September is Healthy Aging Month is celebrating its 30th anniversary. The observance highlights the positive aspects and facets of growing older with the goal of inspiring individuals to be responsible for their own wellness.
Created in 1992 by Carolyn Worthington, the observance has gleaned more interest as aging and wellness are more popular topics than in the past. In fact, in 2021, the U.S. Senate unanimously passed the resolution designating September as National Healthy Aging Month.
Wellness at any age
To honor Healthy Aging Month, we’ve curated a list of activities that promote wellness and healthy aging.
- Be active. Studies have shown inactivity can cost a person between $670-$1,125 per year in medical bills. To combat costly healthcare visits, a person should incorporate movement into their daily routine. Purposeful exercises like cycling, walking, and swimming, promote healthy blood pressure and can lower the risk of heart disease, stroke, depression, and certain cancers. An individual is recommended to participate in about 150 minutes of moderate-intense exercise per week.
- Eat well. Focusing on nutrition is an excellent way to keep the body functioning and flourishing. Cutting back on salt is a quick way to lower the risk of high blood pressure, heart attack, and stroke. Additionally, increasing fiber benefits digestive health.
- Connect with others. Whether it be at work, at home, or while out in the community, it is important to have meaningful social interactions. Being social boosts mental health.
- Spend time on a hobby. Life is full of necessities, but there should always be an allotted time spent on fun and emotional fulfillment. Building skills and doing activities that spark joy allow the body and mind to recuperate.
- Make long-term and short-term goals. When a person creates a goal, they experience a feeling of purpose. Similarly, achieving a goal is accompanied by a rush of pride and accomplishment.
Aging is a natural part of life, offering new experiences and opportunities. Living a healthy lifestyle can lead to a longer lifespan with lower overall healthcare costs.