How can I prevent health problems as I age?

Edtrina Moss
Ambulatory Care

Preventing health problems as one ages is a collaborative effort that includes the person, their family/friends, and their health care providers. Meaning, your efforts of health prevention and health promotion should include a support system of individuals that provide encouragement and sustainment. You should commit to a plan of action that includes regular wellness checks that help identify problems before they become overwhelming. Your commitment to a plan of action should also include regular exercise and lifestyle modifications with SMART goals - Simple, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time bound.

Preventing health problems is a team effort that requires a team approach of support, encouragement, and goal-setting.

Susan S. Blum, MD
Preventive Medicine
Adopt a lifestyle that supports your stress system and hormones.  The hormone cortisol is made by the adrenals, is secreted when you are stressed, and can cause muscle loss and high blood sugar if it stays high for too long. 

The 5 Ways to support healthy cortisol levels:
  • Get a good night sleep. Minimum 7 hours.
  • Exercise most days, not too much, not too little.
  • Eat whole grains, fruit, veggies, nuts and seeds every day. Eat minimal sugar, alcohol and coffee.
  • Practice some form of relaxation every day to keep your stress hormones in check.
  • Eliminate toxins from your environment as best as possible by filtering your water, eating organic, and eating plenty of greens to support your liver detox system.
You can't change the past … or stop the clock. Growing old is inevitable but some of the health problems associated with aging don't need to be. Some nutrition and lifestyle changes can help prevent health issues that start to crop up with age:
  • Get adequate rest to help keep your immune system strong.
  • Control your weight. Excess weight seems to increase your risk for several diseases, which can affect quality of life and life span.
  • Refuel regularly. Maintaining a regular meal schedule keeps insulin levels steady and avoids surges which can increase your disease risk.
  • To the extent you are able, engage in regular physical activity.
You can make choices at any age or health condition that can slow the changes and challenges that come with getting older. You'll feel good longer and enjoy life for many years to come.

Continue Learning about Healthy Aging

How Friendships Improve Your Health
How Friendships Improve Your Health
In a memorable scene from I Love Lucy, Lucy and Ethel go on stage to perform a song about friendship, only to notice that they’re wearing the same dre...
Read More
Why can having a purpose in life slow down your aging?
Dr. Mehmet Oz, MDDr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Telomeres, which are sequences of DNA at the end of chromosomes, can provide one way to judge your r...
More Answers
How does having an education affect the way I age?
Dr. Michael Roizen, MDDr. Michael Roizen, MD
Going to school and learning make you younger. People who are better educated tend to stay young...
More Answers
How Important is Assistive Technology for Seniors?
How Important is Assistive Technology for Seniors?

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.