As we grow older, our brain’s volume gradually shrinks, causing brain nerve cells to diminish or lose their connections with other nerve cells. It is these natural, age-related changes that are thought to cause cognitive decline in older adults. However, seniors do not have to resign to memory loss. Learn how living in a retirement village can help boost brain function and keep your memories sharp in the years to come.
Daily exercise opportunities
Exercise has been proven to boost brain function and keep seniors active. Experts recommend that seniors get about 30-45 minutes of light exercise each week to stay healthy and reduce cognitive decline. Moderate exercise like walking or swimming increases capillary development in the brain, which creates more blood supply and enables oxygen to flow more easily to the brain. Likewise, exercise can help stave off other conditions like heart disease and diabetes, which can also contribute to the risk of cognitive decline. Luckily, retirement villages make getting one’s daily exercise easy and safe by offering guided group fitness classes, paved walking trails and supervised physical therapy.
Better nutrition options
Certain foods can have a large impact on the quality of your brain function. Research suggests that the nutrients found in foods like fish, olive oil, dark green leafy vegetables, and berries can help prevent the loss of neural connections in your brain. Some retirement villages have dieticians available on staff to help residents design a customized meal plan and answer their questions.
Keeping your mind active is a key way to stay sharp after 60. Experts suggest trying a new, complex skill like quilting, painting, photography, learning a new language, or even playing an instrument. Retirement villages offer many opportunities to learn new skills, from continuing education classes to fun activities like video games, fitness classes, and arts and crafts.
New friendships abound
Our brains depend on new experiences and interactions with others to create and repair brain cells. Unfortunately, many older adults find themselves isolated over time due to their declining health or distance from their friends and family. Moving to a retirement village is one great way to increase seniors’ social activity and reduce the risk of isolation. In these warm, welcoming communities, seniors often find a revived social life, making new friendships through shared meals, outings, and activities.