By some accounts, approximately one million people reach retirement age per year in the United States. As of last year, more than 48 million seniors were living in their retirement years. That number has been steadily growing over the last few decades. At the same time, the number of seniors looking into assisted living is increasing proportionally. 

On top of that, studies are showing that the number of seniors who aren’t as physically active as they should be is surging. Quite a few people expect that to be the case. Retirement is largely considered a time for aging Americans to relax and take things a bit slower than they did while raising their families and serving as part of the nation’s workforce. Experts say that settling into a sedentary lifestyle could actually be harmful to seniors, though. 

Protecting the Health of America’s Seniors

Arbor Palms is an assisted living community in Anaheim, CA. We’re committed to fostering the health and longevity of our residents, and we go to great lengths to achieve that goal. We cater to all our residents’ needs, ensuring they live happy, well-rounded lives. We also strive to keep our residents active by offering an array of fitness programs and other activities that meld with their lifestyles. 

Why Is Active Living Important for Seniors?

Active living is essential for seniors for numerous reasons. Being inactive can have detrimental impacts on aging Americans from both physical and mental perspectives. Our health tends to decline as we age, and failing to exercise only exacerbates that problem. In contrast, physical activity fosters health. Take a look at some of the ways active living can affect seniors for the better. 

Bolstering Immunity

Many studies indicate that exercise can bolster the immune system. On one hand, it helps to ward off insomnia. Research shows a significant link between adequate sleep and increased immunity. Exercise improves sleep, so the connection there is difficult to ignore. Physical activity also reduces the risks and effects of certain chronic medical conditions that can leave people vulnerable to illnesses. 

Additionally, exercise can help people fight off illnesses that may be trying to take over their bodies. It raises the body’s temperature. That can help eliminate harmful bacteria in the body. Exercise may also allow immune cells to flow more freely, so they’ll be ready to attack infections before they have a chance to take their toll. Strengthening the immune system can go a long way toward keeping seniors healthy, but that’s only part of the picture. 

Promoting Healing

Physical activity can improve the body’s ability to heal after injuries as well. It increases blood flow, which is a crucial component of the healing process. Exercise also increases oxygen flow, another important piece of the puzzle. Since physical activity boosts immunity, it can help prevent infections and other complications following injuries, too. All those factors contribute to faster, more effective healing. 

Improving Balance and Coordination

Communities that offer a range of senior living options can help aging Americans with balance and coordination issues. Many seniors point out that they feel unsteady on their feet. That makes them leery of trying to exercise. If physical activity places them at risk of falling and sustaining injuries, that’s a good reason to avoid it. Exercise programs can be designed to target those problems, giving participants better coordination and balance while reducing their risks of falling.  

Multiple Mental and Emotional Benefits

Physical activity has proven effective for improving mental and emotional well-being, too. It reduces stress, allowing both the mind and the body to relax. It likewise reduces the risk of developing anxiety and depression for people of all ages. Recent reports note that seniors are vulnerable to mental disorders like anxiety and depression, but exercise can reduce the risks. 

Living in a community for seniors can keep mental disorders at bay in other ways as well. When seniors are surrounded by their peers and living under the watchful eyes of experienced caregivers, they’re less likely to succumb to loneliness and isolation. Exercise programs give them opportunities to connect with others and make them more likely to participate in social events and other activities. That can have a major positive impact on mental and emotional health.

Fostering Well-Being for Seniors

Exercising isn’t always easy for seniors. For some, it may even seem frightening or impossible. Assisted living communities can resolve those problems, though. They provide physical activities that are designed to be safe and helpful for aging Americans. Exercise programs can greatly improve seniors’ health, giving them reinforcements to maintain physical and mental well-being.