Dietary Supplements Needed for Healthy Aging

As we age, our body starts to need some essential vitamins. Our bodies aren't able to absorb nutrients like before. There are a few nutrients we may be lacking as we get older. 

Calcium: This vitamin will support bone growth and can prevent one from getting osteoporosis. Taking calcium supplements will help keep bones strong and prevent one from getting fractures when falling. You will have better functioning muscles and nerves as well. Calcium is known for your heart and can prevent blood clots. Women should be getting 1,200 mg of calcium everyday and men should be getting 1,000 mg. If you prefer not to take supplements you can add calcium to your diet by having low-fat or fat-free dairy, dark greens, or foods with fortified calcium. 

Vitamin D: We can get adequate amounts of Vitamin D by being exposed to sunlight. When we age though, our skin doesn't produce as much Vitamin D as it used to. Without Vitamin D, our body has a harder time absorbing calcium. Everyone should be getting around 800 IUs of Vitamin D each day. Besides taking supplements, you can find it in fatty fish, eggs, milk, and cereal. You probably won't get enough just by eating these foods. This is why a supplement for Vitamin D is important. 

Vitamin B12: This is needed to reduce one's risk of getting heart disease or having a stroke. When B12 is not present, there can be memory issues and anemia can occur. This can be found in seafood, meat or dairy. You should be getting 2.4 micrograms of Vitamin B12 each day. 

Vitamin B6: 1.5 mg for women and 1.7 mg for men is recommended. This vitamin is very important for healthy red blood cells. If not taking supplements you should be eating more poultry, seafood, fruit, and potatoes.

Vitamins A, C, & E: These vitamins can be used to repel certain diseases as they are known as antioxidants. The best way to get these vitamins is to eat fruits and vegetables. Eat the rainbow and try different kinds to maximize your intake. 



Essential Oils

Aromatherapy has been known to have great health benefits for all ages. But specifically, it has shown to help older adults who are suffering from multiple conditions. It has been known that essential oils can alleviate or lessen certain health issues. Below I will list some essential oils that can help with common age-related conditions. 

Ginger: arthritis, inflammatory conditions, fatigue, & digestion
Peppermint: improving blood flow, alzheimer's and dementia (memory loss), & respiratory problems
Rosemary: arthritis, inflammatory conditions, memory loss, respiratory problems, & skin conditions
Lavender: high blood pressure, stress and anxiety, skin conditions, pain management & respiratory problems

Essential oils can be put in a diffuser, used internally by diluting 1-2 drops in liquid, or used topically by applying 1-2 drops to a certain area of the skin. Make sure to test out the essential oil before hand to make sure there are no skin reactions. If you are unsure, talk with your doctor first to make sure it is alright to use essential oils. Besides having great health benefits they are calming and smell great as well! 


Emergency Preparedness

Are you prepared if an emergency occurs? Emergencies can strike at any moment without any warning. It's important to be prepared and have a plan in place in case there is a disaster. 

1. Get a kit
Have a emergency preparedness kit ready to go. Gather all the supplies you will need and store them in a backpack or duffle bag. Put this somewhere that is easily accessible so you can get to it without any problems. You should pack enough for at least 3 days. Pick food that has a long shelf life so you don't have to switch it out that often. Some ideas for a preparedness kit includes, food bars, water pouches, ponchos, light sticks/flashlights, gloves, dust masks, first aid kit, a whistle and blankets. You could also pack some clothes as well. It's also a good idea to have a big baggie or envelope with important documents inside like a copy of your drivers license, social security card, insurance cards, contact list, and medications. 

2. Make a Plan
Start now by making a plan for if there is an emergency so you can reduce your anxiety if something does happen. Make arrangements for someone to check up on you if there is a disaster. This person should be from out of town because you will be able to reach a long distance number during this time rather than a local one. Do your research on your communities plan for emergencies. Make sure there are transportation arrangements in place if you do not drive. Figure out the quickest escape route out of your house and neighborhood. Do practice drills with your family and if you are unable to leave the house finds spots where you can take shelter that will be safe. 

3. Be Informed
Think about the disasters that could strike in your area. Are you more likely to have a hurricane occur, an earthquake, or a tornado? Think about the risks and how they could affect you. This will help with your planning. Look into how your community can help you prepare for an emergency. 

Visit red cross for more information and start today by building your own kit. If you do not want to make your own, lots of stores sell already put together emergency bags! 


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