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Healthy Aging Tips by Cathy Goocher, RN

The Healthy Aging® executive director urges people, particularly those age 50 or older, to use September to take stock of where they’ve been and plan for what they really would like to do.

September is the annual Healthy Aging® Month, when Americans nationwide are reminded to focus on the positive aspects of growing older and take personal responsibility for one’s health – physically, socially, mentally or financially.

More than 15 years ago, the national health initiative, Healthy Aging®, was developed to provide people with helpful information for successful aging.

If you think it’s too late to reinvent yourself, Carolyn Worthington, the executive director of Healthy Aging®, urges you to think again. “Use September as the motivation to take stock of where you’ve been and what you really would like to do if money were no object. And try it!” Worthington advises. “Who says you have to do something related to what you studied in school? Who says you can’t start your own home business later in life, test your physical prowess, or do something wildly different from anything you’ve done before? Only that person you see in the mirror!”

Seeing a need to draw attention to the myths of aging, the Healthy Aging® group encourages people to take control of their own health and think about the upside of growing older instead of the negative stereotypes and attitudes. Instead of people age 50 and older dwelling on the “I can’ts” and failing health, Healthy Aging® Month is the time to concentrate on the activities and exercises one can do and enjoys.

Part of this year’s September campaign is the launch of the free, digital Healthy Aging® Magazine, which centers on older adults living their vibrant best. Right at Home, a leading provide of in-home companion and personal care to senior citizens and disabled adults, also shares this objective – to improve the quality of life for seniors. “Our professional home care services staff encourages clients of any age to stay as active as possible, keep following their passions and remain optimistic to what’s next in life,” said Cathy Goocher, Owner, Right at Home Pinellas “We help seniors bring back vibrancy to everyday living, whether we help them cook wholesome meals, participate in a sport, learn a new skill or take fun tours and trips.”

The following are Healthy Aging® Month tips for reinventing yourself:

Go back to school.

It’s never too late to take courses to refocus your career, enhance a skill set or expand your knowledge. Choose a focus or specialization that you care about and can balance well with work, family and other commitments. Many degrees are now available through online courses.

Take a volunteer vacation.

Perhaps it’s time to visit new places, connect and give back. Many travelers are opting for “giving back” vacations that allow for meeting and helping new people, learning something new or fulfilling a dream. Volunteer Vacations Across America (www.immersiontraveler.com) is an excellent resource with more than 200 trips for volunteering to help people.

Initiate a financial makeover.

Make an appointment with your financial advisor or find one this month and walk through your current finances and long-range monetary plans. Don’t be afraid to readjust investments or pull out of financial commitments that weigh you down.

Get moving like there’s no tomorrow.

Older adults getting regular physical exercise are 60 percent less likely to get dementia and improve their overall physical and mental health. Exercise increases oxygen to the brain and releases a protein that strengthens cells and neurons. Dancing, swimming, walking and golfing are a few of the favorite activities of people age 50 and older.

Eat fresh.

Make a commitment to add more fresh fruits and vegetables to your daily snacks and meals. In September, many local farmers markets are still available and stores carry fresh, local produce. Try to cook from scratch using fresh ingredients as much as possible, skipping the processed, canned foods that often have excess
fats and sodium.

September’s Healthy Aging® Month is a motivation for Americans of any age, but particularly those in their golden years, to resolve that it’s not too late to shore up their health, pursue something new or revive a favorite hobby or activity. Today is the perfect day to start.

About Right at Home

Founded in 1995, Right at Home, Inc. is an international franchise
organization based in Omaha, Neb. Independently owned and operated franchise
units offer in-home care and assistance to seniors and disabled adults who want
to continue to live independently. Right at Home offices directly employ all
caregiving staff. Each caregiver is thoroughly screened, trained, bonded and insured prior to entering a client’s home. All ongoing care is monitored and supervised by the more than 250 locations across 41 states nationwide and throughout the world. For more information on Right at Home, visit About Right at Home or read the Right at Home caregiving blog. Sign up for Right at Home’s free adult caregiving enewsletter, Caring Right at Home.

About Right at Home of Central Pinellas

The Right at Home of Central Pinellas office of Right at Home is a locally owned and operated franchise office of Right at Home, Inc., serving the communities of Belleair, Belleair Beach, Clearwater, Clearwater Beach, Dunedin, Indian Rocks Beach, Largo, Safety Harbor and surrounding areas. For more information, contact Right at Home of Central Pinellas at http://www.rightathome.net/central-pinellas/ or at 727-437-4170 or by email at info@rahcentralpinellas.com

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Lynda September 15, 2012 at 07:04 PM
Great article. And it couldn't come at a better time. Even people under 50 can use these hints to work towards a positive outlook on life.
Bob Clark September 18, 2012 at 06:14 PM
Great article. Thanks for the healthy tips!
Cathy Goocher September 20, 2012 at 08:29 PM
Thank you Bob and Lynda for your comments :-). Yes even people under 50 can use these helpful, healthy living tips. Cathy

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