This past week I received the following letter from my financial advisor:
The 22-page article was titled: “Health and Retirement: Planning for the Great Unknown” and began with the following words:
Following are the percentages of retirees who say what the most important ingredients for a happy retirement are:
- 81% - Having good health
- 58% - Being financially secure
- 36% - Having loving family and friends
- 20% - Having purpose
Later in the article under the heading: “Three Critical Solutions for Healthier Aging”:
- Retirees must take greater charge of their own health to achieve the retirement and lifestyle they aspire to in later life.
- Health care system must enhance resources, skills, and knowledge to be more aging ready.
- Both the government and scientific communities must increase research to eliminate and manage the diseases of aging.
- People who begin exercising in their 60s or 70s are three times more likely than those who don’t exercise to age healthfully – and not develop a major chronic disease, depression, physical or cognitive impairment.
- A nutritious diet. A healthy diet can improve heart health, fortify bones, and reduce the risk of stroke, type 2 diabetes and cancer.
- Maintaining a healthy weight. People age 45-64 who eat better, maintain a healthy weight, and exercise a few hours a week can reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease by 35%.
- Staying socially connected. Studies show that having a low level of social interaction is just as unhealthy as smoking and can be even unhealthier than lack of exercise or obesity.
- Maintaining healthy lifestyle habits. This includes the avoidance of smoking, stress, and excessive drinking. It’s never too late to quit smoking. The benefits are almost immediate, and quitting at age 65 adds two to four years to your life. People who drink two or more drinks a day have a 62% higher chance of having a stroke.