Get Your Plate in Shape.
Before you eat, think about what goes on your plate or in your bowl. Foods like vegetables, fruits, whole grains, low-fat dairy products and lean protein foods contain the nutrients you need without too many calories. Over the day, include foods from all the food groups. Try the following tips to “Get Your Plate in Shape.”
Make half your plate fruits and vegetables.
Eat a variety of vegetables, especially dark-green, red and orange vegetables plus beans and peas. Fresh, frozen and canned vegetables all count. Choose “reduced sodium” or “no-salt-added” canned vegetables.
Add fruit to meals and snacks. Buy fruits that are dried, frozen or canned in water or 100% juice, as well as fresh fruits.
Make at least half your grains whole.
Choose 100% whole-grain breads, cereals, crackers, pasta and brown rice.
Check the ingredients list on food packages to find whole-grain foods.
Switch to fat-free or low-fat milk.
Fat-free and low-fat milk have the same amount of calcium and other essential nutrients as whole milk, but less fat and calories.
If you are lactose intolerant, try lactose-free milk or a calcium-fortified soy beverage.
Vary your protein choices.
Eat a variety of foods from the protein food group each week, such as seafood, nuts and beans, as well as lean meat, poultry and eggs.
Twice a week, make seafood the protein on your plate.
Keep meat and poultry portions small and lean.
Cut back on sodium and empty calories from solid fats and added sugars.
Drink water instead of sugary drinks. Select fruit for dessert. Eat sugary desserts less often. Choose 100% fruit juice instead of fruit-flavored drinks.
Look out for salt (sodium) in foods you buy. Compare sodium in foods and choose those with lower numbers. Add spices or herbs to season food without adding salt.
Make major sources of saturated fats such as desserts, pizza, cheese, sausages and hot dogs occasional choices, not every day foods.
Select lean cuts of meat or poultry and fat-free or low-fat milk, yogurt and cheese.
Switch from solid fats to oils when preparing food.
Be physically active your way.
Pick activities that you like and start by doing what you can, at least 10 minutes at a time. Every bit adds up and health benefits increase as you spend more time being active.
The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics is the world’s largest organization of food and nutrition professionals.
Summer is upon us with a “heated vengeance”! However, regardless of the time of year, appropriate hydration is important. The following will give some tips on proper hydration, signs of dehydration, and hydration in the children, athletes, and the elderly.
Water is the largest component of the human body, accounting for nearly 60% of total body mass. It is important for digestion, joint function, healthy skin, and removal of waste products. Water is lost from the body via a number of different routes including loss from urine, loss from humidity, and perspiration. The total daily water loss is approximately 2500ml per day. It is recommended that adults drink eight 8-ounce glasses of water each day, but this recommendation depends on age and type of activity. Adults need about 20 oz. of fluid before beginning activity, as well as an additional 10 oz every 15 minutes during activity. Children need about 8 oz. of fluid before outdoor activity, as well as an additional 10 oz. every 20 minutes during activity. Everyone needs to replenish fluid after an activity to prevent symptoms of dehydration.
Dehydration occurs when more fluid is lost from the body than is taken in. This causes an imbalance of minerals, sodium, and potassium, which are all needed for muscle and nerve function. There are many things that cause dehydration including: malnutrition, vomiting, diarrhea, blood loss, and failure to replenish liquids by not drinking enough water. Dehydration can be mild, moderate, or severe and each category has its own symptoms.
Symptoms of mild dehydration include dry mouth, fatigue, chills, head rush, dry skin, dark colored urine, and thirst. Moderate dehydration will have similar symptoms along with increased heart rate, respiration, and body temperature. One will also sweat less and complain of tingling in the limbs, headaches, nausea, muscle cramps, and extreme fatigue. If the body continues on its current path, individuals can reach 10% fluid loss and they need to be helped immediately. Individuals experiencing a racing pulse, difficulty breathing, muscle spasms, dim vision, confusion, and unconsciousness should be sent to the emergency room immediately.
Other factors that may affect fluid loss in individuals is high temperature, high altitudes, people who sweat excessively, increased exercise duration, and increased exercise intensity.
Water hydrates better than any other liquid and is inexpensive, but people find the taste not appealing after a while and stop drinking it. Sports drinks don’t necessarily hydrate better than water, but people will drink it in larger volumes because they prefer the taste. You have to drink more, but you also get the additional electrolytes lost during exercise. Caffeinated soft drinks may give you a quick energy boost, but are not good for the body as a whole and do not rehydrate the body. Finally, drinks such as coffee, tea, and alcohol cause dehydration and act as a diuretic by pulling water out of your body.
Populations at higher risk of dehydration include the very young and the elderly. There has been evidence that dehydration has a significant negative effect on brain function in the elderly and may impair cognitive states leading to confusion and agitation. Dehydration cannot only lead to detrimental physical and cardiovascular effects, but also detrimental cognitive effects.
Telephone scammers will implement various techniques to get you to answer their call. The elderly can be particularly susceptible to their creative tactics, so it is crucial that caregivers and family members stay up to date on the latest schemes and warn their loved ones.
One technique that has been on the rise is to make it appear that you are receiving a telephone call from your own telephone number. But how is this possible?
The scammers are using a technique called caller ID “spoofing.” Spoofing is the practice of forcing the telephone network to display false information on the receiving caller’s caller ID. The scammers do not need any complicated tools to do this. They merely need to visit a spoofing website to use the service. A simple Google search for “caller ID spoofing” will reveal a half a dozen or more websites offering such services. While manipulating caller ID is illegal for malicious purposes, it is legal for permissible purposes.
Scammers will use this technique to force your caller ID display to show a number from your local area code. They know that most people will only answer telephone calls that originate from local area codes. Remember, scammers are very good at what they do. Caller ID spoofing has been used by con artists pretending to be from your mortgage company, your bank, or your credit card company. The possibilities are endless, and it is important to be aware of these deceptive tactics.
One telephone scam that has been on the rise is the IRS imposter scam. In this ploy, the caller ID may say IRS or display a Washington D.C. area code. When you answer the call, the scammer pretends to be from the IRS stating that there is a problem with your tax return or that you owe money. The call then quickly escalates to the scammer demanding payment or you will be arrested. Their ultimate goal is to get you to send money, provide your credit card information or provide your bank account information. If you get this call, hang up. The IRS will not contact you by telephone. If there is a problem with your tax return, or if you owe them money, they will contact you by mail.
Another spoofing telephone scam is the Microsoft call. In this instance, the caller ID may say “Microsoft” and the scammer claims to be a representative of the tech company. The scammer says they have detected a problem with your computer and then asks permission to remotely check your device. He will then graciously provide you with instructions on how to grant him permission to access your computer. Once they have accomplished this, the scammer can access everything on your computer, including your sensitive information, which could easily be downloaded. The scammer could install additional malware, software with malicious intent, for nefarious purposes. If you get this call, hang up. Most people store sensitive information and engage in online banking and shopping on their computers. Opening your device up to a stranger can be extremely risky. Microsoft will never call you. Furthermore, they do not proactively monitor computers using Microsoft.
So the next time your telephone rings and the caller ID displays your own telephone number, another suspicious number, or a number you simply do not recognize, hopefully you will remember this article. It behooves people of all ages to remain skeptical when accepting calls these days. When it comes to caller ID, perception is not always reality.
This information was taken from the website “AgingCare.com”.
“You must learn to let go. Release the stress. You were never in control anyway.”
Ironically, retirement is supposed to be the time when you relax and play golf, a time when you are older and wiser and now have the answers to many of life’s questions. However, with aging comes new concerns, such as managing your health, how to fund retirement, and a general sense of “loss.”
These new challenges can be worrisome and keep you up at night. To help seniors release stress and take pleasure living in the moment, these six (6) ways to de-stress will do some good.
Number 1: Jot-It-Down—Find a Short-Term Solution to Your Worries
While distractions may help in the moment, they don’t help to address the root cause of your stress; it still lurks near the forefront of your mind. Identify what it is, write it down and find a tentative solution. It may be helpful to talk about it with a friend, confidante or trained counselor to get a speedy resolution.
Number 2: Read Words of Inspiration or Just Read…
Find a story that inspires you! Read a biography that shares the story of a hero, find a poem that quiets your soul, or enjoy a piece of classic literature. Stories from the Bible are filled with acts of courage, trials that were overcome, and proverbial words of wisdom. Make reading a regular habit and allow yourself to simply read because it gives you pleasure and enjoyment.
Number 3: Meditate and Be Thankful
Meditation is easier than you think. Start with choosing a comfortable area and try practicing some deep breathing. Eliminate distractions around you and take several deep breaths until you find yourself becoming calm; it’s easier to do when you think about things in your life you are most thankful for. Allow yourself to relax and find a quiet inner place of peace, where you can feel content and at rest.
Number 4: Play with a Pet!
Play with a pet! Take a walk with your dog, cuddle your cat. Pets offer soothing comfort to their owners; they are fun, loving, companions known for their ability to improve mental well-being. If you’ve never owned a pet, consider getting one. Seniors in assisted living and senior care communities have the opportunity to cuddle and stroke “visiting pets,” often part of a community’s pet therapy program.
Number 5: Change the Pace – Go Mall Browsing!
An indoor or outdoor shopping mall is a perfect place to do something different with your day. Shopping or browsing is a popular pastime for seniors, and it’s easy to see why. Mall browsing always offers something new or different: you can simply enjoy the ambiance, the comfortable temperature and the interesting people who walk by. Browse through books or magazines at the bookstore; try some local cuisine at a new restaurant, indulge in a latte at the coffee shop; buy a gift for someone special or meet up with friends. Take advantage of a nice day and shop outside, or avoid the elements and stay inside. Either way, an ordinary shopping mall can be filled with possibilities!
Number 6: Take Care of Yourself- Exercise, Explore the Outdoors and Don’t Forget to Laugh
Be intentional about taking care of yourself. Develop healthy eating habits and don’t neglect your rest. A good night’s sleep can revive your body, mind, and spirit. Daily exercise can give you a sense of accomplishment and help to refresh your mood.. Whenever you feel like you are starting to fall into the rut of stressful habits, try spending some time outdoors. Take an exploratory walk and invite some friends along to socialize. Find a new trail, visit a garden, or sit out on the front porch. If you feel trapped inside all day, even a few moments to step outside and enjoy the sun can make a difference. Finally, take some time to laugh and enjoy a funny movie, a witty remark, or a comic strip, as we all know the value of a good sense of humor!
Every season of life brings changes and adjustments to your body. Understanding what is happening will help you take control of your nutrition requirements.
Physical changes that affect your diet
• Metabolism. Every year over the age of forty, our metabolism slows. This means that even if you continue to eat the same amount as when you were younger, you're likely to gain weight because you're burning fewer calories. In addition, you may be less physically active. Consult your doctor to decide if you should cut back on calories.
• Weakened senses. Your taste and smell senses diminish with age. Older adults tend to lose sensitivity to salty and bitter tastes first, so you may be inclined to salt your food more heavily than before—even though older adults need less salt than younger people. Use herbs, spices, and healthy oils—like olive oil—to season food instead of salt. Similarly, older adults tend to retain the ability to distinguish sweet tastes the longest, leading some to overindulge in sugary foods and snacks. Instead of adding sugar, try increasing sweetness to meals by using naturally sweet food such as fruit, peppers, or yams.
• Medications and illness. Some prescription medications and health problems can often negatively influence appetite and may also affect taste, again leading older adults to add too much salt or sugar to their food. Ask your doctor about overcoming side effects of medications or specific physical conditions.
• Digestion. Due to a slowing digestive system, you generate less saliva and stomach acid as you get older, making it more difficult for your body to process certain vitamins and minerals, such as B12, B6 and folic acid, which are necessary to maintain mental alertness, a keen memory and good circulation. Up your fiber intake and talk to your doctor about possible supplements.
Lifestyle changes that affect your diet
• Loneliness and depression. Loneliness and depression affect your diet. For some, feeling down leads to not eating and in others it may trigger overeating. Be aware if emotional problems are affecting your diet, and take action by consulting your doctor or therapist. Sharing meals with others can also be an effective antidote to loneliness. Reach out to friends or neighbors—everyone loves a home-cooked meal and most people who live alone are in the same boat as you. They probably feel just as awkward about reaching out as you do. Be the one to take the initiative. You may even be able to share cooking responsibilities—one prepares the entrée, the other dessert, for example. Cooking with others can be a fun way to try out new recipes and deepen relationships.
• Death or divorce. If you’re newly single, you may not be used to cooking or have little enthusiasm for preparing meals for just yourself. However, cooking your own meals can help you take charge of your health. No matter your age, living situation, or culinary skills, you can learn to prepare easy meals for one that not only taste great but can boost your energy and mood. The key to cooking for one is to master a few basic skills and get creative in making meals that work specifically for you. After all, that’s the great thing about cooking for one: you don’t have to please anyone but yourself.
• Living on a limited budget. You may think that it’s impossible to afford a balanced, healthy diet on a limited income. But with the right tips and a little planning, it is possible to enjoy healthy food on the cheap. Often, by simply cutting out junk and processed foods and avoiding conventional grocery stores, you can free up enough in your budget to enjoy healthier, better quality food.
Taken from www.helpguide.org
Which types of exercise are best for seniors?
A comprehensive exercise program should include the following:
What precautions should seniors take when exercising?
It's never too late to go healthy. Anybody, young or old, can successfully redesign the way they live to be healthier. While we don't have a say in our own genetic makeup, greater than 50 percent of our mental and physical health status is related to lifestyle. You can even start small: ride public transportation, reconnect with a long-lost friend, join a ballroom dance class, or follow guidelines on how to safely move around the community. The point is, try something new and be willing to learn.
Take control of your health. Appreciate the relationship between what you do, how you feel, and their impact on your well-being. Our research suggests that social and productive activities are as important as physical ones for staying healthy. As we age, even deceptively simple or downright mundane pursuits like reading the newspaper, cooking a potluck dish, walking the dog, or going to church have a powerful influence on our physical and mental health.
Know thyself. The guiding principle of Socrates rings just as true today as it did in ancient Athens. Lifestyle changes are most sustainable when they fit into the fabric of your everyday life -- your interests, schedule, and self-concept. Identify supports on your journey that are strong enough to counterbalance the obstacles you face. Set goals that are challenging but still realistic enough to be achieved.
Anticipate how chronic conditions may affect your plan. Over 70 percent of seniors age 65 and older have a chronic condition, such as hypertension, heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, COPD, or cataracts. Don't let these impede your progress. Before a big game, elite athletes visualize their performance in their minds' eye. So too should you be prepared for the potential ways you might have to adapt or improvise. And, of course, consult your physician in advance about any new activities.
Living longer can also mean living better. Our research demonstrates that maintaining a mix of productive, social, physical, and spiritual activities as you age can lead to increased vitality, social function, mental health, and life satisfaction, along with decreased symptoms of depression and self-reported bodily pain. Even better, activity-centric lifestyle interventions to ward off illness and disability may also be more cost-effective and have fewer negative side effects than prescription drugs.
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