When you’re living with a chronic medical condition, staying healthy can be challenging — especially during a pandemic. The good news is there are some simple shifts you can make to improve the quality of your life now because, let’s face it, health is the real wealth.
Here are five easy, expert tips to ensure you live better and longer.
Eat Nutrient-Rich Foods
A well-balanced diet can improve your health and help control chronic illnesses like heart disease, obesity, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, and osteoporosis. Swap sugary drinks for water or freshly made juices and choose whole foods (oats, whole wheat, barley, quinoa) and lean protein (chicken breast, salmon) over fried and processed foods. And it goes without saying, don’t smoke and limit your alcohol consumption. A great way to start the day, increase your fruit and vegetable intake, and keep your cholesterol in check is to blend a delicious smoothie.
Try this heart-smart blueberry-avocado smoothie:
1 cup frozen blueberries (these are packed with disease-fighting antioxidants)
1/4 avocado (the fatty acids, vitamin B-6, and folic acid supports heart health and fights heart disease)
1 cup of coconut water
Juice of 1/2 lime
1 serving protein powder (go for whey, hemp, or brown rice)
1 serving greens (kale or spinach)
Raw honey or agave to sweeten to taste
4 ice cubes
Blend until smooth and creamy, and enjoy.
Get Moving Daily
The National Institute of Aging recommends seniors do 30 mins of cardio exercise daily to boost their health, strength (to prevent falls), balance, flexibility, cardiovascular health. Physical activity also helps with weight control, prevents muscle loss, and reduces stress — plus, you’ll look and feel better too.
If you haven’t exercised in a while, start slow with five to ten minutes, three times a week and build up. It’s important you find something you love, so walk, bike, swim, try water aerobics or tennis (all great exercises for seniors). Yoga is another great way to build strength and flexibility and warm-up for cardio exercise. These 5 Beginner Yoga Poses for Seniors from renowned yoga expert Deepak Chopra are perfect for those that haven’t tried it before. You got this.
Try this easy chair squat to build strength and kick start your routine:
- Stand in front of a chair with your feet as far apart as your hips.
- Bend your knees while keeping your shoulders and chest upright.
- Lower your bottom, so you sit down.
- Push your body back up to return to a standing position.
- Repeat as many times as you can.
Prioritize Your Health Care
Your health is everything, so make managing it and maintaining it your top priority. When dealing with a chronic health issue, stay committed to checking your vital signs daily, and see a doctor regularly to ensure your health and wellness is on-track. While getting to the doctor is much more difficult during the pandemic, telemedicine makes it easy and convenient to have virtual visits with your doctor from the comfort and safety of your own home. The government expanded Medicare coverage for at-home health care during Covid-19, and now is the perfect time to take better care of yourself.
As we said, health is the real wealth, so here’s to living a long and happy life on your terms with more energy and time to spend doing the things you love most with those you love most.Community Wellness is a health and wellness company dedicated to empowering people to achieve better health outcomes from the comfort of their homes. We make ongoing health monitoring simple by providing you with personalized smart medical devices and a monthly online check-in with a licensed doctor — all from the comfort of your home. If you’re 65+ with a qualifying chronic condition, including prediabetes, diabetes, heart disease, or high blood pressure, you may be eligible to have At-Home Health Monitoring by Community Wellness covered by Medicare Part B and your Supplement Insurance (if you have it). See if you qualify.