Seniors Health Center
General Health Information
As we age, our body becomes more vulnerable to degenerative conditions and illness. We become more concerned about a variety of conditions related to the heart and circulation, nervous system and brain, bone density, and many other body functions. Practicing a healthy lifestyle in general does much to aid in reducing the severity, as well as preventing the onset of these age-related conditions.
The "free radical theory" on aging proposes that damaging free radicals contribute greatly to the aging process. Free radicals are highly reactive, toxic forms of oxygen molecules that bind to and destroy cellular components. Free radicals damage our cells and our DNA, leading to degenerative conditions of the circulatory system, bone and joints, brain and nervous system, eyes and hearing, and our immune system. Antioxidants are nutrients, such as vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin E, and selenium that interact with free radicals rendering them inactive. Supplementing our diets with antioxidants can be very helpful in fighting the damaging effects of free radicals
Seniors also suffer many health problems caused by nutritional deficiencies. Some problems are caused by nutrient malabsorption where the nutrients in food are not properly absorbed from the gastrointestinal tract. As we age, our digestive system slows and we do not assimilate nutrients as efficiently as when we were younger. Sometimes there?s not enough stomach acid to digest foods properly. Seniors often do not eat enough food or make proper food choices, further leading to malnutrition and body breakdown. B-vitamins, calcium, vitamin C, and iron deficiencies are particularly common in the elderly. Supporting a healthy digestive system is critical to Senior Health. See our Digestive Wellness Center for more information.
As we age, common conditions include complaints about bone and joint problems such as stiffness and pain, decline in visual function, and memory loss. Women are concerned about hormone imbalances and bone loss, and men are concerned about sexual health and the prostate. Men and women alike share very real problems concerning circulation, vision, the brain, and immunity, as well as damage to our DNA caused by free radicals.
A healthy lifestyle can do much to help slow down or prevent many of these degenerative conditions that concern Seniors. A healthy lifestyle begins with the basics of proper nutrition and a diet that is low in fat and high in fiber. A program of regular exercise increases our strength, stamina, and our energy as well as improving respiratory and cardiovascular health. Avoid tobacco, excessive alcohol, and exposure to other toxins. Eliminating our exposure to toxins helps keep our bodies clean and functioning at their peak. A healthy lifestyle is one that is full of enjoyable healthy activities, such as walks in nature and gardening. These are great stress-reducers too, along with other activities such as meditation and yoga. Plenty of restful sleep refreshes and replenishes the body and mind as well.
There are numerous supplements that can be very beneficial for coping with aging. In general, high quality multivitamins, minerals, antioxidants, fibers, and essential fatty acids are most important as core nutrients. Supplementing certain herbs and other nutrients such as gingko biloba for circulation and mental function, and glucosamine for joint function can also be beneficial. See our various other wellness centers for more specific supplement advice concerning age related maladies.
These products are recommended by licensed pharmacists who have specialized in natural medicines and dietary supplements. For maximum benefit from these recommendations, be sure to read the Wellness Center Guidelines.
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