While there is a lot of controversy about what diet is best for a long and healthy lifestyle- there is no doubt about things that you can do to stay healthy into the golden years. We want them to be golden years, not rusty years.
So here are things that all of the medical community agrees with- and things that my 87 year old father do:
Lose weight– as you age most appetites decrease a bit, and habits change. If you lose weight it is a lot easier on your joints, your heart, and your back. Take advantage of the diminished appetite – my parents skip dinner most nights, or just have a snack. My dad has gone from 185 pounds when he worked to 150 pounds now — a nice slow weight loss over the last twenty years.
Exercise – one simple thing- walk every day. Thirty minutes – it makes a big difference. When I visit my parents my dad can out walk me. Both of my parents are as sharp as ever.
Keep your mind occupied. The golden years do not mean settling down and watching television. Keep up with something- my parents have a wide range of interests, my dad still serves on a board – and they always discuss politics (I might disagree with their views at times).
Simple formula: Eat less, walk a bit, and keep your mind occupied.
I’m glad my parents are happy and pretty healthy for being in their 80’s, and my son (18 months old now) has a great set of grandparents to enjoy (he’s their first grandchild).
Dr. Terry Simpson
Dr. Terry Simpson received his undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Chicago where he spent several years in the Kovler Viral Oncology laboratories doing genetic engineering. He found he liked people more than petri dishes, and received his MD. Dr. Simpson, then became a renowned weight loss surgeon, and a leading advocate of culinary medicine. The first surgeon to become certified in Culinary Medicine, he advocates teaching people to improve their health through their food. On the other side of the world, he has been a leading advocate of changing health care to make it more "relationship based," and his efforts awarded his team the Malcom Baldrige award for healthcare in 2011 for the NUKA system of care in Alaska. A frequent contributor to media outlets discussing health related topics and advances in medicine, he is also a proud dad, husband, author, cook, and surgeon “in that order.” For media inquiries, please visit www.terrysimpson.com.