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10 Meaningful Tips For Healthy Aging

February 10, 2022
Written by
Team NutriSense
Brooke McKelvey

Are you worried about the wrinkles, sagging skin, loss of energy, and brain fog that often go hand-in-hand with your golden years? While aging is a natural and inevitable process, it doesn’t mean you have to accept everything else that can accompany it. You can do things to make the process easier and more enjoyable so you can age gracefully without being affected by every potential health issue it can bring. 

While aging gracefully doesn’t mean you have to look like you’re still in your twenties, you don’t want to experience premature aging either, do you? As you age, it becomes more and more important to make healthy choices that will keep you looking and feeling your best. Unfortunately, there’s no secret recipe for staying young forever, but the concept of healthy aging doesn’t have to feel like such a mystery. Read on to find out more about what happens to your body as you age, and then check out our tips for healthy aging.  

Understanding What Happens to Your Body as You Age

an older woman getting dressed

You want to look your best as you age, but it’s not always easy. Your body is a complex organism with numerous features and functions, making repairing any changes or damages in your cells and tissues progressively more complex over time. 

As you grow older, these changes are much harder on the body because it is more challenging to repair them. It eventually leads to some of the first most noticeable signs of aging—wrinkles! While you may begin to notice some early signs of aging, there are some that are less noticeable. Making it important that your doctor monitor these changes during your yearly visits. Here’s what you may experience as you grow older: 

Your Bones Become Thinner

a person sitting in a armchair

As you reach middle age, your bones may become weaker and lose density. It happens because as you get older, your body may begin to reabsorb calcium and phosphate from your bones, weakening them. When you are young, your body will (usually) leave these minerals untouched. 

Since your bones are tissues that constantly break down and are replaced, weakening bones can develop into a host of health issues. One such issue is osteoporosis—this is when your bones become extremely weak and brittle. If it progresses, they can get fractured by the simplest daily activities, like bending or coughing. 

Your Arteries Become Stiffer

an older person checking their blood pressure

As your body ages, your arterial walls will begin to stiffen. It’s why people often discover that their blood pressure rises slightly as they get older. It is typical for the aorta—your main or root systemic artery—to get stiffer, thicker, and less flexible over time. 

Another common age-related condition is arteriosclerosis. It occurs when your arteries begin to harden due to the fatty plaque inside your blood cells, causing them to narrow—which may eventually lead to a block. Your doctor will likely monitor this during your yearly visits and suggest necessary treatments.

You Might Experience Forgetfulness

an older person reading a book

At any age, memory lapses can be frustrating and embarrassing. But as you grow older, it’s inevitable to experience some subtle alterations to your thought processes. Still, sometimes, these shifts come sooner than expected. There are many reasons that you may experience forgetfulness as you age. 

Some of these reasons are naturally occurring causes like age. For example, it's natural for the hippocampus to deteriorate a bit as you age, for blood flow to decrease to the brain, and for a decline in the hormones and proteins that repair brain cells to occur. Sometimes, your forgetfulness may be the first sign of a more severe condition like Alzheimer’s disease, a form of dementia, that your risk of developing increases with age.

Your Digestive System Slows Down

two people eating

As your body ages, you may begin to see changes in your digestive system. Your digestive system is responsible for passing food through your body using muscle contractions, and it may start to slow down as you age. It is vital to keep track of your digestive health as you age to absorb the nutrients you need and prevent issues like incontinence or constipation.  

Your Skin Loses Elasticity

an older woman

Losing skin elasticity is a natural part of the aging process, and many things may cause noticeable changes like wrinkles or loose skin as you get older. How healthy your skin remains as you age will often depend on your lifestyle and genetics. It will change depending on your dietary choices, how much time you spend in the sun, weight fluctuations throughout your life, chemicals that you are surrounded by, and much more. 

Your Body’s Natural Blood Glucose Management Changes

an older person checking their level of blood glucose

By now, you know your body changes a lot as you age. It means that you’ll begin to see changes in everything from your energy levels and weight to hormone production and blood glucose management. As you grow older, your body may not utilize insulin as well as it could in your youth. 

As you age, your muscles and tissues start to lose their sensitivity to insulin, so sugar remains in your bloodstream for an extended period. As this happens, you may find that you are experiencing more blood sugar spikes. It will be necessary, especially if you have diabetes, to closely monitor your blood sugar trends as you age. Using a tool like a continuous glucose monitor can be helpful here!

Healthy Aging Tips for Getting Older Gracefully

two older people smiling at each other

All the changes your body starts to go through as you age can be somewhat overwhelming, and it’s normal to feel like throwing your hands up in despair over it all. But you don’t need to feel this way! You can do many things to take control of your body and put processes in place that allow you to age healthily. 

Of course, staying healthy always requires a commitment to your lifestyle and diet, regardless of how old you are. If you’re wondering what you can do to make sure you can enjoy life to the fullest as you grow older, here are a few tips and tricks:

1) Practice Regular Exercise

Exercise is key to healthy aging. Staying active as you grow older can vastly improve your quality of life and prevent conditions from developing. Regular exercise may help with the following:

  • Balance: This may help you prevent falls as you become older.
  • Sleep: Getting an adequate amount of good quality sleep is essential. While research is ongoing, moderate exercise may help increase the amount of slow-wave sleep you get. 
  • Blood Pressure: Regular exercise may also help regulate blood pressure levels.
  • Stress: Physical activity not only helps you sleep better, but it also may help reduce feelings of stress and anxiety.
  • Disease Prevention: Regular exercise may prevent diseases like heart disease and arthritis and also help maintain symptoms of diseases like diabetes.
  • Energy Levels: Staying in shape can help improve your energy levels and endurance, which may help you improve your quality of life as you age.
  • Mood: Exercise has been known to be a mood booster and may help reduce feelings of depression as you age. 

Tips to Maintain Maintaining Physical Activity:

  • Start slow. Begin with 10 minutes of activity and work your way up at a moderate pace, five minutes at a time.
  • Make activity part of your daily routine—take a walk after dinner, try to walk instead of driving short distances, or take a break from sitting and move around a bit in between your workday.
  • Be open to trying new things. Try different types of activity and be patient until you find one that feels fun. It will help you build a sustainable habit that brings you joy while meeting your goals and setting yourself up to age healthily. 

2) Follow a Healthy Diet

two older people eating a salad

A healthy diet is a crucial part of living a healthy life, regardless of how old you are. But as you get older, it becomes increasingly important to follow a healthy diet. Remember that this will look different for different people—there’s no one-size-fits-all diet. Your dietary needs will depend on your genetics, any health conditions you have, your level of activity, and your age. 

Tips for Healthy Dietary Habits:

  • Develop an understanding of your body’s needs. You may need different nutrients, calories, or even fiber levels than others. 
  • Create a routine to follow for meals. It will help you make healthy food choices and prevent over or undereating. 
  • Opt for high quality protein, healthy fats, fresh fruits and vegetables, and whole grains, over-processed and refined foods. 

3) Take Good Care Of Your Skin

Even if you take precautions and always wear sunscreen, you may still notice your skin becoming more loose, and wrinkles beginning to develop. But, you can prevent the acceleration of skin aging by developing good skincare habits. These habits may help you prevent fine lines and wrinkles, skin cancer, tough skin, scars, and loose skin. 

Tips for Good Skin Care:

  • Protect your skin from UV rays by wearing sunscreen, a wide brim hat, and avoiding long periods of exposure from the sun when possible—this includes tanning beds. 
  • Discuss a skin care routine that includes products that address your skin concerns with a dermatologist. 
  • Ditch the cigarettes. Smoking can cause cancer and dehydrate your skin. 
  • Follow a healthy diet. Overeating refined sugar and saturated fats can cause skin problems to develop. 

4) Look After Your Mental Health

an older person doing yoga

According to the CDC, an estimated 20 percent of people over 55 experienced mental health concerns, including mood disorders, anxiety, or cognitive impairment. Mental health is an often overlooked part of overall wellbeing, and if ignored, can lead to poor quality of life, increased mortality, and diminished bodily functions. It is important to begin paying attention to your mental health when you’re young—it’s just as important as your physical health. 

Tips for Good Mental Health:

  • Don’t ignore feelings of sadness or anxiety. Stress may be causing some of these things, but if you leave these feelings unchecked, they could develop into something more severe like chronic depression.
  • If you’re experiencing mental health problems, avoid consuming alcohol or smoking, which worsen symptoms of depression and anxiety.
  • If you think you may be struggling with your mental health, speak to a doctor or mental health professional immediately. 

5) Quit Smoking

When you think of smoking and its effects on your health, you may immediately think of your lungs and cancer risk. However, smoking can also affect the rate at which your skin ages, leave you more susceptible to disease, and diminishes your skin’s ability to heal. The chemicals in cigarettes, including nicotine, lead, and ammonia, can cause premature aging and wrinkles. 

Tips to Quit Smoking:

  • You can find many resources to help you quit smoking. While you can’t always reverse every effect smoking has on your body, you can prevent further issues from developing. 
  • Speak with your doctor to develop a plan and get help if you are overwhelmed by the thought of giving up cigarettes. 

6) Reduce the Amount Of Alcohol You Consume

two  older people drinking wine

It’s okay to enjoy the occasional drink with friends, but heavy drinking has many adverse effects on your health and may affect how you age. Alcohol consumption can speed up your aging process and make your body unable to maintain itself properly. 

Tips for Alcohol Consumption:

  • According to the “Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2020-2025," adults of legal drinking age can choose not to drink or to drink in moderation by limiting intake to one (for women) or two drinks (for men) a day.
  • If you cannot reduce your drinking levels on your own or feel dependent on alcohol, reach out to your doctor. They can help you develop a plan to reduce your intake and create a healthier lifestyle. 

7) Get Regular Checkups

Visiting the doctor for a yearly checkup may feel like a chore, but it will be increasingly important to do this as you begin to grow older. Consistent visits will help your doctor track any changes in your health and lifestyle. Not only will this help you maintain a healthy lifestyle, but it will also help them identify any other severe health conditions that you may develop as you age. 

Tips for Maintaining a Regular Checkup Schedule:

  • Work with your doctor to make sure you’re visiting often enough. Be honest about your habits and any genetic conditions. This information may influence how often you need specific tests and screenings as you age.
  • Log your scheduled appointments on your phone so that you get notifications and never miss an appointment.

8) Get the Sleep Your Body Requires

a person sleeping

Sleep is an often underrated part of maintaining good health. It’s easy to work and party late and forgo those crucial hours our body uses to reset and repair itself. Your body repairs your heart and blood vessels when you sleep, and as you age, this can get more challenging. As you age, you may begin to regret those lost hours of (literal) beauty sleep. 

Tips for Better Sleep:

  • Stick to a regular sleeping schedule, and create a space that encourages good sleep hygiene
  • Aim for seven to nine hours of sleep every night. Depending on your genetics, age, and health conditions, you may need more. 

9) Take Your Medications as Directed

As you age, you may need to take medications for age-related issues. It means taking them on time, as directed, and following any other requirements like taking them with food, before or after a meal. If you don’t take your medicines as directed, you may find that your health conditions worsen and negatively affect your aging process. 

Tips to Take Your Medication Seriously:

  • Set a timer for your medications. That way, you won’t miss a dose. 
  • Keep a spare bottle of your prescription on your person so that if you travel, you won’t miss a dose even if your luggage is lost.

10) Find New Ways To Have Fun!

two older people playing cards

Getting older doesn’t mean that you need to stop exploring life and learning new things. It doesn’t mean you have to stop making friends or pursuing romantic interests either! But it does mean that you have to be more careful with your body. Still, it doesn’t mean that you have to be overly cautious or afraid of trying new things. Challenge yourself to begin new hobbies and meet new people.

Tips to Find More Fun in Your Life:

  • Keep an open mind. As you grow older, you may have set habits and routines, but try to ensure that that doesn’t prevent you from saying “yes” to something new. 
  • Challenge yourself. Challenge yourself to try new things and explore new interests. It’s never too late to try that dance class or pick up that book that you want to read.

Engage with Your Blood Glucose Levels with Nutrisense

Your blood sugar levels can significantly impact how your body feels and functions. That’s why stable blood glucose levels can be an important factor in supporting overall wellbeing.

With Nutrisense, you’ll be able to track your blood glucose levels over time using a CGM, so you can make lifestyle choices that support healthy living.

When you join the program, our team of credentialed dietitians and nutritionists are available for additional support and guidance to help you reach your goals.

Ready to take the first step? Start with our quiz to see how Nutrisense can support your health.

Click here to listen to the podcast.
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10 Meaningful Tips For Healthy Aging
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Weight Loss and Blood Glucose
Weight Loss and Blood Glucose

Learn about how weight loss can impact blood glucose levels, and find tips for maintaining healthy blood sugar levels.

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What A Digital Detox Can Do for Your Mental Health
What A Digital Detox Can Do for Your Mental Health

Do you spend all your free time scrolling through social media? If you can’t remember the last time you went offline, you may need a digital detox.

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Vinegar and Blood Sugar: Does It Lower It?
Vinegar and Blood Sugar: Does It Lower It?

Read on to find out what impact, if any, vinegar really has on our body’s ability to balance blood sugar.

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Useful Glycemic Index Charts For Fruits and Vegetables
Useful Glycemic Index Charts For Fruits and Vegetables

Review our glycemic index charts for the most common fruits and vegetables to better understand the impact on your glucose levels.

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Understanding the Relationship Between Menopause and Metabolic Health
Understanding the Relationship Between Menopause and Metabolic Health

Did you know that menopause can affect your metabolic health, and vice versa? Read on to understand the relationship between metabolic health and menopause, and how to manage metabolic health during your menopausal journey. 

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Understanding The Effects of Sugar on the Brain According to Research
Understanding The Effects of Sugar on the Brain According to Research

What really happens to your brain when you consume sugar? Review how interesting the relationship between the brain and sugar is, and why it’s important to control your blood sugar.

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Understanding the Causes and Symptoms of Endometriosis
Understanding the Causes and Symptoms of Endometriosis

Endometriosis is a common yet often ignored condition. Learn more about the symptoms to watch out for, how you can seek treatment, and read first-hand accounts from two women who have dealt with endometriosis.

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Understanding Hyperglycemia vs. Hypoglycemia and How to Recognize the Differences
Understanding Hyperglycemia vs. Hypoglycemia and How to Recognize the Differences

Quickly understand the differences between hyperglycemia and hypoglycemia, how to recognize the signs, and key prevention tips.

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Triglycerides and Blood Glucose [+Tips to Lower Triglyceride Levels]
Triglycerides and Blood Glucose [+Tips to Lower Triglyceride Levels]

Learn everything you need to know about the relationship between triglycerides levels and blood glucose.


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Tips and Tricks for Staying Healthy in the Summer
Tips and Tricks for Staying Healthy in the Summer

If you're gearing up to travel or spend more time outdoors this summer, here are a few tips to help you stay safe and hydrated in the sun.

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Tips for a Healthy, Happy Purim
Tips for a Healthy, Happy Purim

Purim, a joyous occasion celebrated around March or April every year, is just around the corner! Read on to learn more about the holiday and the delicious foods that accompany it.

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Thoughtful Valentine's Day Gift Ideas from NutriSense Dietitians
Thoughtful Valentine's Day Gift Ideas from NutriSense Dietitians

Still haven't settled on the perfect gift for your Valentine this year? Take a look at our Nutrition Team's favorites for some thoughtful ideas.

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The Warning Signs of Nerve Damage You Should Watch Out For
The Warning Signs of Nerve Damage You Should Watch Out For

Because nerve damage can have many silent symptoms, it often goes undiagnosed in the early stages. Read on to learn more about what causes nerve damage and some warning signs to watch out for.

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The Ultimate Guide to Fiber and its Effect on Metabolic Health
The Ultimate Guide to Fiber and its Effect on Metabolic Health

Ready to learn all about fiber beyond just the basics? In this post, we dive deep into the different kinds of fiber and health benefits of each. From functional fiber to fermentation, we break down all the jargon into a layman's language.

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The Relationship Between Cardio and Blood Sugar
The Relationship Between Cardio and Blood Sugar

Did you know that cardio can help you lose weight as well as optimize your health and blood glucose? Here's everything you need to know about cardio and its relationship with blood sugar.

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The Side Effects of Unhealthy Weight Loss
The Side Effects of Unhealthy Weight Loss

Find out what unhealthy weight loss is and learn more about its side effects and what you can do to prevent them.

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The Relationship Between Low Blood Sugar and High Blood Pressure
The Relationship Between Low Blood Sugar and High Blood Pressure

Learn about the warning signs of low blood sugar and the relationship it has on blood pressure.

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The Positive Impact Weight Lifting Has on Blood Sugar
The Positive Impact Weight Lifting Has on Blood Sugar

Here is everything you need to know about the relationship between weight lifting and blood sugar.

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The Relationship Between Cholesterol and Blood Sugar
The Relationship Between Cholesterol and Blood Sugar

Cholesterol plays a very important role in the human body, contributing to the structure of the cells, helping with vitamin D synthesis, and also promoting the production of steroid and sex hormones, like cortisol, aldosterone, testosterone, and estrogen. But how exactly is cholesterol connected to blood glucose levels?

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The Link Between Sleep Apnea and Diabetes
The Link Between Sleep Apnea and Diabetes

NutriSense dietitian Katrina Larsen, MS, RD,N, LD, CDCES discusses the risk factors for sleep apnea and how this disorder is linked to other health conditions.

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The Paleo Diet and Blood Glucose Levels
The Paleo Diet and Blood Glucose Levels

The premise of the paleo diet is that the body can handle a mix of meats, fruits and vegetables, eggs, fish, and complex carbohydrates better than processed meats, refined fats, grains and simple carbohydrates because it evolved to eat the first category as hunter-gatherers.

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The Health Benefits of Winter Squash
The Health Benefits of Winter Squash

A common ingredient in cozy winter recipes, winter squash is one of our favorite foods this time of year. Read on to learn more about how it can benefit your health.

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The NutriSense Holiday Gift Guide: Stocking Stuffers We Love
The NutriSense Holiday Gift Guide: Stocking Stuffers We Love

Haven't finished your holiday shopping yet? Pick from this list of NutriSense-approved holiday gifts to find some great last-minute stocking stuffers for everyone on your list!

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The NutriSense Holiday Gift Guide: Health-Focused Gifts They’ll Love
The NutriSense Holiday Gift Guide: Health-Focused Gifts They’ll Love

Still haven't bought all your holiday gifts this year? Don't worry—there's still time to find the perfect gift for everyone on your list. Read our guide for some great ideas!

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The Link Between Inflammation and Blood Glucose
The Link Between Inflammation and Blood Glucose

Learn more about inflammation, how it affects blood glucose levels and what you can do to prevent and manage it.

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9
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The Health Benefits of Adding Fermented Foods to Your Diet
The Health Benefits of Adding Fermented Foods to Your Diet

Fermented foods have a range of health benefits. Read on to learn more about what they are and why you should be adding them to your diet.

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The Health Benefits of Potatoes, Yams, and Sweet Potatoes
The Health Benefits of Potatoes, Yams, and Sweet Potatoes

Potatoes, yams, and sweet potatoes are similar in usage, but pretty distinct in taste, texture, appearance, and even nutritional content! Read on to find out more about each one.

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The Health Benefits of Living With Pets
The Health Benefits of Living With Pets

Did you know that living with a pet can do more than just put a smile on your face? Read on to learn all the ways living with pets improves your wellbeing.

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The Health Benefits of Cooking With Herbs and Spices
The Health Benefits of Cooking With Herbs and Spices

Herbs and spices are a great way to add flavor to dishes, and also have a range of health benefits. Learn more about a few of our favorites.

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The Health Benefits of Beans
The Health Benefits of Beans

Learn about the health benefits of beans and how they can help you live a healthier, longer life.

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The Guide to Metabolic Diets: What Are They, Do They Work, And Who Should Try Them?
The Guide to Metabolic Diets: What Are They, Do They Work, And Who Should Try Them?

Review our guide to metabolic diets to help get a better understanding of what they are and whether they might be right for you.

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The Foods and Traditions of Kwanzaa
The Foods and Traditions of Kwanzaa

Learn about the traditions and nutrient-dense food commonly enjoyed during Kwanzaa. 

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The Blood Sugar and Joint Pain Connection
The Blood Sugar and Joint Pain Connection

Have you ever wondered how your glucose levels might be connected to joint pain? We'll take a deep dive into this connection and share tips for reducing pain.

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The Best Diet for Non-Diabetic Hypoglycemia
The Best Diet for Non-Diabetic Hypoglycemia

This article explores hypoglycemia in non-diabetics, how to manage symptoms through diet, and the advantages of glucose monitoring.

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The Effect of Aging on Your Blood Glucose Levels
The Effect of Aging on Your Blood Glucose Levels

Take a look at how aging can affect your blood glucose levels.

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The Best Diet to Increase Your Vitamin D Levels
The Best Diet to Increase Your Vitamin D Levels

Read on to learn more about vitamin D-rich foods and what you should include in your diet to make the most of this vitamin’s health benefits.

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The Best Diet for Menstruation
The Best Diet for Menstruation

When it comes to your menstrual cycle, what you eat can significantly impact how you feel. Read on to learn more about the best foods to add to your diet to help during that time of the month.

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The Benefits and Risks of Popular Ayurvedic Herbs and Spices
The Benefits and Risks of Popular Ayurvedic Herbs and Spices

Ayurveda is an ancient Indian holistic healing system that dates back over 5,000 years. In the second installment of our series on the practice, review the benefits and risks associated with popular Ayurvedic herbs and spices.

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The Beginner’s Guide to the Low FODMAP Diet
The Beginner’s Guide to the Low FODMAP Diet

In this article, we break down what a low FODMAP diet looks like for beginners, and its potential benefits and drawbacks for gastrointestinal health.

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The 6 Worst Foods for Osteoporosis
The 6 Worst Foods for Osteoporosis

When it comes to bone health, good nutrition is absolutely critical. Read on to learn what osteoporosis is and why some foods may increase your risk of or worsen the condition.