As the generation known as the Boomers ages, a new range of medical concerns is coming to the forefront. Chronic diseases like diabetes and heart disease, which are associated with aging, are common among those who are 65 or older. Most conditions can be managed and treated, and healthcare insurance plans like Medicaid can help seniors to pay for the costs. A healthy lifestyle goes a long way in preventing and eliminating such chronic diseases.
Chronic diseases in an aging population
As the generation known as the Boomers ages, the healthcare system faces a new set of medical issues and conditions. The Boomers make up the largest cohort in American society, and number about 72 million. That?s 20% of the total population. By 2030, the youngest members of this generation will be over 65 years old, according to the The State of Aging and Health in America study for 2013.
Most older adults suffer from chronic conditions like diabetes, heart disease and depression, often without being aware of it. In fact, treatment for chronic diseases makes up the largest portion of healthcare costs in the country. Fortunately for seniors, most of their medical costs are covered by the government-run health insurance program known as Medicare. However, simple lifestyle changes can ensure a healthy and happy retirement, without the need for expensive medical care.
A healthy lifestyle is the key
In medicine as in much else, prevention is the best cure. Diet, exercise and interesting occupations for your time are the key to a healthy and happy retirement. Following simple dietary guidelines like getting a minimum of 1.5 to 2 servings of fruit and 2 to 2.5 cups of vegetables daily can improve both physical and emotional health. Fiber is an important part of a healthy diet. The recommend intake for people over the age of 50, according to the Institute of Medicine, is 21 grams per day for women, and 30 for men.
Living a healthy life is also the best way to counteract the impact of the commonest chronic conditions like diabetes, heart disease and depression. Exercise is likewise essential for a healthy lifestyle, though it must be suited to each individual?s condition and health. Scientists and retirees have also found that a round of interesting activities, such as music, art or gardening can all contribute to a happier retirement experience, which is also healthier.
Heath insurance through Medicaid can help seniors pay for their healthcare expenses. However, a healthy lifestyle with a suitable diet, exercise and interesting activities can serve as an excellent primary healthcare plan in itself, preventing and minimizing the impact of chronic conditions as the body ages.