Active Aging: how to stay 20 years old.
How to ‘age’ while maintaining an active lifestyle and a healthy spine
Imagine a young person and imagine an elderly, what did you see? Now imagine a healthy person and an unhealthy person, what do you see now? Was the elderly and unhealthy person the same?
Throughout my life and probably yours, we have both seen seniors well into their 60 or70’s still looking great and can out run someone in their 20’s and vice versa, young people who are frail and unhealthy. Why is it that some people ‘age better’ than others?
In this short blog we will explore the bases of active aging in-terms of chiropractic and the spine and you should be able to answer this question yourself.
Let’s take an unhealthy elderly in relation to falls for example. One fourth of elderly falls with a hip fracture die within six months of the injury (Fuller, 2000). Over 50 percent that survive require assistance (Fuller, 2000). There is a 15 percent decrease in life expectancy and a significant decline in their quality of life (Fuller, 2000).
There are many risk factors for this and this pertains to ‘young’ people as well. We are only going to focus on two points. The first is nutrition. Research has associated increased risk in fracture in relation to decreased bone density; however, decreased bone density/osteopenia/osteoporosis can vary across all ages (Al-Aama, T., 2011; Tucker, 2009). Loss of bone density is part of aging but nutrition plays a role in prevention and increasing bone density. The body absorbs what you eat. If you eat ‘bad’ food starting from 20 years old; by the time you are 60 years old, it means you have been compromising body with nutrition deficiency for 40 years! Now imagine and contrast how this person compares to someone who has been nutrient sufficient for 40 years?
Nutrition is only one factor, exercise and many other aspects play a big role too. The second focus we are exploring is your spinal health in relation to chiropractic care. Neck pain and back pain are estimated to affect almost everyone. Why you have neck pain and back pain can be from your daily stresses, disc herniation, scoliosis and most importantly how you have looked after yourself. Chiropractic care focuses on the health of your spine and the function of your body, research have shown benefits with reduce elderly falls, decrease neck pain, decrease back pain, nervous system, blood pressure and increases in quality of life (Bolton, 1998; Dougherty, 2012; Holt, 2011; Holt, 2012; Meade, 1990; Niazi, 2015; Yates, 1988). The more you look after your health the better you will be and it’s essential to start as young as possible. My family and I have been nurturing our health and had chiropractic care for most of our lives because we choose to look after ourselves and you should as well.
Al-Aama, T. (2011). Falls in the elderly: spectrum and prevention. CanadianFamily Physician, 57(7), 771-776.
Bolton, J. E., & Wilkinson, R. C. (1998). Responsiveness of pain scales: a comparison of three pain intensity measures in chiropractic patients.Journal of manipulative and physiological therapeutics, 21(1),1-7
Dougherty, P. E., Hawk, C., Weiner, D. K., Gleberzon, B., Andrew, K.,& Killinger, L. (2012). The role of chiropractic care in older adults. Chiropractic& manual therapies, 20(1), 3.
Fuller, G. F. (2000). Falls in the elderly. American family physician,61(7), 2159.
Holt, K. R., Noone, P. L., Short, K., Elley, C. R., & Haavik, H.(2011). Fall risk profile and quality-of-life status of older chiropractic patients. Journal of manipulative and physiological therapeutics, 34(2),78-87.
Holt, K. R., Haavik, H., & Elley, C. R. (2012). The effects of manual therapy on balance and falls: a systematic review. Journal of manipulative and physiological therapeutics, 35(3), 227-234.
Meade,T. W., Dyer, S., Browne, W., Townsend, J., & Frank, A. O. (1990). Low back pain of mechanical origin: randomised comparison of chiropractic and hospital outpatient treatment. Bmj, 300(6737), 1431-1437.
Niazi,I. K., Türker, K. S., Flavel, S., Kinget, M., Duehr, J., & Haavik, H.(2015). Changes in H-reflex and V-waves following spinal manipulation. Experimental brain research, 233(4), 1165-1173.
Tucker, K. L. (2009). Osteoporosis prevention and nutrition. CurrentOsteoporosis Reports, 7(4), 111.
Yates, R. G., Lamping, D. L., Abram, N. L., & Wright, C. (1988).Effects of chiropractic treatment on blood pressure and anxiety: a randomized, controlled trial. Journal of manipulative and physiological therapeutics,11(6), 484-488.