There are many factors that come into play to determine our quality of life as we age. Many of our daily choices add up to impact our end of life quality in positive and negative ways (such as choosing to drink water versus soda pop). Researchers have determined three simple tests you can do at home to measure your ability to maintain the quality of life with aging.
Researchers published an article in 2014 titled “Physical capability in mid-life and survival over 13 years of follow-up: British birth cohort study.” In this study, 2,766 individuals who were 53 years old were evaluated on the ability to do three tests. Researchers then followed up on this group 13 years later. They found that those who were able to perform the tests well at 53, were more vibrant and healthy at the age of 66 than those who struggled with the three tests. Death rates were much higher for those who were not able to complete the tasks.
What were the three tests?
- Balance test: standing on one leg with your eyes closed for 10 seconds or longer
- Grip test: ability to apply a pressure up to 54.5 kg (hand dynamometer)
- Chair test: standing up and sitting down in a chair (men = 39 times, women 36 times) in one minute
These are three easy tests you can do on yourself at home.
How should you improve on these if you struggle?
Simple lifestyle changes may make all the difference. These include daily movement, whole foods, water, positive thinking, and quality sleep. You can begin by working with a Functional Medicine practitioner to learn specific ways to improve your overall health.
Yours for better health,
Georgia Nab, DC MS CNS