Blog Archives

What happened to America? Our cohort responds. And we take a break.

In today’s New York Times, a report of an interview with folks in their 70s and 80s about the country, aging, what has changed over their lifetimes. Worth a read.

We are taking a break starting this week for a long-awaited surgical procedure. We expect to come through it just fine, but rehab will take some time, and strong pain relief will be required, which affects the ability to write coherent sentences. We hope to return at the end of May or so.

Enjoy the rest of our wonderful spring!

Last one for this weekend

But importantly, it’s the voice of a lesbian who is wondering what’s ahead for her aging journey. It’s a well-written and very moving read.

A fun weekend read

From yesterday’s New York Times Well: What’s Behind the ‘Middle-Aged Groan’?

Try a sauna? More fun as you age?

Today’s Google Alerts were fun!

Here’s one person’s take on the benefits of sauna use.

And a Psychology Today article on how much fun getting older can be. Your editor would say the author might be overoptimistic on some of the 12 ways we benefit from being older, but you decide!

Thoughts on aging right

We got a link to this HuffPost essay. Granted, this writer’s experience might be a bit extreme, but much of what she writes sounded oh-so-familiar to us.

As with other life transitions, aging IS an adventure. We’re all of us on a journey to a place we’ve never been before. We have to learn to live with the conditions in which we find ourselves, for instance suddenly single, as with the writer, or coping with physical ailments. This has some parallels with the experience of new parenthood. As much as you might have read about how to look after a new human, there’s nothing like actually doing it to achieve some real understanding.

And we all, but especially we who are farther down the path, also need to stay engaged with the world, with nature (to the extent comfortable), with ideas, with people. Particularly people who are, as they say in Australia, ‘good value’. Someone whose worldview is similar to or at least overlaps your own, who is a good listener, whom you can count on.

With these we can hope to find that sense of well-being to which the writer refers, a kind of reward for taking the journey.

Tomorrow: the OLLI course begins!

We’ve been working hard on putting together a course on aging in place and the Village model that will be fun and thought-provoking. We have 18 people registered for the course. The first session is tomorrow afternoon. Will report back afterwards!

Meanwhile here’s a quick read from the New York Times on aging exuberantly! We must find that book, The Gentle Art of Swedish Death Cleaning or how not to leave your survivors a —-load of stuff to clear out after you die. Our spouse is actually the one who needs to read it…

Google alerts: we should eat less to slow aging!

Today’s alert email is chockers with links to articles like this:

A calorie-restricted diet may slow aging in healthy adults, research finds

Calorie restriction slows pace of aging in healthy adults

How Eating Fewer Calories May Help Slow Down the Aging Process

Reducing Calories Could Slow the Aging Process

…and more. In fact 8 of the 10 headlines of articles related to our search term “healthy aging” are about the very same study. This is all it takes for us to run to the refrigerator in search of a snack. We are relieved to read further that the study population were aged 21 to 50. This says that the slowing-aging ship has long ago sailed for us. Whew! We can relax! But younger adults might want to pay attention.

On ageism

Found this one in my google alerts today, about the positive and negative stereotypes around aging, ageism in the media, and what ‘successful aging’ is.

Enjoy the read!

“To better address the needs of older people, stop fussing over aging”

What your grip strength might tell you

Today’s news is from the WaPo, reporting on a study of the relationship between grip strength and biological age aka epigenetic age, as opposed to your chronological age.

You may have heard of these two markers of age, and how nutrition, exercise, and other lifestyle factors can ‘age’ you more or less than your chrono age. This study is observational so can’t say definitively that less grip strength = greater epigenetic aging. But resistance (strength) training has been shown in other studies to promote healthy aging with less risk of falls and more confidence in the world. Seems like a win.

Sleep, the sometimes elusive goal of our nighttimes

Here’s a new Ask Well article from the New York Times on the sleep difficulties of aging. We found the theories of why we develop sleep problems as we get older more interesting than the suggested solutions, which seem like common sense ideas that we’ve probably all tried. Many of the comments seemed to express the view that sleep disturbances are a normal part of aging that we just have to manage as best we can. Commenters made a variety of suggestions you might find helpful.

Our favorite trick, when we wake up at night and can’t turn the brain off, is to read for a bit. A book light is helpful to do this without disturbing one’s bed partner. After a half-hour to an hour of reading we can almost always fall back asleep for a few hours.

What works for you?