Health Tips For Men Over 60
For men over the age of 60, maintaining a healthy lifestyle can be somewhat more challenging as they age. But making minor changes to routines, choosing the proper diet, and monitoring your health is key to living a long and healthy life.
Statistically, the mortality rate for men is higher than women for a variety of factors; and men have higher risks of developing conditions such as:
- Heart Disease
- Chronic Respiratory Diseases
The recommended guidelines for women over 60 to stay healthy also apply to women and people of any age.
Eat Healthy Foods and Maintain a Diet That Provides Key Nutrients
A healthy diet can help men over 60 avoid chronic conditions such as obesity, type 2 diabetes, and heart disease. The best foods to incorporate into your diet include:
- Fruits and vegetables
- Lean meats such as chicken, turkey, and fish
- Whole grains
- High protein foods such as beans, eggs, and nuts
- Low-fat dairy products such as yogurt, cheese, and milk
- Avoid foods that are high in sugar, saturated and trans fats, cholesterol, and sodium.
Consult a registered dietician if you would like to create a personalized meal plan based on your current dietary needs.
Please view our article on Senior Nutrition Tips for more information.
For men over the age of 60, physical activity is one of the best ways to improve and maintain cardiac health, weight, muscle tone, balance, and flexibility. Regular exercise can even prevent conditions such as dementia and some types of cancers.
Some tips for senior men’s fitness include aerobic exercises such as walking, biking, swimming, and strength training exercises that involve using weights. However, if you do not exercise regularly, it is best to consult your doctor before starting a regimen to prevent straining your body.
The CDC ( Center for Disease Control and Prevention ) recommends up to 150 minutes of moderate exercise a week for seniors, including two days of muscle building exercises that target all muscle groups.
If you would like to learn about exercises you can do at home, click here.
Drink in Moderation
Men are more prone to excessive alcohol use than women. A study from 2019 conducted by the CDC found that 7% of men had issues with alcohol abuse compared to 4% of women. Alcohol increases the risk of developing various cancers such as liver, esophageal, mouth, throat and prostate cancers.
Other long term health risks include high blood pressure, heart disease, liver disease, and mental health problems such as depression and anxiety.
It is recommended for men to limit their daily alcohol intake to 2 drinks or less.
It has become common knowledge that smoking tobacco products can significantly impact your health later in life. But it is never too late to quit smoking, and for men over the age of 60, quitting smoking can lower blood pressure, improve lung capacity, and reduce the risk for heart disease, stroke, and lung and throat cancers.
Schedule Health Screenings With Your Healthcare Provider
Getting regular screenings for the following conditions can be fundamental to maintain your health later in life:
1. High Blood Pressure
Also known as hypertension, high blood pressure can increase the risk of heart attack, stroke, and other conditions in men over 50. Blood pressure checks are simple procedures, and it is recommended to have an official blood pressure check at least once every two years.
2. High Cholesterol
High cholesterol results from:
- Eating fatty foods, such as deep-fried foods and red meat
- Lack of exercise
- Excessive alcohol use
- Inherited conditions
High cholesterol can increase your risk of heart attack and stroke. Some ways to lower your cholesterol include a healthy diet, regular exercise, and, if necessary, medications provided by your healthcare provider.
3. Prostate Cancer
Early prostate cancer can be detected via a simple blood test known as the PSA ( prostate-specific antigen ), which can detect early prostate cancer. All men over the age of 50 should be checked for prostate cancer as recommended by their physician. African-American men are at higher risk for prostate cancer and should request to be tested by the time they turn 40.
4. Colon Cancer
Men from the age of 45 to 75 should have regular screenings for colon cancer. There are various types of screenings for polyps in the colon that can develop into colon cancer. In addition, if you have a family history of colon cancer, you should request screenings even earlier.
Stay Up to Date With Your Vaccinations
It is recommended for people of all ages to get their annual flu shots, and the CDC recommends that adults over the age of 50 should also get the following vaccinations:
- Shingles vaccine ( Shingrix )
- Pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine (PPSV23) can prevent pneumococcal diseases such as meningitis and blood infections
- Pneumococcal conjugate vaccines that protect against pneumonia
Talk to your doctor about which vaccines they recommend based on your current health status, lifestyle, and age.
Please note: The information in this article is provided as an educational resource and should not be used as a substitute for professional expertise, diagnosis, and treatment regarding a specific medical condition. Please consult your healthcare provider before making any decisions regarding dietary or lifestyle changes, or doing any physical exercises. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by grief or depression, contact a mental health professional.
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