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13 Tips to Stay Healthy and Happy July 9, 2010

Posted by nrhatch in Books & Movies, Happiness, Health & Wellness, Humor.
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Robert Butler, M.D., one of the country’s foremost experts on aging, recently passed away at the age of 83 from leukemia.

In his last book, The Longevity Prescription: The 8 Proven Keys to a Long, Healthy Life, he offered advice and tips to help readers live a longer and happier life.

Among them:

1.  Stay active ~ remaining active protects your mind and body, and promotes your sense of well-being.   Spend time doing things you love.  Pursue a passion.   Develop a Hobby.  Go for a nature walk.

2.  Maintain a healthy weight.  It’s better for your joints, your heart, and your lungs.

3.  Exercise regularly, especially walking ~ there is no better exercise as you age.  Form a walking group and get outside.  Or keep a treadmill inside to use during inclement weather.  Exercise is great for your lungs, your heart, your muscles, your sense of balance, your emotional well-being, and your eyes (more on this below).

4.   Spend time with other people ~ volunteering, working,  entertaining, exercising, and even playing games will keep your mind active and alert.   People with cognitive issues can regain up to 2 decades of mental acuity with brain training and increased human interaction.

5.  Create varied social connections, friendships, and other supportive relationships.  Reach out and touch someone ~ holding hands and hugging reduces blood pressure.  If you live alone, consider getting a pet for daily  companionship or find a pen pal.

6.  Manage the stress in your life with meditationmusic, laughter, exercise, gratitude, sleep, mindfulness,  nature walks, and other spiritual practices.  Bring the outside in ~ fresh flowers reduce stress.

7.  Get enough sleep.  A 30-minute nap a day has health benefits, and may reduce the risk of heart disease by as much as 30 percent.  Longer naps, though, can interfere with good sleep.

8.  Eat a healthy diet ~ include bright colored fruits and veggies overflowing with vitamins, minerals, and anti-oxidants (e.g., blueberries, grapes, red wine).

9.  Use weight and resistance training, including walking, to stay strong and maintain your vitality and independence.  Falls are the 12th leading cause of death in people age 65 and older.  With strong thigh muscles, you’ll be able to get up from chairs and out of bed on your own without falling.

10. Promote brain health by trying and learning new things. Try new recipes.  Do crossword puzzles.  Try Sudoku or brain teasers.  Learn new words . . . or a new language.

11.  If you lose a spouse or loved one, don’t lose yourself in  grief.  Make an effort to go out and stay connected.  Have dinner with friends, travel, spend time with family.

12.  Laughter is good for what ails you.  It protects the heart and elevates your mood.  Find reasons to laugh,  smile, and play every day.  We do not laugh because we are happy ~ we are happy because we laugh.

13.  Get regular checkups, and eye exams.  On the subject of eye health, go for a walk!  Aerobic exercise  can reduce eye pressure, a risk factor for glaucoma.

So, that’s it in a nutshell ~ 13 Tips to Stay Healthy and Happy.

For more, see the AARP article:  How To Live A Longer, Happier Life

Quote: Beautiful young people are accidents of nature, beautiful old people are works of art. ~ Eleanor Roosevelt

Related posts:  Walk Off Some Weight * Get Out!!! * The Zen of Cooking * The ABC’s of Happiness * Meditation 101 * Creative Visualization

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Comments»

1. Loreen Lee - July 9, 2010

Excellent tips. Thanks.

nrhatch - July 9, 2010

Nothing earth-shattering, but his advice is a good reminder for all of us . . . use it or lose it. (:3=

2. tsuchigari - July 9, 2010

Just today I started learning about preparing freezer meals – healthier meals for my family, more time for me, and something new to learn. I hadn’t heard about eye health and walking, makes sense.

nrhatch - July 9, 2010

Freezer meals are wonderful ~ make a huge pot of soup, or chili, or a whole tray of lasagne. Eat half and freeze half for another meal. Just heat and serve with fresh bread and salad.

The more I read about walking and its benefits . . . the more convinced I’ve become that it’s the “miracle drug” we all need to take everyday.

3. cindy - July 10, 2010

OK, several of those points make blogging a very good passtime :) And I am going to start walking … on Monday.

nrhatch - July 10, 2010

I agree!

Blogging/Writing is a wonderful hobby to keep the mind sharp, and the intellect curious. Probably good for emotional well-being as well.

But . . . it could lead to lazy butt syndrome because it’s so addictive. Your plan to break away and walk is a perfect partnership with a life of writing.

On days I don’t want to go for a walk, I promise myself I can stop after 5 minutes if I’m not enjoying it. Once you get started, 5 minutes is never enough. : )

When I walk by myself, I aim for 45-60 minutes of brisk walking. When I walk with Bill, we stroll for 20-30 minutes. Either way, I feel better about the world and my place in it when I’m finished.

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