Today, all you may want is a cup of coffee while you read the paper. But caffeine and reading material aren’t all you need when you’re approaching 65. You also have to worry about exercise and eating healthily. Your lifestyle depends on you learning about yourself. Here are six health and lifestyle planning tips you need when you’re approaching 65.
1. Get Plenty of Physical Activity
You should do plenty of walking as you age. Bicycling, swimming, and playing sports like basketball and golf can also be healthy for your bones and muscles. As you get older and your joints stiffen, you’ll want to prioritize exercising every day, even if only for a few minutes. Better to reduce your chances of injury by staying limber while you still have the time.
2. Stop Smoking if You Haven’t Already
Give up smoking before your lungs pay a heavier price. Research shows it’s never too late to quit, and the benefits of doing so are greater the earlier you do. If you’re still lighting up, explore smoking cessation programs and quit options like patches or nicotine gum. Get it into your head now that your grandkids won’t look forward to seeing you destroy your body as you get older. Now’s the time to quit.
3. Monitor Your Mental Health
Every day, another 10,000 people turn 65, making them eligible for a government-provided health insurance program. That means older adults may qualify for Medicare and will be able to use that insurance program to pay for mental health treatment as needed. While you should get regular screenings to stay on top of your physical health, it’s a good idea to look for changes in your mental health and mood. If you or a loved one notices periods of sadness, crying spells, paranoia, anxiety, or symptoms of psychosis, you should visit an outpatient mental health treatment facility for an evaluation of your mental health. You may find that you have a mental health diagnosis that requires ongoing medication and counseling.
4. Socialize with Your Peers
The older you get, the harder it may be to maintain friendships. Worse, finding new friends can be difficult, even with the rise of social media sites supporting friendship. But it’s worth making the effort. Not socializing can lead to loneliness and social isolation, both of which happen to cause emotional distress. Ask yourself if a conversation is such a bad idea. If not, see if you can socialize more often.
5. Write Your Will
Only 18% of Americans over 55 have a will, an advance health care directive, or a durable power of attorney. That means that if you don’t want to be part of that low number, you should have your will written before you turn 55. The point of writing a will is to assign ownership of your estate and property to a specific person. If you want some money to go to a specific family member, having a will keeps your money in the hands of the person you want to have it. Without a will, you run the risk of losing the ability to make decisions regarding your estate and affairs. An estate qualifies as an estate when the defendant has less than $100,000 in assets. An inconvenience at worst, and a major life crisis at worst.
6. Eat the Right Foods
It’s imperative you eat plenty of fruits and vegetables when you approach 65. Your diet should consist of nutrients containing vitamins A, K, E, C, and D. The more vitamins you have in your body, the more efficient your organs can carry out their intended functions, which ultimately makes your body run more efficiently as well. As long as you can resist the urge to eat unhealthily, you can enjoy a healthier lifestyle as you age beyond 65. And you can even drink plenty of coffee while you’re at it.
They say a good cup of coffee can help you live longer. If that’s so, then take a casual morning to come up with a plan for living life beyond 65. Today, you might feel more in control if you wrote your will or ate better. No matter what, all you have to do is make sure you take care of your body and health. From there, you’ll be able to age gracefully.