Archive for June, 2008

Summer Fitness for Seniors and More

Monday, June 30th, 2008

Summer has officially arrived, and for me it is a great reminder to all of us who have been hibernating indoors to go out and get some exercise and a little sun.

Exercise is key to improving fitness, and a little sun will boost critical vitamin D production and contribute to good health overall.

Take fitness for older people, for example. I am reminded of a study published earlier this year in the Journal of the American Medical Association that found that fitness level, not body fat, was a stronger predictor of longevity for adults age 60 and older.

Many Diabetics Not Getting Life-Saving Blood Pressure Treatment

Monday, June 23rd, 2008

A bit more bad news for diabetics that you may not have known: having a diagnosis of type 2 diabetes makes your risk of having a heart attack just the same as someone who already had a heart attack. This means it is automatically assumed that with diabetes, there may be hidden heart disease as well.

In addition, a worldwide study of over 21,000 patients with diabetes found that vigorously controlling your blood sugar to get your blood sugar levels into near normal range did not lower the risk of heart attack or heart disease. For some patients, tight control of blood sugar led to more episodes of dangerously low blood sugar too.

TOO FEW OF OUR ELDERLY GET THE BEST CARE AFTER A HIP OR OTHER FRACTURE

Monday, June 9th, 2008

I don’t think there is anything more feared among seniors than being totally dependent on others for help or for some the thought of being sent to a nursing home because they aren’t able to care for themselves. I know fear of being dependent is the biggest concern for the elderly Cabrini religious sisters I have cared for over the past 26 years. It turns out that suffering a debilitating hip fracture is one of most common reasons a person is sent to a nursing home and when that happens, they all too often don’t get the treatment they need to prevent future fractures and more pain and disability. And what is perhaps worse, despite safe and effective remedies to diagnose and treat osteoporosis, too few people are getting the treatment they need to prevent a disabling hip fracture in the first place.