Life expectancy in the United States is at an all-time high. You have probably heard the terms “healthy aging,” or “improved quality-of-life;” our favorite is “Longevity Dividend.” Advertisers use these terms to entice you to spend money with them and senior adult communities often use these terms to attract new residents. Of course the challenge with these terms is that they are often defined by the marketing department instead of by residents.
At Fellowship Square-Mesa we take these terms very seriously and we strive to be a Center of Aging Excellence. We work every day to make certain that our residents are provided with the opportunity to achieve “healthy aging,” and a high standard of “quality-of-life.” The programs we offer are designed by input we receive from our residents, and are built on research that supports healthy aging. I’ve cited the research that supports our objectives and will provide you with a link to summaries of the studies, if you are interested just send me an email at JonScott.Williams@ChristianCare.org.
Research has shown that eating regular meals that contain protein, fresh vegetables & fruit, and fewer carbohydrates result in a healthier senior population. Alternative meals and special dietary needs can be easily accommodated. (USDA, Nutrition.gov).
Social connections help senior adults stay active and mobile, and can even slow the rate of cognitive decline. At Fellowship Square-Mesa we provide a variety of planned events and activities. We encourage every resident to study the monthly calendar and find the events that appeal to them and make that event a regular occurrence. (National Institute on Aging, Benefits of Social Interaction for Senior Adults).
The idea of keeping our “brains healthy” is way beyond crossword puzzles, computer games, and Bingo. We realized a long time ago that our residents wanted current information about our community and exposure to technology and lifelong learning classes. Learning is a way for us to stay connected to the world around us. We can learn things that we may not know, engage with our fellow residents and improve our brain fitness. (Journal of Aging Studies, It’s Time for a Revolution in Senior Adult Care, 12.15)
Fitness or Wellness Programs
Physical activity is important for everyone but especially for senior adults who are concerned with healthy aging, “Stay Strong to Live Long.” Exercise can energize your mood, relieve stress, help you manage symptoms of illness and pain and improve your overall sense of well-being. (Center for Disease Control, June 2015).
Take the steps necessary to improve or sustain your quality-of-life today. Try something new; don’t make up your mind that you won’t like it before you’ve tried it. Most of all make a commitment to be healthy and happy and you will benefit from the Longevity Dividend!
Jon Scott Williams