Myth 1: Dementia Is An Inevitable Part Of Ageing.
Untrue. Dementia isn’t a normal part of ageing, it’s a medical condition which affects one in six people over the age of 80. The condition isn’t inevitable as we age and we can actually help prevent it. Studies find that the same risk factors contributing to “heart disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and obesity could potentially also contribute to Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia.” (via HealthyWoman)
Staying physically and mentally active reduces the risk of diseases that cause Alzheimer’s. Research finds people who exercised twice a week over an average of 21 years slashed their risk of Alzheimer’s in half. While keeping your brain stimulated increases blood flow and helps to build connections within the brain and improve the health of existing tissue.
Myth 2: It’s Too Late To Exercise
It’s a popular misconception, but actually you can exercise and still yield great results at whatever age. In a small study of 50 men and women over the age of 87 who completed a 10 week resistance training course increased muscle strength by 113%. Find out more about the benefits of resistance training on doctorfithealth.com
Myth 3: Your Sex Life Goes
Sexual activity as you get older largely depends on health of both you and your partner, the most likely to be sexually active are those who are healthy. A third of over-70s reported frequent sexual activity in a study of over 6,000 men and women.
Myth 4: Arthritis Is Inevitable
Although arthritis is common with age, with the most widespread form, osteoarthritis largely down to ‘wear and tear’ of the joints. But although linked to age it’s not natural, but a medical condition and should be treated so.
Like Dementia, there are measures you can take in youth to help prevent it. This includes staying in shape and following a healthy, nutrient-rich diet. Studies show that regular exercise can reduce your risk of developing arthritis by 50%.
5. You’re Not Happy
It’s actually quite the opposite. Happiness levels are shown to follow a U-shaped curve as you age, peaking once again during later life. Polls have shown positivity to be linked with age and that we become more content with ourselves and life as we reach old age.
6. Ageing Makes You Less Creative
Ageing can actually make you more creative, with many often find they are most creative in their later years. An ageing brain is one of the reasons linked to loss of creativity, but provided you keep your brain stimulated and healthy throughout life there is no reason for this to happen.
As argued by Tanner Christensen, “In reality, creative capability is still strong in old age, it’s only a willingness to pursue creativity that is shown to decline as we grow older.”
7. Myth: Genes Play The Biggest Role In How You’ll Age
Although genes do play a part in it, our lifestyle largely determines how we age. For example, factors such as the sun are responsible for 80% of extrinsic skin ageing, something which can easily be avoided with the regular use of sunscreen.
Provided you life a lifestyle with regular exercise, a healthy diet and take an active approach to your wellbeing and ageing you will set yourself up to age well.