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Improve Overall Well-Being Through Exercise

Health Benefits Of Senior Living

Staying active is important for everyone’s whole body well-being, no matter their age. Seniors in particular can realize many health benefits – and it’s never too late to start.

As humans age, we often lose some of the stamina and agility we had in our younger years. However, by regularly taking part in some form of exercise, it’s possible for older adults to increase flexibility, reduce pain and joint stiffness, improve balance and mobility, and even boost their spirits.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has determined that all older adults can benefit from regular, moderate physical activity – even people with medical conditions including arthritis, heart disease, obesity and high blood pressure. It’s also been shown that getting active in our older years not only positively impacts physical health but also mental and emotional wellbeing.

Healthy In Mind, Body & Soul

Here are a few of the ways exercise can benefit the overall health of older adults:

Prevents Bone Loss: While post-menopausal women lose up to 2% of their bone density each year, both men and women lose bone density as they age, which can cause a greater risk for bone fractures. Strength training has been shown to not only counteract this loss and but also restore bone density, leading to fewer fractures and aiding in balance.

Improves Function: Mobility and other types of functional movement can decrease due to lack of muscle strength – impacting tasks like getting up and down from a chair or opening a jar. The National Institute on Aging has found that even very small changes in muscle strength can make a real difference in function, particularly lower-body strength exercises which can improve balance and prevent falling and its serious consequences.

Protects Against Chronic Disease: Chronic illnesses including cardiovascular disease, colon cancer, diabetes, obesity and hypertension can be prevented by exercise. Even individuals who already have a chronic condition can help minimize their symptoms through physical activity.

Reduces Cognitive Decline: Different forms of physical activity have been shown to improve cognitive function, which could help those with early signs of Alzheimer’s or other forms of dementia. One study found that participants over the age of 60 showed fewer Alzheimer’s disease biomarkers when they performed 30 minutes of exercise every day.

Boosts Immunity: Moderate exercise has been linked to a lower incidence of acute respiratory illness and fewer sick days off of work. The anti-inflammatory effects of physical activity also may enable better immune function.

Improves Mood: When we exercise, we produce endorphins which simply make us feel good. Physical activity has been shown to not only promote a sense of wellbeing, but also help with symptoms of anxiety and depression. Older adults can realize the mood-boosting benefits of exercise well into old age.

A community like Longleaf provides convenient opportunities to stay active in mind, body and soul. The wide variety of classes and activities at our community give residents a chance to have fun, be social and stay fit – all of which promote whole-body wellbeing. Contact us to learn more.