HOBBIES ARE GOOD FOR YOUR HEALTH

Do you have a hobby? Hobbies can give meaning and purpose to your life in retirement. As Robert Putnam points out in his book, Bowling Alone, it’s easy to discount the importance of hobbies and social engagements. Putnam details the widespread decline in civic engagement, from PTA memberships to neighborhood potlucks and bowling leagues. Over a couple of generations, Americans have misplaced the concept of free time.

SPECIAL PLANS FOR YOUR SPECIAL PEOPLE

Lily is a beautiful, active and full of personality toddler who happens to have Down syndrome. Lily’s parents and I have been friends for years and I have the continuing pleasure of watching Lily and her siblings grow up. While Lily is becoming a physical therapy rock star and hitting all her milestones in a timely fashion, her parents have started planning for the future.

….FULL ARTICLE

WHY WE ENJOY OUR HOBBIES

The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines a hobby as “a pursuit outside one’s regular occupation, engaged in especially for relaxation.” Hobbies include anything from playing a musical instrument to gardening, bird watching or sewing. A hobby is a way of focusing on something you enjoy just for the sake of that enjoyment. It may also be a way to clear your mental palette. You could be stressed out by a situation at work or the challenges of raising children and need an escape.

….FULL ARTICLE

….FULL ARTICLE

Use the buttons below to scroll through more great articles from Living Well 60 + Magazine

MORE ARTICLES

Be Sociable, Share!

Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Delicious Share on Digg Share on Google Bookmarks Share on LinkedIn Share on LiveJournal Share on Newsvine Share on Reddit Share on Stumble Upon Share on Tumblr

MORE ARTICLES

CONTACT INFORMATION

© Living Well 60+ Magazine - All rights reserved | Design by PurplePatch Innovations

MORE FROM ROCKPOINT PUBLISHING

LIVING WELL 60+ MAGAZINE

HOME | FEATURE ARTICLES | COLUMN ARTICLES | DIGITAL ISSUES | CALENDAR | DIRECTORY | ABOUT | CONTACT

subscribe to living Well 60+


A woman’s wellness is directly tied to her ability to engage in economically productive activities, to garner more income and financial independence to increase household spending on nutrition, health and education, leading to stability and growth. Researchers for The 90+ Study at the University of California Irvine Institute for Memory Impairments and Neurological Disorders have been focusing on questions such as, “What kinds of things can people change in their lives to so they might live longer? What makes people live to age 90 and beyond? What types of food, activities or lifestyles are associated with living longer?” The researchers conclude both genetics and lifestyle play key roles in understanding the aging process.


Sources and Resources

Women who are maintaining healthy families serve as a litmus test for the economic strength of communities. Across her lifespan, a woman’s health status matters to herself, her family and to her community. While life expectancy is higher for women than men in most countries, a number of health and social factors combine to create a lower quality of life for women.


Men dying sooner than women makes sense biologically: Because 105 males are born for every 100 females, it would ensure there are about the same number of men and women at reproductive ages. But even though women showed a longer life expectancy in almost every human society in the past decade, the size of the advantage varied greatly. For example, in the United States, male life expectancy was 73.4 years for males and 80.1 years for females, a difference of 6.7 years. In France the difference was 7.8 years and in the United Kingdom it was 5.3 years. The discrepancy was much greater in some countries, such as Russia (more than 12 years,) but in others, such as India (0.6 years) or Bangladesh (0.1 years), it was much less.


Women, more so than men, are attentive to their bodies and needs and often carry on deeper dialogues more easily with their doctors. Women may be better able to glean greater profit from modern medical and social advances by practicing activities that are healthier and

HEALTH, WELLNESS AND LONGEVITY IN WOMEN

better protect their bodies. In this context, women’s biological advantage appears relatively minor in the total mortality differences between the sexes.


During the first year of life, in the absence of any outside influence that could differentiate mortality between the sexes, male mortality is 25 percent to 30 percent greater than female mortality. The genetic advantage of females is evident. When a mutation of one of the genes of the X chromosome occurs, females have a second X to compensate, whereas all genes of the unique X chromosome of males express themselves, even if they are deleterious. More generally, the genetic difference between the sexes is associated with better resistance to biological aging. Furthermore, female hormones and the role of women in reproduction have been linked to greater longevity. Estrogen, for example, facilitates the elimination of bad cholesterol and thus may offer some protection against heart disease. Testosterone, on the other hand, has been linked to violence and risk taking. Finally, the female body makes reserves to accommodate the needs of pregnancy and breast feeding; this characteristic has been associated with a greater ability to cope with overeating and eliminating excess food.

DR. THOMAS W. MILLER, PH.D, ABPP

Thomas W. Miller, Ph.D., ABPP, is a professor emeritus and senior research scientist, Center for Health, Intervention and Prevention, University of Connecticut; retired service chief from the VA Medical Center; and tenured professor in the Department of Psychiatry, College of Medicine, University of Kentucky.

more articles by dr thomas W. Miller