying Socially Active
Most metropolitan cities have designated places for physical exercise. Many people in the same age group can exercise in the same place together.
Since it is a group activity, senior citizens will get to interact with people their age. It becomes a social event and wards off depression. Also, group exercise helps to ensure an active and socially engaging lifestyle.
5. Disease Prevention
As people age, they fall victim to ailments like diabetes and heart problems. People who frequently exercise rarely suffer from diseases. Exercise helps to increase immunity. So, senior citizens, whose immunity is naturally low, need to exercise more frequently. Even light exercise, such as a brisk walk for half-an-hour, can help keep diseases at bay.
As people age, the blood flow to the brain decreases. Exercise boosts the circulation of oxygen in the bloodstream as well as to the brain. Also, it helps to flush out the toxins present in our body. As a result, immunity is strengthened.
Senior citizens generally face difficulty in processing their thoughts and solving problems. Exercise prevents dementia and strengthens problem-solving skills.
6. Better Bone Health
Certain muscle-strengthening and weight-training exercises force the muscles to work harder. Such exercises reduce the risk of developing osteopenia and osteoporosis.
According to a process called Wolff’s Law, these exercises increase the strength of the bones. Senior citizens generally have brittle bones. Consequently, they frequently suffer from fractures.
People who frequently exercise, on the other hand, have better and stronger bones. Also, it boosts their memory and leads to more vigorous movements.
7. Better Sleep
Generally, the older that people get, the more effort they need to make to fall asleep. Doctors generally recommend that seniors sleep at least 7 to 8 hours each day. However, as we approach old age, it becomes more challenging to obtain that 7 to 8 hours of sleep each day.
Body temperature fluctuates during and after the exercise. So regular exercise helps people sleep better and also improves their concentration level.
Regular exercise is generally the secret behind graceful aging witnessed in certain people. However, once a senior falls sick, it takes them longer to recover. Low immunity is the cause behind this, and it can be combated by exercising regularly.
Seniors can watch Youtube videos or check online to find out what exercises are best suited for them. It is a good idea to consult a doctor before starting with any exercise regime. It is also advisable not to do any intense workouts. Also, they should stop immediately if they feel any searing pain in the body.
Cardiovascular exercises like swimming and running can improve the level of stamina and endurance in older adults. The same applies to strength training exercises, such as lifting weights. Even performing household chores or climbing stairs is a decent way of staying active.