weekly blog--one for the ages
A photo of South Natick Dam. ConfrontingAging will be on hiatus beginning Sunday through Labor Day. Enjoy the rest of the summer.
For aging adults living alone…there now is a Facebook page, Elder Orphans, devoted to creating a community and support group for those aged 55 years and older without mates or adult children. About 20 percent of U.S. women now reach their 50s without having children, up from 10 percent in the 1970s, according to a recent report on care-giving from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine. Further, one-third of middle-age adults are heading toward retirement years as singles, after never marrying, divorce or widowhood. Women are particularly likely to stay single or become single as they age, with more than 80 percent unmarried after age 85, according to other government statistics.
For men experiencing androgenic alopecia, male pattern baldness…a cure might be lurking in a research lab in California. According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, more than 50 percent of all men over the age of 50 are affected by male pattern baldness. UCLA researchers have discovered a new way to activate the stem cells in the hair follicle to make hair grow, which may lead to new drugs that could promote hair growth.
ConfrontingAging is now 1.5 years old. Our website averages more than 300 unique visitors a week and more than 1,000 page views. Aside from the home page that features the latest news on aging issues, the most frequented sections include Health Challenges and Eating & Exercise. As we move through the dog days of summer, it’s a wonderful time to think about travel. Below are some of the lesser known destinations that retirees like to go. The list was compiled from several websites. Happy Trails!
Jekyll Island, Georgia
Beaufort, South Carolina
Fort Wayne, Indiana
La Paz, Bolivia
Cebu City, Philippines
Dr. Shigeaki Hinohara, who helped make Japan a world leader in longevity, passed away a few weeks ago at age 105. Dr. Hinohara ministered to victims of the firebombing of Tokyo during World War II. He was taken hostage in 1970 when Japanese Red Army terrorists hijacked a commercial airliner. He treated 640 of the victims of a radical cult’s subway poison gas attack in 1995. He also wrote a musical for children when he was 88, and a best-selling book when he was 101. Until a few months ago he was still treating patients, playing golf and kept a date book with space for five more years of appointments.
In the early 1950s, Dr. Hinohara pioneered a system of detailed health checkups for middle-aged and elderly men called “human dry-dock” which has been credited with helping to lengthen the average life span in Japan. Women born today can expect to live to 87; men to 80.
His advice for living longer: avoid obesity, take the stairs, and carry your own packages. Also, remember that doctors cannot cure everything. Don’t underestimate the beneficial effects of music and the company of animals. Don’t ever retire, but if you must, do so a lot later than age 65. And prevail over pain simply by enjoying yourself.
Dr. Hinohara maintained his weight at about 130 pounds. His diet consisted of coffee, milk and orange juice with a tablespoon of olive oil for breakfast; milk and a few biscuits for lunch; vegetables with a small portion of fish and rice for dinner. He consumed about 3 ounces of lean meat twice a week. (NY Times)