Gary's Guidance: Some Helpful Tips for Senior Wellness

March 2014

One of the many upsides to aging is that through time we gain much experience which can translate to having wisdom and insight into the many different conditions in life that we may encounter.  This can be quite helpful to others, especially to children and grandchildren as we shepherd them through problems or challenging situations.

Growing older and staying healthy, both physically and emotionally, do not necessarily occur by chance or luck.  Here are a few tips for ensuring that as we age we will impart some of our wisdom to others:

  • Consistently get enough sleep; according to The National Institutes of Health a good night’s sleep will occur between 7.5 to 9 hours.  Deep sleep, REM (rapid eye movement), and light sleep are all important in playing a vital role to our health.  For instance, deep sleep (20% of sleep cycle) helps maintains your health, stimulates growth and development, repairs muscles and tissues, and boosts your immune system.
  • Exercise for 30 minutes per day five days per week.  Just walking at 3 miles/hour (20 minute mile pace) a person weighing 200 pounds can burn 201 calories. (Obesity Management, April 2007)
  • Eat healthy – did you know that white rice once digested converts to sugar and can raise blood glucose levels.  In general, stay away from white foods such as white bread, dinner rolls, potatoes, and also eliminate drinking beverages with sugar.
  • Engage in mindfulness meditation to reduce stress – simply focus on the sound and image of a waterfall for 10 minutes with your eyes closed.  Experience how it works.

Gary Kozick, LCSW