There are many things you can do to help yourself age well: exercise and be physically active, make healthy food choices, and don't smoke. But did you know that participating in activities you enjoy may also help support healthy aging?
As people get older, they often find themselves spending more and more time at home alone. The isolation can lead to depression and is not good for your health. If you find yourself spending a lot of time alone, try adding a volunteer or social activity to your routine.
Engaging in social and productive activities you enjoy, like taking an art class or becoming a volunteer in your community or at your place of worship, may help to maintain your well-being. Research tells us that older people with an active lifestyle:
Would you like to get more involved in your community or be more socially active? There are plenty of places to look for opportunities, depending on your interests. Here are some ideas:
Everyone has different limits to the amount of time they can spend on social or other activities. What is perfect for one person might be too much for another. Be careful not to take on too much at once. You might start by adding one or two activities to your routine and see how you feel. You can always add more. Remember—participating in activities you enjoy should be fun, not stressful.
This chapter includes text excerpted from “Participating in Activities You Enjoy,” National Institute on Aging (NIA), National Institutes of Health (NIH), August 21, 2017.