There is nothing to stop us from getting older, but a lot can be done to determine how we age. Age is a lot more than the number of years lived or the physiological changes the body goes through during life. Age is heavily impacted by social norms and expectations that apply to each stage of life. Age can and should reflect the richness of life experiences that has made us who we are. Medical advancements has also made it possible to only to prolong human life but to enhance it. However, the aging experience also heavily depends on social class, race, gender, and other social factors, such as living alone, family violence, loss of a spouse, aging-related cognitive impairments and disabilities, and transport issues. Due to these factors the aging population is a very diverse group of people.
Aging and What to Expect
Apart from gray hair, wrinkles and moving slower, aging many also affect your teeth, heart, and sexuality.
HEART HEALTH AND AGING
It is natural that as aging takes place there will also be a stiffening of the blood vessels and arteries of the cardiovascular system, causing your heart to work harder pumping blood. These changes increase the risk of high blood pressure (hypertension) and other cardiovascular problems.
Things you can do
Make physical activity a part of your daily life.
- Walking (a moderate pace)
- Any activity you enjoy
Regular moderate physical activity helps maintain a healthy weight and lower heart disease risk.
Eat a healthy diet – Choose foods from each of the Six Caribbean Food groups
- Whole grains
- High-fiber foods
- Lean sources of protein, such as fish, skinless chicken, trimmed meat
- Limit foods high in saturated fat and salt, such as processed, fast, & fried foods
Do not smoke – this contributes to the hardening of the arteries and increases blood pressure and heart rate.
If you smoke or use other tobacco products, ask your doctor to help you quit.