Healthy ageing depends on genetic, environmental and behavioral factors, as well as broader environmental and socioeconomic determinants. An individual can control some of these factors (usually known as lifestyle factors) but not others. Social determinants of health, such as income and education, influence the choices that individuals can make, and create life circumstances that limit opportunities for healthy lifestyle, and therefore create health inequalities.
The World Health Organization defines healthy or active ageing as ‘the process of developing and maintaining the functional ability that enables well-being in older age’.
The Australian Government have published a well-for-life-a-healthy-approach-to-ageing document that shows the importance of health and wellbeing as you grow older, along with healthy ageing “ingredients” such as the following:
• Regular physical activity
• A healthy diet and plenty of water
• Keeping your brain active
• A positive outlook and having fun
• Having meaning and purpose in your life
• Connecting with community
• Connecting with nature
• Time with people who are important to you
• Good relationships
• Understanding your health issues and medications
• Quit smoking
• Continuing to adapt to changes in your life
• Planning for your older age.
Phoenix Park Neighbourhood House offer many programs that help with healthy ageing.