AC4ma week 11

Week 11

The Real Fountain of Youth:  Exercise.  This week’s information isn’t going to have anything in it that you haven’t read in our previous articles, but we keep hoping that if we say it in a different way, we will strike a nerve.  Our goal is to get you out of your chair and get you to go for a walk, attend an exercise class, work out with weights, go bowling, or maybe you would rather do some gardening. It turns out that the secret to eternal youth might not be as elusive as you think.  A research team in Hamilton, Ontario analyzed groups of mice.  One group was forced to run on a treadmill for 45 minutes, three times a week; the other group of mice was kept sedentary.  The mice that were forced to exercise were found to be young-looking, sleek-coated and healthy; while the sedentary mice were greying, slow-moving, and socially isolated.  “Every part of the body was protected by exercise,” said Dr. Mark Tarnopolsky.  “I think that exercise is the most potent anti-aging therapy available today and likely forever.” So, while humans aren’t mice, the study is compelling:  You already know exercise is good for your heart and your soul.  And now, it’s good for your longevity. Aging is inevitable, but there’s no reason you can’t make the process more enjoyable.  Exercise can promise better health, functional independence and a better quality of life as you age.  In fact, it may help slow the aging process by preventing or reducing the chances of disease and disability in seniors. The exercise guidelines for older adults aren’t much different from any other age group.  You want to do regular cardio exercise to keep your heart and body healthy, aiming for about 2.5 hours a week (or about 30 minutes, 5 days a week) of moderate intensity activities like walking, cycling, swimming, jogging or any other cardio activity you enjoy. IMG_1407To get started, join the Activity Center for 3 months where you have access to a variety of machines, classes and activities.  Another option is to start right at home with a basic walking program.  One 30-minute walk or three 10-minute walks a day can help you add a few more years to your life.  If you have any joint pain, join a water aerobics class, which can help with flexibility, mobility and cardio endurance.  The water gives your body full support so there’s no impact on the joints which is helpful if you have joint tenderness or pain. Strength training is a must for older adults; experts know it’s essential for building strong bones and muscles while keeping your body functioning at its peak.  It doesn’t take much strength training to reap the benefits.  Just a few exercises a week can help you build muscle and improve your ability to do things like climb the stairs or get up from a chair. If you want to age gracefully, keep moving.  Regular exercise can reduce the risk of chronic disease – such as heart trouble, diabetes, even cancer – and keep you feeling and looking younger as you age. While the message is clear, it’s not getting through to the majority of older Americans.  Only 11% of people aged 65 or older responding to a government survey said they engaged in strength training two or more days each week, the recommended level to improve overall health and fitness. And only about 6% of the respondents met the national objectives for engaging in both physical activity and strength training. But minimal efforts at getting more physical activity offer big payoffs, experts say. “Many of the chronic health conditions we experience as we age come from disuse rather than aging, and exercise can retard the onset of many of those conditions,” says Colin Milner, head of the International Council on Active Aging. Need proof?  Consider this: Starting at age 50, people begin to lose 12% of their muscle strength and 6% of their muscle mass every decade.  But weight training can reverse these effects in a big way.  Two to three months of weight training three times a week can increase muscle strength and mass by one-third, making up for three decades of loss of muscle strength and muscle mass, said University of Maryland Kinesiologist Ben Hurley. And it’s never too late to start; you can be as fit as you want to be.  You can’t regain the strength you had when you were 18 or 19, but you can run marathons, and participate in the senior Olympic Games.  Or, you can get off the couch and engage in less strenuous pursuits such as gardening, walking, or dancing and reap benefits. Think about your goals, and what being fit means to you.  Whatever your goal is, make them realistic for you.  You may want to run a marathon, or you may just want to lift your groceries out of your car without straining.  Start slowly, and don’t overdo.  If you get hurt, it will stop you in your tracks. Much of what happens with aging, what goes wrong with the body, is due to under use rather than wear and tear.  If you’re unsure of how much stamina you have, start out with walking as your primary exercise.  Contact the Activity Center about finding a walking buddy if you don’t have one. Later on, add strength training, such as doing weight machines or free weights.  Get advice from Carole Wardell our personal trainer. And don’t neglect two other aspects of fitness – flexibility, gained by stretching before and after exercise, and balance, crucial to prevent falling, especially as you get older. In the book “Younger Next Year for Women” the author says “You Do Have to Age, but You Don’t Have to Rot.”  He goes on to say that 70% of what you feel as aging is optional!  You are eligible to play – you just have to learn how! Sources:,,, and “Younger Next Year for Women, Live Strong Fit, and Sexy – Until You’re 80 and Beyond.”   With Spring round the corner, here are some “Quick & healthy” salads to go with dinner:

Fruit Cocktail Salad

You’ll find this to be an attractive dish that can be served on lettuce leaves for a salad or in sherbet glasses for dessert. 1 can (16 oz.) fruit cocktail, in juice 1 small pkg. (0.3 oz.) sugar-free raspberry flavored gelatin 1 cup applesauce, unsweetened Drain fruit cocktail reserving the juice.  Add water to the juice to equal 1 cup.  Bring to a boil.  Dissolve gelatin in the boiling water / juice mixture.  Add remaining ingredients.  Chill until set.   Per serving:  57 calories, 3 grams carbohydrate, 1 gram protein, 0 grams fat

Mandarin Cottage Salad

This light dish has a refreshing taste and a pretty pastel orange color. 2 cups low-fat, small curd cottage cheese 1 can (11 oz.) mandarin orange sections, drained 1 can (8 oz.) crushed pineapple (packed in juice), drained 2 pkg. (0.3 oz. each) sugar-free, orange flavored gelatin 1 cup light whipped topping 8 oz. vanilla nonfat yogurt, sweetened with artificial sweetener Mix all ingredients.  Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. Per serving: 131 calories, 14 grams carbohydrate, 13 grams protein, 2 grams fat


  1. This article is jam-packed with information and inspiration! Thank you, Nancy

  2. Anita Passofaro:

    This has got me motivated! Thanks for all your articles on health….

  3. Linda McClintock:

    Excellent Article!

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