5 Reasons Why Seniors Need a Daily Exercise Routine
Everyone should have some type of daily exercise routine. It doesn’t need to be very involved, just a 10-20 min session of strenuous activity. For seniors, this dose of daily exercise becomes especially important.
As we get older, muscles start to shrink and bone density decreases. These changes can decrease mobility and increase the risk of injury. Benefits of exercise for seniors extend beyond physical gains, too. Exercise improves mood and mental health.
For more info on major changes to seniors’ lives, here are five big reasons to exercise daily.
1. Immune Defense
Seniors are more susceptible to viruses and infections as they age. The immune system can be strengthened through exercise and diet. A daily exercise routine will boost the quality of blood flow and increase blood cell counts. White blood cells, in particular, can be increased as stress hormones are reduced.
Healthy food services can help increase antibodies and antioxidants to further strengthen immune defense.
2. Respiratory and Cardiovascular Health
Engaging in daily physical activity keeps the blood pumping and air flowing. These two major foundations of the body need to be constantly pushed. If there are any drop-offs in conditioning, it can open the door for diseases.
Even if you already have high blood pressure, diabetes, or cardiovascular disease, exercise can improve your quality of life. You can live longer than those with the same disease who don’t stay active.
This can be a silent killer among seniors. Low bone density can lead to fatal breaks. The hip bone is one of the most vulnerable places for breaks and is hard to recover from once broken. Exercise, namely strength training, helps increase bone density and muscle mass to protect bones.
Having a stronger footing will also prevent loss of balance from doing day-to-day activities.
Suffering from arthritis can be painful and tough to combat. Arthritis can also make exercise for the elderly more difficult. The key is to form a routine that keeps those joints lubricated and overall weight lower. Reducing unnecessary pressure on the joints is the best means for prevention.
5. Heart Disease
The number one cause of death in America, heart disease can and should be prevented with regular exercise. Seniors stand to benefit from lowering all the factors that contribute to heart disease through exercise.
Staying active lowers blood pressure, cholesterol, and symptoms/risk for diabetes.
Maintaining a Daily Exercise Routine
Now that you know what is at stake for seniors who don’t exercise regularly, it’s time to take action. The hardest part is taking that first step and sticking to it. We know how hard it is to stay dedicated to an daily exercise routine, just look at all the New Year’s Resolutions that fail.
The best advice is to plan your exercise with a friend or family member. They can help keep you motivated and honest. Making major life changes isn’t easy and shouldn’t be done alone. Not everyone is self-motivated, and that’s okay.
If you need more help and advice on healthy living as a senior, stay tuned into our blog.