In case you hadn’t heard, National Grandparents Day falls on September 13 every year, and it’s the perfect time to focus on taking steps to improve health.
Every grandparent we know would do anything for their grandchildren, but sometimes we forget that the best gift we can give our grandkids is to look after our own health and wellbeing. For this Grandparents Day, set a good example for those grandparents of the future by choosing one, two, or all of these healthy, enjoyable ways to mark Grandparents Day.
1. Keep in touch
Grandparent’s Day is the perfect day to connect with family and friends. Use this day to reach out to loved ones, family members, friends, and anyone else who you know will appreciate it.
This year has been a difficult year for many families, making it all the more important to keep in touch with people whether by phone, email, social media or Zoom.
2. Eat a healthy brunch
Grandparents’ Day is as good a day as any to make an extra effort to eat healthily. Then, if you are a grandparent yourself, you can teach your grandkids about eating their vegetables and the value of whole grains, but remember that they’ll be more receptive to your lessons if you keep healthy yourself.
Here are some healthy, anti-inflammatory foods that can help ease joint pain.
3. Record your memoirs
What could be a better way to celebrate Grandparents Day than by remembering your own grandparents and elders? Recording your memoirs is not only cathartic and healthy, but it also keeps family lore alive for posterity. Your grandchildren will be delighted to know that your stories will be accessible to their children and grandchildren as well.
4. Make sure your vaccinations are up to date
Have you had your flu shot this year? Have you had a tetanus shot within the past 10 years? Have you been vaccinated for shingles since turning 50? If you’re not sure how to answer any of these questions, or you think that some of your vaccinations might not be up to date, check out the Center for Disease Control’s list of vaccinations for adults, or talk to your doctor.
You might not get a sticker for being brave, but you will be able to show your grandkids the importance of protecting one’s health.
5. Catch up on orthopedic health news and breakthroughs
Like you, orthopedic science keeps getting better and better over the years. Check out the AposHealth blog for interesting advice and information ranging from biomechanics to the truth about painkillers and much more. It might help you think of changes you can make in your everyday life to improve your own joint health.
6. Connect with the great-great grandmother who started Grandparents Day
Learning new information is great for keeping your brain in shape as well as your body, and who better to learn about on Grandparents Day than Marian Lucille Herndon McQuade, the founder?
McQuade had 15 children, 43 grandchildren, 10 great-grandchildren, and one great-great grandchild, but she still found time to make Grandparents Day into a reality. A native West Virginian, In 1970, McQuade began her campaign to establish an official day to honor grandparents. Eight years later, on August 03, 1978, the US government passed legislation officially recognizing the new national holiday.
7. Take measures to prevent falls
As they say, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Rather than waiting for a potentially traumatic fall to occur, be proactive to prevent falls by making your environment safer and maintaining a stable gait.
- Wearing proper footwear
- Clearing the floors of trip hazards
- Ensuring rugs are secure
- Installing adequate lighting
Maintaining a stable gait is important to keeping steady on your feet and can be done with appropriate exercises. In case you don’t already have AposHealth shoes to help improve movement patterns42, some knee exercises can be helpful (Note: this is a general idea; you should turn to a physical therapist for specific advice).
8. Go for a walk
Walking is a great way to get out and be active. It can improve circulation, strengthen the heart and lungs, increase balance, and it can be excellent for mental health too. A good walk can help you clear your head and raise your mood.
9. Drink a probiotic
As we age it’s common to discover various digestive issues starting to crop up. One of the main culprits is an imbalance or lack of healthy gut flora, which are the “good” bacteria that live in your gut and help you digest and absorb food.
Antibacterial medication trends to kill off all the bacteria in the body indiscriminately, both the “bad” bacteria and the good gut flora that you need for a healthy body, so by the time one reaches their 60s or 70s they likely need to replenish their gut bacteria levels. Probiotics seed those good bacteria back into your digestive system to keep you in good health.
10. Find a solution for your nagging joint pain
By the time you reach grandparenthood, it’s very common to find that one joint or another begins to grumble and cause pain and stiffness at times. Simply putting up with it or hoping that it will go away on its own can lead to a downward spiral of muscle bracing and increased pain.
Grandparents Day is a great day to start managing joint pain and gain the power and freedom to move again.
Here’s to many more years of happy and healthy Grandparents Days!