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About Us For Patients and their Families Office of Geriatric Research Medical Education Newsletter
Tips For Aging Successfully

Use it or lose it! Whether we're talking about the mind or the body, a growing scientific literature supports the idea that those parts of us we don't exercise atrophy (waste away). The physical benefits of exercise include osteoporosis prevention from bone strengthening, risk reduction for heart attack, and a lower incidence of mental health problems such as depression.

View Your Mind as a Muscle that also needs exercise.
Growing evidence points to the role of education in protecting from Alzheimers Disease and studies are now underway which looks at the ability of mental stimulation to prevent memory loss and intellectual decline as we age. Whether its crossword puzzles, bridge, or getting your child or grandchild to explain how that computer works, jump in!

Develop a Sensible Plan of Nutrition and Nutritional Supplements with your physician that is scientifically based. For example, the role of calcium in the diet of women cannot be over emphasized, and there is growing evidence on the value of other nutritional supplements, such as vitamin D in older women. Nutritional claims that sound too good to be true may very well be. Discuss them with your doctor, and if he or she dismisses them without a thoughtful evaluation or discussion, find another doctor.

Discuss Hormone Replacement Therapy with Your Doctor. No, its not for everybody, but the list of chronic diseases it seems to impact — from osteoporosis to cardiovascular disease, seems to be growing annually. Only a tailored approach that considers your health and family history, as well as your own lifestyle and preferences can determine if it is appropriate for you. To find out more view: Healthgate

The Influence of Social and Emotional Support on Healthy Aging is Real and Powerful.Remember those studies that demonstrated an increased risk of dying after losing a spouse or another loved one? In the past decade we've learned that the opposite is also true. Strong social and emotional support protects us from illness and increases the chance that if we become ill, that we will recover successfully. Maintain and build strong social and emotional ties of every type of exercise with your friends, rekindle sexual relationships, and recognize that you can never have too many true friends!

Take Charge of Your Health Care! The most important primary care provider is not your doctor but you. Take the initiative in learning about the chronic conditions that effect you, and view your relationship with health care providers as a partnership rather than a dictatorship. Increasing evidence points to better health outcomes for those who proactively participate in their health care.

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