Yoga and Seniors

 

A trained yoga instructor conducts Gentle Yoga sessions for our residents, every week. This activity is enjoyed by many of our residents and is always well attended. The yoga sessions for February will be conducted every Friday. Check out our February Activities Calendar to see all the other activities that our residents will be enjoying this month.

Yoga has been shown to help alleviate or reduce many health challenges faced by the senior population, making it an increasingly popular exercise choice.

HEALTH BENEFITS TO SENIORS

Sleep: Yoga practice improves the quantity and quality of sleep among the geriatric population.

Strength/Arthritis: Yoga improves strength in individuals suffering from arthritis.

Diabetes: Over time, Type II diabetics can achieve better blood sugar control and pulmonary functions when they follow a daily Yoga regimen.

Hypertension: Regular yoga practice can show a decrease in blood pressure, as well as a decrease in blood sugar, cholesterol and triglycerides.

Excess Weight: Practicing Yoga regularly for at least half an hour per week may help offset middle-age weight gain (Kristal et al, 2005). It is estimated that people typically gain about one pound per year between the ages of 45 and 55.

Mood/Anxiety: Moods and anxiety levels improve as a result of regular Yoga sessions.

Chronic Pain: Yoga practice has been shown to aid those suffering with chronic pain.

Lung Problems/Breathing Difficulties: Breathing difficulties in Bronchial Asthmatics can be relieved by practicing Yoga-chair breathing procedure composed of simple neck muscle relaxation movements and postures (or “asanas”) with breathing exercises.

This article is from American Senior Fitness Association, please visit their site for the complete article.

How Caregivers Can Properly Treat Wounds

It is normal for a person to get a scrape on their knee from tripping, or a paper cut on their finger from opening an envelope, and usually these minor accidents are not considered a big deal. A scrape or a paper cut for an elderly person, however, can actually be a big deal. Open wounds do not heal as easily on elderly people as they do for those who are younger. Therefore, they must properly treat any wounds they receive if they want to heal. If they do not treat their wounds they could take months to heal, and could even result in an ulcer. Read more

The Importance of a Healthy Diet for the Elderly

It is important for everyone to maintain a healthy diet, but it is especially important for elderly people to do so. The risk of possible complications that could come from an unhealthy diet is greater for the elderly because their bodies are not as strong as they once were. In order to take proper care of themselves and ensure many more healthy years, older adults should be paying a lot of attention to what they eat. Helpguide.org provides a great explanation for how elderly people should be eating, and why they should be eating this way.

The Joy of Eating and Aging Well

Food for thought: Think healthy eating is all about dieting and sacrifice? Think again. Eating well is a lifestyle that embraces colorful food, creativity in the kitchen, and eating with friends.

For seniors, the benefits of healthy eating include increased mental acuteness, resistance to illness and disease, higher energy levels, a more robust immune system, faster recuperation times, and better management of chronic health problems. As we age, eating well can also be the key to a positive outlook and staying emotionally balanced.

You are the boss when it comes to food choices! Read on for tips on how to supercharge with food.

Feeding the body, mind and soul

Remember the old adage, you are what you eat? Make it your motto. When you choose a variety of colorful fruits and veggies, whole grains, and lean proteins you’ll feel simply marvelous inside and out.

  • Live longer and stronger – Good nutrition keeps muscles, bones, organs, and other body parts strong for the long haul. Eating vitamin-rich food boosts immunity and fights illness-causing toxins. A proper diet reduces the risk of heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, type-2 diabetes, bone loss, cancer, and anemia. Also, eating sensibly means consuming fewer calories and more nutrient dense foods, keeping weight in check.
  • Sharpen the mind – Scientists know that key nutrients are essential for the brain to do its job. Research shows that people who eat a selection of brightly colored fruit, leafy veggies, certain fish and nuts packed with omega-3 fatty acids can improve focus and decrease the risk for Alzheimer’s disease.
  • Feel better – Eating well is a feast for your five senses! Wholesome meals give you more energy and help you look better, resulting in a self-esteem boost. It’s all connected—when your body feels good you feel happier inside and out

Tips for wholesome eating

Once you’ve made friends with nutrient-dense food, your body will feel slow and sluggish if you eat less wholesome fare. Here’s how to get in the habit of eating well.

  • Reduce sodium (salt) to help prevent water retention and high blood pressure. Look for the “low sodium” label and season meals with a few grains of course sea salt instead of cooking with salt.
  • Enjoy good fats. Reap the rewards of olive oil, avocados, salmon, walnuts, flaxseed, and other monounsaturated fats. Research shows that the fat from these delicious sources protects your body against heart disease by controlling “bad” LDL cholesterol levels and raising “good” HDL cholesterol levels.
  • Fiber up. Avoid constipation, lower the risk of chronic diseases, and feel fuller longer by increasing fiber intake. Your go-to fiber-foods are raw fruits and veggies, whole-grains, and beans.
  • Cook smart. The best way to prepare veggies is by steaming or sautéing in olive oil—it preserves nutrients. Forget boiling—it leeches nutrients.
  • Five colors. Take a tip from Japanese food culture and try to include five colors on your plate. Fruits and veggies rich in color correspond to rich nutrients (think: blackberries, melons, yams, spinach, tomato, zucchini).

What is Occupational Therapy and Who Needs It

At Odd Fellows Home, we provide occupational therapy to patients in need. This therapy helps our patients to  tend to their own day to day personal activities. Daily living activities  include dressing, home making, light meal prep and feeding skills. There are many people who do not understand what occupational therapy is and who uses it (ages range from children to the elderly). We found this great article from The Fund to Promote Awareness of Occupational Therapy that discusses what occupational therapy is,and how it is used on the elderly.

What is Occupational Therapy?

The person who needs occupational therapy could be your father or mother facing changes because of aging. It could be your child, frustrated with being unable to do the seemingly simple things the other children at school can do. It could be you or your spouse coping with illness or the results of an accident. It could be anyone who, for whatever reason, can’t do the things in life they want or need to do.

Occupational therapy is therapy based on performing the meaningful activities of daily life (self-care skills, education, work, or social interaction), especially to enable or enhance participation in such activities despite impairments or limitations in physical or mental functioning.* Occupational therapy is for individuals of all ages-to improve skills that help them perform daily tasks at home and at school, at work and at play.

Occupational therapy practitioners are skilled professionals. Their education includes the study of human growth and development, with specific emphasis on the social, emotional and physical effects of illness and injury. They help individuals with illnesses, injuries, certain conditions or disabilities get on with their “occupations” of living.

Occupational therapy practitioners are unique in that they look at the whole picture when it comes to a person’s treatment- the individual’s abilities, the task to be performed, and the environment in which the task takes place.

In a team of healthcare specialists, a surgeon, for example, will operate on your injured knee. A physical therapist will devise a series of exercises to help the knee heal properly with a maximum range of motion. An occupational therapist will ask, “What do you need your knee to do? What activities do you want to do, so you can adapt (the way you walk, drive, move around at home, etc.) to that knee,” thereby determining the right treatment for keeping you mobile and an active participant in your own life.

Occupational Therapy for Older Adults

Nearly one-third of occupational therapy practitioners work with older adults. They perform many types of activities, employing many types of therapies, with the overriding goal of helping older adults regain or maintain a level of independence that will allow them to age in place for as long as possible. Occupational therapy has been proven effective for seniors living with various medical conditions or recovering from surgery. In addition to working with individuals to increase strength or regain important life supporting skills, occupational therapists work throughout a community, counseling families, local governments, and community groups to ensure that each is doing what it can to help older adults maintain their independence.