Budgets, brains and better gut health: New Year resolutions for seniors

How many New Year resolutions have you decided upon that have lasted beyond January? Making resolutions is far easier than keeping them, which probably accounts for why 12% of gym membership signups happen in January, but 50% of these new members have stopped going after six months or less.

We’ve picked six top resolutions suitable for seniors from the various lists we found, including an impressive list of 65 suggestions from Good Housekeeping!

1. “Build a better budget”

This resolution is top of the Good Housekeeping list, and we really appreciate that it assumes you already have a budget. Many senior retirees and those requiring care are already budgeting carefully. GH’s top tip is to:

“Supercharge your shopping habits by rethinking when and how you buy things for your home and family; often, there are savings you’re leaving on the table.”

2. Better sleep for seniors

Poor sleep can affect our concentration, focus and levels of depression the next day. Creating a quality sleep routine includes:

  • preparing yourself both mentally and physically
  • ensuring your bedroom is conducive to good sleep
  • adapting your sleep routine to your daytime activity requirements

For more details check out our recent article on seniors and sleep.

It’s also important for caregivers to have sufficient sleep, which is why we offer live-in respite care that covers those all important night-time hours. Call us to discuss respite care for you and your loved one.

3. Give your brain a workout

Research has shown that we can slow the rate of cognitive decline at bay by using our brains to solve maths problems and puzzles. Research by Duke University found that solving basic maths questions gave those studied a boost of endorphins that improved their resilience to cognitive decline. For ideas on brain games for seniors, see our article “Brain training at home for seniors: ’use it or lose it’”.

4. Become an indoor gardener

Actually it’s simpler than that – just get a houseplant or two! Tending for indoor plants has been shown to:

  • calm your nervous system
  • reduce fatigue and headaches by up to 25%
  • lower your stress levels and blood pressure

Houseplants may also help improve the quality of the air inside our homes by removing some “indoor-derived contaminants, predominantly Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC)”. For more information, see this excellent article “Houseplants to support human health”

5. Cook something new each week

As we age, cooking can become more of a chore and less of a pleasure. As a result, seniors may struggle to remain inspired to cook healthy, nutritious meals, and rely on “old favourites”. One of the joys of cooking and eating a meal at midday, as experts recommend for seniors, is that you can cook when you have more energy during the day, rather than when tired at night. The Cleveland Clinic lists four big benefits of trying new foods:

  1. You’ll get more nutrients You may miss out on different nutrients that different foods provide if you eat the same foods every day.
  2. You may live longer Eating a nutritious diet with a lot of variety may lower your risk of mortality.
  3. You’ll reduce your risk of metabolic syndrome One study by Korean researchers found that those with more variety in their diet were at lower risk of metabolic syndrome.
  4. A healthier gut Rotating foods and eating a varied diet also helps increase the diversity of good bacteria in your gut.

For more details on how to enjoy a healthy diet, see our article “Good food and wellbeing: healthy eating for seniors”.

6. Make changes to live independently in your family home

There comes a time when we realize that our family home isn’t quite as suitable for our mobility, health and living requirements as it used to be. However, that doesn’t mean we have to up sticks and move! Aging in place is all about adapting your home to your changed requirements, whether that’s converting a downstairs t=room to a bedroom, making a bathroom more accessible, or simply putting up grab bars to help up get up steps or along corridors more easily.

At Vytality at Home, we have professional trade partners across Calgary and beyond who understand the needs of seniors and can help adapt your home to your needs. Just call and ask – we’re happy to help put you in touch

Bonus Resolution: Try home care!

If you’ve never tried home care before, now is the time to try it! Our Calgary home care company provide a wide range of requirements, not just personal care. So our team of caregivers can help with the everyday tasks you find more difficult these days, from laundry and cleaning to putting away groceries and meal planning.

We can also provide that most essential of home care services, companionship. For those seniors living alone, our caregivers can provide a friendly face every week, someone to talk to, share a cup of tea, perhaps take a walk outside, or sit in the warm and solve a crossword together. Take as look at our website for more information, or call us to discuss your specific requirements.

Our mission is to enhance the quality of life of those we serve, keeping you safe, comfortable, happy and healthy.

Looking for home care in Calgary?

Do get in contact with us:

539, 5940 Macleod Trail SWCalgary, AB