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Healthy living

Older Adults and the Flu

November 6, 2012

older adult flu

I’m sure you’ve heard the rhyme, “an apple a day keeps the doctor away.” Unfortunately, this rhyme is not entirely truthful. Apples are healthy and good for you in many ways, but the reality is, eating an apple can’t keep you from getting sick. There is something that can do that though—vaccination (although we have yet to invent a rhyme reminding us of that).    

Vaccinations are arguably the most important contribution to medicine. They are the reason polio no longer exists in the United States and why children no longer even need inoculation from small pox.

Volunteering as an older adult

October 11, 2012

volunteering

Volunteerism among seniors is on the rise. A report released by the Administration on Aging noted that the number of volunteers age 65+ increased by 1.4 million people in a seven year span. There are many good reasons behind the jump. Older adults today are on average better off than those in the past. Their better financial standing and higher levels of education may be playing a role in their willingness to serve the community.

ReAge and Health Care

October 9, 2012

ReAge healthcare

As part of Hebrew SeniorLife’s commitment to change the way we view aging (the concept of ReAge), we have focused a lot of attention on maximizing the independence of our patients. We do this by offering personalized care that tailors a care management plan to fit the very specific needs of each patient. In a word, we are reengineering health care.

At Hebrew SeniorLife, care is delivered through a multidisciplinary team approach led by specialists, nurses, physical therapists, psychiatrists and spiritual workers—who all work to create an environment for each patient centered on achieving a maximum level of care. Our care transition model—which leads the way to redefining the experience of aging—serves to provide patients with care at the “right place, right time.”

Depression in older adults

September 13, 2012

depression in older adults

While most seniors are happy, content and positive, others need assistance in helping them adjust to life's changes as they get older. It’s not uncommon for people of all ages to experience bouts of sadness but among seniors, depression can be a debilitating and life-threatening condition. Clinical depression is a disorder that affects mood, feelings, behavior and potentially physical health and is diagnosed when sadness is persistent or begins to affect a person’s ability to function normally.

Study shows that social activity contributes to a long, healthy life

August 30, 2012

staying active

Stay connected-and we don’t just mean online! Research has shown that maintaining social engagement with people contributes to longer and healthier lives. A study conducted by Hebrew SeniorLife’s Institute for Aging Research showed survival rates among socially active long-term care patients were greater than they were for those who were not.

You can build your social network of friends and family by setting a goal of getting out of the house regularly.

Here are a few ideas I share with seniors about how they can make that happen:

• Join civic, social or other organizations.

• Get friends together and form a walking club or find one to join at a local mall.

• Visit your community’s senior center or council on aging.

Nature trails mean peaceful strolls, pleasant surprises

Walking provides major benefits for healthy aging

August 16, 2012

NewBridge on the Charles

The benefits of walking are well known, especially when it comes to seniors. Because of this, NewBridge on the Charles makes it easy for residents to include walking as a part of their daily routine. Thanks to some smart designing, walking at NewBridge is much more than putting one foot in front of the other.

Have you ever seen a wild turkey? How about a deer in your backyard? At NewBridge on the Charles, nature is our neighbor. One hundred acres of our 162-acre campus have been deemed environmentally protected woodland and have been criss-crossed with safe, unobtrusive walking trails so our residents and neighbors can explore the dense forest that surrounds us.

Why it’s important to reduce cholesterol numbers as we age

August 14, 2012

monitoring cholesterol

As a staff geriatrician for Hebrew SeniorLife, I often tell my patients: “You’ve got to work on lowering your cholesterol number.” High cholesterol levels are widespread because we absorb cholesterol from certain foods we eat. Once absorbed into the bloodstream, cholesterol is broken down into LDL (bad cholesterol) and HDL (good cholesterol). While LDL can cause plaque buildup on artery walls, HDL helps reduce plaque. LDL can lead to cardiovascular problems and put you at risk for stroke and heart disease.

What’s an ideal number?

The philosophy behind creating healthy meals for seniors in independent living

August 7, 2012

Sal Filetti, Director of Food and Beverage at NewBridge on the Charles

 

Food for our residents is more important than ever. Not only does it need to be nutritious, it needs to be tasty and appealing to the eye. Sal Filetti, Director of Food and Beverage at NewBridge on the Charles, took on the challenge of developing and implementing a “food philosophy” which will guide his department in meeting the needs and desires of NewBridge residents. I recently sat down with him for a quick Q and A on what this means:

Q. What is the NewBridge “food philosophy”?

Vitalize360 wellness program is showing incredible results

Personalized health program can help you successfully achieve your goals

August 2, 2012

Older adult exercising

While many retirement communities only provide regular exercise classes and fitness equipment, the Vitalize360 program at Orchard Cove goes further by providing individualized fitness programs for its residents. This groundbreaking approach—featured in a recent issue of the New York Times—takes the guesswork out of senior health and fitness and provides many benefits.

If you’re an older adult, living with diabetes doesn’t need to slow you down (and it shouldn’t)

July 31, 2012

Healthy seniors

As you age, it’s not uncommon for chronic health issues to appear. While any type of chronic illness can be upsetting and feel daunting—it doesn’t need to be. Diseases such as Type II diabetes are manageable at any age. As physician-in-chief at Hebrew SeniorLife, I counsel our residents and patients all the time on some of the best ways to control their diabetes.

While the treatment of any disease should be tailored to a patient’s specific medical needs, the management goals for everyone who has diabetes are the same, regardless of age—enhancing quality of life and reducing complications.

You can improve the lives of seniors today, and for generations to come.

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