Father’s Day is around the corner, and whether you’re celebrating your dad, a father figure, or another cherished loved one, helping them take care of their health can be the ultimate gift.
Staying on top of your health is especially important as you age. Between balancing work, friends, family, and other responsibilities, it can be hard to prioritize exercise and other healthy activities. To help you out, we're sharing a few fun tips and gift ideas to help you enjoy the day with your loved ones and encourage them to stay healthy.
First, let’s break down some of the most important reasons you should care for your health.
General Tips to Help Your Dad Stay Healthy
There are countless benefits to maintaining your health as you get older, but it can be challenging for parents to make time for themselves with the hustle and bustle of daily life.
Things like exercising regularly, eating a balanced diet, actively taking steps to reduce stress levels, and keeping up with doctor's appointments are simple but effective. They can even be great ways to spend more quality time with your loved one!
1) Stay Active
Regular physical activity can increase your life expectancy by almost seven years and can positively impact heart health and blood sugar levels, and prevent chronic diseases. The World Health Organization recommends getting at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise per week.
Exercising can sometimes sound like a chore, but luckily it’s easy to find ways to make exercise fun, and it’s a great way to spend more quality time with loved ones.
If your dad isn’t a gym-goer, try taking him on a hike or going to your local tennis court together. For people who aren’t able to do high-impact activities or other more strenuous exercises, you can even try stepping out into the garden to plant some flowers together or going on a walk around the neighborhood together.
2) Reduce Stress
Stress is one of the most significant mental health issues affecting almost everyone. Still, it can affect everything from sleep to glucose levels and even increase your risk of heart attacks and stroke.
For parents, stress may seem inevitable. But many things can help reduce stress while also providing other positive health benefits.
Helping your dad make time to practice yoga; going to classes together can be a relaxing way to get the body moving and disconnect at the end of a long day.
Meditation practices can help support mindfulness and may even reduce feelings of depression and anxiety. The best part is there are lots of health apps out there that can help with guided meditation and mindfulness.
3) Keep up with Doctor’s Visits
While this one might seem like a given, it’s essential to ensure your dad keeps up with his doctor’s visits. Self-care can often be put on the back burner for parents, especially when many life events pile up.
But when it comes to chronic illnesses and other potentially life-threatening conditions, detecting their early signs can be one of the most critical factors in successfully treating them.
Helping your dad or loved one keep up with regular health screenings is a great way to show you care, and this is important whether they’re at risk for certain conditions due to family history or other lifestyle factors, or even if they are in tip-top shape.
7 Healthy Gifts Dad Will Love
This Father’s Day, giving your loved one the gift of better health can be a great way to show your appreciation and help support their health and wellbeing.
Now that we’ve gone over some of the things your loved ones can do to stay healthy let’s explore a few gift ideas that can help support them along the way.
A smartwatch can be a great way to stay motivated to exercise and to set and reach health goals. Most smartwatches can do everything from tracking calories burned to detecting irregular heart rates.
Many models and varieties are available at different price points, depending on your budget.
2) Healthy Recipes Cookbook
Eating healthy and cooking at home can become monotonous and repetitive, especially for busy parents. A cookbook with healthy recipes can be a great way to get your dad excited about eating healthy at home.
There are cookbooks for almost every diet and cuisine, so the options are endless! Take a look at some of this year’s top-rated healthy cookbooks.
3) Exercise Equipment
If your dad has extra space at home and needs a little nudge to keep active, home gym equipment can be a convenient way to keep up with exercise at home.
Depending on your dad’s fitness level and abilities, anything from a few dumbbells to a stationary bike can be great for getting recommended physical activity.
If your dad prefers outdoor sports, getting him some new equipment for his activity of choice can get him excited about going out to the golf course.
Things like golf clubs, tennis rackets, a yoga mat, or even running shoes can help boost motivation to get back into his favorite activity or even try out a new one. Here are some gift ideas if you need a hand browsing around.
4) Massage Gift Card
For dads needing an excuse to relax or take a mental break from their routine, a massage gift card to a local spa or clinic can help them disconnect and unwind.
Massages can be an excellent tool for stress management, and there are lots of styles to choose from to get the most out of your session.
From gentle Swedish massages to a thorough deep tissue massage, your dad can reap the benefits of reduced muscle soreness, better immune function, and improved circulation.
5) Air Fryer
If your dad is a lover of fried foods, surprising him with his very own air fryer can be a great way to help him adopt a healthier diet while still enjoying some of his favorite foods.
Air fryers have burst into popularity over the last few years and are a healthier alternative to deep frying with oil.
6) Nutrisense Gift Card
Last but not least, giving your dad the gift of a Nutrisense gift card can help him learn how to change his lifestyle and optimize his diet to regulate his blood glucose.
Whether your dad lives with or is at risk for diabetes, Nutrisense can help create healthy habits and provide new insights into overall health.
Here’s How Our Dietitians Help their Dads Stay Healthy
We asked a few members of our Nutrition Team to tell us how they help their dads stay healthy, so you have some inspiration to start with! Read on to see what they said.
Building a Bond Around Joyful Movement
“Every time I'm home, my dad and I plan a hike or a track workout together and use that time to reconnect! Now, even when we're not together, we chat on the phone about our individual workouts, and it's a way to keep each other accountable to our health goals.”
—Carlee Hayes, RDN, CD, Nutrition Manager
Holding Each Other Accountable to Stay Active
“I help keep my dad healthy by encouraging him to include some strength training into his weekly workout routine—he loves cardio!
On top of the many benefits of resistance exercise, many don't know that it can also help keep bones strong, which becomes even more critical as we age. And, I may also nag him to increase his veggie and protein intake with meals too—lovingly, of course!”
—Amanda Donahue, MS, RD, CD
Supporting His Health and Nutrition Journey
“I help keep my dad healthy by being his partner in his journey to reverse insulin resistance! My dad was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes last year.
His fasting glucose was >300, and he had an A1c of 14! It was pretty scary. We worked on a customized dietary approach that allowed him to drop his fasting glucose to 110 and his A1c to 6.0 within three months.
We did this without any medication whatsoever!”
—Heather Davis, MS, RDN, LDN
Being His Healthcare Advocate
“As a dietitian, I help my dad stay healthy by reviewing his CGM data and providing actionable tips to help optimize his mealtime responses. His favorite “hack” is meal sequencing.
I also am his health care advocate! We organize his thoughts by creating a list of appropriate concerns to address at his visits.
It's super helpful as he tends to forget his actual questions when he’s face-to-face with the doctor!”
—Stephanie Etherington, RD, CDE
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.
Ready to take the first step? Start with our quiz to see how Nutrisense can support your health.
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Heather has worked in healthcare and nutrition for over 15 years, with bachelor's degrees in Microbiology and Philosophy and a master's degree in Nutrition Science. Her professional background includes nutrition and diabetes research, nutrition education, medical writing, and extensive clinical work in a functional neuroendocrine specialty practice.