Healthy ageing is achieving and keeping good physical and mental well-being while leading an active social life. It is important to keep yourself healthy, happy and independent as you age
No matter our age, we all have hopes and goals. Every one of us, regardless of our age, race, or gender, want to live a long and healthy life. There are so many things we can do today to make our tomorrows fun and fulfilling.
According to the World Health Organisation, healthy ageing is defined “as the process of developing and maintaining the functional ability that enables wellbeing in older age”.
Here are a few daily health tips we can start incorporating into our lifestyle so that we can enjoy a better quality of life in our golden years.
Physical activity lowers your risk of chronic health problems such as coronary heart disease, high blood pressure, high blood cholesterol, Type 2 diabetes and selected cancers. It also helps decrease your risk of falling and breaking bones as well as reduce anxiety, depression and improves your overall wellbeing.
Do a mix of physical activity, especially strength, balance and flexibility exercises at least 3 days a week. For example, do exercises such as Tai Chi, Pilates or swimming to strengthen your muscles and balance better. On other days that week, do aerobic exercises such as brisk walking, Zumba or cycling to improve your heart health and circulation.
A balanced and healthy diet is rich in fruit, vegetables and wholegrains. It is also low in fat, cholesterol, salt and sugar. Medication alone is usually not enough to manage your chronic health conditions well.
Healthy eating, together with medication plays an important role in managing chronic conditions. For instance, reduce your salt intake for better control of high blood pressure.
Remember to eat from all the different food groups. Eating foods from different food groups will give us all the nutrients that our body needs.
Maintain a healthy BMI. If that involves losing weight, stick to a healthy diet that does not exceed our daily caloric requirements and get enough physical activity to burn up excess calories we have consumed. Even if weight loss is not a concern, a healthy diet and regular exercise can also help us maintain a healthy weight.
My Healthy Plate to stick to your healthy diet. It’s suitable for everyone - young or old. If you have a specific medical condition, talk to your doctor first to see if My Healthy Plate meets your specific dietary requirements.
If you smoke, consider quitting as it will reduce your risk of heart diseases, high blood pressure, cancers and many other chronic conditions. Quitting will also help you save money, which you can spend on your loved ones. For more advice on how to quit smoking, please call QuitLine at 1800 438 2000.
A healthy mind keeps you young at heart and reduces your risk of various diseases. Stay positive as you adapt and learn to cope with changes in your life.
Positive mental wellbeing helps us to deal with challenges, solve problems and achieve our goals. Maintaining good mental wellbeing also reduces our vulnerability to mental health issues.
Keep an active social life and meet your friends regularly. A strong network of supportive friends and family can is essential for our mental health.
Regular health screening is important to detect conditions. Many chronic conditions, such as high blood pressure, diabetes, high blood cholesterol and certain cancers (e.g. breast, cervical or colorectal cancer) can develop without any signs and symptoms. Regular health screening is important to detect these diseases early. Early detection, together with early treatment and good management of these diseases can prevent or delay the onset of complications.
Chronic conditions are lifelong conditions that must be monitored and managed well to reduce the risk of complications. If you have chronic conditions, you should:
With good knowledge and management of your condition, you will be able to enjoy an active and happy life.
Here are three more daily tips that you start doing today.
Health Promotion Board encourages everyone to age well and take charge of your health today. Join the many
Active Ageing Programmes for older people that range from group exercises to health workshops. They are designed to help you stay healthy so that you can continue to do what you love.
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This article was last reviewed on
Friday, March 24, 2023
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The Health Promotion Board (HPB) conducts annual school health visits to provide free health screening and immunisation services. HPB also conducts health education and health promotion programmes on lifestyle practices. HPB’s Student Health Centre, which generally provides preventive and screening services, follows up children referred from the school visits above.
Subsidised health screening for Singapore Citizens.
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