Category Archives: Excercise

Contact Care: Ease your Hay Fever Symptoms.

Looking out of my window right now the sun is shining, a breeze is tickling the curtains and although the trees are still bare of leaves, it is a blue sky I see beyond them. But not everyone welcomes this time of year….

Contact Alarm Service with advice on relieving hay feverHay fever affects ¼ of the British population

One in four people are effected by hay fever, and unlike the name suggests (hay – harvest time) for many the tree pollen swirling in the air now is causing a runny nose and watery eyes.

There is over the counter medication to help. Additionally, you can help yourself. These five tips are provided by NHS Choices using information from a survey undertaken by the National Pollen and Aerobiology Research Unit of more than 2,000 people with hay fever, found that lifestyle factors, such as stress and exercise, can have a major impact on hay fever.

Five tips to reduce hay fever symptoms

1. Reduce your stress: Easier said than done, but try it anyway because a clear link was found between stress and the severity of hay fever symptoms. As stress levels drop, symptoms become milder.

2. Exercise more: Regular exercise can improve your hay fever. The survey found that people with hay fever who exercise most have the mildest symptoms. Exercise will also help reduce your stress levels, too. Aim to do 150 minutes (two and a half hours) of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise every week. Now, as this is hay fever season, you’ll be better doing it indoors. So put on that exercise video and get bouncing in the living-room. Or go to the gym or swimming-pool.

3. Eat well: The survey suggests those who eat a healthy diet are less likely to get severe symptoms. Be aware though, that some healthy foods can make hay fever symptoms worse. Foods that can worsen hay fever symptoms for some people include apples, tomatoes, stoned fruits, melons, bananas and celery.

Eat foods rich in omega 3 and 6 essential fats which can be found in oily fish, nuts, seeds, and their oils. These contain anti-inflammatory properties, and may help reduce symptoms of hay fever.

 4. Cut down on alcohol. Alcohol worsens hay fever because it contains histamine.

5. Sleep well: Try to avoid too many late nights during the hay fever season. The survey found that those who get a good night’s sleep tend to have the mildest symptoms. Just one in eight (13%) people who had at least seven hours sleep a night reported severe symptoms, compared with one in five (21%) who regularly had five hours sleep or less a night.

Kat Navarro

Contact Alarm Service – Contact Care

Senior Independence: Exercise for the over-65’s

 Senior independence. Senior health.

Senior independence and staying healthy in oder ageGuidelines for older adults aged 65 and over. Seniors, aged 65 or older, who are generally fit and have no health conditions that limit their mobility, should try to be active daily and should do:

At least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity such as cycling or walking every week,

 and

Strength exercises on two or more days a week that work all the major muscles (legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulders and arms).

or

75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity such as running or a game of singles tennis every week,

and

Strength exercises on two or more days a week that work all the major muscles (legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulders and arms).

NHS – keeping you independent in older age:

This advice comes from the NHS who wish to keep you healthy and enjoying your independence in your own home. For more information visit NHS Choices.

Kat Navarro

Community Alarms: Supporting Senior Independence through health.

The benefits of exercise can be great

It is never too late to begin a programme of exercise and the benefits can be great. Improving your strength, stamina and balance will not only make you feel better, you may lose weight and lessen your risk of having a fall due to poor balance.

Balance is affected by several factors; decreased vision, weak hips and legs, poor posture and general weakness. Some prescription drugs can have side-effects that affect balance. Low blood pressure and not eating properly can also lead to light-headedness, making us more susceptible to a fall. That is why beginning a balance programme which incorporates strength training, endurance training and balance training is essential in maintaining and promoting good balance and overall health and wellbeing. It’s best to approach beginning exercise gently,5 minutes a day is enough to make a difference and you can increase this over time as your strength and stamina improve.

A study published in the journal Age in 2014 trained and tested a group of 24 people aged between 91 and 96 for 12 weeks. One group of 11 trained twice a week, carrying out vigorous exercises for strength and to improve balance. The 13 others did 30 minutes of far less strenuous mobility training, including gentle stretching and flexibility exercises. At the end of the experiment, the first group showed a significant improvement in walking speed, hip and knee flexibility. Their muscle mass had increased, they found it easier to get out of their chairs and they were less likely to fall over.

The group that did less strenuous exercise showed far less progress. Professor Mikel Izquierdo, who led the research, said physical inactivity causes muscle loss and frailty. He said: ‘The training raised their functional capacity, lowered the risk of falls, and improved muscle power. To get all of the benefits of physical activity, try all four types of exercise; endurance, strength, balance, and flexibility.

This will give you the maximum benefit. Just make sure that you never exercise when you feel unwell, have a fever or swollen joints. It is also always very important to speak with your doctor before you begin a new exercise regime, especially if you have underlying health problems that could be exacerbated by undertaking a sudden change in your activity levels.

You can do balance exercises almost anytime, anywhere, and as often as you like, as long as you have something sturdy nearby to hold on to if you become unsteady. In the beginning, using a chair or the wall for support will help you work on your balance safely. It’s a great starting point for someone new to exercise as they are usually simple and low impact and will be most important in helping you reduce your risk of losing balance and falling.