We’ve heard it many times – that a good diet, exercise, and plenty of sleep are all important for good health. And as we enter the holiday season, it’s important to keep up all those healthy habits. But what is the real importance of exercise for seniors? We’ve put together some of the most important benefits of exercise for people over age 65.
Lowered disease risk. As we age, the risk of acquiring medical conditions like heart disease, cancer, and type 2 diabetes increase. In conjunction with a healthy diet, exercise helps stabilize blood sugar, lower cholesterol, and lower blood pressure, all aspects that can affect your risk of developing disease. And for cancer, some studies have shown that regular exercise reduces the risk of this disease. As your risk increases with age, exercise can be the key to leveling off that risk.
Elevated mood. Regular exercise contributes to a better mood because it helps you gain a more positive attitude. Studies show that seniors can decrease their risk of depression by as much as 30% just by exercising regularly.
Better sleep. Sleep is an important factor for overall health, and exercising helps you use up your daily energy so that you are more tired at night, for a restful night’s sleep. Some medications can also cause insomnia, so for seniors, it’s important to stay as healthy as possible to try to avoid some of those side effects. And even if the medication does affect your sleep, regular exercise may help to counteract some of those effects. Be sure that you allow at least 2 hours between your exercise routine and your bedtime for optimal sleep.
Better quality of life. Seniors who stay active can improve their overall quality of life. Exercise helps build strength and improve balance, so you can do more of the activities that you enjoy without straining or risking a fall.
Always ask your doctor before you start any exercise program. Most seniors should exercise for about 30 minutes each day and, if possible, should add strength training twice a week.
Staying healthy is important for seniors, and exercise plays an important role. At Ashbridge Manor Senior Living, we wish everyone a safe and happy holiday season! When it’s time to transition to a senior living facility, give us a call and our professional staff members will make the transition easy. Our facilities and programs are designed to provide an active lifestyle for seniors. You can find us at 971 E. Lancaster Avenue in Downingtown, PA, call 610.269.8800, or contact us online for more information. Ask us about our move-in special! Ashbridge Manor is a safe, COVID-free senior living community.