As you age, you can expect your body to witness gradual changes. The secret to staying youthful as you grow older is to see aging as a new stage of opportunity and strength. Many health problems can creep is as you age, but the good news is that they are preventable. In fact, the goal of International Men’s Health Week held from June 12 through June 18 was to spread awareness among men about preventable health problems and the importance of early detection and treatment of disease. Older men should stay physically and socially active. Those who develop healthy habits can expect to minimize the risks of chronic diseases like heart disease, type 2 diabetes, stroke and cancer.
According to Healthinaing.org, though Americans are living longer than before, they are not living as long as American women. The average life expectancy for men in the US is now roughly 75 years. For women, it is more than 80. This could be because risky behaviours like smoking and drinking are more common in men. With the right lifestyle choices and healthy habits such as maintaining a healthy weight, exercising regularly, following a healthy diet, and not smoking, men can boost their chances of living a healthier and longer life. Adopting the following strategies can boost male health in later life:
- Lower the risk of Prostate Cancer: Eating a diet high in vegetables and low in fat, red meat, burnt meats and processed meats can reduce prostate cancer risk. Screening or checking, for early signs of certain health problems can help in diagnosing it early. Early diagnosis and treatment of prostate cancer improves the chances of successful treatment.
- Lower the Risk of Falls and Fractures: Falls and fractures are a common problem among older adults, and difficult to treat as calcium and vitamin D levels get depleted as you age. Ask your doctor’s advice on taking bone-healthy calcium and vitamin D supplements to lower the risk of falls and fractures. These vitamins and nutrients play a key role in keeping you healthy. You can also ask your doctor to recommend suitable exercise programs to improve your strength, balance, and flexibility. If you are medically fit, you can do weight-bearing, bone-building exercises such as walking and jogging.
- Maintain a Balanced Diet: Include more fresh vegetables and fruits in your diet. Limit the intake of fatty foods and maintain a balance between good and bad fats. Avoid foods such as sausages, sausages, canned meat, pastry cream, sundaes, black tea and coffee. If you need to have meat or poultry, then you need to boil, cool the broth and remove fat from the surface. Cooked meat can be baked or stewed. Instead of black tea and coffee, switch to green tea, cocoa, fruit and vegetable juices. And limit intake of salt and sugar.
- Do Brain Exercises: Exercise your brain and keep your memory sharp by doing crosswords, word puzzles or jigsaw puzzles. You can also try to learn new languages, read books, or engage in a new hobby. Such brain exercises can lower the risk of dementia.
- Quit Smoking and Drinking: Quit smoking to avoid blood pressure and heart disease. Avoiding these risky habits can greatly improve health.
- Meet your Healthcare Provider Regularly: Even if you are in perfect health, you should see your provider at least once a year for a check-up. If your provider has prescribed vitamins or any other supplement, take them as directed.
Spending time and doing things with other people, of all ages, can help keep you mentally, physically and emotionally fit.