Staying Healthy in 2019: 4 Tips to Start the Year Right

It’s nearly 2019 – can you believe it?

A new year isn’t just time to get a new calendar. It can also be a reset of your life; a chance to refocus and identify your health goals.

Taking care of yourself – both physically and mentally – is important, especially if you’re a caregiver for a loved one. You’ve got to focus on your own health first before you can help someone else.

Here are a few tips for keeping healthy in the new year:

Staying Healthy

1. Get More Sleep

You might think you’re getting enough sleep, but you’re probably not. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend sleeping at least 7 hours each night. One in three adults don’t.

Not getting sleeping enough leaves you drowsy and unable to focus, making it more difficult to get through the day. While this alone is troublesome, sleep deprivation can lead to more serious health problems over time. It’s important to get your sleep in so you’re fully prepared for the tasks ahead of you.

 

2. Get Healthful Food

In a busy life, it’s tempting to want to grab a quick snack like chips or fast food when you’re on the run. But eating unprocessed foods, like whole grains, fruits and vegetables are the best fuel for your busy day.

That’s because eating lots of vitamins and minerals nourishes the brain, affecting its structure, and how well you feel: good food makes you feel good.

If you’re short on time, try buying pre-cut vegetables like baby carrots and meal prep your food for the week in advance so you’ve always got a healthy meal or snack ready.

 

3. Get Moving

Aside from its more obvious cardiovascular health benefits, exercise has also been shown to improve mental health – keeping you healthier, happier and sharper day-to-day.

Just 20 percent of Americans meet the federal government’s guidelines for physical exercise: 150 minutes a week, or 22 minutes a day.

If you’re not a marathoner or you’re new to the gym, maybe start by taking a morning walk around the block. Increasing your movement in short increments makes a difference in the long run. It can also help keep you agile and mobile for your day-to-day caregiver tasks.

 

4. Get a Healthy Schedule

A new year is a chance to re-evaluate if the schedule you’re operating on is working ideally for proper sleep, exercise, and nutrition. If you’re a caregiver, it may feel like you don’t have enough hours in the day. The best caregivers, however, are always rested and healthy.

 

Arise offers a senior day program to get your loved ones the extra care they need – as well as home care services.  Visit our website for more information.

Healthy Heart Habits for You and Your Loved Ones

February is National Heart Health Month, which means there couldn’t be a better time to learn more about the heart and what it means to keep it healthy, especially as we age.

Heart health affects more than just the heart. If your heart is healthy, you’ll feel the effects because the heart is pumping as it should and circulating proper amounts of blood and nutrients throughout your body. Conversely, if you’re heart is unhealthy, you’ll feel the negative effects throughout your entire body and find that it hinders many parts of your life.

Healthy Heart

Caregivers should be putting heart health on the front burner this month and remind their aging loved ones that it’s never too late to start practicing healthy heart habits!

Here are 6 habits that promote heart health and longevity that seniors and caregivers should learn to incorporate into their daily routines:

Healthy Heart Habits to Adopt:

  1. Stop smoking! This is perhaps the WORST thing you can do for your heart at any age, but even more so as you age.
  2. Exercise regularly by doing something you love. It will get your blood pumping, keeping you strong and healthy.
  3. Eat a colorful range of fruits and veggies because different colors and varieties of fruits and veggies will give you the nutrients needed to stay healthy.
  4. Take an omega-3 supplement. Most Americans are deficient in omega-3 fatty acids, which causes the risk for heart disease to sky-rocket.
  5. Prioritize your protein by avoiding red meats like beef, lamb, and pork. Instead, stick to healthy protein like fish and eggs, as well as leaner meats like turkey and chicken.
  6. Know the symptoms and warning signs of heart disease. In addition to working on better heart health, it’s important to work on your overall health. Health conditions that are not related to the heart can actually increase your risk for heart disease, so make sure you’re taking care of yourself in all areas of your life!

Although heart disease risks increase with age, it doesn’t have to be an inevitable part of getting older. Making the right diet choices and creating healthy habits can help protect you.

February is not only National Heart Health Month, but it’s also the month of Valentine’s Day, which means it’s important to keep your heart healthy for yourself, as well as your loved ones.

Arise Care’s Senior Day Program: Our New Location!

Describe the process of designing the new location. Why is it laid out and decorated the way it is?

We know that families face obstacles/resistance when bringing their loved one to a program like this, so we wanted to make the space as homey and comfortable as possible. The space had to be inviting and warm for people to get past their initial fears. We try to put ourselves in our client’s shoes and ask the question, ”Would I bring my loved one here?” If we answer yes, then we know we are on the right track.

We feel we are on the right track!! We have a space with lots of natural light to sit and watch the outdoors, a separate larger space for activities, exercise and meals, and a nice quiet, cozy space relax.

 

What is the mission of the Senior Day Program?

Our mission is to provide peace of mind when life is hard! We know that many families face health challenges and difficulties as they age making it difficult to remain at home. Our goal is to help them stay at home for as long as possible. Our day program is just one more way for families to achieve this. It gives the family caregiver some much needed respite, but also offers the care recipient; socialization, activities, meals, and care when they are with us. If the family caregiver can stay healthy and have an opportunity to re-charge that leads to good outcomes. Our day program can assist that family caregiver by providing care while they recharge.

 

What are the benefits of the new location?

One primary benefit of our new location is that we have all of our resources in one location. Nursing staff, management staff and caregivers are all right here! Location and easy access make a difference in the decision process for families. The close proximity of many residential neighborhoods, medical resources (such as St. Cloud Medical Group – South Campus), the fast growing education corridor on 33rd Street South, and the easy access to some of the largest employers in St. Cloud make it easier for families to choose us for the care of their loved one. Often, the primary caregiver is an adult child still in the workforce. They are in need of support for their loved one so they can continue to work. Our location can be helpful for those in this situation.

 

What do you hope your clients and their families will gain from utilizing the services of the Senior Day Program?

We all hope that our client families gain peace of mind by using our services. That’s a BIG hope, yet we truly believe that we can do that for families. We have witnessed our clients put off moving to a facility for months or years by using our services. They can achieve some stability, especially when facing health decline, isolation in aging, dementia, or caregiver burnout.

 

What should people expect at the open house?

Our Senior Day Program Open House is taking place August 29th from 9-11 AM and 4-6 PM at our new location: 2907 Clearwater Road in St. Cloud.

At our Open House, visitors can expect a full tour of our facility. They will see the activities their loved one will participate in, they can visit with our staff, learn about our services, and enjoy light refreshments. We are very excited to meet with families. If you can’t make it to our open house, please call (320) 281-2306 or contact Sue Christensen to schedule a tour.

 

Recognizing Depression in Seniors

Depression is a difficult topic to discuss with anyone, especially family members.The stigma that looms over the title of “mental illness” is a difficult problem to solve. Many warning signs of depression are often overlooked and, unfortunately, are only realized after it is too late.

Woman with her hand on another woman's shoulderDepression in older adults can easily be written off as “moodiness” or “typical behaviors”. This is not always the case. Sure, everybody has an image of that cranky man on television that lives down the block, but depression is very different.

Warning signs of depression vary greatly from person to person, but can still be identified. The sooner they are recognized for what they are, the better chance there is to arm yourself and your loved ones with the right tools to battle depression.

According to the Administration on Aging, some common warning signs are:

  • Sad, discouraged mood
  • Persistent pessimism about the present, future and the past
  • Loss of interest in work, hobbies, social life, and sex
  • Difficulty in making decisions
  • Lack of energy and feeling slowed down
  • Restlessness and irritability
  • Loss of appetite and loss of weight
  • Disturbed sleep, especially early morning waking
  • Depressive, gloomy or desolate dreams
  • Suicidal thoughts

Signed into law by president, Lyndon Johnson, the Older Americans Act of 1965 (OAA) set out to maintain the dignity and welfare of older Americans. It also paved the way for services that organized and coordinated opportunities of older Americans and their families to recognize and treat symptoms of depression in the community.

The AOA website offers a vast amount of resources for families and caregivers that allow them to care for their loved ones with the respect and dignity they deserve.

Family sitting around elderly man smiling

If you or your loved one are feeling the effects of depression, know that there are resources that are available for you. Nobody needs to battle depression alone and the symptoms should not be disregarded as minor feelings. Call the suicide hotline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or the 24/7 Treatment Referral Line at 1-800-662-HELP (4357) to find the treatment that works for you.

Visit psycom.net with your loved one to obtain a better understanding of what you may be feeling.

 

Your health and wellbeing go far beyond physical wellness. At Arise, our philosophy is “Stay Home, Stay Safe. Stay Healthy,” And that is exactly what we want for al or patients- no matter the age and no matter the symptoms.