Successful Aging: Secrets for A Long, Healthy, Happy Life Revealed

Successful aging is a new buzz word discussed on dozens of web sites, on television, and in books.

Dr. Sol Stern and Richard Boyle list three musts for optimizing the second half of life.

  • Avoid Disease and Disability
  • Maintain High Cognitive and Physical Function
  • Stay Involved With Life and Living

How Do You Define Successful Aging?

The Center on Aging Studies at the University of Missouri, Kansas City, wonders about the subjective nature of defining successful.

The site adds these qualities to the list above:

  • financial security

  • productivity and employment

  • independence.

  • coping well and an optimistic outlook

  • creative expression and spirituality.

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How Important Are Good Genes for Good Aging?

The prestigious MacArthur Foundation published a 1999 book called Successful Aging that showed lifestyle choices, such as exercise and mental activity, have more effect than getting lucky in the gene pool.

Used copies are still available.

Lifestyle choices make a difference agrees the Alzheimer's Association of American.

They write, "The key to successful aging is a healthy, common sense lifestyle. The goals are to slow or prevent the loss of brain cells, maintain the brain's capacity to make up for any loss, and let remaining brain cells function well. This requires a healthy body, mind and spirit."

The American Psychological Association confirms, "A new paradigm, centering on the idea that memory and cognitive power don't necessarily decline with age as traditionally thought, is taking hold within the psychology community."

Medicinet rounds up information on everything from bones to sexual dysfunction in concise paragraphs.

Singles May Face Special Challenges

The Gerontological Association of American suggests that aging singles may face the additional challenges of being without health insurance and sufficient income.

Some of that information, available in a special issue of the GAA's journal (April 2012), is summarized by Dr. John Grohol at Psych Central, a site I have found to be reliable.

This article explores successful aging from the perspective of a lifetime relationship that results in care-giving.

You've probably heard the saying, "Attitude is everything." How positivity works to keep the brain functioning optimally is part of this Science Daily article about successful aging.

Can You Live to Be 100?

The University of California reminds that diet is important, too. It's page is filled with information and links, including a self-quiz that asks, Can You Live to Be 100?. Scroll down to find it.

Even the World Health Organization is looking at the topic of successful aging, with a report summarized at Bankrate_Monitor.

How do seniors themselves define successful aging? Senior Journal approaches that question.

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