The physiological changes that occur in the body secondary to the natural aging process often contribute to muscle mass loss in older adults. The problem is compounded when seniors fail to consume a healthy diet or get enough physical activity. However, seniors can reduce or reverse the problem by adopting a few strategies.
Do Strength Training
Strength or resistance training may involve using resistance bands, basic weights, or fitness machines. This form of training encourages muscle cell fibers to enlarge, which leads to increased muscle mass and strength. The exercise also initiates the release of growth hormones, which aid in the process. Statistics indicate seniors 65 years and older performing resistance training three times each week can experience an increase in muscle mass in just a few months.
Perform Fitness Exercises
By engaging in exercise for sustained lengths of time, seniors elevate their heart rates. The cardiovascular system becomes stronger. The heart rate and blood pressure decrease while blood circulation increases. Muscles receive more blood enriched with nutrients to optimize function and growth. Activities that provide aerobic exercise include cycling, jogging, and hiking.
Seniors with mobility limitations or health conditions may find it difficult to exercise on their own. Certain age-related conditions can make it more challenging for seniors to age in place safely and comfortably, but New Hampshire live-in care experts are available around the clock to help seniors manage their health. Whether your loved one is living with dementia or is recovering from a stroke, you can trust the professional live-in caregivers from Home Care Assistance to enhance his or her quality of life.
Seniors who haven’t been physically active in a while can enhance their cardiovascular function and boost muscle mass by routinely walking. The exercise costs nothing and may be enjoyed indoors or out. The simple act of walking can increase balance and lower body mass. Older adults can start by walking at their own pace for up to 30 minutes multiple times during the week. As they become stronger, they can quicken the pace and the distance walked.
Follow a Healthy Diet
Seniors should consider evaluating their diets and make adjustments as needed. Protein is necessary for muscle retention and growth. The amino acid leucine is particularly important, and it’s found in lean meat, eggs, and fish. Fish is also a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids, which reduce inflammation and increase muscle mass. Vitamin D, which is necessary for the body to absorb calcium, is vital for muscle flexion and contraction, which promotes muscle mass increase. Exposing the skin to direct sunlight for 15 minutes stimulates the body to produce vitamin D. Older adults might also add fortified dairy products or cereal to ensure they’re getting sufficient quantities of the nutrients they need.
A trained professional caregiver can help your loved one prepare meals that meet all his or her specific nutritional needs. Though you may be researching multiple agencies that provide in-home care, New Hampshire Home Care Assistance has much to offer your family and your elderly loved one. We are leaders in the senior home care industry, offering proprietary programs like our holistic Balanced Care Method and around-the-clock assistance from reliable, experienced caregivers. Trust Home Care Assistance to help your loved one enjoy a happier and healthier life in the golden years.
Get Adequate Sleep
Regardless of age, adults need seven to nine hours of sleep each night. While asleep, the body is able to accomplish necessary repairs. Exercise is known to cause microscopic tears in muscle fibers, which is normal as the muscles grow. However, the damage is more likely to occur in seniors who aren’t physically active and have weakened muscles. The mere act of stretching formerly unused muscles causes damage that must be repaired. A day of recovery after vigorous training is recommended for the body to recover and promote the healing process.
Muscle loss is one of many conditions seniors need to be aware of so they can make lifestyle choices that promote optimal health. There are a variety of age-related health conditions that can make it more challenging for seniors to live independently. However, many of the challenges they face can be easier to address if their families opt for professional elder care. You can rely on expertly trained caregivers to keep your loved one safe and comfortable while aging in place. Call Home Care Assistance today at (603) 471-3004 to learn about our high-quality in-home care services.