agebuzz weekly

March 22nd, 2018

Good morning and welcome to agebuzz… Headlining today’s topics:

Ride Away: Mounting Evidence To Support The Benefits Of Biking: As evidence continues to grow supporting the benefits of exercise for healthy aging, we need to ask ourselves: What exercise is right for my individual situation? What do I enjoy doing that my body can tolerate? For those of you who enjoy a good bike ride, new research has just arrived to support its health benefits. Apparently, regular biking can improve your aging muscles, strengthen your heart and even boost your immune system. Published in Aging Cell, this new research was the brainchild of Dr. Norman Lazarus, an 82-year-old professor at Kings College in England who realized that he was not suffering from the usual maladies that afflict older people and wondered if his biking had a role to play. You can listen to Dr. Lazarus, and find out more about the research, Here. And for more motivation and inspiration, grab a towel andread here about the experiences of 3 Soul Cycle instructors over 50, whose indoor cycling habits have them sweating with riders decades younger. 

All Alone: The Epidemic of Loneliness And How To Respond: You've probably seen the articles: although we live in an era where we're more connected by technology than ever before, many of us are alone and lonely. This paradox hits seniors especially hard. They may become isolated due to deteriorating physical health or perhaps due to geographic distance from loved ones, and technology may not be a solution for them. Whatever the reason, loneliness can have a profound impact on the physical and mental well-being of an older personAging Care recently posted a set of easy-to-implement strategies designed to lessen the peril from senior loneliness. And in this era of sophisticated technology, it's amazing how a plain old vanilla phone call can do more to ease someone's loneliness than any high-tech app. For an example, consider the story of Sophie Andrews, who, in a moving TED talk, reveals how a sympathetic phone call with a stranger willing to just listen had a profound impact on the trajectory of her own life. Sophie went on to create The Silver Line, a volunteer phone bank in England that's fielded over a million phone calls from seniors in search of someone to talk to. And if you have a moment, pick up the phone and just give a listen to someone who may be alone. 

You've Got Mail: Expect Your New Medicare Card To Arrive In The Mail Sometime Soon: The change has been in the works for a while and now the event is finally approaching: for those of you on Medicare, you can expect a new Medicare card, with a new beneficiary identification number, to arrive in your mailbox sometime over the next several months. Depending on what state you live in, new cards will begin arriving in April with the goal of creating a more secure system that doesn't expose your social security number whenever you pull out your card. There's no cost for these new cards, so don't let anyone scam you into giving out personal info for a new card or thinking you need to pay. The only thing you will need to make sure of is that Medicare has your up-to-date mailing address. For more info about the new card, read this Next Avenue post by Carol Levine, Director of the United Hospital Fund's Families and Health Care Project. And for general questions you may have about Medicare, check out the National Council on Aging's My Medicare Matters.

Where Am I? Seniors And Their Sense of Direction: We've all been there. One minute we know exactly where we're going and the next, not so much. It turns out as we age, the brain circuits that allow us to navigate a new space become unstable and thus our ability to find our way in an unfamiliar environment may diminish. The research demonstrating this compromised cell circuitry has been published in Current Biology and you can read more about the study, and its implications, Here. And for some of us, we not only lose our way occasionally but also forget the names of people we've previously met. This sort of memory loss can be a natural consequence of aging (not to mention embarrassing). One research center in Toronto, Baycrest, is working to harness the tendency of senior brains to be distracted into a new brain training game to allow us to better remember faces of people we've recently met. So, instead of playing Angry Birds on your smartphone, you may someday be playing Who's Face Is This. Read more about this potential brain training program Here.

Sea Worthy: Setting Sail During Your Senior Years: It's common to create travel plans for retirement. What may be less common is to embrace travel as the primary way of life for our non-working years. But if you have the inclination and the money, then you'll want to become familiar with a new option in retirement community living. Say hello to Storylines, a new luxury cruise concept that allows you to purchase high-end condominiums aboard a luxury cruise ship so that you can sail the world during your retirement years. Starting in 2019, those with the cash can purchase homes on this ship that will include a full roster of health and medical supports both on board and in every port, and owners will be able to hop on and off, and rent out their cabins when not in use. So pull out your passport, and read more about this luxury liner Here. But if your retirement travel budget is not so plush, you may want to check out some top travel deals and tips for seniors Here

Endless Love: Style Blogger Ari Seth Cohen Shines A Light On Senior Love: Maybe you follow his celebrated Instagramaccount, Advanced Style. Or maybe you own one of his best selling books-Advanced Style or Advanced Style-Older and Wiser. No matter how you've come to know him, you won't forget Ari Seth Cohen, the style blogger who has made it his mission to shine a light on seniors with a sense of personal style. Some of the most fabulous women he has promoted appeared in his 2014 documentary, Advanced Style.  And he himself has been named one of the 500 most influential people in the modern fashion world. So what's he working on now? Well, he's gone beyond the surface to probe the lives of seniors more deeply and his new book, to be published in 2019, is called Advanced Love. In it, he'll profile 40 couples who represent the spectrum of love and style for seniors in the 21st century. For a sneak peek of some of the spectacular seniors who will populate Advanced Love, take a look Here.

THE LAST WORD: “Millions long for immortality who do not know what to do with themselves on a rainy Sunday afternoon." Susan Ertz