How Is Frequent Walking Good for Aging Adults?

By , 9:00 am on

Walking often is essential to the health and wellbeing of seniors. As people age, walking becomes less of a priority, but it can provide many important health benefits. Here are some reasons seniors should walk frequently.

Increases Appetite

Because of a slower metabolic rate, chronic illness, mental health issues, or medication side effects, your senior loved one’s appetite may decrease. Another reason your loved one’s appetite may diminish is because he or she isn’t very active and therefore doesn’t require as many calories. When the body no longer needs a certain amount of calories because of a sedentary lifestyle, the brain suppresses the appetite. To increase your loved one’s appetite, encourage him or her to walk often, which will boost metabolic rate, burn calories, and reestablish hunger signals from the brain. 

Even if seniors have mobility issues or health challenges, they can still get the benefits of exercise, especially with the help of at-home caregivers. Caledon elderly home care professionals can be a wonderful boon to seniors. Whether they require around-the-clock supervision or just need assistance with exercise and household tasks a few days a week, seniors can enjoy a higher quality of life with the help of trusted in-home caregivers.

Offers Exposure to Nature

When older adults are exposed to nature while walking outdoors, they may feel happier. Looking at trees, animals, lakes, flowers, and the sky can play an important role in stress management. Being in the natural environment of the outdoors might be enjoyable for your loved one, which will make walking more pleasant. If your loved one lives in a big city and resists your suggestions to walk, offer to drive to a forest preserve or zoo where he or she can stroll around while being exposed to natural beauty.

Enhances Pulmonary Function

Aerobic exercises such as walking enhance pulmonary function, which is important for seniors with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and asthma. While walking often can boost lung function and facilitate better breathing, check with your loved one’s physician before starting a new walking regimen. The physician may want to order a series of pulmonary function tests to evaluate your loved one’s ability to tolerate new forms of exercise. 

If you usually help your loved one exercise but need a break now and then, consider having an in-home caregiver take over for you. Caledon respite care professionals can assist seniors with a wide array of daily tasks, offering family caregivers the chance to focus on other personal responsibilities or take a break to prevent burnout. Whether it’s for a few hours a day or a few days a week, respite care is the perfect solution for family caregivers who are feeling overwhelmed.

Promotes Sleep

Aging adults sometimes experience sleep problems related to chronic pain, urinary frequency, depression, and cognition issues. Another reason seniors may have difficulty sleeping is because they don’t get enough exercise during the day. Walking sets the stage for a restful night of sleep while enhancing sleep quality, and it also promotes deeper sleep so there are fewer episodes of waking up in the middle of the night. Some seniors experience sleep issues because they’re lonely due to a spouse passing away or they’re worried about finances, their health, or losing their independence. Walking can suppress anxious feelings so seniors can sleep better at night. However, if your loved one shows signs of severe depression or anxiety, don’t rely solely on the benefits of walking. He or she may need help from a mental health professional, who can develop an effective treatment plan that may include walking.

Seniors who need assistance with exercising safely can benefit from the help of trained professional caregivers. Caledon senior care experts are available to provide high-quality care to seniors on an as-needed basis. From assistance with mobility and exercise to providing transportation to the doctor’s office and social events, there are a variety of ways professional caregivers can help your aging loved one continue to live independently. To create a customized home care plan for your loved one, call Home Care Assistance at 905-951-8885 today.