As we age there are two things we fear the most, pain and death. Death is part of life and cannot be stopped. On the other hand, we can prevent the pain we fear will happen. I really believe aging healthy all comes back to education. If we want to age without pain, we have to start by learning how to live healthy in all aspects of life. However, living a healthy life starts right now. The fact is we all want the best for our future selves.
Nobody wants to have dementia. Nobody wants to have emphysema. Nobody wants to see themself wither away in their old age. When I am 85 I don’t want to feel like I’m 85. I want to be healthy, active, and happy when I am 85 years old.
Education is the cornerstone of a healthy life. If you don’t know how to take of yourself, there is no way you can have a healthy lifestyle.
This healthy lifestyle is by no means cheap. You need to get a good education when you are young so you can get a degree. Getting a degree and a decent paying job make it much easier to afford the healthy lifestyle you set out to have.
Education does not just mean getting a degree. It can be as simple as learning that you should use sunscreen when you are outside for long periods of time. Being educated also means learning how to eat healthy. It means learning when you should visit a doctor, ultimately learning how to take good care of yourself.
By getting a degree you can learn a lot of these things, but it is also important to be proactive and seek information yourself.
I am currently current pursuing a degree so I can make enough money to take care of myself and my future family. While in school I have learned a great deal of how to live a healthy lifestyle. More importantly I have learned more about active aging and livingly healthy in this class more than any other. Since I will be educated it puts me that much closer to being the healthy 85 year old I want to be.
Since I plan to get a degree, I do not plan on working a job with a lot of manual labor. I have learned that manual labor over the course of many years is a huge stress on your body. People that worked manual labor jobs over the course of their life have shown to live shorter lives than those who do not work jobs requiring manual labor.
Physical jobs are not only stressful on your body, but by working a highly physical job you put yourself at risk of sometimes potentially life threating accidents. Someone who works as a construction worker may deal with heavy equipment all day long, while someone working in an office would not face the same risks as the construction worker. By having a job that does not put physical stress on the body, I am helping myself live to be the healthy 85 year old I want to be.
Ethnicity also plays a part in any person’s aging process. I am not a minority and while it is unfortunate, not being a minority statistically helps me in the aging process. Overall minorities are shown to have more limited resources when it comes to health care. As a white man my life expectancy is 5 and a half years longer than that of an African American man. I am more likely to have health insurance, and seek formal care if I need it. I am also less likely to have functional disabilities. This goes hand in hand with not having to work a physically stressful job.
The fact I am white is something I have no control over, but statistically it does mean I should age healthier and live longer. Though this is unfortunate, not being a minority helps me be the active, healthy, and happy 85 year old I want to be.
Currently I live in an urban area and I live in close proximity to different types of healthcare and hospitals. This is extremely beneficial if I ever need any type of medical attention. However as I grow older, if I continue to live in a city I will be more likely to have poor health. Statistically I am also likely to have a low income and not as socially active.
As I age I would like to live in the suburbs, because that’s where I’ve grown up. Again statistically by living in a suburb it is more likely that I will have a higher income and not live by myself. At the end of the day it all comes back to someone’s income. In most cases people with higher incomes will have better health and healthcare, compared to those with lower incomes. With a degree and a high paying job I would fit right into this statistic and would want to live in the suburbs as I grow old. While I would not be as close to healthcare as someone living in the city, I would be able to afford the healthcare, helping me be the 85 year old I want to be.
We are all going to die someday, we cannot avoid that. What we can do is life a healthy lifestyle and not be afraid to get old. I want to be a happy, healthy, active 85 year old. While there is no perfect formula to living a healthy lifestyle, there are many things we can do to improve the quality of our lives. Staying active, eating right and regularly seeing a doctor are just some basic things we can do to live a healthy lifestyle. More specifically getting an education can astronomically improve your quality of life.
An education will provide you with a high income job, knowledge about how to take care of yourself, and peace of mind knowing you are trying to do the best you can to live a healthy lifestyle. There are some things out of control that affect our life expectancy. While it is unfortunate, in the United States your race/ethnicity can statistically mean you will live longer than others. With what I am in control of, I believe I am living a healthy lifestyle. I am getting an education, eating healthy, and staying active. Right now I am doing everything that I can right now to be a healthy, active, and happy 85 year old someday.