As you reach your 70s, your body and mind are changing, making preventative care a continued priority. Whether you're dreaming of travel, quiet walks through the forest, or time with the grandkids, your health directly ties in. Here are a few ways to consider preventative care in your 70s.
What you put in your body directly correlates to how well it functions, so a healthy diet in your 70s is key to preventative care. The more and more we learn about nutrition science, the more it becomes clear that a proper diet is very personalized. In general, it's smart to eat plenty of fruits and vegetables and cut down on processed sugars and alcohol. But the specifics vary depending on the person. That's why it's a good idea to speak with your healthcare provider about the type of nutrition that's right for your body. The answer may vary depending on your blood work or risk factors, but you can be confident in a personalized recommendation that fits you right.
Even if you find yourself starting to slow down in your 70s, you don't want to throw in the towel on gentle exercise. At a minimum, lifting light weights and walking daily if you're able to will help keep your muscles and joints going strong. If any routine movements cause pain or discomfort, though, speak with your provider for help getting to the root of the issue or finding modifications to make your life more comfortable.
Your mind is part of your body, and it needs to be exercised too. As we get older and the regular mental movement of school and work are behind us, making time for mental activity is vital. Things like learning a new language, trying out a complex recipe for the first time, or challenging yourself with a difficult crossword can all help work your mind. Now is the time to learn new things and work out your grey matter.
Mental health goes beyond working your brain. It also includes taking care of your happiness, emotions, and brain chemical balance. Speaking with a professional counselor or psychiatrist can help if you're not feeling well mentally and emotionally. You can also work to keep yourself feeling well by making time for an active social life. Make plans with friends and family, sign up for a club, or go to Monday night trivia to stay connected and keep mental health in mind.
As you live in your 70s, new health concerns may arise for you, so it's a good time to keep the lines of communication open between you and your healthcare provider. In this decade of life, you may even want to ask your provider about discontinuing colon cancer tests or mammography, depending on risk factors.
As you require more personalized care later in life, the staff at CHP can help you find the preventative care path that suits your life best. Reach out to the clinic in your community to schedule an appointment with your healthcare professional.