Stay going strong! Seniors immune systems are highly susceptible to flu, cold and other common illnesses. It is important, at any age, to have an immune system that can stand up to the harmful surroundings of everyday life. Seniors are at continuous high risk for contracting illnesses, making it critical to have a healthy immune system. Seniors with a higher immune system are able to recover faster even when an illness is caught.
Here are some simple, but pertinent, rules to follow to maintain a strong immune system:
1. Stay current on your vaccinations. Seniors that receive the flu vaccination have a lower risk of sickness and death than those that do not receive the vaccination.
2. Eat a healthy, nutrient-rich diet. As we get older our diets begin to have less variety and lack the nutrition we needs. A low-sugar, low-fat diets with lean proteins and whole grains helps the body reboot its health. Make sure you have a colorful varieties of fruits and vegetables for the extra immune boost.
3. Exercise Regularly. Any and all physical exercise (raising your heart rate) helps circulation and releases endorphins essential to living a long and happy life. Take a walk around the block, take a seniors fitness class or take a brisk bike ride and you’ll be well on your way to fight off infections with a strong immune system.
4. Reduce stress and Stay Positive. Maintain a socially active lifestyle reduces the risk of stress due to isolation which decreases stomach irritation and heart problems. Participate in activities and hobbies that make you happy… maybe pick back up one of the hobbies you loved when you were younger.
5. Sleep. A natural immune system booster, sleep helps us respond better to stress and inflammation. It’s also shown to improve our response to the flu vaccine.
6. Practice good hygiene. Wash your hands regularly with warm water and soap. When coughing use your arm to cover your mouth preventing the germs from getting away from you, preventing disease from spreading.
7. Consider multivitamin or herbal supplements. An option for increasing nutrients and fighting infections, seniors should talk to their doctors first before adding multivitamins or herbs to their regimen.
8. Stay hydrated. You’ve heard this throughout your life but it is now more important than ever! You need at LEAST 8 glasses of fluid every day. Water, coffee, tea and soup all count.
Illness isn’t inevitable for the elderly. Good health habits lend to keeping seniors happy and active so they can enjoy the most out of life.
The first step in our process to a happier and healthier life includes a free personal consultation with Inga, YOUR Always Best Care of Boulder County coordinator at (720)494-8407. She will be happy to meet with you, discuss your needs, and assist with a personalized Care Plan specific to the level of care needed.
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