Cami Wells: Keeping active as we age | Advice

Including regular physical activity is one of the most important things you can do for your health as an older adult (65 years and older).

Less pain, better mood, and lower risk of many diseases are some of the health benefits from being active. It can make your daily life better, so it is easier to:

Cami Wells

Do everyday tasks, like chores and shopping

Stay independent as you get older

Keep up with the grandkids

How much activity do older adults need? Focus on moving more and sitting less throughout the day. Always remember some activity is better than none. Check with your doctor before starting a physical activity routine. If you are 65 years of age or older, are generally fit, and have no limiting health conditions, you can follow these recommendations:

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At least 150 minutes a week of moderate intensity activity such as brisk walking or anything that gets your heart beating faster counts

At least two days a week of activities that strengthen muscles such as gardening (digging, shoveling) or some forms of yoga

Mix in stretches and activities to improve balance such as standing on one leg

Ready to get more active?

Start gradually and increase the amount and intensity of physical activity over time. Evaluate your age, level of fitness and level of experience to help reduce injury risk when increasing physical activity.

The best way to get started is to focus on a light- to moderate-intensity activity, such as walking 5 to 15 minutes per session, two to three times a week. Research has shown walking to be a low risk of injury and no known risk of severe cardiac events.

Blueberry Baked French Toast

5 cups whole grain bread cubes

½ cup fresh or frozen blueberries

¼ cup granulated sugar, divided

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 tablespoon butter or margarine

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly coat an 8-inch square baking pan with cooking spray.

Add bread cubes to the baking pan and top with blueberries.

Crack eggs into a mixing bowl. Wash hands with soap and water after handling raw eggs.

To the eggs, add 2 tablespoons of sugar and vanilla. Whisk together. Pour egg mixture over bread and blueberries. Cut butter or margarine into small pieces and place on top of bread cubes. Combine the remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar with cinnamon and sprinkle over the top.

Bake about 45 minutes until eggs are set and reach a minimum internal temperature of 165 degrees F on a food thermometer.

Store leftovers in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to four days.

Nutrition information per serving: Calories 240, total fat 7g, saturated fat 2g, cholesterol 120mg, sodium 280mg, total carbohydrates 32g, fiber 3g, total sugars 16g, includes 12g added sugars, protein 11g.

Cami Wells is an Extension Educator for Nebraska Extension in Hall County. Contact Cami by phone at 308-385-5088, by email at or visit the Hall County website at