Reaching Retirement Massively Boosts Health And Happiness (If We Ever Get There)

Posted by Big Rat on Campus on Jun 20, 2013 in Rat Answers | Subscribe

The retirement age may have just gone up, but once you actually get to retire, you may find yourself feeling younger and healthier than ever. It may sound like a premise from the film ‘Cocoon’, but research from the Office of National Statistics has revealed that people in their late 60s have similar levels of happiness as people in their 30s and are satisfied with their own health.

Interestingly, anxiety and depression drops by almost a third for people between the ages of 50 to late 60s.

The Telegraph reported that as part of a wider study of 40,000 households, people were asked to rate how happy they were with their overall health and other factors that might be affecting their wellbeing.


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Part of the reason might be that retirees are finding themselves in better health than their parents’ generation, another might be that it’s easier to emigrate or travel nowadays that it was 20 or 30 years ago.

The report was published by the ONS and shows that people’s wellbeing declines from their teens until their 50s. Teenagers rank their overall happiness at 75%, which drops to 70% in their 30s and lowers to 60% by the time people are in their 40s and 50s. It then jumps to 67% once people reach retirement age.

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  • Meditate

    Meditation can help maintain a calm and focused mind, but one side benefit of that relaxation could also help with blood pressure. When relaxed, the body produces more nitric oxide, a href=”http://www.npr.org/2008/08/21/93796200/to-lower-blood-pressure-open-up-and-say-om”which in turn helps blood vessels to open up, reducing the pressure of the blood flowing through/a.

  • Adopt A Pet

    Research shows that a href=”http://www.webmd.com/hypertension-high-blood-pressure/guide/5-ways-pets-improve-your-health”pet owners have lower blood pressure/a (also: lower cholesterol and heart disease risk), thanks to the anxiety-reducing qualities of an animal companion.

  • Work On Your Marriage

    In one 2008 study in the Annals of Behavioral Medicine, a href=”http://www.cbsnews.com/2100-500368_162-3955956.html”researchers found that happily married adults had better blood pressure/a than happily single and unhappily married adults.

  • Get Moving

    This one’s a no-brainer, but exercise is one of the best ways to lower blood pressure. There are many ways that the simple act of moderate exercise can improve your blood pressure (and overall health). First, it helps with other risk factors for hypertension, like extra weight and stress. But exercise also improves the strength of your heart so that a href=”http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/high-blood-pressure/HI00024″it can more effectively and efficiently pump blood, which lowers the pressure on the arteries/a.

  • Stick To One Or Two Drinks

    Moderate drinking — one drink for women and men over 65 and two drinks for younger men — can actually help reduce blood pressure. a href=”http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/high-blood-pressure/HI00027″But more than that has the opposite effect/a, according to the Mayo Clinic.

  • Monitor Your Caffeine

    There is some evidence that caffeine can temporarily increase blood pressure, though it’s unclear if there is a long-term effect.

    The a href=”http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/high-blood-pressure/HI00027/NSECTIONGROUP=2″Mayo Clinic recommends/a checking blood pressure 30 minutes after a cup of coffee or caffeinated soda to see if the effect remains.

  • Quit Smoking — And Smokers

    Of course, for this and many other reasons, you should quit smoking. But even second-hand smoke can have a damaging effect on your blood pressure a href=”http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/Conditions/HighBloodPressure/UnderstandYourRiskforHighBloodPressure/Understand-Your-Risk-for-High-Blood-Pressure_UCM_002052_Article.jsp”because it damages arteries/a.

  • Choose Pressure-Lowering Foods

    Several foods have been found to naturally lower blood pressure. Things like chili peppers, chocolate, beans and bananas have all been proven to lower blood pressure in humans or in trials with rats. a href=”http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/03/28/raisins-and-7-other-foods-lower-blood-pressure_n_1382535.html#slide=817449″Read on for more here/a.

  • Keep Weight Under Control

    Eating well is essential to maintaining healthy blood pressure, but even if you live on a href=”http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/03/28/raisins-and-7-other-foods-lower-blood-pressure_n_1382535.html#slide=817449″beans and bananas/a, extra pounds could harm you. In fact, one Italian study found that a href=”http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/09/070928180348.htm”hypertension in overweight patients was a secondary condition, caused by the excess weight/a. In other words, once the weight was lost, the high blood pressure went with it.

  • Stay Away From Salt

    Perhaps the best known advice for healthy blood pressure is maintaining a low sodium diet. Follow the a href=”http://health.gov/dietaryguidelines/faq.asp”USDA’s Dietary Guidelines for Americans/a: a max of 2,300 mg of sodium for healthy, young adults — or 1,500 mg a day or fewer for those who are over 50, African-American or suffering from diabetes or chronic kidney disease.

Article source: http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2013/06/20/retirement-boosts-wellbeing-_n_3470785.html?utm_hp_ref=uk-lifestyle?ncid=GEP

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