Aging affects men and women differently. While men are more likely to have heart attacks, women are more likely to contract osteoporosis. This is why it’s important for senior women to make lifestyle choices that combat the conditions associated with female aging. Here are 8 ways for senior women to stay healthy as they age.
1. Consume More Calcium and Vitamin D
Due to hormonal changes caused by menopause, women’s bodies stop absorbing an adequate amount of vitamin D and calcium. These are both essential nutrients for strong, healthy bones. To ward off osteoporosis and prevent brittle bones, senior women should eat a diet rich in these two nutrients. Yogurt and low-fat milk are excellent ways to get calcium, and vitamin D can be found in fish.
Seniors can face a variety of challenges as they age, many of which can be mitigated with the help of professional in-home caregivers who provide high-quality home care. Douglas County families trust in Home Care Assistance to help their elderly loved ones age in place safely and comfortably.
2. Lower Iron Intake
To make up for nutritional deficiencies, senior women should consider taking multivitamins. However, after menopause, women should stop taking multivitamins that contain iron. This is because the postmenopausal body needs a very small amount of iron, and ingesting too much can be toxic.
3. Get Screened for Health Conditions
Senior women should get screened for health conditions on a regular basis, even if they feel perfectly healthy. Mammograms are especially important for senior women.
4. Use Sunscreen
Sunscreen should be the most important component of a senior women’s skincare regimen. Products with SPF serve multiple purposes. They can protect against premature aging, as harsh UV rays cause wrinkles and age spots. They can also protect the skin from cancer.
5. Engage in Exercise
Senior women are at risk of osteoporosis, and adding calcium to their diets may not be enough. To maintain bone health, it’s also important to exercise. Weight-bearing exercises like aerobics and jogging can preserve bone health. Women who prefer low-impact exercises should consider strength training, Pilates, and yoga.
6. Get Vaccinated
Senior women should never skip their annual flu shot. It’s important to stay up to date on vaccines, which include pneumonia vaccinations, the tetanus shot, and the shingles vaccine.
7. Reduce Sodium Intake
To maintain a healthy heart, senior women should cut down on their salt intake. As women age, their blood vessels become less elastic and more susceptible to hypertension. To prevent heart conditions, senior women should stop eating processed foods, which are almost always high in sodium. They should replace their canned soups and bags of chips with leafy vegetables and fiber-filled fruits.
Seniors who need assistance with healthy meal preparation and other daily tasks can benefit from professional in-home care. If your senior loved one needs hourly or live-in care, Douglas County Home Care Assistance can help. Our caregivers can assist with exercise and mobility, prepare nutritious meals, provide timely medication reminders, and help with a wide array of other important daily tasks.
8. Exercise the Mind
Women are more likely to get Alzheimer’s disease than men. This statistic is somewhat misleading because women also live longer than men, and the leading risk factor for Alzheimer’s is age. To reduce the risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s, senior women should work hard to exercise their brains. Mental exercise can take a variety of forms. Crossword puzzles are a great method of mental stimulation, as is reading an interesting nonfiction book.
Regular socialization can also help seniors delay the onset of cognitive decline. For families living in Douglas County, CO, respite care can be a wonderful solution when their aging loved ones need companionship and socialization a few hours a week or just need minor assistance with daily household tasks. At Home Care Assistance, we thrive on helping seniors maintain their independence while living in the comfort of home. To tailor a care plan for your elderly loved one, call one of our friendly Care Managers at 720-287-1685 today.