The Foutain Of Youth
Now that the average life expectancy in the United States is at 77 years, quality of life in one`s later years is increasingly important. According to the American College of Sports Medicine, by the year 2030, people 85 years and older will be the fastest growing segment of the population, and individuals 65 years and over will reach 70 million.
Ask anyone to guess which age group is least likely to be regularly meeting for physical activity and they will probably say children. Not so, according to the Department of Health older people sit firmly at the bottom of the class with approx 15% over the age of 65 sufficiently active. Research shows that 44% of adults over the age of 70 years take a 20-minute walk less than once a year, or never.
Studies show that regular exercise by elderly people can turn back the clock 20 years when compared to those who do little or no exercise. Regardless of our present age, exercise & physical activity is clearly the best thing that we can do for ourselves to counteract the effects of aging and disease.
What is inspiring is that weekly, we are seeing media reporting about how simple, consistent and regular exercise can improve heart & respiratory function, lower blood pressure, control type II diabetes, increase strength, improve bone density, improve flexibility, quicken reaction time, relieve stress, prevent cardiovascular disease and osteoporosis, reduce body fat, increase muscle mass, slow risk of Alzheimer`s and dementia, and reduce susceptibility to depression – “one of the biggest causes of death in the elderly,” says a leading senior health facility executive and countless health professionals.
No wonder experts believe that “exercise” is one of the closest things we have to a Fountain of Youth – allowing one to maintain an independent status, one with social interaction, encouragement, self-love, self-care, thus not requiring aid-living for the remainder of life.
It has also become increasingly clear that it is crucial that we set- “Healthy Life Patterns” in our mid 30’s. 40’s and 50’s to give us a powerful edge as we move into these (for lack of a better word) golden years of our lives. It’s unfortunate that when many people are young they think they truly bullet proof (somewhat foolish) and often take their good health for granted. It’s equally as disturbing to me that adults take their good health for granted, but as an adult the consequences are way more serious, kind of like playing with a loaded gun. (makes me think of cigarette smokers who laugh at cancer warnings – trust me they have an entirely different mind set when they get diagnosed with cancer.)
Bottom line, if we respect our bodies, they will serve us well for years to come! If we eat a clean and balance diet (organic foods in particular), not smoke, limit alcohol consumption, control stress the best we can, get the proper sleep and not let dust settle on any moving parts through “daily exercise”….I think we have pretty good odds that we can plan on living an active, happy and long life.
It’s Duty Now for the Future! Start moving in a healthier direction.
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The Fitness Underground-Los Angeles c.2012 _______________________________________________________________
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