What exactly is healthy aging? According to the Centers on Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) “Healthy aging means living a long, productive, meaningful life and enjoying a high quality of life.” In the State of Aging and Health in America 2013 report, the authors describe how chronic disease management accounts for a majority of healthcare costs. A few key strategies and services are listed below which may help you manage and/or prevent chronic diseases and promote healthy aging.
- Education and information are provided through handouts, educational programs, articles in the Council on Aging newsletter, and on our Facebook page
- Programs and social/educational activities and a variety of exercise classes are available that facilitate healthy aging
- Health Screenings and/or immunizations are offered each month (e.g. flu shots, hearing screening, blood glucose screening, blood pressure screening)
- The Living Healthy Workshop is an evidence-based structured participant workshop held for 2.5 hours weekly over six weeks. This evidence-based program helps individuals with chronic health conditions such as arthritis, diabetes, lung/heart diseases or many other chronic conditions learn how to: deal with frustration, pain, and isolation; maintain and improve strength and flexibility; manage medications; eat healthy, and communicate effectively to family, friends, and health care providers.
*See our calendar and our newsletter for more information
Handouts on a Variety of Healthy Aging Topics
- Aging Safely at Home
- Body Mechanics and Lifting
- Brain Health
- Computer and Smart Phone Use
Healthy Aging Strategies
- Exercise regularly (with physician approval)
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that older adults without a health condition try to perform strengthening exercises two or more days a week and participate in 75 or more minutes of aerobic activity each week (amount varies depending on the intensity of the exercises)
- Receive age appropriate immunizations (with physician approval).
View the CDC website for a schedule of recommended immunizations for adults at: www.cdc.gov/vaccines/schedules/downloads/adult/adult-schedule-easy-read.pdf
- Eat a healthy diet
Try to eat a balanced diet which includes a variety of food groups. Choose different colored fruits and vegetables which contain different nutrients. Read nutrition labels to ensure the food you are eating is healthy.
- Avoid tobacco use
If you currently smoke, consider participating in a tobacco cessation program
- Obtain recommended preventative health screenings
(e.g. cholesterol, colorectal cancer, diabetes, breast cancer screening for women)
Reference: The State of Aging and Health in America, 2013; CDC, National Institute on Aging
Additional Resources and Information
- Healthy Aging North Carolina has information about healthy aging programs. http://healthyagingnc.com/
- National Institutes of Health has educational information on health https://www.nih.gov/
- National Institutes on Aging has educational information on aging, including healthy aging https://www.nia.nih.gov/
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has educational information about healthy aging https://www.cdc.gov/aging/index.html