Fit at Any Age

Age is a matter of mental perception – not an excuse. You can begin an active lifestyle at any age.

By: Sylvia Slezak

Goals for Healthful Eating
Healthful eating is easier than you might think. When you make small changes and take them one at a time, they are more likely to stick with you throughout the New Year and beyond. As with any diet or exercise, it is advisable to consult your physician first.

• Eat more fruits and vegetables.
• Eat more whole-grain foods such as whole-wheat bread, rye bread, brown rice and whole-grain cereal.
• Use healthful fats and liquid vegetable oils such as olive, grape seed, coconut or safflower oils, avocados and nuts.
• Choose lean proteins such as skinless poultry, fish, yogurt, beans, nuts and grains.
• Read food labels to help you choose healthful foods.
• Keep portions smaller than your fist and in control at all times.
• Resist emotional and nighttime eating.
• Balance your meals, and keep track of what you eat.
• Cut back on added sugars and caffeine.
• Limit alcohol consumption to one or two drinks per day.
• Select restaurants that offer heart-healthy meals. Ask for salads (sprinkle lemon juice and oil instead of fatty salad dressing) and steamed or broiled rather than deep-fried.

Health Benefits of Physical Activity
• Tackles anxiety, depression and anger
• Improves both mental and physical health
• Promotes enthusiasm and optimism
• Improves self-image and energy levels
• Enhances the immune system
• Improves circulation, which reduces the risk of heart disease
• Helps maintain a healthy weight
• Improves muscle tone and muscle strength
• Helps prevent bone loss
• Can lower blood pressure
• Helps you fall asleep faster and sleep more soundly
• Helps in the battle to quit smoking

Get Movin’
Did you know that you lose balance, core strength and overall muscle strength every year if you don’t do something about it? If you haven’t exercised in years, it’s time to get going! Even if you’re 50, 60 or 70, you can start to reverse these changes with a few simple moves. Physical activity is all it takes to start turning back the clock!

Ways to be Active
• Stretch to increase flexibility.
• Balance by standing on one leg at a time, shifting weight to one foot and holding.
• Lift light weights and squat.
• Train with resistance band exercises to tighten and tone all over.
• Do push-ups against a wall instead of on the floor.
• Walk outdoors, garden, golf, swim or dance.

Motivation

Take a break
• Pamper yourself – whatever makes you feel special.
• Go to a spa and get a massage, manicure, pedicure or facial.
• Change your hairstyle, or add to your wardrobe.
• Make yourself laugh – an excellent antidote to stress.
• Read a funny book, watch a comedy or call a friend who makes you laugh.
• Take a tour, a boat ride or a cruise, or go horseback riding on the beach.
• Try a new restaurant, or go to your all-time favorite one.
• Watch the sunset on the beach.
• Attend a concert, go to a movie, try new things and be adventurous.

Believe in Yourself
The body achieves what the mind believes. To live well, you should enjoy life, get the most out of every situation and get excited. You’ll be energized and so will those around you.

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