Health care costs are skyrocketing these days. The Obama administration is trying to work out an equitable health plan for all of us to benefit by, but it is difficult to please everyone in the same manner. People can help lower the costs of healthcare by taking control of their own health. Being healthy and living a healthy lifestyle are very important for each of us.
Remember my Eight Sacred Truths to Successful Aging, which list what you need to be aware of in the transitions of life.
1. Stay social. Be with others and enjoy their company. Try not to spend too much time alone
Recent research on brain “plasticity” has shown that we can regenerate new brain cells with constant repetition of cerebral cortical stimulation through learning and relearning daily. Stroke victims, whose cortex or other brain parts may have inadvertently been damaged can help repair the damage through cerebral exercise. I have seen it work. The brain is an amazing computer; one that we don’t completely understand yet.
A terrific book to look at is one by Jill Bolte Taylor called “My Stroke of Insight,” where she describes, as a neuro-anatomist, every nuance of her own stroke at age 34 and how she recovered from in it with eight long years of hard work. The proof is in the pudding folks, so learn each day and keep your brains sharp and strong!
Wild animals like the tiger on the left, don’t make fine bed fellows. Domesticated animals such as cats, dogs, bunnies and Pot Belly pigs make fine bed fellows in these winter months! You’ve probably heard the expression “It is a two dog night.” Well, that expression has come to us from years gone by when it was so cold outside that people had a tendency to allow their pet dogs to sleep with them in order to keep warm. A two dog night was a cold night. Dogs have a higher normal body temperature than their owners and can heat up a bed in no time.
I usually allow my dogs to sit on my bed and warm it up for me before I go to bed and then I chase them off. If it gets too cold during the night I will request their presence again and they are only too happy to oblige. I have a difficult time sleeping if they ingratiate themselves too much and don’t get off the bed as they are large; take up most of the bed, leaving me and my wife no room to cuddle. So my extraneous heat source is short lived with my pets until my wife gets in to take over.
If you do not have a partner then may I suggest keeping warm in winter by sleeping with a clean pair of socks on, wearing a full set of pajamas, using several blankets and possibly investing in a small space heater. It is not good to get too cold and again it is not good to be too hot. We must each find our own equilibrium. Hormones play a large part in this. We must also hydrate ourselves to help regulate body temperature. In winter especially, cold dry air will increase both dehydration and dry skin, so drinking lots of water is in order. The older we get, the more we don’t feel thirsty. So drink anyway…stay hydrated and stay warm! Get a pet or if you prefer a stuffed animal, they provide insulation to help you stay warm… enjoy. Unfortunately drinking too much liquid can disrupt your sleep in any kind of weather. If this is the case with you, drink liquids earlier in the day.