Healthy Aging

Healthy Aging Articles

Your health through the decades

By age 60, all men tend to get thrown together into the so-called 60-and-older group, even though there are often significant differences between a man who is 65 and one who is 85. Certain lifestyle habits need to be maintained, no matter what a man’s age, such as adopting a heart-healthy diet, maintaining a healthy weight, and continuing a regular exercise routine to build strength, flexibility, and cardio fitness. Yet most men also need to place extra attention on certain aspects of their health depending on whether they are in their 60s, 70s, or 80s. (Locked) More »

The Art of Aging Well - Longwood Seminar

Is age just a number? How will medical and technology advances redefine biological aging? In this seminar, learn more about research led by scientists at Harvard Medical School about what healthy aging means, and explore discoveries that could help to improve the experience of aging. Each spring, Harvard Medical School's Office of Communications and External Relations organizes a series of four free "mini-med school" classes for the general public in the heart of Boston's Longwood Medical Area. At the end of the seminar series, participants who attend three out of the four sessions receive a certificate of completion. Topics are selected for their appeal to a lay audience and have included the human genome, nutrition, sleep dynamics and health care access. Faculty from Harvard Medical School and its affiliate hospitals volunteer their time to present these lectures to the community. More »

Are you functionally fit?

Exercise is important to maintain “functional” fitness, which is the ability of a person to perform regular daily activities, whether that means carrying laundry or playing with grandkids. A program to maintain functional fitness includes exercises that mimic daily activities, with motions that help the body get better at pushing, pulling, climbing, bending, lifting, reaching, turning, squatting, and rotating the trunk or shoulders. The exercises also train the muscles to work together. (Locked) More »

Staying connected can improve your health

Research shows that loneliness may have ill effects for health. Social bonds can fray as people age, particularly in times of stress such as after the loss of a partner or in cases of illness or disability. Taking steps to reconnect can not only help improve social life, but can also help protect health over the long term. More »

Free services to help your health

There are many free services that can help improve health. Grocery store workers can point shoppers toward fruits and vegetables that are in season and the freshest cuts of meat. Pharmacists may be able to dispense free prescription medications or free advice about how to use medications, and even take a person’s blood pressure at no charge. Some universities offer free online academic classes. Some nonprofit organizations provide free food to people who are too sick to shop or cook for themselves. And many organizations offer free exercise classes for older adults. (Locked) More »

More over-the-counter hearing aids on the way

In August 2017, Congress and the president approved the Over–the-Counter Hearing Aid Act, which gives the FDA three years to establish an over-the-counter hearing aid category and develop safety and labeling rules for the devices. More »

Lift weights to boost muscle

Men naturally lose muscle mass as they age—as much as 3% to 5% per decade after age 30. Weaker muscles mean less stamina, balance and mobility, all which increase a person’s risk for falls and fractures. Strength training, using either free weights like dumbbells, kettlebells, and barbells or weight machines that are designed to work specific muscle groups, can help men maintain and even add muscle. More »

An aspirin a day for your health?

Low-dose aspirin use has been shown to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and colorectal cancer. But it’s not right for all women and can lead to serious complications, including gastrointestinal bleeding. A thorough risk analysis should be conducted by your doctor before you consider starting a low-dose aspirin regimen. (Locked) More »

Better habits, better brain health

Engaging in healthy lifestyle habits may help protect thinking skills. For example, aerobic exercise helps improve the health of brain tissue by increasing blood flow to the brain and reducing the chances of injury to the brain. Maintaining routine habits of good health—such as getting at least seven hours of sleep per night, managing stress, quitting smoking, and treating underlying conditions—also support brain health. Socializing also has important brain benefits. People who report having more companionship and more emotional support have a lower risk for dementia and stroke. (Locked) More »