Height changes are not partial to gender; both males and females of all races are affected equally. Bones, muscle and joint changes all influence the loss of height. Depending on certain variables, people can lose about 1 cm (0.4 inches) every 10 years after they turn 40, typically. Once a person turns 70, height loss increases exponentially. For many people, they could lose anywhere from one to three inches over their lifetime. Others could lose more if outside variables were serious (diseases, heredity, etc).
In order to prevent height loss, if you have been reading this blog, you will already know that a proper diet, rich in calcium will certainly help. Also, exercise or some form of physical activity is helpful as well. I’ve already incorporated these into my clients’ three-step plan to maintain health (diet, exercise and cleanliness). The other option for you to speak to your client’s physician about is ways to treat osteoporosis with supplements.
Is it body image that elders are concerned about? Absolutely not! It is the fact that when your body’s shape changes, it takes some adjustment. At times the added weight could throw the person off kilter and they could fall; balance is affected more than anything.
Weight gain for men occurs until the approximate age of 55. After that, they tend to lose weight. Women, on the other hand can gain weight until the age of 65 before they begin to lose. Hormones have a lot to do with this as does the fact that people slow down and when they do, muscle is replaced with fat. This goes back full circle to the diet and exercise thing once again.
Everything centers around a few main things. The NIH (National Institute of Health) specify those as being:
- Get regular exercise.
- Eat a healthy diet that includes fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and optimal amounts of healthy fats.
- Limit your alcohol use.
- Avoid tobacco products and illicit drugs.
I am certain that as a caregiver, having had them iterated and reiterated that you already know this because you follow the thought pattern that With Age Comes Respect.