THIS BLOG IS BEST VIEWED IN
Wednesday November 29, 2023
“Social security isn’t a ponzi scheme.
It’s not bankrupting us.
It’s not an outrage. It is working.”
― Rachel Maddow
Boomers Know Best —
If You Have to Hustle,
It's Not Passive Income
BY KENNY ROSE
- There's a clear divide in how different generations perceive and pursue passive income.
- Many people, particularly younger generations, misunderstand the true nature of passive income.
- True passive income typically comes from investments that require minimal ongoing effort, such as dividends from stocks, interest from bonds, or earnings from real estate and other alternative business assets.
Investors have coveted passive income streams since the early days of the COVID lockdown, when we were all sitting around on our laptops, figuring we might as well make a few extra bucks. Its popularity shows no sign of waning — not with inflation surging and eggs at $5 a dozen.
The pursuit of passive income ignites young and old investors alike. In a recent survey of 1,000 US investors with at least $10K in assets, the State of Alternative Assets report, respondents across age demographics ranked it as a top 2023 priority. But while passive income is a common goal, there's an increasingly clear divide in how generations understand and earn passive income. Gen Z and Millennials see it as a dependable stream of income outside their main paycheck and seek it via crypto and side hustles. Gen X and Boomers take the set-it-and-forget-it approach, and look for passive income via capital appreciation.
Read more >> https://www.entrepreneur.com/money-finance/boomers-know-best-if-you-have-to-hustle-its-not/464001
Exploring Medicaid Payments
for Assisted Living:
What You Need to Know
BY DANIEL COBB
When it’s time for you or a senior you care for to look into assisted living, the cost can quickly turn into an obstacle. According to Genworth Financial’s Cost of Care Survey, the average senior pays $4,500 a month for assisted living, with prices going much higher in many places. Paying for this can be a challenge, especially for older adults with limited incomes.
Many seniors with limited resources receive health care coverage through their state’s Medicaid program, which may open the door to financial assistance in paying for care. Assisted living communities house seniors in a safe, caring environment where their needs can be taken care of by trained staff. These are not medical facilities like skilled nursing homes, but they do offer help with activities of daily living and chore assistance. Many communities also offer premium features such as concierge services and lifestyle classes.
Assisted living communities house seniors in a safe, caring environment where their needs can be taken care of by trained staff. These are not medical facilities like skilled nursing homes, but they do offer help with activities of daily living and chore assistance. Many communities also offer premium features such as concierge services and lifestyle classes.
50-year-old muscles just
can’t grow big like they used to
— according to science
There is perhaps no better way to see the absolute pinnacle of human athletic abilities than by watching the Olympics. But at the Olympics – and at almost all professional sporting events – you rarely see a competitor over 40 years old and almost never see a single athlete over 50. This is because with every additional year spent on Earth, bodies age and muscles don’t respond to exercise the same as they used to.
I lead a team of scientists who study the health benefits of exercise, strength training and diet in older people. We investigate how older people respond to exercise and try to understand the underlying biological mechanisms that cause muscles to increase in size and strength after resistance or strength training.
Old and young people build muscle in the same way. But as you age, many of the biological processes that turn exercise into muscle become less effective. This makes it harder for older people to build strength but also makes it that much more important for everyone to continue exercising as they age.
What’s the Key to
a Secure Retirement?
The answer is long-term planning,
but if you, like so many other
retirees and others approaching retirement,
have planning gaps, here’s what you can do.
BY ANNA M. RAPPAPORT
By the time a person approaches retirement age, they have enough life experience to know that change and the unexpected are, well, expected. On the other hand, human beings also tend to focus on what’s right in front of them, and retirees and those approaching retirement are no different.
Studies have found that many people at or near retirement age have major gaps in their planning, making them vulnerable to financial problems in retirement.
Misperceptions put retirement nest eggs at risk:
A result of gaps in knowledge and failure to think about the long term is a focus on cash flows and expected bills and not on unexpected events. The SOA Research Institute has studied shocks in retirement, and it found that retirees are resilient and able to deal effectively with many of them, but not all.
9 Simple and Effective
Online Safety Tips
for Seniors in 2023
By Ben Pilkington
A recent Pew Research survey found that three-quarters of people aged over 65 are online every day, 61% own a smartphone, and 45% are users of at least one social media platform like Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.
When people from any group go online more often, they expose themselves to more online risks.
And as seniors engage more with the online world, they are more likely to become targets for cybercriminals. It has been estimated that older people in the US lose $30 billion annually due to cybercrime.
Your best defense against cybercriminals is yourself.
Arming yourself with a few simple, effective, and memorable safety tips is the best way to protect yourself from online risks like scams, fake news, and abusive trolls.
PRIDE, SELF RESPECT
AND HOW TO WIN AN ARGUMENT
Throughout my experiences, I have had the privilege of observing elderly individuals from various perspectives, which has allowed me to develop a deep understanding of the subject matter. I have personally been a patient in a nursing home and a resident in an assisted living facility, gaining valuable insights into the challenges faced by seniors. Additionally, I have relied on a wheelchair, walker, Rollator, and cane to navigate my surroundings. I have encountered the humbling experience of being assisted out of bed, wheeled to a shower, and washed by a female aide. Moreover, I have even found myself on the receiving end of a scolding from someone significantly younger than me. Therefore, I believe I have the qualifications when I urge my fellow seniors to "get your act together." *And by that I mean the one thing that stands out as a key factor for many seniors is their lack of self respect. Let's take a quick look at what I think self-respect and pride in oneself means.
Firstly, have you noticed how you've been dressing lately? Don't you care about how your clothes fit anymore? What's up with wearing your pants so low, or even worse, up to your neck? Do you even know what a belt is? And what about matching colors? When did it become okay to wear striped pants with a checkered shirt? The saying "Clothes make the man" still holds true even when you're older.
And then there's hygiene. You can douse yourself in all the cheap aftershave or cologne you want, but that's not a replacement for a good shower. And when I say shower, I mean every single day. The other day, a fellow resident decided to stand next to me while we were waiting for the dining room to open for breakfast. I was greeted with a lovely mix of urine, skunk, and stale lime juice. What a way to start the day, right?
But what I really want to change (or adjust) is how you perceive yourself. Many of us have been treated with such disrespect that we've lost all respect for ourselves. I can't even count how many times I've witnessed my fellow seniors being belittled by other seniors and staff members here at the A.L.F. Instead of standing up for themselves, they either slink away muttering or try to come up with some nonsensical excuse for their behavior. This only makes them appear even more foolish than they actually are. What you should do is walk away from an argument, but always have the final say. What I do is use these words when I know I can't win: "You're wrong, and deep down, you know it." Then I simply turn and walk away. It has worked for me countless times. Why? Because it forces the other person to question and reconsider their actions. Just remember, you have a better chance of respect if you aren’t dressed like a clown and don’t smell like a horse. …
* Alternatively, I could have used a more direct phrase like "grow a pair," but I prefer to maintain a respectful tone.
Average Social Security retirement benefits by age
The Social Security Administration (SSA) publishes detailed data that slices and dices Social Security benefits payments in lots of ways. One of those ways is how much on average retired workers receive in benefits at various ages. Following is a table based on SSA's data that will tell you how your Social Security benefits stack up against the average for your age group:
THURSDAY NOV. 30, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
THIS BLOG IS BEST VIEWED IN
Tuesday November 28, 2023
“The use of solar energy has not been opened up
because the oil industry does not own the sun.”
Should a POLST
Be Part of Your Care Plan?
The American Hospital Association estimates that half of Americans suffer from chronic conditions like heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. Following a diagnosis, many experience concerns about the kind of care they will receive. They may worry about how invasive it will be, and how it will affect their quality of life. Fortunately, you can proactively decide what treatments would – or would not – suit your preferences.
If you are one of the half of Americans with a condition that puts your health at risk, consider working with your health care provider to create a Physician Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment (POLST).
By creating a POLST, those with long-lasting or terminal conditions can ensure they receive their desired treatment should their health decline. Creating a POLST could help you plan your treatment for an adverse health event or the end of your life.
What Is a POLST?
Hearing loss can lead
to deadly falls,
but hearing aids
may cut the risk
By Allison Aubrey
If your hearing begins to decline, your risk of falling may rise.
Research shows older adults with mild hearing loss are at a greater risk — more than double — of falling. Though it's not exactly clear how hearing loss increases the risk, it's known that falls are the top cause of death from injury among people 65 and older.
Now, new evidence shows that restoring hearing through the use of hearing aids may be protective, especially when people wear them consistently. That's according to a study published this summer in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.
"We found, quite significantly, that individuals that wore hearing aids compared to those that didn't, did show a significantly lower prevalence," explains Laura Campos, an audiologist and researcher at UCHealth in Colorado and the study's lead author. "They reported fewer falls," she explains, and their scores on a falls risk questionnaire showed they were at lower risk.
Read more >> https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2023/11/13/1212051086/hearing-aids-hearing-loss-falls-injury-aging-older-adults
Doctor’s Best Home Remedies
to Ease the Pain of a Gout Flare
— in 10 Minutes or Less
By Alyssa Sybertz and Ann Green
If you often find yourself sidelined by a sudden, throbbing pain in your joints, especially in your big toe, you may be suffering from a gout attack. Flare ups of this common type of arthritis can also cause the affected joint to feel swollen, tender and warm to the touch. Here, we break down what you need to know about gout and how to reduce your risk of developing it. Plus, we share the best 10 minute gout cure — and more easy home remedies — that alleviate pain fast.
What is gout?
Gout is the most common form of inflammatory arthritis and occurs when inflammation in a joint causes symptoms like redness, tenderness and swelling. “Gout is caused by an excess of uric acid in the body, which deposits in joints and causes intermittent episodes of inflammatory arthritis,” explains Theodore R. Fields, MD, a gout specialist and attending rheumatologist at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York, NY.
Housing for Older Adults
By Mia Chapman
Race & Equity
By 2030, one-fifth of the American population will be aged 65 or over, which will only make worse a critical deficit in suitable housing that caters to their specific requirements. As individuals grow older, their housing needs change, including increased accommodations for those with disabilities. For many older adults, coping with a chronic illness throughout their aging journey will make it difficult to access adequate housing. Across the country, 78% of individuals aged 55 and above grapple with chronic conditions, and 85% among those aged 65 and older. As the age and health of the country shifts, there are also transformations in family systems and dynamics. Increasingly, North Americans are less likely to reside with extended family or even live within an hour of family members who offer intermittent care. While the physical closeness to adult children can serve as a vital support system for many older adults, 15.2 million older adults do not have children, and 22% of adults are currently or will eventually be alone during their elderly years. Generally, Americans are having fewer kids, have longer lifespans, and live alone.
Housing Solutions for Older Adults
As the population ages, there are a variety of cultural and programmatic solutions that address the housing needs of older adults. From cultivating a sense of community to improving physical health, different housing solutions can reap benefits for our aging population.
OVER THE HOLIDAYS:
A DIFFICULT TIME
TO MAKE GOOD CHEER
BY MARIE BURNS
As the holiday season approaches, I often think about those who are Suddenly Single – and have recently experienced life-altering events such as divorce, widowhood, or separation. Especially during the holidays, overwhelming feelings of loneliness and isolation can be tough to fight off. The cheerful festivities that are meant to foster togetherness can magnify the sense of being alone.
How can we help ourselves or others who find themselves suddenly single during the holidays? Here are some tips from women who have experienced it first-hand.
A Change of Scenery...
Learn more >> https://sixtyandme.com/single-over-the-holidays/
U.S. OIL PRODUCTION
The US is now producing more crude oil than ever—13.2 million barrels per day, per the Energy Information Administration, topping the pre-Covid peak of 13.1 million. That copious amount is nearly double the volume from a decade ago and up from the ~5 million produced when Obama entered the White House, Bloomberg’s Steven Dennis points out. The US is the world’s largest oil producer by a country mile, accounting for 21% of global oil production in 2022. Saudi Arabia is in second place, at 13%.
WEDNESDAY NOV. 29, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
THIS BLOG IS BEST VIEWED IN
Monday November 27, 2023
”If each day is a gift I'd like to know
where I can return Mondays.”
Why Quality of Life
Is Important for
By Kayla Keena
In the realm of hospice care, the goal is not only to provide medical support but also to ensure the highest possible quality of life for patients. Unlike traditional medical care that focuses on curing diseases or prolonging life, hospice care prioritizes the patient’s comfort and dignity, helping them to live their remaining days to the fullest. Learn more about why quality of life is important for hospice patients.
Provides Comfort and Peace:
Focusing on quality of life in hospice care provides patients with immense comfort and peace during their end-of-life stage. This approach acknowledges the importance of emotional and psychological well-being and physical health. Rather than concentrating solely on medical treatments, which can often be invasive and distressing, hospice care emphasizes creating a serene, supportive environment that caters to a patient’s holistic needs.
This care seeks to minimize suffering, manage pain efficiently, and respect the patient’s wishes, bringing them a sense of peace and fulfillment. Focusing on these aspects eases their transition and offers a compassionate space for families to say their goodbyes.
Read more >> https://seniorslifestylemag.com/health-well-being/why-quality-of-life-is-important-for-hospice-patients/
Falls Short for So Many
By Jordan Rau and JoNel Aleccia
For 35 years, Angela Jemmott and her five brothers paid premiums on a long-term care insurance policy for their 91-year-old mother. But the policy does not cover home health aides whose assistance allows her to stay in her Sacramento, California, bungalow, near the friends and neighbors she loves. Her family pays $4,000 a month for that.
“We want her to stay in her house,” Jemmott said. “That’s what’s probably keeping her alive, because she’s in her element, not in a strange place.”
The private insurance market has proved wildly inadequate in providing financial security for most of the millions of older Americans who might need home health aides, assisted living, or other types of assistance with daily living.
Read more >> https://kffhealthnews.org/news/article/dying-broke-why-long-term-care-insurance-falls-short/
Never Worked Before?
You Could Still Be Entitled
to Social Security.
By Katie Brockman
You may be eligible to receive hundreds of dollars per month.
Social Security benefits can be a lifeline in retirement, and they're usually based on your work history. The more you've earned throughout your career, the more you can receive in benefits.
However, there's a special type of benefit reserved for certain individuals that doesn't necessarily depend on your work history. In fact, even if you've never worked a day in your life, you could still be entitled to hundreds of dollars per month from Social Security.
Read more >> https://www.fool.com/retirement/2023/11/18/never-worked-before-entitled-to-social-security/
Tech problems one reason
why many Coloradans stuck
without Medicaid benefits
they need to survive
BY KATI WEIS
Thousands of Coloradans may not be receiving the healthcare benefits they desperately need to live this Thanksgiving, because of backlogs and technological issues within the state's Medicaid verification systems.
This comes after the federal government required Medicaid eligibility verification again after a two-year pause during the pandemic.
Sources tell CBS News Colorado that one reason for the problems stems from tech issues with Colorado's systems for Medicaid processing, that the patient's portal, called PEAK, is not properly communicating sometimes with the portal that state and local staff use, called the CBMS, or the Colorado Benefits Management System.
Getting Out of Control?
and when not, to tip
By Donna Fuscaldo
If you feel like requests for tips are everywhere, you’re not alone. From dry cleaners to shops, prompts to provide a gratuity are popping up in unusual places.
Tipping has long been part of American culture, expected in restaurants, hair salons and taxis — anywhere workers rely on them for a livable wage. An explosion of digital point-of-sale terminals and contactless checkouts has resulted in even more requests for tips.
It can be frustrating and annoying for consumers who don’t want to give 20 percent for a $5 purchase at the convenience store every morning. Nearly 2 in 3 (66 percent) of U.S. adults in a Bankrate survey said they have a negative view about tipping.
I really needed to relax this weekend. It has been such a stressful year, and with the holidays approaching, I can only imagine that the stress will continue to build. Although I enjoy putting together this blog every day, it does come with its fair share of stress. One of the main stressors is writing an editorial three times a week. Do you remember when you were in school and the teacher would assign an essay on a specific topic? It always caused a bit of panic, right? Well, imagine having to do that three times a week. That's pretty much what I have to do, and the panic never really goes away.
When you're young, you have the ability to handle stress more effectively. Plus, you're physically fit enough to release that stress by playing sports, riding your bike, or hanging out with friends. However, as you get older, things change. The stress relievers that used to work for us are no longer feasible. So, how do older people cope with anxiety? They resort to sleeping, eating, or sometimes both. That's exactly what I've been doing for the past few days. Just relaxing, getting some rest, and eating junk food.
There's another thing that helps me relax, and that's shopping. I wouldn't call myself a shopaholic, as I only buy things I actually need and I don't rely on shopping to stay sane. However, I do enjoy treating myself to new items. I love experimenting with products I've never tried before, such as aftershave or shower gel. Recently, I purchased a shower sponge, something I had never used before, and I absolutely love it. Sometimes, I find myself buying things out of fear. Whenever I notice that I'm running low on toothpaste or mouthwash, I start to panic a little. But most of the time, I buy things because it makes me feel like I'm contributing to society. Shopping reminds me of the days when I used to work, had a steady income, and could afford almost anything I wanted. Getting older and living on a limited fixed income has put a halt to that, but old habits die hard. However, just having the ability to buy something, does reduce my stress level.
To reduce stress and anxiety, simplifying your life is the best approach. Eliminating sources of worry can go a long way in reducing stress. Interestingly, as we age, much of this simplification happens naturally, especially when it comes to dealing with toxic people like bosses, landlords, spouses, and relatives. However, financial problems can be more challenging to overcome. Money has always been a barrier to true happiness. But with the right people working with you, who know how to navigate the system, you may be surprised at how much money is available to help with any problems you may have.
Finally, I've learned to let go of things I can't control, like my health. I still take care of myself, but I don't stress about it anymore. Medication can only do so much, and I've accepted that. It's also important to be kind to everyone, even those who may not deserve it. It may be hard, but it's not worth getting upset over. Plus, being nice to mean people can really throw them off!…
RETAILERS RETURN POLICIES
Petco refunds dead fish. There are some caveats—the fish has to have died within seven days of its being delivered to you, and you must email a photo of the deceased fish. “Please do not mail any specimens back to Petco,” the website pleads.
Home Depot has a relaxed plant policy. Perennials, trees, roses, and shrubs have a one-year guarantee and can be returned for store credit (other plants have a 90-day return window).
Ikea will buy back your old furniture. Moving to a new place and not sure what to do with the bookshelf that took you forever to build? Sell it back to Ikea and they’ll give you a voucher.
Costco will let you return almost anything, any time. The exceptions include electronics, cigarettes (where prohibited by law), and gold bullion, the three staples of any trip to Costco.
Trader Joe’s looks out for the average Joe: Virtually all items can be returned for a full refund, even if you don’t have a receipt and even if you’ve eaten most of the chocolate covered pretzels already.
Zappos gives you a full year. Just make sure the shoes are unworn and in the original packaging.
Athleta offers a 60-day tryout. Buy some workout clothes and, if you don’t like them after two months, send them back. That’s a real no-sweat return policy.
TUESDAY NOV. 28, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
THIS BLOG IS BEST VIEWED IN
November 24, 2023
“As we express our gratitude,
we must never forget that the
highest appreciation is not to utter words,
but to live by them.”
_John F. Kennedy
10 QUESTIONS TO ASK
ABOUT YOUR HEART HEALTH
BY SARAH BREWER
You have more control over your heart health than you might think. In fact, researchers estimate that almost one in three heart attacks are linked with eating an unhealthy diet while an unhealthy lifestyle – smoking, not exercising, drinking too much alcohol – accounts for many of the others.
Following a heart-friendly diet and lifestyle can reduce your future risk of a heart attack whether or not you have already experienced one.
Ask yourself these 10 heart health questions to see if you need to take action.
Of course, none of the following information is intended to be medical advice, but we hope that it gives you something to discuss with your doctor on your next visit.
What Is My Risk?...
Not just kid play:
Toy companies aim more
products at older adults
Toymakers are tweaking original classic games or coming out with new ones that embrace an audience that's been around for a while: people over 65 years old.
The products are being marketed as a way for older folks to sharpen their brain skills as well as allay loneliness by helping them connect with other family members and friends, although some experts have raised doubts about toymakers' claims.
Toymaker Hasbro penned a licensing deal with Ageless Innovation — which designs toys with older people in mind — to come out with new versions of Scrabble, Trivial Pursuit and Life with a tagline “Generations” that offer bigger fonts on tiles and bigger game pieces.
Read more >> https://www.mprnews.org/story/2023/11/20/not-just-kid-play-toy-companies-aim-more-products-at-older-adults
Parkinson's and Alzheimer's
May Lie in
Common Kitchen Waste
By Jess Thomson
The coffee grounds you throw away every morning might hold quantum secrets that could help protect against dementia and other conditions.
Scientists have discovered that something called caffeic-acid based carbon quantum dots (CACQDs), which can be made from coffee grounds, may protect neurons in the brain from the damage caused by several neurodegenerative diseases, according to new research in the journal Environmental Research.
These CACQDs were only protective of the neurons against neurodegenerative conditions if the disease was triggered by factors including obesity, age, and exposure to pesticides and other toxic environmental chemicals.
How to avoid
paying taxes on
Social Security income
By James Royal, Ph.D.
Yes, it’s possible to avoid paying taxes on your Social Security income, but it requires some careful maneuvering. While avoiding taxes on your monthly benefit check may sound like a good thing, retirees and other beneficiaries may want to think twice before trying to make it happen.
Here’s how the experts say you can avoid taxes on Social Security, why you might not want to, and what taxes you may end up paying on your monthly benefit check.
How much of your Social Security is taxable?
It’s possible – and perfectly legal – to avoid paying taxes on your Social Security check.
20 reliable home remedies
that will actually work for you
By Amy McCarthy
Most of us grew up with home remedies being passed down by wise relatives, but a lot of the time, those "tips and tricks" are just old wives' tales. That said, there are a slew of home remedies that have been proven by science to work, from using fenugreek to boost breastmilk supply to grinding oatmeal for a skin-soothing bath additive.
Looking for a guide to the home remedies that actually work? Flip through the slideshow below for easy DIYs that can help soothe burns, relieve sore muscles, and more.
Olive oil, coconut oil, and safflower oil are versatile moisturizers for dry skin and chapped lips. Decant your favorite oils into small bottles, and rub a few drops into patches of dry skin for instant relief.
Mental Health Day
I'm skipping the usual Friday editorial this week just because I want to. Our Thanksgiving dinner at the A.L.F. wasn't outstanding but it was alright, nothing unexpected. Surprisingly, there were more residents than usual, which is a bit disheartening in some ways. I plan to spend most of this weekend lounging in a reclined position, watching TV. I'll be back on Monday. …..
PRICETAG FOR HAPPINESS
Does happiness have a price? For a majority of Americans, the answer is yes — but it doesn't come cheap.
About 6 in 10 of Americans believe money can buy happiness, according to a new poll from financial services firm Empower. Yet to achieve happiness through financial means, most people say they'd need a significant raise, as well as a big chunk of money in the bank.
Median household income in the U.S. stands at about $74,000 annually, but respondents told Empower that they'd need to earn roughly $284,000 each year to achieve happiness.
And as for wealth, Americans said they'd need even more in the bank to feel content: $1.2 million, to be exact, the poll found. Many people are wealthier than they were a few years ago, thanks to the rise in real estate and stock market values, yet the median net worth of U.S. households stood at $192,900 in 2022, according to the Federal Reserve.
SOURCE: CLICK HERE
NEXT WEEKDAY BLOG
MONDAY NOV. 27, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
THIS BLOG IS BEST VIEWED IN
November 23, 2023
“99% of all problems can be solved by money
-- and for the other 1% there's alcohol.”
― Quentin R. Bufogle
November SSDI Check 2023:
Your Money Could Be on
the Way Tomorrow
By Katie Teague
The final November Social Security Disability Insurance checks are getting sent out this week. If you haven't received yours yet, it could arrive this week but it all depends on when you started receiving SSDI, as well as the day your birthday falls on. In addition, if you receive Supplemental Security Income, that payment should have arrived on Nov. 1.
We'll help you find out when your SSDI money should arrive. Note that the SSDI schedule is similar to Social Security payments unless you've been getting SSDI checks for several decades. Plus, did you know there's another COLA increase coming in 2024?
Payment schedule if you've received SSDI since 1997 or earlier
If you've been an SSDI recipient since May 1997 or before, your payment should arrive on the third day of every month.
Here's One Silver Lining
to Retiring on
Social Security Alone
By Maurie Backman
- Social Security might replace just 40% of your pre-retirement wages if you're an average earner.
- For this reason, it's generally advisable not to retire on Social Security alone.
-The one "benefit" is that your Social Security income probably won't get taxed in this situation.
It's hard to retire on only Social Security, but at least you might get to keep your benefits in full.
Some seniors are forced to retire on Social Security alone in the absence of having savings. And it's fair to assume that people in that boat are likely to struggle financially, to some degree.
If you earn an average wage, you can expect Social Security to replace about 40% of your pre-retirement salary. This assumes that benefits are not cut in the future, though, which might happen if Social Security's trust funds run out of money.
Read more >> https://www.fool.com/retirement/2023/11/21/heres-one-silver-lining-to-retiring-on-social-secu/
Marijuana use among
older Americans is rising,
By Jacob Knutson
The number of U.S. seniors who report using cannabis has climbed in recent years, according to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health.
Driving the news: In 2022, 8.4% people age 65 or older said they used marijuana in the past year, a significant increase from about 0.4% of seniors who reported using it in the past year when polled in 2007.
The uptick in usage among seniors comes as marijuana use has become more common for all age groups. The increase could in stem in part from decreasing social stigma around the drug.
Hobbies, travel, ‘extreme’ sports
top retirement ‘bucket lists’
for older adults
By Kimberly Bonvissuto
More than 40% of US adults have “bucket lists” of goals they want to achieve in retirement, including ones that they believe support their overall mental health, according to the results of a recent Forbes Health survey.
According to Forbes Health, bucket lists can help inspire activity as well as provide a sense of focus, momentum and fulfillment. A survey of 2,000 US adults conducted by OnePoll found that across all generations, survey respondents were most excited about finding a new hobby due to their bucket list (57%), along with travel (56%) and trying “extreme” sports (53%).
But bucket list priorities shift over time for older adults nearing or navigating retirement, according to survey results.
The History of
In the realm of culinary novelties, few dishes spark as much intrigue and amusement as the turducken. A portmanteau of turkey, duck, and chicken, this dish is a gastronomic matryoshka doll, where a deboned chicken is stuffed into a deboned duck, which is then stuffed into a deboned turkey. Each layer is often separated by layers of stuffing.
The result is a meat-lover’s dream and a centerpiece that guarantees discussion. But where did this unique dish originate, and how did it capture the imagination of food enthusiasts around the world?
The concept of stuffing one animal inside another dates back centuries and is not unique to the turducken. Medieval cooks were known for their love of elaborate, fantastical dishes, and ‘engastration’ (the practice of stuffing one animal inside another) was a common technique. One of the most notable examples is the ‘roast without equal’ – a bustard stuffed with a turkey, a goose, a pheasant, a chicken, a duck, a guinea fowl, a teal, a woodcock, a partridge, a plover, a lapwing, a quail, a thrush, a lark, an ortolan bunting and a garden warbler.
STORES OPEN ON THANKSGIVING
Store hours: This grocery store chain and its pharmacy will be open with adjusted hours. The supermarket operator recommends customers check with their local store and pharmacy before visiting on Thanksgiving.
Store hours: Store hours are on a modified basis. Check with your nearby store for hours of operation on Thanksgiving.
3. Bass Pro Sports
Store hours: Stores are typically open 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., but the timing may vary. It’s best to check with your local store to get the hours of operation.
4. Big Lots
Store hours: All of the locations will be open 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Store hours: The drugstore operator is open, but hours may vary. Check with your local store for specific hours of operation.
6. Dollar General
Store hours: Open 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Store hours: Stores are open on Thanksgiving, but hours are modified. It’s best to call your local store before heading over.
Store hours: Store hours vary by location, and stores may occasionally adjust their hours based on business and customer needs. Starbucks recommends customers look for specific store hours using the Starbucks app or by visiting its website store locator: Starbucks.com/store-locator.
9. Whole Foods
Store hours: Many of the stores have modified hours on Thanksgiving. Check with your local store for hours of operation.
FRIDAY NOV. 24, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
THIS BLOG IS BEST VIEWED IN
November 22, 2023
“How to thaw a frozen turkey: "Blow in it's ear."
1 in 5 older adults don’t
have someone they can depend on
in time of need.
It’s driving up ER visits
and food insecurity
BY ALEXA MIKHAIL
Emily Solos was a social butterfly thanks to a 50-year career in the retail industry. She frequently attended work events and connected with her colleagues in person.
“I love all that,” the 79-year-old who lives alone in South Florida tells Fortune. “And then, all of a sudden, that stops because of your age.”
As she got older, Solos had trouble with her back and a car accident reduced her mobility. She wanted to keep her job but could no longer work in the same capacity.
“The job offers are not out there for the older person, unless it’s just sitting behind a desk or doing something very quietly,” Solos says. Without work interactions, and with her daughter relocating further away, Solos became increasingly isolated and lonely.
Read more >> https://fortune.com/well/2023/11/07/older-adults-loneliness-isolation-emergency-room-visits/
Frailty status in older adults
associated with more adverse
events after surgery
Electronic frailty index may help identify patients who are at risk
By Ashish K. Khanna, M.D.
A new study from researchers at Wake Forest University School of Medicine shows that frailty is associated with higher rates of death and major morbidity after surgery.
The findings appear online today in JAMA Network Open.
“Frailty refers to a lack of functional or physiological reserve that determines whether patients bounce back from a health event such as surgery or illness,” said Ashish K. Khanna, M.D., associate professor of anesthesiology and vice-chair of research with the department of anesthesiology, section on critical care medicine at Wake Forest University School of Medicine and corresponding author of the study.
According to Khanna, most rating scales to assess frailty require considerable time and resources. In-clinic assessments also often include patient self-reported questionnaires and physical examinations by clinicians with varying, sometimes subjective results.
Read more >> https://www.eurekalert.org/news-releases/1007115
Future for seniors
People are living longer these days, we’re happy to say. At the Press-Republican, we don’t keep statistics on such things, but we can tell by the obituaries we run daily. The indisputable trend is for more people to make it into their 90s and even over 100 than in decades past.
Our region’s senior residences are reportedly full, to the extent that the Samuel F. Vilas Home is building on an enormous extension.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention tells us that more than 22 percent of adults say they’ve provided care or assistance to someone, family or friend, in the past month. For a third of them, care involves 20 hours or more a week.
Can surfing the web
lower risk of dementia?
What researchers are saying
A new study shows using the internet, even on your phone for just minutes a day, can lead to life changing rewards and huge health benefits later in life.
"I'm 89 years old, and I didn't grow up with all these electronic gadgets," said John Erario.
At 89, Erario might be right on time for taking on the internet.
The study, published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, found that older people who use the internet between 6 minutes to 2 hours a day cut their risk of dementia by about half.
"I was afraid to touch different things, thinking I was going to blow up the computer," said Henrietta Brunson.
How older adults can overcome
barriers to healthy eating
Good nutrition is important for older adults to stay strong and reduce the risk of disease. But as you get older it can be harder to eat in healthy ways. If you have health problems or can’t be active anymore, you may not feel as hungry as you used to. It can also be more difficult to plan and make meals.
Here are several common barriers that older adults face to healthy eating, paired with ideas to help you overcome them.
Learn more >> https://www.parkview.com/blog/how-older-adults-can-overcome-barriers-to-healthy-eating
This is the final editorial before Thanksgiving, and I want to express my gratitude to all of you who have taken the time to read this blog. Your support means a lot to me.
Now, let's cut to the chase. What's happening to America? We have so much to appreciate, yet we seem to be throwing it all away. We used to be a nation of forward-thinking individuals who addressed problems with innovative solutions. But now, it feels like we're heading towards a society that embraces conspiracy theories, rejects science, and idolizes a misogynistic potential dictator.
Like most of you, I’m no child. I've experienced a lot and witnessed significant transformations in this country. We shifted from the post war contentment of the 1950s, where life seemed limitless for white males, to the upheaval of the 1960s, when we awakened to social consciousness, recognizing inequality. It was a struggle, but laws were passed to guarantee every American access to the dream. That era made me truly proud of America. Today, I see that America fading away.
Once upon a time, we were proud owners of the tallest skyscrapers, the most vibrant cities, and the finest automobiles. We never hesitated to splurge on projects like interstate highways, mass transit systems, bridges, tunnels, hydroelectric endeavors, and even space exploration. And most importantly, we were experts at finding middle ground. "You scratch my back, and I'll scratch yours," was our mantra, and it always helped us build bridges or secure budgets. But now, it feels like we can't agree on anything anymore. It's almost as if we've transformed into two distinct nations. There's the "Blue" nation that upholds the constitution, fights for equal rights, supports a woman's freedom to choose, and advocates for programs like social security, Medicare for all, environmental preservation, and renewable energy. On the other hand, there's the "Red" nation that denies election results, questions the importance of the constitution, disregards climate change, bans books, struggles with racial issues, and desires a thrice-indicted bully and imbecile as their leader. And now something new has been added to the mix. Antisemitism. Recently, there's been a rise in antisemitism, not just from the right but also from some liberal extremists who, despite opposing the Republicans, show prejudice against Jews similar to right-wing Neo-Nazi groups.
Finally, as we gather for our Thanksgiving meal, let's remember the true meaning of this celebration. It's about tolerance, the freedom to make choices, and uniting for the betterment of society. Let's ignore the divisive rhetoric and the wacko’s and return to the values we held dear. Happy Thanksgiving, America!…..
TURKEY THAWING TIMES
Time to size up your turkey. The bigger the bird, the more time it needs to thaw. This Thanksgiving, make sure you take your turkey out of the freezer at the right time.
THURSDAY NOV. 23, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
THIS BLOG IS BEST VIEWED IN
November 21, 2023
“There's very little in my world
that a foot massage and
a thin-crust, everything-on-it pizza
won't set right.”
― G.A. McKevett
New research shows that
social interaction really can be
a matter of life and death
for older adults
By Lois A. Bowers
As the holidays approach, the results of a newly published study offer a reminder of the importance of social connections. In fact, in some cases, it could be a matter of life and death.
The results also serve as a reminder of the potential benefits of senior living.
Researchers at the University of Glasgow have found that older adults who never are visited by friends and family are at a higher risk of dying. They shared the findings of their research in the journal BMC Medicine, suggesting that they could be used to help identify people at a higher risk of dying due to social factors and to develop more effective interventions to combat the increased risk of death associated with social isolation.
A Pill to Slow Aging?
Researchers have been looking for decades for ways to
delay human aging and prevent diseases.
The prognosis for success appears to be improving
By Rachel Nania
Medical professionals have figured out a way to treat many of the diseases that accompany aging: We have medications for heart disease, diabetes, arthritis — even Alzheimer’s. But what if a pill could help prevent these diseases from ever occurring?
For decades now, scientists have been searching for such a medical Holy Grail: safe medicines that treat aging as a whole by slowing cellular decay or by making your body more resilient to the factors that trigger physical and mental decline.
Despite the research costs and scientific challenges, the path toward such a pill is attracting more interest than ever. The federal government is involved, as well as many prominent academic institutions. Billionaire “biohackers” have joined the fray, pursuing their own age-defying theories and sparing no expense.
FEMA rolls out campaign
to help seniors prepare for disasters
By Dylan Croll
The federal government is working to prepare its older citizens, especially financially vulnerable ones, for national disasters.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency — in coordination with nonprofit the Ad Council — is releasing new public service announcements Thursday that specifically target older adults, especially those with limited financial resources, disabilities, and living in rural areas. FEMA provided Yahoo Finance with an early look at its campaign.
The goal is to make sure seniors not only can ride out a major catastrophe but can financially weather the aftermath as well.
"We know that there are a lot of different inequities across society, and when a disaster happens, it just exasperates them," FEMA administrator Deanne Criswell told Yahoo Finance. "And so these targeted campaigns help us get into some of these more under-resourced communities, give them information on how they can take steps to help protect and prepare their families."
Read more >> https://finance.yahoo.com/news/fema-rolls-out-campaign-to-help-seniors-prepare-for-disasters-120010227.html
Circadian disturbances and
frailty risk in older adults
Frailty is characterized by diminished resilience to stressor events. It is associated with adverse future health outcomes and impedes healthy aging. The circadian system orchestrates ~24-h rhythms in bodily functions in synchrony with the day-night cycle, and disturbed circadian regulation plays an important role in many age-related health consequences. We investigated prospective associations of circadian disturbances with incident frailty in over 1000 older adults who had been followed annually for up to 16 years. We found that decreased rhythm strength, reduced stability, or increased variation were associated with a higher risk of incident frailty and faster progress of frailty over time. Perturbed circadian rest-activity rhythms may be an early sign or risk factor for frailty in older adults.
Frailty is defined as an age-related decline in multiple physiological systems
Frail older adults have increased vulnerability to stressor events, poorer quality of life and increased risks for major adverse health outcomes, including Alzheimer’s disease. Frailty has emerged as a practical and unifying concept in the care of older people who experience multi-organ problems more commonly than a single-system illness. To inform appropriate interventions for preventing frailty incidence or its further progress and to promote successful aging, research is urgently needed to better understand the mechanisms of frailty. This study was designed to investigate the role of the circadian function as potential physiological correlates of frailty development.
Governed by the internal circadian clock, nearly all biological and physiological processes in humans, such as sleep and motor activity, show ~24-h rhythms as an evolutional adaptation to daily environmental changes7. Disrupted circadian function leads to altered rhythms in physiological processes or daily behaviors, as observed with aging and in neurodegenerative diseases8. For example, compared to younger adults, older people have suppressed circadian rest-activity rhythms with advanced phase9; and these changes were further degraded with aging within the same older adults10. In addition, changes in circadian rest-activity rhythms have been linked to the future development of many chronic diseases, such as type 2 diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, and Parkinson’s disease10,11,12. Given the high prevalence of perturbed circadian function and frailty in older adults13, establishing their link is important but awaits more systematic studies.
Read more >> https://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-023-42727-z
Here's How Long Cooked Foods
Can Stay Unrefrigerated,
According to Food Safety Experts
Plus, how to know when your food is in the temperature danger zone.
By Kirsten Nunez
After prepping meals or cooking for guests, it can be tempting to leave food out and take a break from the kitchen. Or sometimes, you might simply forget or get distracted by other tasks (it happens to the best of us). Regardless of the situation, it's important to avoid letting food sit out on the countertop for too long—you might be left with a food safety hazard, along with a spoiled dish.
But how long is too long, exactly? To find out, we consulted food safety experts to determine how soon you should refrigerate food before it goes bad.
The Temperature Danger Zone...
Learn more >> https://www.marthastewart.com/8354814/how-long-you-can-leave-cooked-foods-unrefrigerated
THE MOST POPULAR CUISINES IN THE WORLD
According to a 2023 study, the most popular cuisines in the world are Italian and Japanese.
Both have been tagged more than 20 million times on Instagram.
Italian cuisine is known for its typicality and connection to Italian culture.
It offers a variety of dishes, including: Pizza, Spaghetti, Risotto, Tomato spaghetti sauce, Wine.
Japanese cuisine has seen a rise in popularity due to: Sushi, Ramen.
Other popular cuisines include: Chinese, Indian, Mexican, Korean, Emirati.
Chinese restaurants are the most common worldwide, representing about 9.5%
of all restaurants in "top-visited cities". Italian cuisine concepts are about 8.5%
and Indian establishments are about 8%.
WEDNESDAY NOV. 22, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
THIS BLOG IS BEST VIEWED IN
Monday November 20, 2023
“After a good dinner one can forgive anybody,
even one's own relations.”
― Oscar Wilde
Millions of adults could be wrongly
diagnosed with high blood pressure
By Bronwyn Thompson
Leading heart health bodies have called for greater attention to be paid to how a patient has their blood pressure taken, over fears that millions of Americans may be misdiagnosed and wrongfully medicated because of inaccurate readings.
Researchers at Ohio State University, along with the American Heart Association (AHA) and American College of Cardiology, have found an alarming degree of wrongful blood pressure data due to where and how the test is taken.
An accurate reading can be obtained when a patient is seated in a chair, with their feet flat on the floor, back supported and with the arm in the blood pressure cuff placed on a surface and kept at heart level. The researchers found that other methods – such as taking it while a patient is on an examination table – can inflate numbers to give higher readings.
"That's not conducive to taking blood pressure accurately," said researcher Dr. Randy Wexler, a primary care physician at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center in Columbus.
Social Security Rules
You Should Be Aware Of
By Kailey Hagen
- When you claim Social Security has an enormous effect on the size of your checks.
- Some seniors may owe taxes on their benefits.
- You and your spouse may not be the only people who can claim Social Security on your work record.
These things could have a huge effect on your monthly checks.
Everyone knows the basics of Social Security: You pay taxes throughout your working years, and you get some of that money back in the form of a monthly check in retirement. But there are a lot of rules affecting the size of your benefit that people aren't as familiar with. Here are five important ones to bear in mind.
1. Full retirement age (FRA)
The government assigns a full retirement age (FRA) to you based on your birth year. It's 67 for most workers today, though some older adults could have a FRA as young as 66. Your FRA determines when you qualify for the primary insurance amount (PIA) you've earned based on your work history.
Claiming before your FRA shrinks your checks by up to 25% if your FRA is 66 or 30% if your FRA is 67. For every month you delay benefits, your checks grow by anywhere from 5/12 of 1% to 2/3 of 1% until you reach your maximum benefit at 70. This is 124% of your PIA if your FRA is 67, or 132% if your FRA is 66.
Read more >> https://www.fool.com/retirement/2023/11/17/5-lesser-known-social-security-rules-you-should-be/
Can you afford long-term care
BY JOSHUA RODRIGUEZ
About 70% of people need some form of long-term care by the time they're 65 years old. Of course, that care comes at a cost. And, some people purchase a long-term care insurance policy to cover those types of expenses, while others pay for it on their own.
But long-term care is expensive, and prices are only increasing, so chances are that at least some of the people who decide to pay for care on their own are unaware of just how expensive it is. But just how much does long-term care cost, can you afford it without insurance and would you want to pay for your care out of pocket?
Purchase a long-term care policy today to make sure you can afford the care you need.
Can you afford long-term care without insurance?...
Managing Your Finances
in Older Age
By Jana Pine
Money is something that many of us worry about, particularly when pressure on household budgets is mounting. As we get older, these concerns tend to mount, especially if we’re faced with a choice between spending on ourselves and leaving money to our nearest and dearest.
Fortunately, these concerns can be mitigated with the help of some astute planning.
The earlier you start planning for retirement, the better. This is so for several reasons. First, by planning early, you’ll make yourself aware of any potential mistakes and challenges you’re at risk of stumbling into. Second, you’ll have more time in which to save money for your retirement. Third, you’ll reduce the risk of your plans being interrupted by cognitive decline, and your reliance on other people.
Read more >> https://seniorslifestylemag.com/retirement/financial/managing-your-finances-in-older-age/
10 Thanksgiving Items
to Buy at Dollar Stores
Get festive home decor, colorful tableware, scented candles and more
By Sheryl Jean
Large family gatherings are back this Thanksgiving, with the guest lists up to pre-pandemic numbers (an average of nine people), according to a Butterball report. The more the merrier, right? True, except maybe when it comes to your Thanksgiving hosting budget.
How can you be the hostess with the mostest without breaking the bank?
The answer might be as easy (and as close) as your local dollar store. With everything from pumpkin decorations to scented candles, dollar stores often have affordable and stylish holiday home decor and decorations.
At The A.L.F....
A Few Tough Weeks For Seniors
I grew up in a big but spread-out family. My dad's side was almost non-existent, while my mom's side, though numerous, lived far apart or weren't very close. This meant small holidays with just close family and friends. And that was okay. We enjoyed our cozy Thanksgiving dinners. It wasn't until I got married that I truly grasped and admired the importance of a large, tightly-knit family. According to my wife, holidays meant a massive family celebration with everyone involved. For me, not used to such grandness, it was a delightful and amazing experience.
For seniors however, the period between Thanksgiving and New Year's is especially tough. Holidays that are supposed to be a time for gathering and joy with loved ones means something else entirely. Instead of looking forward to companionship and good food, seniors often feel a sense of loss, missing out on what the holidays used to represent for them.
Loss comes in various forms. Firstly, there's the expected yet hard-to-accept departure of loved ones due to attrition, which shrinks our circle of acquaintances. Secondly, there's a sense of not belonging, particularly among older individuals who become isolated and no longer partake in the seasonal activities they once enjoyed, like shopping for holiday essentials. The joy of preparing festive meals loses its significance, despite our complaints about the hustle and bustle; these tasks actually make us feel valued and engaged in society, a feeling seniors often lack. This burden weighs heavily on one's soul.
Here at the Asylum, the feeling of being disconnected is very noticeable. Although some residents are fortunate to have family members who make an effort to include them in holiday activities, most cannot travel due to financial, medical, or mobility issues. This prevents them from enjoying the things they used to love. What's even worse is that many have been abandoned by their families or have no family left at all.
The facility does its best to make Thanksgiving better by organizing a meal for those staying here. It might not be a traditional feast, but it means we won't be alone. For us residents, we're like a family, caring for each other more than our actual relatives. We find comfort in our shared struggles, like soldiers finding companionship and solace in knowing we're all facing this together.
I won't criticize or pressure you to invite a senior to your Thanksgiving dinner. I understand that this holiday is about being with loved ones, and truthfully, many elderly individuals might not be the easiest to connect with. We have our own unique traits and needs, and not everyone feels ready or capable of handling them. However, if you're willing, instead of completely ignoring us, consider paying us a visit. Perhaps bring along some leftovers or, even better, a homemade dessert. There's nothing more valued than a homemade gesture of kindness. A small act of love can make a big difference during this time of year…
Remember older guests and family members
with dementia-friendly Thanksgiving tips
As families plan to gather around the Thanksgiving dinner table this week, the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America has some simple steps to make holiday celebrations dementia-friendly.
According to the AFA, an estimated 6 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s or another dementia-related illness.
“We want individuals living with dementia to experience the joy and togetherness that comes with Thanksgiving, which is why it’s important for family caregivers to be proactive and sensitive to their loved ones’ needs,” said Jennifer Reeder, LCSW, SIFI, AFA’s Director of Educational and Social Services.
Six tips for an Alzheimer’s/dementia-friendly Thanksgiving:
Consider routine: Take the family member suffering from Alzheimer’s/dementia’s routine into consideration when planning your holiday. Changes to routine may be upsetting, so try to stick to routine or hold your celebrations earlier.
Plan for help: Give them specific tasks that they can help with, such as asking them to bring a dish, help with cooking, shopping or decorating.
Prepare: Prepare your loved one for the presence of guests by familiarizing them with the guests beforehand by showing photos or sharing stories.
Inform guests: Share beneficial information with guests about your loved one, including how to communicate, what they respond well to and what may distress them.
Keep your loved one involved: Make adaptations that enable your loved one to participate in the celebration by focusing on what they can do, rather than what they cannot.
Have a quiet space available: Prepare a quiet place away from the crowd where the person with dementia can go if the celebration becomes too much for them.
TUESDAY NOV. 21, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
THIS BLOG IS BEST VIEWED IN
Friday November 17, 2023
"What glitters may not be gold;
and even wolves may smile;
and fools will be led by promises
to their deaths.”
― Lauren Oliver,
Millions of retired Americans
aren't coming back to work
By Alex Tanzi
More than three-and-a-half years after COVID struck, the U.S. still has around 2 million more retirees than predicted, in one of the most striking and enduring changes to the nation’s labor force.
The so-called Great Retirement induced by COVID-19 is evident in the divergence between the actual number of retirees and that predicted by a Federal Reserve economic model. While down from a 2.8 million gap late last year, it remains elevated today and has even risen from 1.7 million in June.
“While the gap seemed to be closing earlier in the year, it seems to have widened slightly since then,” said Miguel Faria-e-Castro, economic policy adviser at the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis. “As of September, we estimate about 1.98 million excess retirees.
Health plays a role
in older adults'
vulnerability to scams,
Three out of every four older adults say they have experienced a fraud attempt by phone, text, email, mail or online in the last two years, a new poll shows. Three in ten say they've been victims of at least one scam.
The poll reveals an especially strong link between an older adult's health and their vulnerability to scams—both being able to spot one and becoming the victim of one.
Across the board, people aged 50 to 80 who reported being in fair or poor physical or mental health, those with disabilities, and those who rate their memory as fair or poor were more likely than others their age to say they'd experienced fraud.
Whether or not they'd actually experienced fraud, older adults with health issues were more likely to lack confidence in their ability to spot a scam.
We must protect our
older citizens from
By Senator Kirsten Gillibrand
When you’ve spent the majority of your adult life working, you learn a thing or two about how to do it well. Experience in the workplace should be an asset to employers, not a reason to discriminate against employees.
I recently heard from an older worker who worked hard for 24 years at his company, and eventually managed a multimillion-dollar portfolio. However, despite excellent performance reviews and better sales compared to his younger counterparts, he was unexpectedly let go five years before he would have been entitled to significant retirement benefits. The timing of his dismissal certainly raises questions.
Yet due to a forced arbitration clause he doesn’t even remember signing, he was unable to obtain justice. Unfortunately, this is all too common.
Spending the night
in an emergency room
puts older adults at higher risk
of dying in the hospital: study
Some patients who have to spend a night in the emergency room before being admitted to the hospital may face a higher risk of dying there, according to a new study in JAMA Internal Medicine.
Researchers in France assessed statistics from 97 different emergency departments across the country between Dec. 12-14, 2022, focusing on patients who were older than age 75.
They compared patients in two different groups: those who were admitted to a regular hospital room before midnight, and those who had to spend a full night in the ER before they were given a room.
6 Best Clothing Items
to Buy at Thrift Stores,
BY JULIANA LABIANCA
It's a known fact that clothing quality has gone down in recent decades—so finding items secondhand is often a great way to discover pieces with top-tier materials and craftsmanship. Plus, you can also pick up more unique things at thrift stores. But before you get started on your next shopping excursion, be aware that personal stylists say you should keep an eye out for certain things. Keep reading to learn the best clothes to buy at thrift stores.
Visit your local thrift shop, and you might come across a treasure trove of quality denim.
"Shop Levi Strauss, Lee, and Wrangler jeans, but also look for denim jackets, shackets, skirts, and shorts," says Elizabeth Kosich, certified image stylist and founder of Elizabeth Kosich Styling. "Turn your denim finds into a creative DIY project by embellishing with patches, embroidery, jewels, or a fun fabric liner. Or, reimagine denim separates and cut jeans to shorts or a jacket to a vest."
Before I start, I want to express this: "I am American and I want only to be American. I don't desire to live elsewhere. I will do my best to protect and defend this country." We have many reasons to be proud. Our constitution serves as a model for democracies worldwide. Despite its flaws, our justice system is arguably the fairest for defendants compared to other nations. The chance to succeed and lead a good life remains possible for anyone.
Historically however, this country hasn't been fair for everyone. Personally, as a white person with a non-ethnic last name, I haven't faced the discrimination that exists in our society. But we saw the error in our ways and we enacted laws against discrimination in various areas like work, education, and government, aiming for equality for all. There was progress towards achieving the American dream despite opposition, but things shifted around beginning in 2016. Today, there are some not-so-good things happening that make me question the direction we're taking. Whether it's an attitude change, a movement, or deep-seated hate, our country isn't the same as it was in the 1960s and 70s.
I think you know where I’m headed. In 2016, Donald Trump became president. Instead of choosing an experienced, capable former Secretary of State and someone who knew their way around Washington, America opted for an untested, aggressive bully and reality TV personality to head our government. What qualities did they see in Trump that inspired hope? What made him appealing, and why does that appeal persist even now?
Trump isn't solely responsible. I know it's hard to admit, but we must acknowledge who elected him— the American voters. They're the ones we relied on to discern between right and wrong, truth and falsehood, decency and harm. Trump merely sparked things off. He was like the pull tab opening a can full of awfulness, filled with prejudice, conspiracy, anti-science beliefs, anti-Semitism, and fascism. Sadly, it seems we might be heading down that road once more. What is it people see in this man that appeals to, not all, but enough Americans to make it scary?
Surely they can’t see themselves in him. Trump never had a real job in his life. He never worked in a factory that closed down because the work went overseas. His house was never foreclosed on or his truck repossessed. He was never denied an education because he had to work to support his family. And they certainly shouldn't relate to a man who has cheated, lied and stiffed his suppliers. Maybe what they like is a man, who despite being indicted three times, keeps denying responsibility for his actions, berates his detractors and has as much loyalty to his “friends” as the Roman senate had to Caesar. Are we really this stupid? No. We’re just human. And as humans we tend to want what’s best for us. And I don’t mean the collective ‘us.’ The dream of one nation united, while not dead, is certainly tarnished. And there is no one around to act as a splint for what’s broken.
Biden's like a temporary fix, just a small bandage for a big wound. He slowed the bleeding but didn't really fix anything. Some think Trump's the ultimate solution to return us to where we were, even though that place wasn't great. Instead of focusing on the future, some in our society prefer looking backward. There's so much we urgently require now - like new energy sources, fixing our falling-apart infrastructure, dealing with increasing housing needs, and closing the wealth gap. But hardly any politicians are ready to tackle these issues. Republicans don't want to spend money, while Democrats fear speaking plainly, worried about alienating the MAGA crowd they believe has a hold over us. If there was any time we need a true leader it’s now. There is nobody on the horizon. Where have all they all gone?
There is a quote attributed to political philosopher Alexis de Tocqueville that says “We get the government we deserve.” I hope he’s right. Because we deserve so much better than what we have. But it will take some deep sole-searching to get us there. My fear is, I might not be around long enough to see it………………
Gold holds significant value for several reasons:
1. Gold is relatively scarce compared to other metals. Its rarity contributes to its value as it requires significant effort to mine and extract.
2. Throughout history, gold has been highly sought after for its beauty. Its lustrous yellow appearance and malleability make it an appealing material for jewelry and ornamentation.
3. Gold is resistant to rust, tarnish, and corrosion, which means it does not deteriorate over time. This durability adds to its appeal for various uses, especially in electronics and technology.
4. Gold has been used as a form of currency for thousands of years. Its historical use as a medium of exchange, a store of value, and a symbol of wealth and power has contributed to its continued perceived value.
5. Gold is often seen as a "safe-haven" asset, particularly during times of economic uncertainty or geopolitical instability. Investors view it as a hedge against inflation and market fluctuations, which can increase its value.
6. Gold also has practical applications in various industries, including electronics, dentistry, and aerospace, due to its excellent conductivity and resistance to corrosion.
Overall, gold's unique combination of scarcity, durability, aesthetic appeal, historical significance, and various practical uses contributes to its enduring value and demand.
NEXT WEEKDAY BLOG
MONDAY NOV. 20, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
THIS BLOG IS BEST VIEWED IN
Thursday November 16, 2023
“Kindness in words creates confidence.
Kindness in thinking creates profoundness.
Kindness in giving creates love.”
A New Jointly Reported Series
on America’s Long-Term Care Crisis
Today, KFF Health News and The New York Times published the first phase of an investigation into America’s long-term care crisis, which has left many in the boomer generation facing the prospect of exhausting their financial resources as the price tag for care explodes. Dying Broke, the investigative series, uses KFF polling, original analysis and interviews with experts and impacted individuals and their families to examine the challenges facing families and caregivers in navigating long-term care.
The financial and emotional toll of providing and paying for long-term care is wreaking havoc on the lives of millions of Americans. Paid care, either at home or in a facility, is often so expensive that only the wealthy can afford it, and many of the for-profit companies providing care raised their prices sharply during the pandemic. The ongoing shortage of health care workers is also worsening the situation.
The project found that nearly three million older Americans who need long-term help are not receiving it, in large part because of the high costs of assisted living facilities, nursing homes and aides at home. The United States spends less on long-term care than do most wealthy countries. As part of this project, KFF conducted polling to help shed light on the U.S. public’s awareness of, attitudes about and experiences with long-term care services and supports.
Self-perception of health
influences physical activity levels
in older adults with arthritis
People with arthritis who report more negative feelings about how they are aging tend to get less physical activity and perceive themselves as less healthy, according to a new study by researchers at Hospital for Special Surgery (HSS) and Weill Cornell Medicine. However, self-perception of good health explained the effect of negative thinking – providing an opportunity for clinicians to focus on a patient's outlook on aging as well as their overall health.
Physical activity is essential for older adults with arthritis, as it can help to reduce pain and stiffness, improve mobility, and maintain independence. However, many older adults with arthritis do not get recommended levels of physical activity. Our study suggests that self-perceptions of aging and general health may at least partly explain why."
For clinicians, the new study could serve as a conversation starter with older patients, Dr. Lieber says. "I think this study and others like it can help doctors begin or continue a discussion with their patients about the factors that may challenge them to be physically active."
'The over-65 group is particularly
Older Americans are
losing their appetite
for restaurants like Cracker Barrel
and Olive Garden —
here's what's keeping them away
By Serah Louis
Several fast-casual restaurant chains have reported declining foot traffic and sales following the COVID-19 pandemic — especially among their older clientele.
Company representatives at Cracker Barrel and Darden Restaurants — owner of Olive Garden and Longhorn Steakhouse — have pointed to increased prices and ongoing health concerns alienating some of their over-65 customers.
“We just have not yet recovered the visits with that group [over 65 years old] to the extent we thought we would, really, since the pandemic,” Cracker Barrel CEO Sandra Cochran said during a September earnings call.
But while some of these eateries have taken these changes in spending in stride by appealing to different demographics, it’s possible that others are being held back by their original consumer base.
Read more >> https://finance.yahoo.com/news/over-65-group-particularly-value-120000649.html?guccounter=1
Life expectancy gap
between men and women
in the US widened significantly
during the Covid-19 pandemic
By Deidre McPhil
Women in the United States can expect to live nearly six years longer than men, as disparities in deaths from Covid-19 and drug overdoses drive the life expectancy gap to the widest it’s been in decades.
Overall, life expectancy in the US fell more than two and a half years since the start of the pandemic — down to 76.1 years in 2021, according to data from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Life expectancies for both men and women were affected, but not equally.
US has been falling behind on life expectancy for decades, study shows
The lifespan for women has been consistently longer than men, with the lowest difference of 4.8 years in 2010. But the gap grew by 0.2 years in the decade that followed and by 0.7 years in the first two years of the Covid-19 pandemic. In 2021, life expectancy for women was 79.3 years, compared with 73.5 years for men — a gap of 5.8 years, the largest difference since 1996.
Save Room for 20
of Our Most Popular
By Vanessa Greaves
You might push away from the table stuffed to the gills with turkey and 'taters, but you know when it comes down to it, you'll find room somewhere for a little sweet sumthin' sumthin' to top off your Thanksgiving feast. I've combed through our vast collection of Thanksgiving dessert recipes to put together this sampling of some of our most popular, highly rated, crave-worthy desserts that home cooks love to serve at their own Thanksgiving tables. Take a look, and maybe you'll find a new favorite to add to your dessert buffet.
The first Thanksgiving dessert most people think of is pie. And my oh my, do we have Thanksgiving pies! This 5-star winner is one of the all-time most popular pumpkin pies on Allrecipes and is made from scratch with roasted pumpkin instead of canned. (Of course, you can use canned to save time and effort. It's all good.) If you're going to roast your own, read up on how to prep and bake with fresh pumpkin.
1. Turkeys are native to North America. The species found in the United States is called the wild turkey.
2. Benjamin Franklin, one of the Founding Fathers of the United States, favored the wild turkey over the bald eagle as the national bird, considering it more respectable and courageous.
3. Male turkeys are called toms or gobblers, and they are known for their brightly colored feathers, wattles (fleshy skin hanging from the neck), and the fleshy growth atop their beaks called a snood. Females are called hens and are generally smaller and less colorful.
4. Despite their large size, turkeys are agile flyers and can fly at speeds of up to 55 miles per hour (88 km/h) for short distances.
5. Turkeys are highly social animals and roost together in large groups at night for safety. They also communicate through various vocalizations.
6. The gobble sound made by male turkeys is most often associated with them and is used to attract females and establish territory.
7. The turkey has become a symbol of Thanksgiving in the United States, and it's a common dish served during Thanksgiving meals.
8. The domesticated turkey descended from the wild turkey. They were domesticated by Native Americans in Mexico around 800 BC.
9. Turkeys are omnivores and feed on a variety of foods including seeds, nuts, fruits, insects, and occasionally small reptiles or amphibians.
10. There are several subspecies of wild turkeys, each with its own distinct characteristics and habitats. Some of these include the Eastern, Osceola (Florida), Rio Grande, Merriam's, and Gould's turkeys.
FRIDAY NOV. 17, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
THIS BLOG IS BEST VIEWED IN
Wednesday November 15, 2023
“Landlords grow rich in their sleep.”
__John Stuart Mill
Here Are the 2 Best
Coming to Social Security
-- and the 1 Worst Change
By Keith Speights
- Every Social Security beneficiary will enjoy the best change to the program coming next year.
- Only some Americans will be impacted by the second-best and worst Social Security changes in 2024.
- There's also a change that won't be made to Social Security that's arguably more concerning than the changes that will be made.
Changes to the popular federal program are on the way, but some Americans won't like all of them.
Social Security has been a constant for American retirees for nearly nine decades. But it has nonetheless changed through the years. Some of those changes have been more helpful than others.
It will be a similar story for the federal program next year. Here are the two best big changes coming to Social Security in 2024 -- and the one worst change.
Best change No.1: Increased benefits:
One change to Social Security appears to be the hands-down winner as the best of all. Retirees will enjoy increased benefits beginning in January 2024.
Read more >> https://www.fool.com/retirement/2023/11/13/best-big-changes-coming-to-social-security-2024/
Who will care for
Plenty of know-how
too few specialists
By JUDITH GRAHAM
Thirty-five years ago, Jerry Gurwitz was among the first physicians in the United States to be credentialed as a geriatrician — a doctor who specializes in the care of older adults.
“I understood the demographic imperative and the issues facing older patients,” Gurwitz, 67, chief of geriatric medicine at the University of Massachusetts Chan Medical School, told me. “I felt this field presented tremendous opportunities.”
But today, Gurwitz fears geriatric medicine is on the decline.
Despite the surging older population, there are fewer geriatricians now (just over 7,400) than in 2000 (10,270), he noted in a recent piece in JAMA. (In those two decades, the population of those 65 and older has expanded by more than 60%.) Research suggests each geriatrician should care for no more than 700 patients; the current ratio of providers to older patients is 1 to 10,000.
Read more >> https://www.dailybreeze.com/2023/11/13/senior-living-who-will-care-for-older-adults-plenty-of-know-how-but-too-few-specialists/
High blood pressure?
Reducing salt in your diet
may be as effective as a
common drug, study finds
BY SARA MONIUSZKO
Want to lower your blood pressure? Cutting back on salt in your diet could help do just that — and according to new research, for many people it may be as effective as taking a common blood pressure medication.
The study, published Saturday in JAMA, found that reducing sodium consumption significantly lowered blood pressure in the majority of participants.
Researchers examined 213 participants aged 50 to 75 on their usual diets as well as high- and low-sodium diets. The high-sodium diets contained approximately 2200 mg of added sodium daily, and low-sodium diets contained about 500 mg of sodium daily. The group included a mix of people with and without existing blood pressure issues.
Are assisted living
moving in too early
or too late?
By Lois A. Bowers
A new study published in JAMA Internal Medicine provides fresh insights into assisted living residents at move-in and a couple of years later and suggests questions to contemplate about the future of the setting.
Kenneth Lam, MD, an assistant professor of geriatric medicine at the University of Colorado School of Medicine, and his co-authors set out to provide data related to how independent people are before they move into an assisted living community or nursing home; how much help they tend to get, and for what; and what the process leading up to a move looks like. They used data from the National Health and Aging Trends Study, from 2011 to 2020, as the basis for the research.
What Lam and his colleagues learned is that the mean age of an older adult moving into assisted living is 85 (by comparison, it’s 82 for independent living and 83 for nursing homes), a finding that aligns with the results of other research.
Read more >> https://www.mcknightsseniorliving.com/home/columns/editors-columns/are-assisted-living-residents-moving-in-too-early-or-too-late/
Up until now, I’ve never thought about sharing a turkey gravy recipe. At our house, making the gravy for Thanksgiving dinner has always just been the assumed final step of cooking a turkey.
You marinate and roast the turkey using our go-to Thanksgiving turkey recipe, and then just use the pan drippings to make gravy…right?
Well, I’ve realized that many people don’t quite have this casual view of gravy-making, so today I’m sharing how to reliably make a flavorful, lump-less, delicious homemade turkey gravy that your entire family will love.
Yesterday, my tablemates and I were stuck with a lousy breakfast. We grumbled about how being older limits our choices, wishing we could have what we call "The Druthers" - the freedom to choose. We all agreed we'd rather hop into a cab and go to a proper diner for a good breakfast if we could. But then we faced reality: none of us had the ability or resources to do as we pleased.
There is one striking feature that sets old people apart from others. It’s also the one thing most people try to copy when they make fun of old folks. Our ability to walk.
Almost all of us have some mobility problems. These can range anywhere from a minor limp or shuffle to a sever handicap which forces us into a walker, cane or wheelchair.
While playing with my food, a friend posed an intriguing question: "Given the choice, would you prefer complete control of your mind or full mobility?" Without hesitation, I chose my mind.
My friend, who had been in a wheelchair due to a severe hip injury, disagreed, preferring mobility.
I understood her perspective, but I stuck to my choice. Losing cognitive abilities seemed more challenging to me than losing physical mobility. After all, what’s the need to go somewhere if you don’t know where you are going there or why you’re going there?
Over time, I've noticed many residents experiencing mental decline despite staying physically active. Unfortunately, their physical activity often involves wandering or retracing steps in an attempt to recall their destination or where their room is. I don't believe this trade-off is acceptable.
While it's true that not being able to walk much or moving slowly isn't an ideal lifestyle, it's preferable to losing the ability to read, comprehend a story, or engage with TV shows, movies or carry on a meaningful conversation with others.
In the end, many older adults still long for choice and freedom despite facing limits in mobility and resources due to aging. While our bodies may restrict us, the value of an active mind, staying mentally engaged, and nurturing connections is more important than physical constraints. It's a reminder that our minds and experiences shape our lives, offering a kind of freedom beyond our bodies. Despite aging challenges, finding solace in the resilience and vitality of the mind can grant us a unique liberation that lasts beyond physical limitations and time….
Who’s buying a house
in this economy?
A report released yesterday by the National Association of Realtors (NAR) confirms what many Americans know to be true: Home affordability is in the gutter.
Due to rising interest rates and low inventory, NAR found that the average income of a homebuyer between July 2022 and June 2023 was $107,000, up from $88,000 the year prior—one of the highest levels since NAR started tracking in 1981. But the housing market continues to churn. The organization found…
More and more homebuyers are single women. The share of single women buying homes is almost double that of men. They’re also slightly older—a single woman buying her first home is 38 on average, while a single man is 33.
Buyers are older. The average first-time homebuyer is 35, up from 29 in the 1980s, but it’s older people who are buying up the three-bedrooms after selling their starter homes: NAR found that the median age of a repeat homebuyer last year was 58. In 1981, it was 36.
THURSDAY NOV. 16, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
THIS BLOG IS BEST VIEWED IN
Tuesday November 14, 2023
“It would take a fish a lifetime to climb a tree
but only a year to cross the ocean.”
― Matshona Dhliwayo
Paying Taxes on
Social Security Benefits:
3 Things Retirees
Must Know Before 2024
By Trevor Jennewine
- Retired workers who exceed certain earnings thresholds must pay federal income tax on Social Security benefits.
- More retired workers will owe federal income tax on benefits after the 3.2% COLA in 2024.
- Some retired workers also have to pay state income tax on Social Security benefits.
Retired workers should understand how Social Security benefits are taxed.
Social Security is a major source of retirement income for millions of Americans, so retirees must understand what factors could affect their benefits. For instance, contrary to popular misconception, Social Security benefits are subject to taxation under certain circumstances.
Read on to learn how benefits are taxed at the federal and state levels, and why more retired workers will have to pay taxes on their Social Security benefits in 2024.
Read more >> https://www.fool.com/retirement/2023/11/11/tax-on-social-security-benefits-retirees-must-know/
IS YOUR BALANCE OFF?
WHEN TO SEEK
BY CLAUDINE AHERNE
Have you noticed changes in your balance recently? Are you wondering whether these changes are normal or a sign of something that should be investigated?
Have you considered seeing your doctor but worried you might be wasting their time?
We often hear from people who have concerns about their balance but aren’t sure whether these warrant a visit to the doctor.
In this article, I will tell you the important signs that it’s time to consult a medical professional about your balance. You’ll find out why many people don’t visit their doctor (so you don’t make the same mistakes). I’ll share some inspiring personal stories of balance reclaimed.
Read more >> https://sixtyandme.com/medical-advice-balance-off/
5 Loan Options
That Senior Citizens
To Fulfill Their Money
Needs In Retirement
By Karla Lopez
No one wants to face financial hardship in their golden years, yet the reality is that many do. Imagine still working well into your 70s, your back aching, your energy waning, and your dreams of travel and relaxation fading. Thankfully, many loan instruments are available to senior citizens to help pay for their retirement expenses. Read on to know more.
Online Personal Loans
A personal loan can be used for practically any purpose. For senior citizens, these reasons include making home improvements, financing medical expenses, or fulfilling long-held travel aspirations.
Find out which CBD product is best for you
Generally, you can apply for a personal loan in person or online. However, applying for a personal loan in person can be frustrating and tricky. That’s why online loans have gained immense popularity. The digital application process provides accessibility and convenience that traditional in-person applications often lack.
Read more >> https://seniorslifestylemag.com/retirement/financial/5-loan-options-that-senior-citizens-could-explore-to-fulfill-their-money-needs-in-retirement/
are spending big on
travel right now.
By Christopher Muther
Welcome back to Survey Says, a carefully curated collection of travel surveys that have piqued our interest. Translation: We found some fun tidbits and slapped them together. This week, we dive into the travel generation gap.
The airport is going to look a bit older this holiday season, and I’m not talking about the worn carpets in front of gates where passengers pace while waiting for their boarding group to be called. Baby boomers are making a grand return to the airport this year, according to several studies that claim those born between 1946 and 1964 have shaken off their COVID fears and are ready to head back out for the holidays and beyond.
Last year, baby boomers made up a fifth of passengers traveling for the holidays. This year, a third of passengers will be in the 60-plus club. According to the tax advisory company Deloitte, those Boomers will not only return in force for holiday travel, but they’re also saving up for 2024 excursions. Translation: if you have a parent or grandparent in the Woodstock generation, start lowering your holiday gift expectations. They’re saving up for a trip to Italy next year, so you’re getting a Chia Pet for Christmas.
“I Have To Find Out
Who The Hell I Am.”
Now 80, the legendary director is on one of the most
creative runs of his career— and consumed by the
challenges (and opportunities) of all that he has left to do.
By Zach Baron
For years, Martin Scorsese would ask himself: What will happen when I get old? As a child, Scorsese was often sick with asthma, and as an adult, he spent a good part of his 30s weakening his heart, through excess and exertion, to the point of ending up in the hospital. Mortality has always been a specter in his life, and particularly in his films, which are a vast record of violent and untimely endings. But this recurring question wasn’t about death. This was: What will happen when I get old? What kind of work could I do? he would ask himself. Would there be any more depth?
In November, Scorsese will turn 81. Since his debut, 1967’s Who’s That Knocking at My Door, he has never stopped working for any noticeable amount of time. He has worked through addiction, four divorces, critical and commercial failure, and 13 losses (and one win) at the Academy Awards. He has made so many good—so many great—feature films and documentaries that I can’t begin to list them all, though we can marvel at even a partial list: Mean Streets, Italianamerican, Taxi Driver, The Last Waltz, Raging Bull, Goodfellas, Casino, No Direction Home, The Departed, The Wolf of Wall Street, Silence, The Irishman. A fun dinner party topic: Did Scorsese make the best movie of each decade since the ’70s? Probably not (I think his case is weakest in the first decade of this century), but you could argue it, and many people have. Still again, in the back of his head, this question about his talent and whether it would endure: “I always wondered, would it develop into anything if I got older? If I became old. Would it develop into anything? Would it be making the same movie? And if making the same movie, is that bad?”
“I don’t really belong there,” Scorsese said of his relationship to the Academy. “I don’t know if I think like them. I just mind my own business here.”
1. Diversity: Fish are incredibly diverse, with over 30,000 known species. They come in various shapes, sizes, and colors, adapting to different aquatic environments.
2. Oldest Vertebrates: Fish are among the oldest vertebrates on Earth, with fossils dating back more than 500 million years. They predate the dinosaurs and even trees.
3. Breathing: While most fish breathe through gills, some species, like the lungfish, have both gills and lungs. Lungfish can survive out of water for extended periods by using their lungs to breathe air.
4. Migration: Many fish species undertake long migrations. For example, the salmon is known for its remarkable journey upstream to spawn, sometimes covering hundreds or even thousands of miles.
5. Electric Fish: Some fish, like the electric eel, can generate electric fields to navigate and locate prey. Electric eels are capable of producing shocks of up to 600 volts.
6. Color Changing: Some fish, such as the cuttlefish, are masters of camouflage and can change their color and skin texture to blend in with their surroundings.
7. Longevity: The orange roughy holds the record for one of the longest-lived fish, with individuals living up to 149 years. Most fish, however, have much shorter lifespans.
8. Schooling Behavior: Many fish engage in schooling behavior, swimming together in coordinated groups. This provides protection from predators and helps in the efficient foraging for food.
9. Memory: Contrary to the common belief that fish have short memories, some species, like the goldfish, have demonstrated the ability to remember simple tasks and learn from experience.
10. Deep-Sea Extremes: The Mariana Trench, the deepest part of the world's oceans, is home to some unique fish species adapted to extreme pressure and darkness. The pressure in the trench is so intense that it's equivalent to 1,000 times atmospheric pressure at sea level.
WEDNESDAY NOV. 15, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
THIS BLOG IS BEST VIEWED IN
Monday November 13, 2023
“When I ask how old your toddler is,
I don't need to hear '27 months.'
'He's two' will do just fine. He's not a cheese.
And I didn't really care in the first place.”
― George Carlin
Older adults who use marijuana
are at high risk of
heart attack and stroke,
Marijuana use by older adults is rising and experts are worried they may not be aware of the cardiovascular risks.
According to new research presented at the American Heart Association Scientific Sessions in Philadelphia, adults over the age of 65 who don’t smoke tobacco but use marijuana are at higher risk of both heart attack and stroke.
Researchers said they found those who abused weed had a 20% higher risk of having a major heart or brain event while hospitalized compared to older patients who did not use marijuana.
A second study followed nearly 160,000 adults with a median age of 54 for about four years to see if cannabis use would impact their risk of heart failure.
The team reported they found that people who use marijuana daily were 34% more likely to develop heart failure compared to those who reported never using it.
Read more >> https://www.wect.com/2023/11/09/older-adults-who-use-marijuana-are-high-risk-heart-attack-stroke-studies-find/
Managing Chronic Back Pain –
Safe and Effective
Techniques for Seniors
By Ella Woodward
Dealing with chronic back pain can be a tough nut to crack, especially for seniors trying to keep up with their daily hustle. If you’re on this journey, know that there are effective techniques that can ease the ache and help you get back to feeling your best. Let’s dive into some game-changing approaches tailored just for you.
Getting to Know Your Back Pain
For seniors, chronic back pain can come from various sources, like aging, osteoarthritis, or spinal stenosis. Understanding the root cause is key to finding the right solutions that fit your needs like a glove.
8 Reasons Even Retirees
Need Good Credit
Poor credit costs you both money and opportunities —
even during your golden years.
By Lucy Lazarony
It would be nice to think you could let things slide. But, no, you do need to maintain good credit in retirement.
It will save you money or hassles in more situations than you may realize. And bad credit can cost you in retirement just as it can cost you during your working years.
Consider these reasons that it pays to keep a stellar credit score in retirement.
Married more than once?
Here’s what that
BY LIZ WESTON
Dear Liz: I’m in a second marriage that’s lasted 10 years. Is my wife fully entitled to my Social Security after I die? My first wife and I were married for 19 years. Is my ex entitled to any of it?
Answer: Both your current spouse and your ex could be entitled to survivor benefits based on your work record. Typically someone must be married nine months to qualify for survivor benefits on a current spouse’s record. If the spouses divorced, the marriage must have lasted 10 years. Each survivor benefit can be up to 100% of your benefit. The amount may be reduced if the women start benefits before their own full retirement age, but they don’t have to share — the amount isn’t reduced because you’ve had more than one spouse.
Read more >>
Behind the Scenes
From the '60s:
The Adventures of
Ozzie and Harriet
By Marissa Block
A Poster Family for American Ideals - or Not?
Today, streaming platforms are saturated with a variety of shows to pick and choose from. There are cop shows for crime lovers, comedy shows for light-hearted amusement, and reality shows for those who like to distract themselves with other people's drama. But in the 50s and 60s, The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet was a popular go-to favorite for all those looking to be entertained.
The sitcom starred the real-life Nelson family, shining a spotlight on them as the ideal American family. However, as you’ll soon discover, their life was far from perfect and was described as somewhat scandalous at times...
When Law School Fails, Start a Dance Band...
Everything nowadays can be recharged. We regularly plug our phones into outlets, patiently waiting for the battery to fill up. I recharge my electric shaver about once a month, prompted by a red light. People are increasingly recharging watches, bicycles, and cars. Once fully charged, these items operate like new, at least for a while. Recharging has become a routine. Yet, strangely, our most crucial electric-powered possession, our own body, isn't as easily revitalized.
Right now, if there was a "LOW BATTERY" warning light on me, it would be close to empty. Lately, I've been really low on energy. Getting up in the mornings is a real challenge, and throughout the day, I move around slowly as if my feet are made of lead. Everything I do exhausts me—I even struggled to put on my socks today, and my pants were a whole ordeal.
I attribute some of this fatigue to my body reacting to the recent COVID vaccine, which hit me hard and I'm still feeling its effects. However, even before that, I've been lacking motivation and energy for a while. Something that’s not like me at all.
I know I'm 78, definitely not a spring chicken. I get that aging means less energy and pep. What baffles me is the sudden lack of interest in activities I once loved, like walking, reading, taking photos, or chatting with friends. It feels like a chore now. I'm questioning if it's a physical thing or just in my head.
I decided to look into this issue, but the more I researched, the more confused I became. It seems like fatigue can be caused by almost anything. However, certain factors are particularly relevant to older individuals, such as having a chronic illness, taking medications for health issues, and dealing with depression, which is more common in older age.
One specific condition is Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS), also known as myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME) or ME/CFS. It's characterized by fatigue lasting six months or more, unrelated to other diseases. People with CFS face challenges in daily activities like dressing or bathing due to symptoms like persistent fatigue, sleep problems, memory issues, difficulty concentrating, pain, dizziness, sore throat, and tender lymph nodes. Although these symptoms align with some of my experiences, the diagnosis doesn't quite fit me.
Scientists have recently started examining something else: Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). Some symptoms match perfectly with my experience, such as feeling sad, loss of interest in enjoyable activities, changes in appetite, and alterations in sleep patterns. On the other hand, certain symptoms like increased purposeless physical activity, feelings of worthlessness, difficulty concentrating, and thoughts of death do not apply to me.
The journey to unveil the source of my fatigue continues, My doctor ordered one of my twice-yearly blood tests the other day. The results of which he will most likely discuss with me this week. Meanwhile I remain hopeful for renewed energy and the return of passions that once defined my days. I'll keep you posted on this chapter of my journey. Until then, take care. ..
DECLINING U.S. POPULATION
According to the latest Census Bureau data, the US population is projected to shrink by the year 2100, which would be only the second decline in the country’s history (the other occurred in 1918 due to the Spanish flu and World War I). Annual population growth rates have dropped from about 1.2% in the 1990s to just 0.5% today. The culprits: declining birth rates and an aging population. The US could even be topped by Pakistan or Nigeria as the third-biggest country by the middle of the century, per UN projections. The anticipated shrinkage means immigration will be essential for any hopes of continued growth. And yet, the US is still growing faster than many other high-income nations, some of which, like Japan and Italy, are already losing population.
TUESDAY NOV. 14, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
THIS BLOG IS BEST VIEWED IN
Friday November 10 2023
“Because gray clouds hang heavy with misery,
blue skies seem bluer.”
― Richelle E. Goodrich,
GOP candidates split
over raising Social Security
in presidential debate
None of the candidates who participated in the NBC News debate said
they'd cut entitlement benefits for current seniors.
But some said they'd raise the retirement age for younger workers.
By Scott Wong
Five of the Republican presidential candidates were sharply divided Wednesday over whether to raise the retirement age for Social Security recipients.
Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and former United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley said they back raising the retirement age for younger workers, while Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina said they wouldn’t change it at all. The latter two are in alignment with the position of former President Donald Trump, who didn’t attend the debate.
None of the candidates onstage for the NBC News Republican presidential debate suggested they would cut entitlement benefits for seniors — a position that would alienate older voters who reliably turn up at the polls during election years.
Read more >>
Health misinformation and
lack of confidence in vaccines
continue to grow, years after
the Covid-19 pandemic,
By Carma Hassan
Vaccine misinformation, which first began spiraling during the Covid-19 pandemic, has grown in the United States in the years since, according to a new survey from the Annenberg Public Policy Center of the University of Pennsylvania.
More than 1,500 adults responded to the survey between October 5 – 12 and according to the results, the share of people who viewed vaccines as less safe and effective has increased since April 2021, when the group was first included on a panel for the survey.
Americans are less likely to consider it safe to get the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR), pneumonia and Covid-19 vaccines than they were in April 2021.
Common cat-borne parasite
Is positively associated with
Frailty in older adults
By Lisa Marshall
A common, cat-borne parasite already associated with risk-taking behavior and mental illness in humans may also contribute to exhaustion, loss of muscle mass, and other signs of "frailty" in older adults, suggests a study published Nov. 6 in the Journals of Gerontology Series A: Biomedical Sciences and Medical Sciences.
The research, by an international team of scientists including University of Colorado Boulder, University of Maryland School of Medicine and the University of A Coruña in Spain, is the latest to explore how the tiny, single-celled organism Toxoplasma gondii (T. gondii) could have big impacts on human health.
"We often think of T. gondii infection as relatively asymptomatic, but this study highlights that for some people it may have significant health consequences later on," said co-author Christopher Lowry, a professor in the Department of Integrative Physiology at CU Boulder.
Read more >> https://medicalxpress.com/news/2023-11-common-cat-borne-parasite-positively-frailty.html
'Praying that my health holds out':
Many senior citizens expect to die
with college loan debts
By Jon Marcus
Marjorie Sener was still in her 20s when she took out a loan for about $5,000 to get some college credits she hoped would eventually add up to a bachelor's degree.
That goal was thwarted when her partner became ill.
"The burden of our living expenses fell on me," said Sener, who lives in the Dallas suburbs. "I devoted all of my resources to keeping our heads above water."
But while Sener never got her degree, that student loan kept growing, fattened by compounding interest.
Now, at 74, she owes more than $55,000, or 10 times what she originally borrowed, and has put off any hope of retiring. Sener still works, as a legal secretary, juggling her student loan debt with other expenses, including medical costs from recent cancer treatments.
IN YOUR 60S:
MOMENT OF REST
BY MARY SUE WILKINSON
Have you ever been so tired that a stop light seemed like a blessing? You close your eyes for just a second and take a deep breath, trying to catch a wisp of the tiniest second – or maybe third wind?
Years ago, when I was starting a school, I had day after day with little rest. My mind was packed with to-do lists, problems to be solved and papers to sign. I would wake in the night, panicked that I had not signed the right papers or that children were unattended.
My mind would frantically try to remember what papers I needed to sign. Sometimes I would even get up and walk into the hallway of our home, sure I needed to do something.
Learn more >> https://sixtyandme.com/reducing-stress-in-your-60s-capturing-a-moment-of-rest-through-music/
From the editor….
When I was young, my friends and I used to collect a variety of things like baseball cards, bottle caps, rocks, bugs, bubble gum wrappers, stamps, coins, and ice cream cup lids. We did it for fun or to trade, not really for making money. Most of us stopped collecting as we got older, although some kids who saved their baseball cards ended up making a lot of money. I didn't do that. As I grew older, I didn't really have the urge to accumulate things unless they were useful. This has been the case for a long time. However, recently, while I was cleaning out a dresser drawer to make space for some new socks I had bought, I realized something surprising. Without even realizing it, I had turned into a collector.
So, what have I been gathering? It's zip-lock bags. Not just a few, but at least a few dozen of them.
I remember occasionally keeping a couple of zip-lock bags to store leftover food and keep it fresh for a few days. However, I didn't realize it had turned into a compulsion.
I removed one bag after another from the drawer. Some of them had bags inside the bags. There were big bags, large enough to hold a pair of shoes. There were smaller ones, just the right size for a sandwich, and even tinier bags that could only fit a few grams of something. Why did I hold on to these? It seems there must be some deep-seated psychological reason for my tendency to hold on to these things. Am I just trying to be economical, or am I heading down the path of becoming one of those hoarders with OCD that you see on TV? Is this something to be worried about? Some research was needed.
"Hoarding disorder is when someone collects too many things they don't need, and they struggle to let go of them, even if they're no longer useful or wanted. They may feel upset at the thought of getting rid of these items. " This doesn't describe me, because I had no personal attachment to those bags and had no problem throwing them away. However, I still wonder if there might be a mental reason behind why I kept all those bags. It's not for personal enjoyment, learning about objects, socializing with other collectors, or seeking status. Maybe it's a way to hold onto memories from childhood or the past, or to feel emotionally secure, which makes a lot of sense. I’ll have to keep an eye on myself. I wouldn’t want anybody to think I have no self control.
Oh. BTW. I have a hell of a lot of rubber bans too. One can never have enough of those you know…
WHY THE SKY IS BLUE
The sky appears blue because of a phenomenon called Rayleigh scattering. When sunlight enters Earth's atmosphere, it is made up of different colors of light, each with a different wavelength. The shorter wavelengths, like blue and violet, are scattered in all directions by the tiny molecules in the air.
Since blue light is scattered more than other colors due to its shorter wavelength, it tends to fill the sky. This is why we see a blue sky during the day. At sunrise and sunset, when the sun is lower in the sky, the light has to pass through more of the atmosphere, which scatters away even more of the shorter wavelengths. This can give rise to the warm hues of red and orange that we often associate with those times of day.
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Saturday and Sunday
November11 & 12. 2023
NEXT WEEKDAY BLOG
MONDAY NOV. 13, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
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Thursday November 9, 2023
“I see retirement as just
another of these reinventions,
another chance to do new things
and be a new version of myself.”
_____ Walt Mossberg
Should we treat aging
as a disease?
The consequences and
dangers of miscategorisation
By Richard G. A. Faragher*
The aging of the population represents one of the largest healthcare challenges facing the world today. The available scientific evidence shows that interventions are available now that can target fundamental “aging” processes or pathways. Sufficient economic evidence is available to argue convincingly that this approach will also save enormous sums of money which could then be deployed to solve other urgent global problems. However, as yet this scenario has barely entered the public consciousness and, far from being a point of vigorous debate, seems to be ignored by policy makers. Understanding why this lethargy exists is important given the urgent need to deal with the challenge represented by population aging. In this paper I hypothesize that one major cause of inaction is a widely held, but flawed, conceptual framework concerning the relationship between aging and disease that categorizes the former as “natural” and the latter as “abnormal.” This perspective is sufficient in itself to act as a disincentive to intervention by rendering those who hold it prone to the “naturalistic fallacy” but can give rise to active hostility to biogerontology if coupled with loose and/or blurred understanding of the goals and potential of the field.
The American public
that cutting Medicare
By Kit Crancer, Bob Still
A wise society cares for its elderly and vulnerable citizens. Whatever its challenges, Medicare represents that compassionate ideal in action. But in their quest for budget savings, some in Washington have again proposed cutting Medicare payments to doctors, mammogram providers, and other critical healthcare services. This ignores public opinion, endangers public health, and damages our national character.
Politicians peddling these cuts claim noble policy aims controlling costs and helping patients. We shouldn't believe these arguments. This ploy simply shifts healthcare expenses onto the backs of sick seniors while enriching insurance companies. We must reject this false choice between compassion and fiscal responsibility. Protecting Medicare requires proper stewardship, not thoughtless cuts that sacrifice quality care.
Slashing reimbursement rates ignores overwhelming public wisdom. A recent national survey conducted by the Radiology Business Management Association's Radiology Patient Action Network and the Medical Imaging & Technology Alliance revealed that 76% of Americans oppose reducing payments for Medicare services.
say they prioritize this
when choosing healthcare
By Eric Hegedus
Most retirees have no plans to move away — here’s why
Over the years, nearly one-quarter of seniors have selected a healthcare plan that they weren’t happy with.
That’s according to a survey of 2,000 Americans 65+ who have healthcare.
In fact, results also found that a similar number (24%) have chosen a plan simply because it was the cheapest option.
But today, seniors tend to prioritize plans that cover what they need, regardless of the cost rather than focusing only on the price tag (54% vs 34%).
Despite the average respondent having the same healthcare plan for five years, 50% say reading through it gives them a headache.
Fears of higher
for over-50s after
as study finds
‘real, lasting impact’
on their brain health
Covid-19 pandemic lockdowns and other restrictions have had a “real, lasting impact” on the brain health of people over the age of 50, researchers have suggested.
Older people’s cognitive function and working memory declined more rapidly during the pandemic, regardless of whether they were infected with Covid-19, a study has found.
This could be down to factors exacerbated by the pandemic, such as not exercising enough and drinking too much alcohol, as well as loneliness and depression, researchers
Are the Most In-Demand Dates
BY REBECCA STRONG
If watching the charming debut season of The Golden Bachelor motivated you to find love later in life, you're not alone. A new DateMyAge survey revealed that 70 percent of 50+ singles are interested in meeting someone, and more than half of adults in that same age group are online dating specifically to connect with a long-term partner.
Bachelor and Bachelorette Parties are Changing
But these statistics aren't all that surprising, experts say. After all, according to the survey, women are more likely to describe dating experiences with older men as positive—meanwhile, 60 percent of women said their experiences with dating younger men are "overwhelmingly negative."
According to Kimmy Seltzer, a dating strategist, confidence therapist, and host of the Charisma Quotient podcast, there are several reasons for this phenomenon, including changing social norms, de-stigmatizing of senior dating, a longer life expectancy, increased divorce rates, and an increased awareness of the value of companionship.
Emma Hathorne, dating expert at Seeking, points out that older adults often have a clearer understanding of their relationship goals.
BEST PLACES TO RETIRE
Florida isn’t the best place to retire—Pennsylvania is. That’s according to US News & World Report, which ranked the state capital, Harrisburg, No. 1 for its access to the outdoors and a buffet of nearby festivals. Pennsylvania accounts for seven of the top 10 towns on the list, while Florida has just one (Daytona Beach). Only three Florida cities were top 20, down from eight last year. A USNWR expert suggested that’s because of the state’s expensive housing and, you know, all the hurricanes.
See the entire list here >> click here
FRIDAY NOV. 10, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
THIS BLOG IS BEST VIEWED IN
November 8, 2023
“In order to really enjoy a dog, one doesn’t
merely try to train him to be semi-human.
The point of it is to open oneself to the
possibility of becoming partly a dog.”
— Edward Hoagland
Older Adults Reveal
The Things They're Simply
"Getting Too Old" To
Deal With Anymore
By Raven Ishak
As we get older, there are just some things we no longer want to deal with, whether it’s on a weekly or daily basis. So when I saw that Reddit user u/XmasJ asked: “What are you simply getting too old for?” I wanted to share their answers to see if you relate. Here’s what they had to say below:
1. "Arguing with other people. It makes me think of Keanu Reeves. He gave an interview about growing older and said he protects his peace by refusing to argue with anyone about anything. He said, '2+2 is 5? You are correct. Have a nice day.'"
2. "Concerts without assigned seating. I'm not showing up hours early to get a good spot and then be stuck there the entire time without being able to sit or use the bathroom or else I lose my view."
You are what you eat:
Why nutrition is so important
in senior living
BY MELISSA POWELL
One fundamental truth remains constant in senior care: elderly residents deserve access to the best possible care throughout their golden years.
Senior living and care executives stand at the forefront of this noble mission. It is our responsibility to strive to improve the quality of life and well-being of our aging population. Although a multitude of factors will influence this mission, one aspect often is underestimated yet holds the key to unlocking a world of health, vitality and happiness for our elderly loved ones: nutrition.
Beyond the familiar adage, “You are what you eat,” this article will explore the profound significance of proper nutrition in senior living and care and the interconnectedness between aging and nutritional needs. But it doesn’t stop there. Confronting the silent but alarming epidemic of malnutrition allows us to identify and necessary implement strategies that detect and combat this insidious threat. Nutrition is a powerful ally in safeguarding cognitive health, preserving independence and functional ability, and nurturing emotional well-being.
Read more >>
Social Security recipients
struggle to pay back
BY ANDERSON COOPER, ALIZA CHASAN,
ANDY COURT, ANNABELLE HANFLIG
Roy Farmer was 11 years old when his family last received Social Security benefits for him. Farmer has cerebral palsy; as a child, he had leg braces and couldn't walk.
More than two decades ago, Social Security determined he was no longer medically eligible for benefits. His family received several thousand more dollars while Farmer's mother appealed the decision. The appeal was eventually denied, and the money sent to the family over the course of the appeal was deemed an overpayment. Two years ago, Farmer learned that the Social Security Administration expected him to pay back that excess money his mother received when he was a child.
Farmer is one of about a million people getting billed each year over miscalculated payments from the Social Security Administration. Retirees and disabled workers are being told to pay up, and it often doesn't matter whether they're at fault or not.
Charting the Course of
the Effect on Feet
By Anna Giorgi
Diabetic foot, a condition of foot problems linked to diabetes mellitus, is common among people with diabetes. These problems can occur in one or both feet due to type 1 or type 2 diabetes.1
Symptoms associated with diabetic foot can occur over time. They can be linked to nerve damage or blood flow problems common with this disease.
Diabetic foot problems can affect your skin or the structure of your foot. Foot ulcers (open sores), infections, and changes in the shape of your foot can develop.2
Read more >> https://www.verywellhealth.com/diabetic-foot-7967121
BECOMING A GRANDMOTHER:
6 THINGS NEW GRANNIES
ARE CONCERNED ABOUT
BY ANN RICHARDSON
So, you have become a grandmother! Congratulations!
How are you feeling about it? Excited? Apprehensive? Not ready to see yourself as a grandma? Join the club. Many of us feel that way at first.
Just after my second grandson was born, I decided to write a book exploring how women feel about being a grandmother, based on interviews I conducted with grandmothers from a range of backgrounds.
It seemed such a complex subject, with so much to talk about. I had already written other books of this kind, so it was just taking a slightly new path.
Learn more >> https://sixtyandme.com/becoming-a-grandmother-6-things-new-grannies-are-concerned-about/
From the editor….
I'm still not feeling well after getting the latest COVID vaccine. While the symptoms have improved, I still have a cough, sore throat, and some body aches. I'm starting to question if taking the shot was the right decision. I've been feeling pretty miserable for several days. On the bright side, I've been able to get some much-needed rest, which might be more important for my health than all the medications and vaccines.
Like many older individuals, the chances of having a good night's sleep are quite low. For those old enough to recall black and white TVs and 25-cent-per-gallon gas, falling asleep isn't the issue; it's remaining asleep for more than an hour or two at a time that poses a challenge. Most nights, I'm fortunate to achieve three consecutive hours of sleep, and it's been a while since I slept for over four hours in one go.
You might believe that insomnia is just one of nature's jokes that she enjoys playing on the elderly, like wrinkles, unwanted hair growth, and basketball-size prostates, but there are scientific reasons why we struggle to fall asleep and stay asleep for a full 7 or 8 hours.
Insomnia, or difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep, can be more common in older adults for a variety of reasons. Some of the factors that contribute to insomnia in older individuals include:
As people age, there can be changes in their internal body clocks, known as circadian rhythms. This can lead to a shift in sleep-wake patterns, making it harder to fall asleep at night and stay awake during the day. Older adults often have more health issues, which can lead to discomfort or pain that disrupts sleep. Conditions like arthritis, heartburn, respiratory problems, and chronic pain can all contribute to insomnia. Older adults tend to take more medications, and some of these can have side effects that affect sleep. For example, certain medications for high blood pressure, asthma, or pain management can interfere with sleep. Significant life changes, such as retirement, loss of loved ones, or health concerns, which can lead to stress, anxiety, or depression—all of which can contribute to insomnia. And let’s not forget the all-time favorites like sleep apnea or restless legs syndrome. Here’s the one that I can attest to, reduced physical activity leading to less physical fatigue. I haven’t done any real work for over ten years.
I talked to my doctor about it. He suggested giving me sleep pills, but I didn't want more medication. I've discovered one thing that helps a little bit: having a glass of warm milk before bedtime. Surprisingly, it seems to calm and relax me. I guess grandma knew what she was talking about…..
FAVORITE DOG NAMES-2023
An estimated 69 million U.S. households include a dog, according to the American Pet Products Association. And all of those doggos need a name.
Most likely, it’s Bella or Luna, or perhaps Charlie or Max.
That’s what U.S. News & World Reports’ 360 Reviews learned from a new report on the most popular dog names nationwide.
THURSDAY NOV. 9, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
THIS BLOG IS BEST VIEWED IN
Tuesday November 7, 2023
“What a foolish thing, the human heart,
being both fragile and reckless.
No wonder we spend such an
inordinate amount of time in pain.”
― Eliza Crewe
Older Adults at Risk
By Brittany Vargas
Roughly 2% of prescriptions to older patients appear to be inappropriate — but the figure does not appear to differ between physicians and nurse practitioners, according to a study published last month in Annals of Internal Medicine.
Older adults are "especially vulnerable to adverse drug events from inappropriate prescribing due to comorbidities and aging-related physiological changes," said Johnny Huynh, MA, doctoral candidate in economics at UCLA and lead author of the study. "Considering the volume of prescriptions for older adults, even a small percentage can translate to a big impact on adverse drug events and spending."
In recent years, more states have granted prescriptive authority to NPs, while professional medical organizations have opposed the reforms and made claims about differences in quality of care.
Read more >> https://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/997971
9 Ways Wearable Tech
Can Be Beneficial
BY CHRISTINE ROMANS
Smartwatches, smart rings, and other wearable tech offer quite a few health and wellness benefits for people as they get older. See how they can help.
Wearable devices are commonplace for young people, but did you know that they're becoming more and more beneficial for the older generation? The main reason is that older adults can use them to their advantage to live happier and healthier lives.
From emergency features like fall detection to blood pressure and heart rate monitoring, below are several impressive ways wearable tech can be beneficial to seniors.
Older adults would be wise
to embrace lifelong learning
By STATE SEN JUDY SCHWANK
For those who make regular morning commutes, you may have noticed the roads have been a bit busy since students returned to school in late August.
For students, parents, teachers and communities broadly, the beginning of a new school year is a new chapter because with it comes all kinds of other fun things folks look forward to all year. Cooler weather, the changing of the leaves and the return of Friday night football games are all things I know communities all over Berks County adore, no matter how old you are.
The beginning of the new school year also got me thinking about the importance of education, not just for our young students, but for everyone. If there’s one thing I’ve learned over the years, it’s that you can never have too much information. While it’s my obligation as a state Senator to learn about the issues my constituents are dealing with and the subject matter of bills we vote on in Harrisburg, I also find it energizing.
Read more >> https://www.readingeagle.com/2023/11/05/older-adults-would-be-wise-to-embrace-lifelong-learning-column/
BY BRIAN JOSLYN
The age-old saying “it takes a village” rings especially true when it comes to raising children. In today’s dynamic family structures, grandparents often play a significant role in the upbringing of their grandchildren, either by providing essential support or even assuming the role of primary caregivers. A staggering 2.7 million grandparents dedicate long hours to the upbringing of another generation in the US, even after they’ve bid farewell to their own child-rearing days.
While other family members often play a role in this support network, there are currently one million children who have their grandparents as their primary parental figures. Interestingly, only 150,000 kids are being raised solely by their grandfathers, and a significant 55% of devoted grandmothers who maintain households for their grandchildren are under the age of 55.
It’s noteworthy that two-thirds of families supported by at least one grandparent also include the child’s parents in their lives. In total, a staggering 2.7 million grandparents in the United States are stepping up to the plate to raise their beloved grandchildren, emphasizing the importance of understanding the rights and responsibilities they hold in this critical role.
Read more >> https://sixtyandme.com/grandparents-custody-rights/
5 Car Maintenance
Tips for Seniors
Car maintenance can be a challenging prospect the older you get, but it’s no less important. In fact, if you would like your vehicle to last throughout your retirement years, it’s even more vital to keep it in proper working order and prevent issues through regular car maintenance.
Here are five ways you can make sure your vehicle is ready to handle the roadway and keep you safe:
1. Change the Oil Regularly
Oil is the lifeblood of your car’s engine. Without clean oil, don’t expect your car to function at a high level or last for an extended period of time. Check the owner’s manual of your car before you schedule an oil change.
Depending on the make, model and type of oil you use, you may not need to get an oil change every 3,000 miles according to traditional rules. Modern cars last for up to 10,000 miles between oil changes, but still, neglecting this basic car maintenance step can have serious repercussions.
The circulatory system
If a child’s entire circulatory system—we’re talking veins, arteries, and capillaries—were laid out flat, it would stretch for more than 60,000 miles, according to the Franklin Institute. By the time we reach adulthood, our bodies have become home to approximately 100,000 miles of blood vessels. That’s just one of the mind-blowing facts that sound made up (but aren’t).
WEDNESDAY NOV. 8, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
THIS BLOG IS BEST VIEWED IN
Monday November 6, 2023
“There are very few things in the world
I hate more than Daylight Savings Time.
It is the grand lie of time, the scourge of science,
the blight on biological understanding.”
― Michelle Franklin
'MAGA Mike Johnson'
Wants Commission to
Cut Social Security Formed
Social Security Works said that the new House speaker's "NUMBER ONE
priority is to cut our earned benefits behind closed doors."
When Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives elected Louisiana Congressman Mike Johnson as speaker last week, critics quickly sounded the alarm about his previous calls to cut trillions of dollars from Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid—and the GOP leader triggered a fresh wave of fears on Thursday with related comments to a Capitol Hill journalist.
NBC News' Sahil Kapur reported on social media that Johnson "says he pitched a debt commission to Senate Republicans yesterday and 'the idea was met with great enthusiasm.' He says it will be bipartisan and bicameral. He says he wants 'very thoughtful people' in both parties to lead it. He wants this 'immediately.'"
In response to Johnson's remarks—which echoed his first speech as speaker—the Alliance for Retired Americans wrote, "Translation: They're eager to begin gutting Social Security behind closed doors."
Older adults want to
‘age in place,’
but their options are
limited in most states
As America gets grayer, advocates are
pushing for new types of housing.
BY: ROBBIE SEQUEIRA
As older adults begin to outnumber young people in the United States in the coming decade, advocacy groups are challenging states to shift away from single-family zoning in favor of housing solutions that allow older adults to “age in place.”
By 2035, the U.S. will have more people over the age of 65 than under the age of 18, a first in the nation’s history. Recent census data suggests that the U.S. is short of aging-ready homes, with just 40% of the country’s housing considered accessible enough to meet the basic needs of older adults.
Organizations such as AARP are lobbying state by state for two housing approaches: the development of so-called middle housing such as duplexes, triplexes and townhomes, and the allowance of accessory dwelling units, often known as granny flats or in-law suites.
Read more >> https://stateline.org/2023/11/02/older-adults-want-to-age-in-place-but-their-options-are-limited-in-most-states/
How to Treat 11
Top Vision Problems
From floaters and flashes to dryness and sharp pain —
know what symptoms may signal a bigger problem
By Jessica Migala
You may think that recent changes in your vision are just another sign you’re getting older. That may not be so. Although nearly half the people who struggle with a visual disability are 65 or older, many of those cases could have been prevented. “It’s not normal to be losing vision as you get older, and there’s usually an underlying reason,” says Rahul Khurana, M.D., a physician and clinical associate professor in ophthalmology at University of California San Francisco Medical Center. With new treatments for a variety of eye diseases, doctors can slow their progression or reverse the damage — though you have to know what’s going on first.
Here are some troubling eye symptoms and what to do if you experience one.
1. You have double vision
First, a self-test: Cover one eye. Is the symptom still there? If yes, that’s good news. The cause could be dryness; using artificial tears to lubricate the eye surface may help, says Jennifer Eikenberry, M.D., an ophthalmologist and assistant professor of clinical ophthalmology at Indiana University School of Medicine. More worrisome is when the problem is “binocular,” meaning that double vision disappears when you close one eye. “It’s a sign that your eyes are not aligned, and we worry that the double vision is caused by a nerve palsy from a stroke or aneurysm,” she explains.
2. You see floaters or flashes
With aging, the gel-like substance in your eye starts to liquefy; as it pulls away from the retina, you may see dark moving spots called floaters. According to Khurana, 85 percent of the time, these are not dangerous. But if you see new floaters or flashes of light in your field of vision, contact an ophthalmologist immediately; you may need a dilated eye exam to rule out a retinal tear.
Doctors urge elderly adults
to get triple-whammy of
Covid, flu and RSV vaccines
this winter despite 'miniscule'
risk of strokes flagged by FDA
Doctors have urged older adults to roll up their sleeves for three different vaccines this fall - calling the tenuous links to higher stroke risk ‘minuscule’.
The advice comes on the heels of a Food and Drug Administration analysis out this week that found there was a slightly elevated risk of stroke in over-85s who received the new Covid-19 vaccine and the flu shot formulated for seniors at the same time.
It was the second analysis by health officials to flag a possible association between strokes and seniors after getting the combination of seasonal vaccines.
Why the American Climate Corps
Looks Ageist to Me
The Biden administration’s new youth-skewed program is admirable,
but needs to be more welcoming to older Americans
By Richard Eisenberg
When the Biden Administration announced the American Climate Corps in late September, it said the program was designed "to train young people in clean energy, conservation and climate-resilience skills, create good-paying jobs and tackle the climate crisis." It's a joint project of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration; the Departments of Labor, Interior, Energy and Agriculture and the hub, AmeriCorps.
My immediate reaction, as a 67-year-old boomer: The idea of a Climate Corps — it's a jobs program, not a volunteer program — is commendable, if not overdue. But pitching it to, and for, "young people," smacks of ageism and is a missed chance to involve Americans of all ages in helping to fix an existential global problem.
Several environmental and intergenerational activists share my grievance.
Overlooking Older Adults....
Out Of Action.
Last Wednesday, I got the latest COVID-19 vaccine shot. Similar to the previous three shots, I only experienced slight pain at the injection site. However, on Friday, I started feeling a bit odd, with some coughing and sneezing. I took some Tylenol, thinking it might be my allergies acting up, but I was mistaken. Saturday morning, I woke up with intense head and body aches, and my cough and scratchy throat got worse. By Sunday, I was pretty much unable to do anything, having a light breakfast and spending most of the day in my room sleeping. While I've had reactions to medication in the past, this one was more severe. After researching, I realized that what I was experiencing was normal and a positive sign that my immune system was responding to the vaccine as intended. That’s the good news. I also learned that these symptoms can last for three or four days….not so good news…..
Why Daylight Savings Time?
Daylight Saving Time (DST) was originally implemented with the goal of conserving energy. It was first widely adopted during World War I and later during World War II as a way to make more efficient use of natural daylight and reduce the need for artificial lighting, particularly in the evenings. This was seen as a way to save resources like coal and electricity, which were crucial for the war effort.
By shifting the clocks forward in the spring, people could make better use of the longer days and therefore reduce the amount of energy used for lighting and heating in the evening. This practice was thought to contribute to national energy conservation efforts during times of conflict. After the wars, some regions continued to use DST as a way to save energy during the warmer months.
TUESDAY NOV. 7, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
THIS PAGE IS BEST VIEWED IN
Friday November 3, 2023
“How can you govern a country
which has 246 varieties of cheese?”
― Charles de Gaulle
Many older Americans
high blood pressure
In the past two decades, there has been a troubling surge in hospitalizations due to high blood pressure among older Americans.
This concerning trend has raised eyebrows, especially since numerous initiatives have been launched to manage and control blood pressure levels.
Researchers from Yale University have scrutinized data spanning the last 20 years, seeking evidence of a decline in hospitalizations stemming from sudden spikes in blood pressure. Regrettably, their findings do not paint an optimistic picture.
The Impact on Seniors...
Read more >> https://knowridge.com/2023/10/many-older-americans-suffer-from-high-blood-pressure-hospitalizations/
Social Security Benefits:
All Retired Couples
By Katie Brockman
- Spousal benefits are a special type of Social Security.
- Not everyone is entitled to them, but they could significantly boost your payments.
- Even if you're divorced or widowed, you could still qualify for extra money each month.
You could be entitled to hundreds of dollars more per month.
Social Security can go a long way in retirement, especially if your savings are falling short. The average retiree collects around $1,800 per month in benefits, as of September 2023, but there could be a hidden benefit you're missing out on.
If you're married, you may be entitled to Social Security spousal benefits. Not everyone will qualify, and there are some tricky rules around how much you can receive. Here's everything you need to know about this special type of benefit.
Read more >> https://www.fool.com/retirement/2023/11/01/spousal-social-security-benefits-retired-couple/
Here’s a Social Security fix,
using an online calculator
anyone can access
By Scott Burns
“Everyone talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it.” That famous quote is widely credited to humorist Mark Twain.
The same is often said about Social Security. In fact, those in Congress try to make changes every year.
Not a year goes by without multiple pieces of proposed legislation being evaluated for cost and impact.
In most years, every proposal dies without action. According to the Social Security website, the actuaries have evaluated seven pieces of legislation so far this year.
Aging at Different Speeds
Challenges accrue when partners can
no longer move at the same tempo
By Jill Smolowe
On the eve of my departure for Austria with a friend, my husband and I sit side by side on the living room couch, sharing a bottle of wine.
"Are you excited?" he asks.
It's a simple question. Yet the answer is complicated.
Since my early 20s, I've routinely traveled abroad at least once a year, sometimes for work, more often for pleasure. Always, I've eagerly anticipated those trips, looking forward to the change in my daily get-it-done pace. The exotic sights, tastes and smells. The brush with unfamiliar cultures and people. The reminder that the way we Americans spend our days and interact with family, friends and strangers is far from the only option.
Senior Citizens and Health Plans:
Navigating the Medicare Landscape
By Ella Woodward
As we age, our healthcare needs change, and for senior citizens in the United States, Medicare becomes a critical component of their health care plan. Understanding the Medicare landscape is essential for seniors and their families to ensure they receive the necessary healthcare services without breaking the bank. In this blog post, we will explore the world of Medicare, its various parts, and how senior citizens can navigate this complex healthcare system to make informed decisions about their health and well-being.
Medicare is a federal health insurance program in the United States that primarily serves individuals aged 65 and older. It was established in 1965 and has since become a lifeline for millions of senior citizens, providing them with access to essential healthcare services.
Parts of Medicare:
Medicare is divided into different parts, each covering specific aspects of healthcare:
Learn more >> https://seniorslifestylemag.com/health-well-being/senior-citizens-and-health-plans-navigating-the-medicare-landscape/
Vaccinated, and Ready For Winter
I’m all set for winter. I got my long underwear, 100% wool navy peacoat, boots, scarves and gloves. And one more thing. Actually two more things. Yesterday I received the latest version of the COVID-19 vaccine. And two weeks ago I got my yearly flu shot. The COVID vaccine, if I’m not mistaken, is the fourth in a series we residents here at the AL.F. have received. The flu shot was a triple dose just for us old folks. Normally, one would not rave about being stuck in the arm with a needle. I certainly didn’t look forward to it as kid. But now I look upon these miracle drugs as another weapon in the war against pain, suffering and death.
I used to not worry about getting sick every season. I hadn't experienced the flu since the 1960s and rarely caught colds or anything else. It seems like I had a strong immune system, perhaps because I lived in a busy city, used public transportation, and didn't avoid crowds. Without realizing it, I probably encountered many different respiratory viruses and built up immunity over time.
Things are different now. Ever since I fell victim to what the doctors told me was most likely a bacterial infection a few years back, I’ve been afraid of getting sick. I know my once active immune system isn’t what it used to be. Apparently, as we age, our immune system weakens. This makes us more vulnerable to infections of all types. And any sort of challenge to the body can do more damage.
Our immune system weakens as we age because it undergoes natural changes over time. Here are a few key reasons:
The thymus, an organ that plays a crucial role in training immune cells (T cells), gradually shrinks as we get older. This reduces the production of new T cells, which are essential for fighting infections. The function of immune cells, such as T cells and B cells, can become less efficient with age. They may not respond as quickly or effectively to infections, making it harder for the body to fight off diseases. B cells, which produce antibodies, may become less responsive with age. This can impact the body's ability to create specific antibodies against pathogens. And, lets not forget older individuals are more likely to have chronic health conditions that can affect their immune system, such as diabetes, heart disease, or autoimmune disorders. These conditions can divert resources and energy away from the immune system.
There is one other vaccine health officials are suggesting we old folks get. The RSV vaccine.
RSV stands for Respiratory Syncytial Virus. It is a common respiratory virus that can infect people of all ages, but it is particularly dangerous for infants, elderly individuals, and people with weakened immune systems. RSV can cause symptoms similar to the common cold, such as coughing, sneezing, fever, and difficulty breathing. In severe cases, especially in young children or older adults, it can lead to more serious respiratory problems like bronchiolitis or pneumonia. Unfortunately, while Medicare will pay for this vaccine, it will be up to you to find out where to get it. It’s not as widely available as a flu or COVID shot. You’ll probably have to ask your personal physician if they have it. I was informed that the RSV vaccine will not be routinely given here at the A.L.F.
Finally, as we age, we accumulate more exposure to various infections and diseases, which can lead to the immune system being "worn out" or less responsive. Additionally, the immune system's memory may not work as well, so it's less effective at recognizing and responding to previously encountered pathogens. These factors combine to weaken the immune system over time, making older individuals more susceptible to infections and less capable of mounting strong immune responses. This is why vaccination and other preventive measures become increasingly important as we age. So, put on your big boy pants (or big girl dress) and get that shot. I need every reader I can get………..
Two events happening here in the NYC area this weekend. The NYC Marathon through all five boroughs and, we change our clocks back one hour. Guess which one I will NOT be participating in.
The world’s best cheese for 2023
This year, over 4,000 cheeses were sent from all over the world to be judged by experts, buyers, retailers and food writers, all in one room. Just think of the pong.
16 were crowned as the best, but which nation’s cheese was named the best of them all? It was (drumroll please)... Norway! Their Nidelven Blå cheese is a handmade, semi-solid blue cheese, made only two hours from Trondheim, where this year’s awards were held. It topped the other 292 entries from Norway.
Here are the 10 best cheeses in the world right now:
- Nidelven Blå from Gangstad Gårdsysteri (Norway)
- Baliehof Houtlandse Asche Kaas from Baliehof Kaas En Zuivelboerderij Jabbeke (Belgium)
- Eberle Würzig Seit 5 Generationen from Dorfkäserei Muolen (Switzerland)
- Eleftheria Brunost from Vivanda Gourmet (India)
- Müller-Thurgau Rezent from Käserei Müller-Thurgau (Switzerland)
- Kärntnermilch Mölltaler Almkäse Selektion 50% FiT. from Kärntnermilch (Austria)
- Michel from Rohmilchkäserei Backensholz (Germany)
-Holland Delta, 1 Year Old from Van der Heiden Kaas (Netherlands)
- Old Amsterdam Goat from Westland Kaasexport (Netherlands)
- Parmigiano Reggiano 30-39 Months from Nazionale Parmigiano Reggiano Rastelli Fratelli (Italy)
SOURCE: click here
NEXT WEEKDAY BLOG
MONDAY NOV. 6, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
THIS BLOG IS BEST VIEWED IN
Thursday November 2, 2023
“We read to know we're not alone.”
― William Nicholson
How to Live Forever
A new Netflix series visits the world’s “blue zones”
to unlock the secrets
of longevity. Our intrepid columnist puts
the show’s mandates to the test
BY CAZZIE DAVID
Like every other hypochondriacal American who is pathologically afraid of dying, I recently watched all four episodes of the Netflix series Live to 100, in which author and NatGeo guy Dan Buettner tours “blue zones”—places around the world where a disproportionate number of people live past 100 without medical intervention—in order to discover their secrets.
Going into the show, living to 100 didn’t actually appeal to me. I know people say that as you get older, you get wiser, but the people I know—old or not—are, for the most part, total morons. On top of that, I always associated true old age with isolation, disease, pain, boredom, and, of course, death.
When it comes to death, the not existing part always sounds kind of chill, but everything leading up to it I could do without, which is why I have spent my entire life specifically trying not to die or get sick, and therefore to live longer. What this amounts to is me frantically trying to implement every single thing I’ve ever heard on The Huberman Lab, a goal that is physically impossible, but that certainly hasn’t stopped me from trying.
Older Americans Are
Living Large as
‘Silver Spending’ Surges
By Lynnley Browning
From buying yoga pants on QVC to purchasing a golf cart for a modern new home in Florida, older Americans are increasingly living large, significantly outspending younger people after refraining from drawing down their long-term savings.
In an Oct. 24 report, Bank of America analyzed selected data from holders of its credit and debit cards. So far this year, “silver spending,” or money splashed out by older generations on everything from vacations to meals at restaurant, is “significantly stronger” compared with that of younger cohorts, it said. Spending by seniors age 59 and older spiked especially around April and then again last month.
“Older generations are the only ones increasing consumer spending” in 2023, the report said. David Michael Tinsley, a senior economist at Bank of America Institute in London and the lead author of the report, told The Messenger in an interview Thursday. He said that while a small portion of the increased spending was probably for healthcare, the majority was for travel, entertainment, consumer purchases, real estate and the like.
Read more >> https://themessenger.com/business/older-americans-are-living-large-as-silver-spending-surges
and Older Adults
By Terry Ann Donner
Life can be defined by how we love and are loved. Essential to this concept is sexual expression, one of our most basic needs. A 2018 National Poll on Healthy Aging revealed that almost 40% of those surveyed who were between the ages of 65 and 80 confirmed they were sexually active, and 75% felt that sex was an important part of a romantic relationship at any age.
Even though we are remaining sexually active well into our 70s and 80s, societal taboos and ageist myths continue to promote the notion that those over 65 are asexual.
The health benefits for those who remain sexually active as they age, including lower blood pressure, better healing, less stress and depression, and a longer lifespan, are often overlooked. To promote healthy aging, sexual expression can no longer be a taboo topic, especially in the nursing home industry.
US adults living alone
may face higher risk of
cancer death, study suggests
By Jacqueline Howard
Adults living by themselves may have a higher risk of dying from cancer compared with those who live with others, a new study suggests, and the share of adults in the United States who live alone is on the rise.
The research, published Thursday in the journal Cancer, found that among 114,772 working-age adults who lived alone, 2.5% of them died of cancer during the study period. In comparison, among 358,876 adults who lived with others, a much smaller share — 1.6% — died of cancer in the study. Adults ages 18 to 64 were enrolled in the study and researchers found the strongest association was in those ages 45 to 64.
Loneliness or social isolation linked to serious health outcomes, study finds
“We found that working adults living alone had a 1.32 times higher risk of cancer death than adults living with others,” said Dr. Farhad Islami, an author of the study and senior scientific director of cancer disparity research at the American Cancer Society in Atlanta. That suggests that adults living alone have about a 32% higher risk of cancer death.
TV remotes often ideal
for older adults
By Jim Miller
Dear Savvy Senior: Can you recommend some simplified universal television remotes for seniors? My 88-year-old dad, who lives in a retirement community, has some dementia and gets confused with all the buttons on his remote. As a result, he keeps accidentally reprogramming his TV set. — Searching Son
Dear Searching: Most modern television remotes — that come with dozens of unnecessary buttons — can be confusing for anyone to operate and especially challenging for older adults. Fortunately, there are several universal TV remotes available that are specifically designed for older adults tackling issues with vision, memory or confusion, as well as those that are technologically challenged. These remotes have bigger buttons and pared-down options that make them much easier to see and use. Here are three top choices to consider.
The two most popular simplified TV remotes on the market today are the Flipper and the EasyMote. Both are infrared-only remotes intended for those who use traditional cable/satellite boxes or their TV’s internal tuner. They are not designed for use with streaming devices and will not work with devices that are controlled via Bluetooth or radio frequency.
Learn more >> https://www.staradvertiser.com/2023/10/31/live-well/simple-universal-tv-remotes-often-ideal-for-older-adults/
Books: Everyone’s got them. That is, except 9% of Americans. A survey from YouGov found that almost 1 in 10 Americans does not own a single physical book. On the other hand, 3% of Americans own more than 1,000 books. And while nearly a third of Americans don’t organize their bookshelves at all, those who do are most likely to sort by genre (22%). Only 10% sort by author, and even fewer (3%) arrange by color.
FRIDAY NOV. 3, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
THIS BLOG IS BEST VIEWED IN
Wednesday November 1, 2023
“How can a nation be called great
if its bread tastes like Kleenex?”
― Julia Child
The No. 1 Reason to Claim
Social Security at Age 62
By Christy Bieber
- Claiming Social Security at 62 will result in a reduction in benefits.
- There are still good reasons to start Social Security at 62, even though you'll get smaller checks.
- Being able to preserve your savings is the best reason to start getting Social Security at 62.
Claiming Social Security at 62 is a smart financial choice if starting benefits at that age is necessary to preserve your savings.
If you want to receive your standard Social Security benefit, you will need to wait until your full retirement age (FRA) to claim benefits for the first time. Depending on when you were born, FRA could be between 66 1/2 and 67 if you were born in 1957 or later.
You get to claim benefits before then if you want to, though -- as long as you accept a reduction in benefits. Or you can claim benefits later than FRA, earning a benefits increase for each month you delay until age 70.
Read more >> https://www.fool.com/retirement/2023/10/28/the-number-1-reason-to-claim-social-security-at-62/
Employers stuck in ‘time warp’
about older workers
Companies need to address “blind spots” and ageism in their
recruiting efforts, panelists said at the Center
for Workforce Inclusion’s annual Equity Summit.
By Ginger Christ
As people live longer and choose to remain in the workforce longer, society needs to reevaluate its stereotypes about older workers, Elizabeth White, an author and aging solutions advocate, said Tuesday during a panel discussion at the Center for Workforce Inclusion’s annual Equity Summit.
“We’re stuck in a time warp about what it means to be an older adult. The expectation is that people stop working at 65, and that’s just not the case,” White said. “There’s a big challenge to change our framework and our perception of what it means to be an older adult.”
Stereotypes about older workers not wanting to work or being too frail to work don’t hold up, White said. Rather, these are experienced workers with institutional knowledge, she said.
Why Women Outlive Men
but Save Less for Retirement
Lower pay, fewer promotions and career breaks to have children
make saving difficult; as a result,
the poverty rate for older women is rising
By Terri Williams
Women live longer than men after the traditional retirement age of 65 — 18% longer, on average — yet women save less than men do to support themselves in retirement, Census Bureau data shows.
About half of all women aged 55 to 66 have no personal retirement savings at all; the same is true for 47% of men, Census says. The difference is greater for people who have saved at least $100,000 for retirement: only 22% of women surveyed reached that modest goal, compared with 30% of men.
Longer lives and less savings may help explain why poverty is more prevalent among older women than older men. According to Census Bureau data, 16.1% of American women 75 and older live below the poverty line, which is $14,580 for an individual in 2023, compared with 9.1%.of men that age.
Almost a Quarter of the World
BY ELLYN MAESE
Nearly one in four people worldwide -- which translates into more than a billion people -- feel very or fairly lonely, according to a recent Meta-Gallup survey of more than 140 countries.
Notably, these numbers could be even higher. The survey represents approximately 77% of the world’s adults because it was not asked in the second-most populous country in the world, China.
With the World Health Organization and many others -- including the U.S. surgeon general -- calling attention to the dangers of loneliness, these data, collected in partnership between Gallup and Meta, provide a much-needed global perspective of social wellbeing.
Swifties in their 70s:
Their love for Taylor
keeps them young
By Angela Barbuti
They’re oldies but Swifties.
Seventy-something Taylor Swift fanatics are not shy when it comes to expressing their devotion to the pop star, and are buying her music, seeing her movie, and joining her fan groups — while their friends are off playing shuffleboard.
“I don’t really talk to my friends about it … I’m trying to stay younger,” she told The Post.
“I just hang out with the teenage girls. They call me ‘Swiftie mom.'”
Fox became a Swift fan because of her 16-year-old granddaughter, Phoenixx Brito.
Brito’s house burned down on Christmas night last year, so she lived with Fox, who tried to make new Swift memories for her since all of her memorabilia was destroyed.
Learn more >> https://nypost.com/2023/10/28/entertainment/swifties-in-their-70s-love-for-taylor-keeps-them-young/
Remember the Vietnam War? I was 18 years old and worried about being drafted to fight in a war I didn't believe in. Many of us protested against the war to try to stop it. We carried signs, marched, and even did sit-ins. We were called "Peaceniks," but we were just young people who didn't want to die or kill for no good reason. I still prefer peace over war today. However, in the current Israel-Hamas conflict, I can't support those waving the Palestinian flag. I believe they are not just anti-war protesters, but actually hold strong anti-Semitic views. They want the end of Israel and harm to Jewish people. In my eyes, the recent protesters at Grand Central Station might as well have been Neo-Nazies pretending to support "poor Palestinian civilians."
The prejudice against Jews and Israel is evident. None of the protestors, who claim to advocate for peace, ever acknowledge the loss of 1400 innocent Israelis or the indiscriminate harm inflicted on elderly individuals and children. It seems that Hamas terrorists are somehow excused for committing these atrocities, while Israel is not granted the same leniency to defend itself. Regarding the hospital that was supposedly targeted and destroyed by Israeli airstrikes, resulting in hundreds of casualties, it has been verified that Israel was not involved; rather, it was an errant Hamas rocket. Curiously, none of the self-proclaimed pro-Palestinian demonstrators bring up this fact. Why? Because their agenda is not centered on peace, but rather on the eradication of Israel and the Jewish people.
Jews have always been an easy target for the haters. Jews are a minority wherever they settle. They are usually very visible and historically, don’t fight back. The bullies of the world have a field day when it comes to shaming Jews and they know no one will take them to task for it. Now, the bullies are confused because, those that were so easily persecuted and oppressed, are fighting back. “How dare they have the audacity to want to defend themselves” they say.
Do I have compassion for the innocent people killed in Gaza? Of course I do. And so should you. But don’t be fooled by those who protest for peace and don’t target Hamas, Hezbollah and all the others in those protests. ………..
BREAD TAG FACTS
Although some shops use their own methods, and it’s rare to find bread more than a couple of days old still on the shelves, most grocery stores follow a similar schedule with their bread tag coloring as detailed below:
Monday – Blue
Tuesday – Green
Thursday – Red
Friday – White
Saturday – Yellow
It should be noted that since most bakeries don’t produce bread on Sundays and Wednesdays, they are omitted. But wait, it goes even deeper. To help us remember the nifty key, the days of the week match the colors when listed alphabetically. So, since “blue” starts with ‘b’ and is close to the start of the alphabet, it corresponds to Monday.
That means if you go to the grocery store on a Friday, you’ll want to choose a loaf with a white or red bread tag to ensure the freshest bread for your grilled cheese. Don’t forget the other important tool you can check as well … the expiration date. This was hilariously pointed out by the grocery store worker from the reel, who joked that it was “an even cooler secret” when he saw how excited Howlett was about the whole bread tag concept.
THURSDAY NOV. 2, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
THIS BLOG IS BEST VIEWED IN
Tuesday October 31, 2023
“There is nothing funny about Halloween.
This sarcastic festival reflects,
rather, an infernal demand
for revenge by children on the adult world.”
____ Jean Baudrillard
Thriving in Retirement
Requires Resilient Choices
By Lena Haas
Retirement today bears little resemblance to our parent’s or grandparent’s retirement. Today’s retirees are active, engaged and purposeful. They want to stay physically fit, continue learning and trying new things. Something else that’s different is that we are living longer and could spend 20 years or more in retirement.
The years may be there to enjoy, but they must be paid for and, according to the latest Edward Jones and Age Wave study, only 30% of Americans say they can afford a retirement lasting more than 20 years. The third in our series, this study looks at both the personal and financial sides of retirement today with the goal of helping retirees and pre-retirees make resilient choices to thrive in retirement.
With economic uncertainty, and the cost of retirement averaging almost $1 million, it stands to reason that many Americans are nervous about this chapter of life. In fact, most believe they will need to work longer than previous generations to have a financially secure retirement.
Read more >> https://www.thestreet.com/retirement-daily/planning-living-retirement/thriving-in-retirement-requires-resilient-choices
Social Security's 2024 COLA
Might Leave Retirees
Worse Off Than They Expect
By Adam Levy
- There's a flaw with how the SSA calculates the Social Security COLA.
- Medicare Part B premiums are climbing higher next year.
- Increased taxes could also eat into your benefits.
A 3.2% increase might not be enough to cover increased living expenses and more.
Social Security beneficiaries will see their monthly checks increase 3.2% in 2024.
The Social Security Administration's (SSA) annual cost of living adjustment, or COLA, is designed to help offset inflation. But for many recipients, the 3.2% increase next year will not go nearly as far they hope.
Read more >> https://www.fool.com/retirement/2023/10/29/social-securitys-2024-cola-might-leave-more-retire/
in Senior Citizens
Depression is not a normal part of aging, yet senior citizens are at an increased risk due to isolation and physical health issues. In the elderly, depression often occurs with other medical illnesses and disabilities, which can increase the risk of death. Despite these challenges, older adults can live a fulfilling life with the proper treatment approach.
Depression can manifest itself differently in seniors compared to younger adults. Common symptoms such as persistent sadness, lack of interest, and changes in appetite or weight may be present, but there are also other symptoms to look for in older adults. These include:
- Memory loss
- Irritability and agitation
- Withdrawal from social activities
Eight Don’ts to Keep in Mind
as You and Your Loved Ones Age
Getting older isn’t for sissies, and the more prepared you are for
cognitive decline and the issues that come
with it, the better your life will be.
BY H. DENNIS BEAVER, ESQ.
Do you worry about a friend or family member who is getting on in years? Perhaps you even worry about yourself? When was the last time you looked in a mirror and thought, “Where did that wrinkle come from? It wasn’t there yesterday.”
A bit scary, isn’t it? “Life is great until it isn’t, until Mom or Dad, Grandma or Grandpa — or you — slips and falls, winding up with bruised ribs at best or a hip fracture, and everything is suddenly upside down,” observes M.T. Connolly, author of The Measure of Our Age: Navigating Care, Safety, Money, and Meaning Later in Life.
Connolly is an attorney and social researcher focused on elder justice and a 2011 MacArthur Fellow. She was the founding head of the Justice Department’s Elder Justice Initiative. In my experience, she is one of a handful of lawyers truly dedicated to making a profound difference in our society instead of fattening their bank accounts.
Read more >> https://www.kiplinger.com/retirement/donts-do-these-things-as-you-and-your-loved-ones-age
WHAT YOU NEED T
EATING AFTER 60
BY SHARI BRODER
One issue with which many of my clients struggle is eating at night, after they have had dinner. I hear things like:
“My husband and I watch TV and snack after dinner.”
“I feel mildly hungry around 9-ish, and am afraid that if I don’t eat, I’ll wake up in the middle of the night, starving, and won’t be able to sleep.”
“Well, I crave sweets at night and sometimes binge on them.”
I believe there are three main reasons why most people want to eat shortly after they’ve had a reasonable dinner:
They were distracted when they ate dinner, whether with their phone, watching TV or whatever, and therefore did not experience the satisfaction of their meal.
SALEM WITCHES FACT
The Salem Witch Trials were one of the darkest periods of American history, but no one was burned at the stake during this historical event. Between 1692 and 1693, almost 200 people were accused of witchcraft. Most were jailed, some were hanged, and one unlucky soul was crushed with heavy stones. Not a single one was burned.
WEDNESDAY NOV. 1, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
THIS BLOG IS BEST VIEWED IN
Monday October 30, 2023
“Real knowledge is to know the extent of one's ignorance.”
Retirees Want Better
BY JOHN SULLIVAN
The 3.2% Social Security cost of living adjustment (COLA) is well above the 2.6% average over the past two decades, according to The Senior Citizens League (TSCL).
Still, “80% of retirees think Congress should beef up inflation protection by providing a COLA that more closely reflects inflation experienced by older adults,” it recently reported. Some senior advocates, including The Senior Citizens League, have proposed using a “senior’ CPI to determine the annual COLA.
“If that were the law today, the COLA in 2024 would be almost a percentage point higher—4%, versus the 3.2% just announced by the Social Security Administration,” Mary Johnson, a Social Security policy analyst for The Senior Citizens League, said in a statement.
Read more >> https://www.napa-net.org/news-info/daily-news/retirees-want-better-social-security-inflation-protection
Pause Bill Would Let Banks
Delay Suspicious Transactions
By Colin A. Young
Joined by a Hingham man who told the story of how his 93-year-old mother lost $9,500 to a scam last winter, Secretary of State William Galvin urged lawmakers Tuesday to act quickly to address what he said is an uptick in scams targeting senior citizens and other vulnerable people.
Duane Wanty told the Joint Committee on Financial Services that his mother got a call last winter from someone who said they were her granddaughter and claimed to have injured a pregnant woman in a car crash. The person said they needed $9,500 to post bail and begged their “grandmother” not to tell anyone about the situation.
“My mom went to the bank, withdrew $9,500 in cash with no questions asked, and left. Within an hour of delivering the money to a Lyft driver, another call came in asking for another $9,000 as as supposed manslaughter charges had now been filed. At that point, my mother broke down [and] told me what was going on. I even spoke to the supposed defense lawyer on the phone and was half-convinced myself that this was real,” Wanty said. “But then I was able to confirm that my niece was OK. And that’s when the con unraveled, but too late.”
Read more >> https://bankerandtradesman.com/pause-bill-would-let-banks-delay-suspicious-transactions/
Millions of Americans
Have Cognitive Decline
and Don't Know It
By Ed Cara
Millions of Americans and their doctors are in the dark when it comes to early cognitive decline, according to new research from the University of Southern California. A study out this week suggests that most general physicians vastly under-diagnose mild cognitive impairment among their patients, following another recent study from the same authors which found that millions of Medicare patients with the condition slip through the cracks. The researchers say this diagnostic gap is worrying, given the importance of recognizing and treating mild cognitive impairment before it becomes more serious.
It’s well established that mild cognitive impairment is under-diagnosed in older people, but the researchers say theirs is some of the first work to quantify the current size of the problem.
“It’s a very different conversation to have when we can point to these numbers,” senior study author Soeren Mattke, director of the Brain Health Observatory at USC Dornsife’s Center for Economic and Social Research, told Gizmodo over the phone.
Why older adults
at a higher rate
By Anil Bhatt
Older adults are adopting digital health tools at a higher rate than ever before. This adoption has considerable potential to support these individuals in accessing healthcare, helping them maintain their autonomy and independence as they age, as well as promoting their health and well-being.
The adoption of digital tools for those 65 and older has grown considerably since the COVID-19 pandemic. In fact, 75% of adults 65 and older are internet users, up from just 19% in 2000, and more than half of people 65 and older (61%) are now smartphone owners, according to the Pew Research Center.
At Elevance Health, we are seeing an increasing acceptance of virtual care and technology by older adults to help manage their health.
Read more >> https://www.fiercehealthcare.com/health-tech/industry-voices-why-older-adults-are-adopting-health-technology-higher-rate
5 times senior citizens
By Ben Hooper
From the racetracks to the open waters to high in the skies, senior citizens have been proving recently that you are never too old to make history -- or the odd news headlines.
In tribute to these aged adventurers, here are five stories of seniors who prove that you're never too old to blaze trails and break records.
First up, an 84-year-old Colorado woman who went skydiving for the first time in 1959 is nearing her 600th jump -- and she is aiming for 1,000.
Kim Knor, who was a member of the inaugural U.S. Women's Parachute Team in 1962, said she took a 37-year break from skydiving, but got back into the sport after her husband's death in 2003.
The high-flying grandma is aiming for a lifetime record of 1,000 skydives, which would earn her a set of gold wings from the United States Parachute Association.
“When I get older losing my hair
Many years from now
Will you still be sending me a Valentine
Birthday greetings bottle of wine
If I'd been out till quarter to three
Would you lock the door
Will you still need me, will you still feed me
When I'm sixty-four”
When the Beatles released this song written by Paul McCartney, I was only 22 years old, and the age of 64 seemed distant. It still feels far away, but now in the opposite direction – 14 years behind. Oh, to relive those years at 64.
Truth be told, my 64th year wasn't great for me. I spent much of that year in and out of hospitals and nursing homes. Yet, despite all that, I long for the times when I had more of my life ahead. Now, in my late 70s, the unavoidable feels much closer than before.
When we're young, we often think we're indestructible. We associate death with old age or risky behavior. We truly believe our bodies are somehow protected from harm, whether it's from a virus or an accident. Even when we witness evidence that danger is close, like a near miss at a stop sign or someone taking dangerous substances, we're so convinced it won't happen to us that we dismiss anyone who says otherwise.
I guess that's how it's meant to be. Without those brave young men and women who take risks, where would we be? They're willing to put their lives in danger to protect their loved ones and their country, like we're seeing in Israel at the moment. The typical age of an IDF recruit is just 18.9 years old. These are essentially kids, ready to sacrifice themselves to defend not only a nation, but a people who have faced threats from malicious forces throughout history.
"People often say, 'Youth is wasted on the young,' and there's truth in that. How many times have you wished you knew then what you know now? Sadly, it takes time to gather knowledge, and by the time we have it, much of it may not be as useful or might be forgotten. Imagine if things could be the other way around. What if we were born with all the knowledge we'd ever need, and the capacity to learn more? As we grow older, our knowledge and learning ability wouldn't diminish, but we could focus most of our energy on doing what brings us joy. That, to me, sounds ideal."…………………
On Tuesday, we'll be celebrating Halloween. Both children and many adults will be joining in the festivities by donning costumes. If you're still unsure about what to wear, here's a roundup of this year's most popular costume ideas.
Topping the charts is none other than "Barbie." Following closely are a princess, Spider-Man, a witch, a fairy, Wednesday Addams, and a Dinosaur. Personally, I don't have the hairstyle for Barbie or Ken, and a Spider-Man outfit is out of the question. While being a witch could be entertaining, I think the Dinosaur costume would suit me best. After all, I have a lumbering gait, a unique way of walking, and some jokingly claim I've been extinct for years.
The Most Reprinted
‘New Yorker’ Cartoon
the Highest Price Ever Paid
for a Single Comic
July 5th, 1993 was a simpler time, a decade before Facebook and 17 years before Instagram. Most computers still accessed the Internet via dial-up, and the quickest form of communication for most people was fax. The iPhone wasn’t even a glimmer in Steve Jobs’s eye.
And yet cartoonist Peter Steiner, in that week’s issue of the New Yorker, was somehow able to distill an essential truth of the then-protean Internet in a now-beloved comic. In it, a dog sits at a desk with a computer on it, looking merrily at another canine, saying, “On the internet, no one knows you’re a dog.”
That comic, which has gone on to be the most reprinted in the magazine’s history, proves so enduringly popular that it recently sold at auction for a whopping $175,000, the highest price for a single cartoon on record.
NEXT WEEKDAY BLOG
TUESDAY OCT. 31, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
THIS BLOG IS BEST VIEWED IN
Friday October 27, 2023
“Preachers at black churches are the last people
left in the English-speaking world
who know the schemes and tropes of classical rhetoric:
parallelism, antithesis, epistrophe, synecdoche, metonymy,
periphrasis, litotes - the whole bag of tricks.”
______ P. J. O'Rourke
New GOP House Speaker
Mike Johnson Has Proposed
Trillions in Cuts to Social Security
BY JAKE JOHNSON
The newly elected Republican speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives has previously proposed trillions of dollars in cuts to Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid and suggested that slashing the programs should be the top priority of Congress.
During his tenure as chair of the Republican Study Committee (RSC) between 2019 and 2021, Rep. Mike Johnson (R-La.) helped craft budget resolutions that called for roughly $2 trillion in Medicare cuts, $3 trillion in Medicaid and Affordable Care Act cuts, and $750 billion in Social Security Cuts, noted Bobby Kogan of the Center for American Progress.
Alex Lawson, executive director of the progressive advocacy group Social Security Works, said in a Wednesday statement following the speakership vote that the budget proposals released by the Johnson-led RSC also endorsed raising the Social Security retirement age, lowering annual cost-of-living benefit increases, and advancing privatization efforts.
oldest woman in the world, 116,
to develop cures for diseases
By Charlie Jones
Scientists are studying the oldest person in the world - a 116-year-old woman - in an attempt to discover the secrets to a long life and to develop cures for ailments.
Maria Branyas, who was born in San Francisco, has few health complications apart from hearing and mobility issues. She has no cardiovascular problems which often plague old people and no memory issues.
She has gathered a number of followers on X (formerly Twitter ) where she's recalled beating Covid, surviving the Spanish Civil War and even a deadly earthquake in the US.
Dr Manel Esteller, director of the Josep Carreras Leukaemia Research Institute (IJC-CERCA) and a professor of genetics at the University of Barcelona, said: "She’s incredible."
Sleeping less than five hours a night
can raise depression risk, study suggests
By Hannah Devlin
Sleeping less than five hours a night could raise the risk of developing symptoms of depression, research suggests.
The link between poor sleep and mental ill health is well known, but it has been unclear which problem tends to come first. Now scientists have found evidence that consistent short sleep at night can be a precursor to developing depressive symptoms.
“We have this chicken or egg scenario between suboptimal sleep duration and depression. They frequently co-occur, but which comes first is largely unresolved. Using genetic susceptibility to disease we determined that sleep likely precedes depressive symptoms, rather than the inverse,” said Odessa Hamilton, a PhD candidate at UCL and first author of the research.
Read more >> https://www.theguardian.com/society/2023/oct/20/sleeping-less-than-five-hours-a-night-can-raise-depression-risk-study-suggests
11 ESSENTIAL THINGS
BEFORE STARTING A
BUSINESS IN YOUR 60S
BY DOUGLAS WINSLOW COOPER
Many people hope to own their own business, but very few do. In addition, women around the world are hesitant to become entrepreneurs because they feel they lack confidence and resources.
A successful European businessman, Patrick Gruhn, published a fine book a few years ago, Good Business, written primarily for his daughter. However, his ideas apply to would-be entrepreneurs of all ages.
Gruhn favors cooperation versus competition in business. Believing that women tend toward nurture and men toward battle, he wants to see more women in entrepreneurial positions.
Read more >> https://sixtyandme.com/11-essential-things-to-consider-before-starting-a-business-in-your-60s/
What to do if you're falling short
on your retirement funds:
BY HELENA KELLY
More than half of working Americans feel they are falling 'behind' on their retirement savings, a new survey shows.
Rampant inflation and higher interest rates are eroding workers' opportunities to save for their twilight years - sparking fears of a nationwide 'retirement crisis.'
The latest study by personal finance website Bankrate found around one-quarter of Americans had not made retirement contributions in at least a year.
Meanwhile one in three said they felt 'significantly behind on their retirement savings.'
Despite the stark findings, experts insist workers can quickly catch up with the right habits.
I awoke yesterday at about 6 am. And as my custom, I flipped on the TV. The channel was already set to CNN. As the cobwebs cleared in my head I could not believe what I was hearing. Instead of the latest news out of Israel with its horror stories of death and destruction, I learned of a horror story right here at home. Another mass shooting in an American town carried out, not by a terrorist organization, but by an lone gunman armed with a weapon of war.
In this latest test of our ability to ignore the obvious, the death toll is now at 18 people killed and 13 wounded. The suspect is still on the loose. This incident is the 565th mass shooting this year, and it's the most deadly. It's a shocking statistic for a nation that's supposed to be civilized. The weapon used was far from civilized itself. It wasn't a handgun or a hunting rifle; it was openly visible. The rifle used is the preferred choice of individuals with dangerous intentions – an assault-type rifle designed for one purpose: to quickly kill as many living beings as possible. Unfortunately, it accomplished that goal all too effectively.
Robert Card, the shooter, displayed clear signs of mental illness, as he voluntarily admitted himself to a mental health facility due to hearing voices. Despite this, he was able to obtain a deadly weapon as effortlessly as buying bread. The true cause for concern, however, lies with the 535 members of the U.S. Congress who, despite numerous mass shootings, have failed to enact significant laws to prohibit the use of assault rifles, which raises questions about their priorities and affiliations with the NRA a well as their sanity.
Why is it so difficult for Congress to do the right thing and put an end to this craziness? Here is the mainstream thinking on this matter.
There are diverse opinions on gun control in the U.S. Some people believe that access to firearms, including AR-style weapons, is a fundamental right protected by the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. They argue that responsible gun ownership is crucial for self-defense and as a check against government tyranny.
Organizations like the National Rifle Association (NRA) have significant influence in American politics. They lobby for gun rights and often oppose stricter gun control measures. Their financial and political clout can sway lawmakers' decisions. They claim the U.S. has a long history of gun ownership, dating back to its founding. This cultural attachment to firearms plays a role in shaping attitudes toward gun control. And finally, some individuals worry that stricter gun control measures may be a slippery slope towards complete disarmament. They may view any attempt to regulate firearms as a threat to their rights.
Of course, all of that is not true. The truth (and I'm taking a risk by saying this) is that there are some really strange people in this country. Using the argument of having a 'cultural attachment to firearms' as a reason to own an assault weapon is disrespectful to the memory of those who died at the hands of unstable gunmen. And are they genuinely worried about government oppression? From what I remember, the last time the government used force against American citizens was on January 6th, 2021, when armed members of the Capitol police defended against a mob trying to harm democracy. Maybe it's the government that should be concerned about the potential misuse of the 2nd amendment by its flag-waving citizens."
By the way, on his first full day as Speaker, Mike Johnson, a long-standing advocate against gun control, responded to reporters' questions by stating, "This is a challenging period in America. We face numerous issues, and we maintain a sense of hope and prayer. Prayer is fitting in such a moment, in the hope that this senseless violence can come to an end." Well done, Mike. You are a disgrace…..
Mind-blowing facts about
the English language
The English language is the only language in the world that capitalises the word ‘I’. Importance of self is very prominent in the English language.
The longest word in the English language is “Pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis” and the second longest is “hippopotomonstrosesquippedaliophobia”.
“I am/go” is the shortest complete sentence in the English Language.
The word “Uncopyrightable” is the longest english word in normal use that contains no letter more than once.
Only 3 words in the english language end in ‘ceed’: proceed, succeed and exceed.
The dot on the top of the letter ‘i’ is called a “tittle”.
There are more english words beginning with the letter ‘S’ than with any other letter.
The word ‘Bookkeeper’ and ‘Bookkeeping’ are the only 2 words in the english language with 3 consecutive double letters.
‘Sixth sick sheik’s sixth sheep’s sick’ is said to be the toughest tongue twister in English.
Of all the words in the English language, the word “set” has the most definitions.
Approximately, one new word is added to the English language every two hours.
Underground” is the only word in the English language that begins and ends with the letters ‘Und’.
There Are No “Bs” Until “Billion”. It’s hard to believe, but if you wrote out every single number in order, you wouldn’t use the letter “B” until you reached the word “billion”. There isn’t a single “B” in the first 999,999,999 numbers in English.
English is the language of the air. This means that all pilots have to identify themselves and speak in English while flying, regardless of their origin.
The English language has been developing for more than 1,400 years.
NEXT WEEKDAY BLOG
MONDAY OCT. 30, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
Thursday October 26, 2023
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“The one thing that unites all human beings,
regardless of age, gender, religion, economic status,
or ethnic background, is that, deep down inside,
we all believe that we are above-average drivers.”
― Dave Barry,
Medicare open enrollment
forces those over 65 to choose
the original or to take advantage
By Chris Tomlinson
Americans of a certain age find themselves buried in Medicare advertisements this time of year, swimming through a sea of confusing options to determine what kind of health coverage they want in retirement.
Medicare open enrollment began Oct. 15 and runs through Dec. 7. Those enrolled in Medicare should review their coverage, investigate any proposed changes and ensure their needs are covered.
Making the right choice is not only tricky but consequential. For those of us with a few years to go before signing up, what’s happening today to the federal government’s single-payer system will decide Medicare’s viability for years to come.
President Lyndon B. Johnson signed Medicare into law in 1965 as part of his war against poverty. Before, millions of elderly Americans died from preventable causes because they could not afford medical care or bankrupted themselves trying to stay alive.
3 Positive Changes Seniors
on Social Security
Can Look Forward to in 2024
By Maurie Backman
- Social Security's rules can shift from one year to the next.- While it will get harder to qualify for Social Security in 2024, on a positive note, benefits are going up.- Seniors also get more leeway to earn money while collecting benefits.
While not every change coming in the new year is a positive one, these factors are all a plus.
Although Social Security has been around for many decades, the program's rules aren't set in stone. Rather, they can change from one year to the next. But that doesn't mean every Social Security change that comes down the pike is a positive one.
In 2024, it will become harder for workers to qualify for Social Security. That's because eligibility for benefits hinges on earning a certain number of lifetime work credits. And in 2024, the amount of earnings needed for a single work credit is increasing.
The wage cap for Social Security taxes is also getting a lift in 2024. Higher earners may not like the fact that beginning next year, wages of up to $168,600 will be taxable for Social Security purposes. That's an increase of $8,400, compared to the $160,200 cap that's in place for 2023.
Read more >> https://www.fool.com/retirement/2023/10/24/3-positive-changes-seniors-on-social-security-can/
Pay Off All of Their Debt?
Before you put a match to your mortgage, think about whether
you will have enough liquid assets for emergencies
— and routine expenses
By Terri Williams
America, by and large, is a country in debt. Total household debt in the U.S. rose to $17.05 trillion in the first quarter of 2023, according to the latest data from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. Mortgage balances were at $12.04 trillion, auto loans were at $1.56 trillion and credit card balances stood at $986 billion.
"If the interest rate is low on your mortgage, it may be worthwhile to put that money toward an investment account or a high-yield savings account, rather than trying to pay off your mortgage before or in retirement," | Credit: Robert Linder
Debt-free living is the goal of many retirees (as well as many people who are still working). But is this really the best use of your funds? Here are some factors to consider if you're a retiree thinking of paying off all of your debt.
Interest Rates Rule:
The interest rate on the debt is always a consideration — whether it's your home, car, credit card debt or other type of loan. "If the debt carries a high interest rate, such as credit card debt, it's usually a good idea to pay it off as soon as possible to avoid accumulating more interest," says Kortney Ziegler, CEO and founder of WellMoney and a Stanford University Fellow.
Here Are 5 Ways
to Help Fill
Costly Holes in
Your Retirement Plan
To find out, Athene polled 730 people in or near retirement about their financial planning for their post-career lives. Many of them, ages 55 and older, have the basics covered. But it’s another story when it comes to more complex money issues, such as how to safely withdraw money from savings and managing the cost of long-term care.
Here are five ways to help address potential gaps in your retirement planning:
Safely draw from retirement accounts
It’s possible to spend 30 or more years in retirement. And one complex decision is how to tap IRAs, 401(k)s and other investment accounts — where most people hold their retirement savings — without depleting this money too quickly.
Our survey found that 46% of pre-retirees and 27% of retirees haven’t devised a withdrawal strategy.
Read more >> https://www.kiplinger.com/retirement/here-are-5-ways-to-help-fill-costly-holes-in-your-retirement-plan
5 EASY TIPS FOR
TAKING BETTER PICTURES
WITH YOUR SMARTPHONE
BY KARIN VAN MIERLO
Smartphone photography is often associated with quick and easy snapping away. That’s because you can just walk around, point at something, click – and there’s your photo!
I’d like to take a different approach to smartphone photography. It is amazing that modern technology has put a camera in the back pocket of so many people. But I also know that it takes a lot more than the push of a button to make a photo that has meaning.
Wouldn’t it be great if by just a few adjustments you could elevate your smartphone photos from a simple record of the events and people in your life to photos that tell a story, have meaning, and are still beautiful to look at years from now?
WORLD'S BEST SELLING CARS
Tesla Model Y -up 3 spots- with 883,982 units sold (+65.9%).
Second place is in the hands of previous year’s leader the Toyota Corolla, with current YTD sales at 815,035 down 2.0% from the previous year.
The first pick-up in the rankings is the Ford F-Series, in 3rd with 672,117 sales and a 19.6% year-on year growth.
The Toyota RAV4 falls 2 spots into 4th reporting 651,117 cumulative sales, a 1.5% loss from the sales period last year
In 5th place ranks the Honda CR-V -up 1 spot- with 493,767 sales (+8.1%), followed by the Toyota Camry -up 1 spot- with 463,836 sales (-5.5%) and the Hyundai Tucson -up 3 spots- with 463,059 new registrations (+12.1%).
The Chevrolet Silverado ranks in 8th with 453,640 sales (+4.9%), followed by the Toyota Hilux with 435,834 (-2.8%) and the Ram pick-up with 395,234 new registrations (-6.1%).
FRIDAY OCT. 27, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
Wednesday October 25, 2023
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“drinking non-alcoholic beer is like going down on your sister:
it might taste kind of the same, but it is just plain wrong.”
― Steve Higgs,
What the 2023
America’s Health Rankings
Reveal About Senior Health
The United Health Foundation has released its 2023 Senior Report, which provides an in-depth look at the health of older adults. This is the eleventh Senior Report released, creating a rich data history that allows for the review of older adult health progresses and setbacks.
The 2023 report examines key measures that impact Americans as they age, including the availability of communal support, access to health care resources, and specific health issues like cognitive impairment. Individual state summaries are also available, providing a benchmark that organizations can use when setting goals. The report also includes valuable information for senior care communities.
The report utilizes data from multiple sources, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ Mapping Medicare Disparities Tool. Many of the measures include data from 2021, so the report reflects some of the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Read more >> https://www.iadvanceseniorcare.com/what-the-2023-americas-health-rankings-reveal-about-senior-health/
This Is the Surprising Truth
About the Future of
By Chuck Saletta
Social Security's trust funds are expected to empty in 2034, slashing benefits by around 20%.
The program's status as the "Third Rail" of American politics makes it hard to get a fix in place until the situation is truly dire.
Higher taxes, lower benefits, or some combination of both are likely in the future for that critical retirement program.
Social Security is often called the Third Rail of American Politics. It earned that nickname because it acts to politicians somewhat like the power-carrying third rail of an electrified train: touch it, and your political career dies.
With that kind of reputation, you might think that the program is in fairly good shape. On the surface, with about $2.833 trillion in its trust funds as of the end of August, 2023, it would certainly seem that way. Unfortunately, the surprising truth about the future of Social Security is that if Congress does nothing, those trust funds are expected to empty by 2034, cutting benefits by around 20%.
Read more >> https://www.fool.com/retirement/2023/10/23/surprising-truth-about-future-of-social-security/
Here’s why hitting that
little button might be beneficial
Researchers in Sweden asked people to spend several nights in a sleep lab
— and then hit snooze on their alarms in the morning.
By Linda Carroll
If you’re concerned that by hitting the snooze button multiple times in the morning you could be hurting your sleep, you can sleep easy: For most people, “snoozing” has no impact on sleep quality, a new study suggests.
What's more, for some, hitting the button multiple times over 30 minutes may spark alertness more quickly than sleeping through without a break, according to the study, published Wednesday in the Journal of Sleep Research.
The study found “that snoozing for 30 minutes in the morning does not make you more tired or more likely to wake up from deep sleep,” the study’s lead author, Tina Sundelin, an associate professor in the department of psychology at Stockholm University in Sweden, said in an email. “For those who usually snooze, it might even be helpful with waking.”
How does technology
impact nutrition management
in older adults?
By Tarun Sai Lomte
In a recent study published in Nutrients, researchers reviewed existing evidence on the use of technology in managing the nutrition of older adults.
In the United States (US), 25% of the population is aged ≥ 65, and many cannot use technology. However, studies report that computer-based assessment systems and assistive robots can improve nutrition awareness in older populations.
Physiological changes in musculoskeletal, cardiovascular, respiratory, and neurological systems are part of aging and major factors in age-associated chronic illnesses.
An optimal diet can enhance lifespan and independence and reduce healthcare costs. Health status may vary among older people; technology could help manage this variability and the nutrition care process. Government-funded meal and health support programs are intended to address the nutritional status of older people.
Read more >> https://www.news-medical.net/news/20231019/How-does-technology-impact-nutrition-management-in-older-adults.aspx
Latest bed sensor innovations
are from outer space, literally
By Aaron Dorman
The film “2001: A Space Odyssey” concludes with an old man sitting in bed, about to transform into a star child.
While not quite as dramatic, a new sensor for bedridden seniors has been derived from technology initially used to help build and repair the International Space Station.
The bed sensor, named Smart Bed Occupant Sensor or BOSFAL, is built into an innovative, flexible mat that is intended to go on top of a mattress and can detect deformations in the material caused by the bed user’s movements. The goal is to address comfort and positioning in the bed to reduce the incidence of bed sores.
Bedsores and pressure injuries are a common concern with seniors. Around 11% of nursing home residents develop pressure ulcers, which often demand further treatment, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Learn more >> https://www.mcknightsseniorliving.com/home/news/tech-daily-news/latest-bed-sensor-innovations-are-from-outer-space-literally/
As you get older, it's expected that you'll experience some discomfort. If you're fortunate, you can usually handle it with a few Tylenol and a positive outlook. But for those who require stronger relief than what's available at the local pharmacy, finding effective pain management becomes a more complex issue. The hesitancy of healthcare providers to prescribe medication has resulted in many older individuals struggling with pain and seeking assistance.
Doctors face challenges in managing pain for older individuals. They need to find a balance between providing effective pain relief and considering potential risks and side effects of medications. They explore alternative approaches and take into account the person's overall health and medical history before prescribing strong painkillers.
There are reasons why doctors might be hesitant to prescribe powerful pain medications, like opioids, to seniors. Firstly, older adults can be more sensitive to drugs due to changes in their body's functioning, making them more prone to side effects and overdose. They often take multiple medications for various health issues, increasing the chances of interactions with strong painkillers. Additionally, some pain medications can lead to confusion or cognitive problems, which is especially concerning for seniors with existing cognitive issues. Moreover, opioids can cause dizziness and balance problems, heightening the risk of falls and resulting injuries in older adults.
Apart from these more obvious concerns, there are two less apparent reasons why seniors might not be given strong pain relief:
1. Regulatory Constraints: There are strict rules and monitoring in place for prescribing potent pain relievers like opioids to prevent misuse and abuse, which can influence a doctor's decision.
2.Addiction Risk: Opioids have the potential to lead to dependency, and seniors may have a higher likelihood of developing this dependence, particularly if they have a history of substance abuse or mental health issues.
When I was in excruciating pain after I transferred here from a nursing home, I was given Percocet. It was strictly monitored and it helped me tremendously. Eventually, the original pain subsided to a point where I no longer needed a regular dose of pain meds. And you know what? I did not crave more. The pain was gone and that was that. The same with morphine. In the hospital I was given IV morphine. It was marvelous. Then, when I finally was able to have surgery which took care of the original pain, they stopped the morphine. Amazingly, I was not addicted. The pain was gone so why would I need morphine anymore?
Recently, due to widespread misuse, well-known painkillers such as Vicodin and Percocet are under strict supervision. It's likely that if you haven't been in the hospital needing prescription pain relief, few doctors will give you these medications as an outpatient, even if your pain is persistent and OTC drugs don't help. So, I wonder why seniors in good health should be refused effective pain relief just because some irresponsible Gen X individuals can't control their use. Why is it just assumed we’ll be addicted to these drugs?
I believe the most effective approach to pain management in older adults is to treat each person as unique, rather than relying on a one-size-fits-all approach with opioids. At this stage in life, all we really seek is peace and relief from pain I wish the medical profession understood that........
Your Health teacher was right—you don’t need alcohol to have a good time. Beer that won’t leave you buzzed (or hungover) is gaining ground: Sales of nonalcoholic beer rose 32% during the one-year period that ended September 9 compared to the year before, according to NielsenIQ. That’s in keeping with its 31% average sales growth over the last four years, even as sales of alcoholic drinks mostly plateaued after the pandemic. But it’s not just teetotalers knocking back zero-proof brewskis—NielsenIQ found most nonalcoholic beer buyers also bought the hard stuff.
THURSDAY OCT. 26, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
Tuesday October 24, 2023
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”When life gives you lemons, do NOT make lemonade.
Lemonade is for losers. Make orange juice instead.”
CRC Screening in Older Adults
By Megan Brooks
Older adults with limited life expectancy are just as likely to undergo colorectal cancer (CRC) screening as those with longer life expectancy, a new study shows.
Researchers used national survey data to estimate the prevalence and factors associated with CRC screening in 25,888 community-dwelling adults aged 65-84 according to their predicted 10-year mortality risk.
They estimated 10-year mortality risk using a validated index. From the lowest to highest quintiles, mortality risk was 12%, 24%, 39%, 58%, and 79%, respectively.
Investigators determined the proportion of screening performed in adults with life expectancy less than 10 years, defined as 10-year mortality risk ≥ 50% (ie, quintiles 4 and 5).
Read more >> https://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/997605
The Most Important
Social Security Chart
You'll Ever See
By Stefon Walters
Many Social Security decisions will be based on someone's full retirement age.
It's hard to overstate how important Social Security has been and continues to be for so many Americans. Unfortunately, navigating the world of Social Security isn't always the easiest task. There are many rules, exceptions, and regulations, and the landscape changes regularly.
Despite the complexities, there is one chart that can simplify your decision-making process and help you cut through some of the noise.
This Social Security chart is the most important one you'll see, because of how central your full retirement age (FRA) is to your Social Security retirement benefits. It should be the guide for helping you make an informed decision about when to claim benefits.
Read more >> https://www.fool.com/retirement/2023/10/19/the-most-important-social-security-chart-youll-eve/
The overlooked option in elder care –
Level 1 Assisted Living
Her husband gone, Paula moved thousands of miles away from her children and grandchildren to live with her aged mother, who refused to leave her own home. Although healthy and rational, her mother can no longer take care of it—or herself.
Many years ago, Alfred promised his wife he would never put her in “one of those places.” Gradually, after she stopped being able to dress herself, cook or remember where she put things, he took on more of their daily tasks. One day, when he was in the next room folding laundry, she fell and broke her hip. He was physically unable to care for her after that, and she ended up in a nursing home anyway.
These names have been changed to protect the innocent. Not innocent as in not guilty; innocent in the sense of unaware—of missed opportunities and future consequences.
Read more >> https://buckrail.com/unlocking-independence-the-overlooked-option-in-elder-care-level-1-assisted-living/
Doing your homework on
home health care company
during search process
BY STEVE MARK
If you’ve reached the point when your loved one needs in-home health care, there are a myriad of items you’ll have to have answered. Nadine Glatley, owner of Rent-A-Daughter, offers a must to-do questionnaire list when shopping for help.
“These are the first questions most families ask and they are important for families to know,” Glatley said. “First, of course, is how much the service costs. They want to know how long you’ve been in business. They want to know, ‘Are you licensed, bonded and insured in the state of Ohio?’ That’s very, very important.
“They want to know what kind of caregivers we have, and if we have companionship all the way to the end of life. They want to know about training, and if our aides are experienced in dementia care, or even Parkinson’s. Those are very good questions worth asking.”
Does chicken soup really help
when you’re sick?
A nutrition specialist explains what’s behind the beloved comfort food
By Colby Teeman
Preparing a bowl of chicken soup for a loved one when they’re sick has been a common practice throughout the world for centuries. Today, generations from virtually every culture swear to the benefits of chicken soup. In the U.S., the dish is typically made with noodles, but different cultures prepare the soothing remedy their own way.
Chicken soup as a therapy can be traced back to 60 A.D. and Pedanius Dioscorides, an army surgeon who served under the Roman emperor Nero, and whose five-volume medical encyclopedia was consulted by early healers for more than a millennium. But the origins of chicken soup go back thousands of years earlier, to ancient China.
So, with cold and flu season in full swing, it’s worth asking: Is there any science to back the belief that it helps? Or does chicken soup serve as just a comforting placebo, that is, providing psychological benefit while we’re sick, without an actual therapeutic benefit?
The Price Of Orange Juice
Frozen concentrated orange juice futures hit a record $3.91 per pound on Friday. Orange juice prices at the grocery store have climbed more than 10% over last year as citrus growers confront citrus greening—a bacterial disease that attacks the vascular system of plants—and extreme weather. Florida’s crop has fallen more than 50% from two years ago, and an increasing number of orange farmers are getting out of the game and selling their land to property developers.
WEDNESDAY OCT. 25, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
Monday October 23, 2023
THIS BLOG IS BEST VIEWED IN
“You do not buy Taco Bell,
you rent Taco Bell and then return it to
its ecosystem with a couple of flushes.”
― Chuck Wendig
A Senior’s Guide to
(And How to Avoid Them)
Many financial scams specifically target seniors.
Knowing what the warning signs are for each of these scams
can help you avoid falling for them.
Edited By Kim Borwick
Increasingly more technology in our day-to-day lives has brought more opportunity for scam artists to increase the amount and type of scams they perform. From pretending to be a loved one to posing as a government employee, there are many ways scammers can trick you into giving up confidential personal and financial information.
No matter how new, attractive or promising a scam may sound, the result is always the same: you lose money. Knowing the warning signs will help you avoid being scammed, thus protecting the money you’ve worked long and hard for.
Why Are Seniors Susceptible to Financial Scams?
According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, seniors account for more than $3 billion in annual losses due to fraud. While they aren’t the only ones falling for these scams and losing money, there are a few reasons seniors can be susceptible to them.
How Mediterranean diet
and exercise can help
older adults with body fat,
Researchers report that older adults who followed a lower calorie Mediterranean diet and increased their physical activity had improvements to body composition.
When people age, their body composition changes with an increase in total fat and a reduction in lean muscle mass.
Experts say the Mediterranean diet has numerous health benefits.
A lower calorie Mediterranean diet coupled with physical activity may reduce body fat and prevent muscle loss in older adults.
That’s according to new researchTrusted Source published in the journal JAMA Network Open.
In their study, researchers reported that study participants who followed the Mediterranean diet and increased their aerobic physical activity had an improvement in body composition.
How Hearing Loss
Affects the Mental Health
of Older Adults
A new survey conducted by The Harris Poll on behalf of Lexie Hearing finds 64% of older adults, aged 50 and older, report hearing difficulty, but only 14% have tried hearing aids and nearly a quarter have never had a formal hearing test.
The online survey measured hearing care attitudes and behaviors of more than 1,000 adults aged 50 and older in the U.S. nearly a year after over-the-counter (OTC) hearing aids were made available by the FDA.
Those who report having hearing difficulties cite a range of negative impacts on their overall and mental health, relationships, and day-to-day lives. Specifically:
Read more >> https://hearingreview.com/hearing-loss/health-wellness/how-hearing-loss-affects-the-mental-health-of-older-adults
At What Age Do You
Become A Senior Citizen?
By Jennifer Lagemann
According to the U.S. Census, there are more than 55 million people over the age of 65 in the U.S.
While many people have come to equate age 65 with the term “senior citizen,” it’s a distinction worth exploring—or perhaps debating. For some, it could simply mean reaching retirement age. Meanwhile, others may see becoming a senior citizen as a period of life defined by exploring new interests, spending more time with loved ones or rediscovering old passions. Regardless, there are specific milestones that signify you’ve reached that special age.
Read on to explore various landmarks, benefits and perks available to a person in their golden years—and at what age they’re up for grabs.
11 Things You Can Do Online
Via the Social Security Website
By Shawna Brown
The Social Security Administration (SSA) website hosts a wealth of online tools that offer you convenient access to benefits information. To make the most of these tools, simply create a my Social Security account online. It is free to set up a mySSA account.
More than 65 million people are currently collecting Social Security benefits. Whether or not you are already receiving these benefits, there are numerous services you may be able to take advantage of through the SSA website. These include the following:
Determine whether you are eligible for Social Security – in less than 10 minutes.
Apply for Social Security benefits (Gather all the details that you’ll need to complete the application process, including your bank account information, recent employment history, your Social Security number, your spouse’s Social Security number, and the names of your eligible children).
Check on the status of your application.
Update changes to your name, phone number, email address, or mailing address.
Replace your Social Security card if you’ve misplaced it, damaged it, or have had it stolen.
Review your Social Security statements (View a sample statement).
See more >> click here
I've always focused this blog on sharing information for older Americans, those aged 55 and beyond. That includes a wide range of people. As seniors, we have diverse interests, financial situations, living setups, and health concerns. However, one thing we'll all face eventually is the need for help with everyday tasks. This got me thinking about how many older individuals are ready for their future or have really considered it.
Aging is something that happens to everyone, and it brings about various changes in how you live. Even if you're in great health, unexpected things can happen. A minor accident, which might not be a big deal when you're young, can have serious consequences as you get older. Your body doesn't recover as quickly as it used to. Sometimes, an injury might not fully heal, leading to long-term mobility problems.
Genetics also play a role. You can lead a healthy lifestyle, eat well, exercise, and see your doctor regularly, but if a certain condition runs in your family, you might still develop it. Conditions like diabetes, heart issues, digestive problems, and mental health disorders can be passed down through generations, and there's not much you can do to change that.
Now, let's talk about money. Unlike what the song says, as you age, having enough money can bring you happiness and make a significant difference in how you live and provide a level of comfort and stability.
Just like everyone else, older people don't know what the future holds. However, there are ways to safeguard yourself from potential risks as you enter your 70s, 80s, and beyond. While I'm not an expert on dealing with the challenges that come with aging, I've faced some difficulties that I could have addressed better if I had known about them beforehand.
The most important thing as you grow older is having a partner or significant other. They aren't just a replacement for a nurse or caregiver, but someone who will stand up for you when you can't do it yourself. You need someone who always has your best interests at heart, someone you can trust completely. If a partner isn't an option, having a large extended family or close friends nearby is the next best thing. There will be times when you'll need help with getting around, doing small tasks, or just having someone to talk to, go shopping with, or share a cup of coffee with now and then. Being alone in old age is very serious and can be just as dangerous as any illness. I can only imagine how much different my life would be today had I still been married or had been surrounded by friends and family when I needed them.
As we grow older, the circle of dependable people in our lives naturally shrinks due to factors like death, illness, and family obligations. Sometimes, friends or family may also move away. In such situations, having financial stability becomes crucial. It might sound blunt, but it's a reality: money matters. Contrary to common belief, older individuals require money just as much, if not more, than younger ones. Basic needs like food, clothing, rent, and various services still need to be covered. Relying solely on Social Security and savings may not provide the same level of comfort as when you were working. Even with careful planning for retirement, it's often insufficient. Unless you have a substantial amount, ranging from half a million to a million dollars, living a worry-free life becomes quite challenging.
The biggest challenge in old age is likely your health. While genetics may influence it more than diet and exercise, it's still crucial to have regular checkups. You might not prevent serious conditions like cancer or heart issues, but you can catch them early and receive proper treatment. Looking back, I wish I had taken the recommended tests for middle-aged men. It could have spared me a lot of pain and suffering.
In summary, the key to a happy old age includes living healthily and seeing your doctor regularly, managing your finances wisely and saving more than you might think, and having loved ones around to help you through the emotional challenges that come with aging, like loneliness, grief, and anxiety. Friends and family offer crucial support, bringing comfort, empathy, and someone to talk to as you grow older….
Which Fast Food Chain Has
the Fastest Drive-Thru
and Which Has the Slowest?
According to QSR’s data, Taco Bell has the fastest drive-thru for the third straight year. On average, it took customers 278.84 seconds to receive their orders, almost half a minute faster than Carl’s Jr (303.74 seconds), the next-speediest drive-thru. The top five included KFC (303.95 seconds), Arby’s (319.64), and Dunkin’ (321.10). The slowest drive-thru was at Chick-fil-A, at over seven minutes per order (436.09) — but that doesn’t tell the whole story.
QSR also determined that Chick-fil-A had the busiest drive-thru lines, with an average of 3.41 cars waiting for their orders. That was followed by McDonald’s (2.01 cars), Wendy’s (1.50), Taco Bell (0.96), Burger King (0.92), and Dunkin’ (0.78).
TUESDAY OCT. 24, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
Friday October 20, 2023
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“You do not buy Taco Bell, you rent Taco Bell
and then return it to its ecosystem with a couple of flushes.”
― Chuck Wendig
Older Adults Who Disagree With
Deprescribing Medication More Interested
in Additional Communication,
By Gillian McGovern
According to the authors, identifying the degree of disagreement with physicians’ deprescribing recommendations can improve the communication among older adults and their physicians.
1. Rating Level of Disagreement: Enrolled participants received 1 of 2 possible vignettes and rated their agreement on a scale from 1 to 6, with 1 being “strongly disagree” and 6 meaning “strongly agree.” Participants who responded with a score of 1 to 3 were included in the study.
2. Factors Influencing Disagreement: The study identifies various factors that contributed to participants’ disagreement with deprescribing recommendations, including doubts about deprescribing, valuing medications, fear of complications, and the need for additional communication and information prior to deprescribing.
3. Different Views in Deprescribing: Compared to participants who strongly disagreed with deprescribing recommendations, participants who disagreed were more likely to be interested in additional communication, alternative strategies, or consideration of medication preferences.
U.S. gets a C+ in retirement,
on par with Kazakhstan and
lagging other wealthy nations
BY AIMEE PICCHI
Many Americans are anxious about their ability to save enough to fund their retirement, yet the problem may not only be with their own ability to sock away money, but the way the U.S. system is designed. That's according to a new report which give the nation's retirement approach a C+.
The not-so-great rating places the U.S. retirement system on par with nations such as Kazakhstan, Colombia, Croatia, France and Spain, according to the new Mercer CFA Institute Global Pension Index, which was released Tuesday. Meanwhile, the strength of retirement systems in many other wealthy, developed nations, such as the Netherlands, Iceland, Denmark and Israel, far surpassed the U.S., with all four receiving A ratings.
The U.S. system is based on a two-pronged approach: Social Security and private pension plans such as 401(k)s. But many Americans fall through the cracks, such as the roughly one-half of workers who lack access to a retirement plan through their workplace. Social Security, meanwhile, only replaces about 40% of income for the typical worker when they retire, which means many older Americans struggle financially.
Read more >> https://www.cbsnews.com/news/retirement-in-us-rated-c-plus-behind-many-wealthy-nations/
Take Charge Of Arthritis
Before It's Too Late:
Importance Of Home Healthcare
By Tavishi Dogra
Arthritis affects over 210 million people in India alone. While arthritis is often associated with ageing, it can lead to significant pain, disability, and a diminished quality of life. Dr. Vishal Sehgal, President of Portea Medical,shares that understanding the symptoms, treatment options, and care strategies is essential to help individuals take charge of their arthritis before it is too late.
Osteoarthritis is the most prevalent form, primarily affecting older individuals. It occurs when the protective cartilage cushions the ends of the bones and wears down over time, leading to pain, swelling, and reduced joint flexibility. If left untreated, it causes the immune system to mistakenly attack healthy joint tissues, leading to inflammation, pain, and joint deformity.
Recognizing The Symptoms....
Legal Options for Victims
of Nursing Home Abuse:
Seeking Justice and Compensation
By Gail Willowby
Nursing homes are facilities where elderly or disabled individuals receive care when their families can’t provide it. But do they really get the care they deserve?
Being home to almost thousands of older adults, at times, they are the breeding ground for abuse and neglect. They don’t turn out to be the safety havens we hope for!
There is no denying that the nursing home care system is derailing. Here, we’re talking about a whopping 50% increase in the number of senior citizens in need of nursing home care by 2023.
Read more >> https://seniorslifestylemag.com/retirement/legal/legal-options-for-victims-of-nursing-home-abuse-seeking-justice-and-compensation/
5 REASONS WHY
ADOPTING A PET
MAY BE RIGHT FOR YOU
BY MOLLY WISNIEWSKI
Socialization is fun, and many reports state that remaining active and social as older adults can keep us healthy and help us to live longer. But what happens when it’s no longer just as simple as hopping in the car and going?
Isolation is a genuine and even dangerous reality to the aging community. Without proactive solutions, many people could easily find themselves in this position. Adopting a pet can help you give back to your community and has the added benefits of keeping you company!
Are there benefits to getting a pet after retirement?
For those of us who want to gallivant around the world, adopting a dog or cat may not be the best option – unless you have someone who can watch them while you are away.
Learn more >> https://sixtyandme.com/5-reasons-why-adopting-a-pet-in-retirement-may-be-right-for-you/
I stared at the small paper cup in front of me, given to me by one of our medical technicians at the A.L.F. Inside were my daily prescribed medications: pills for high blood pressure, depression, stomach acidity, prostate issues, gout, and a vitamin D capsule. Additionally, I have a nasal spray in my fridge in my room that helps regulate my calcium levels. It might seem like a lot of medications, but it's actually in line with the national average. According to the Lown Institute*, a significant number of older adults take multiple medications, which is known as "polypharmacy. "More than four out of ten older adults take five or more prescription medications, which is three times higher than twenty years ago. Nearly 20 percent take ten or more drugs.”
However, despite the common practice, it's important to note that all these medications may not always be as beneficial as one might assume for older individuals. Every day, 750 older people in the United States (aged 65 and above) are hospitalized because of serious side effects from one or more medications. Over the last decade, older people sought medical attention over 35 million times due to negative reactions from drugs, resulting in more than 2 million hospital admissions.
I'm on various medications, which goes against my personal beliefs. I'm not against medicine or science, but I prefer not to put foreign substances in my body, especially those I'll need to take indefinitely. I'm okay with pain relievers and antibiotics that provide immediate relief and aid in curing. However, I'm skeptical about the other chemicals seniors are prescribed daily, as they mainly help manage specific conditions or, in some cases, just mask them. None of the medications I'm currently taking will actually cure my underlying issues. Not a single one.
Since 2009, I've likely been given around 20 to 30 different medications and treatments, including pills, injections and enemas, in an attempt to treat a digestive disorder. Unfortunately, none of them worked. Only surgery was effective. I can only imagine the cost of all those medications. I do know that one of them was nearly $800 per dose. This made me wonder: What is the true objective of the pharmaceutical industry? Are they genuinely focused on discovering cures for humanity's most deadly diseases? Or is their research primarily aimed at creating medications that can manage a disease well enough to ensure patients rely on them for the rest of their lives, which could easily be 20, 30, 40, or more years as in the case of diabetics.
Companies producing items with replaceable components, such as razor blade manufacturers or coffee pod producers, understand the importance of ensuring you keep buying their products over time to keep your device functional. It seems that pharmaceutical companies have followed suit, treating us more like consumers rather than patients, influenced by their marketing-focused counterparts.
I'm not saying you should quit your medications out of frustration with the pharmaceutical companies. However, I strongly recommend discussing your worries about the quantity and effectiveness of your meds with your healthcare provider. This way, your doctor will be aware to consult with you before prescribing any more pills.
The approaching weekend brings with it the prospect of yet another washout in the New York metro area. Nevertheless, for those of us at the Asylum, these rainy days offer a wonderful opportunity for some quality nap time and reconnecting with old friends, whether virtually or in person. Be sure to explore our weekend edition, and we'll return with fresh, valuable news bright and early on Monday...
SEE SOURCE: CLICK HERE
Which Fast Food Chain
Has the Fastest Drive-Thru?
According to QSR’s *data, Taco Bell has the fastest drive-thru for the third straight year. On average, it took customers 278.84 seconds to receive their orders, almost half a minute faster than Carl’s Jr (303.74 seconds), the next-speediest drive-thru. The top five included KFC (303.95 seconds), Arby’s (319.64), and Dunkin’ (321.10). The slowest drive-thru was at Chick-fil-A, at over seven minutes per order (436.09) — but that doesn’t tell the whole story.
QSR also determined that Chick-fil-A had the busiest drive-thru lines, with an average of 3.41 cars waiting for their orders. That was followed by McDonald’s (2.01 cars), Wendy’s (1.50), Taco Bell (0.96), Burger King (0.92), and Dunkin’ (0.78).
Chick-fil-A also topped the customer service chart, and its associates were rated as 91% friendly. (Interestingly, 9% were rated “neutral” when dealing with customers, and 0% were categorized as “not friendly” — the only chain to have a 0% in that metric.) The next-friendliest were Hardee’s and Taco Bell, which were both rated 79% friendly, followed by Arby’s and Carl’s Jr, which both had a 76% friendly rating.
And finally, Chick-fil-A was the most accurate drive-thru, with overall orders clocking in as 92% accurate. That was followed by Burger King (90%), McDonald’s (88%), Wendy’s (87%), and KFC (87%). Perhaps unsurprisingly, the accuracy of orders increased by 7% when the restaurant had an Order Confirmation Board where the customer could both see and confirm their order to the restaurant’s team members. Order accuracy also improved by between 11% and 18% when the speaker was both loud enough and clear enough to hear what the restaurant staffer was saying.
NEXT WEEKDAY BLOG
MONDAY OCT. 23, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
Thursday October 19, 2023
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“Daring ideas are like chessmen moved forward.
They may be beaten, but they may start a winning game.”
― Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Breakthroughs in Men’s Health:
A New Prostate Cancer
Treatment and More
Ultrasound treatments with fewer side effects,
plus help for erectile dysfunction and prostate enlargement
By Sari Harrar
Tommy Saul, 57, takes prostate cancer seriously. His father died after a 12-year fight with the disease, the second-leading cause of cancer death in men. So when Saul’s annual prostate specific antigen test (a measure of prostate health) showed that his PSA levels had doubled, and a biopsy in 2022 confirmed that he had prostate cancer himself, his doctors urged radiation or immediate surgery to remove his prostate gland. Still, despite his family history, Saul hesitated. “I didn’t like the side effects — urinary incontinence and erectile dysfunction,” Saul says. “But I wanted to live a long time for my wife and our three sons. That’s when we did a lot of research.”
Saul and his wife, Autumn, decided that he was a good candidate for TULSA-Pro, an outpatient procedure cleared by the FDA in 2019 that destroys cancerous tissue from inside the prostate gland with ultrasound heat. Doctors use magnetic resonance imaging to guide the robotic procedure while a cooling catheter inserted in the rectum reduces heat exposure of nearby tissue. Recovery is generally faster than with surgery or radiation. It’s intended mostly for men with low- and intermediate-risk prostate cancer that hasn’t spread.
“The goal is to minimize side effects,” says Yair Lotan, M.D., chief of urologic oncology at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, in Dallas. “We can’t guarantee a risk-free experience. But with magnetic resonance imaging to guide the procedure, we can be very precise.”
We’re 65 and 69 with
no long-term-care insurance.
We want to self-insure —
but how do we do that?
By Alessandra MalitoFollow
We are truly fortunate to have a lifetime inflation-adjusted federal pension and Social Security of $200,000 annually. We’re a 65-year-old man and a 69-year-old woman. Our income roughly breaks out to $125,000 and $75,000, respectively.
We did not take advantage of spousal survivor benefits when we retired years ago, which seemed like a good idea at the time. So our plan was always to self-insure our long-term care and spousal survivor needs. We would like some help with how to plan for the future.
We have also amassed $1.5 million, half in IRA and thrift savings plans and the other half, which came from the sale of our real-estate assets, in a taxable brokerage account. Our financial adviser has us striving for a 5.5% return on the taxable account. We really don’t need or intend to tap these funds, since our pensions cover more than our needs and allow for our three to six months of travel per year. We have no debt or mortgage and pay our credit cards off monthly.
Grape Consumption Benefits
Eye Health in
Human Study of Older Adults
Grape intake improved macular pigment accumulation and downregulated harmful biomarkers
In a recent randomized, controlled human study, consuming grapes for 16 weeks improved key markers of eye health in older adults. The study, published in the scientific journal Food & Function looked at the impact of regular consumption of grapes on macular pigment accumulation and other biomarkers of eye health.
This is the first human study on this subject, and the results reinforce earlier, preliminary studies where consuming grapes was found to protect retinal structure and function.
Science has shown that an aging population has a higher risk of eye disease and vision problems. Key risk factors for eye disease include 1) oxidative stress and 2) high levels of ocular advanced glycation end products (AGEs). AGEs may contribute to many eye diseases by damaging the vascular components of the retina, impairing cellular function, and causing oxidative stress. Dietary antioxidants can decrease oxidative stress and inhibit the formation of AGEs, with possible beneficial effects on the retina, such as an improvement in Macular Pigment Optical Density (MPOD). Grapes are a natural source of antioxidants and other polyphenols.
Read more >> https://californiaagtoday.com/grape-consumption-benefits-eye-health-in-human-study-of-older-adults/
How long does retirement last?
Most American men
don't seem to know
By Daniel de Visé
Most of us seem to know that the average American lives between 70 and 80 years: 73.5 years for men, and 79.3 for women, to be exact.
Fewer of us understand that life expectancy rises with age. An American man who turns 70 today will live to 85, on average. A woman of 70 will live to 87.
That knowledge is called longevity literacy. Many of us don’t have it, and ignorance may cost us.
Let's say a man retires at 65 with $250,000 in savings. If he spends it down at a rate of $30,000 a year, the money might last him to age 73.5. But longevity tables say he can expect to live another decade, to 84.
Read more >> https://www.usatoday.com/story/money/2023/10/12/how-long-does-retirement-last/71074947007/
Furnishing With Purpose:
How To Make Every Piece
Count In Your Home
By Ella Woodward
Purposeful furnishing isn’t just a design concept; it’s a way of life. It’s about making conscious choices that align with your needs and desires. When every piece in your home serves a purpose, it transforms your living space into a functional and aesthetically pleasing environment. Imagine a home where every chair invites you to relax, every table serves a practical function, and every door opens to new possibilities.
If you are looking for ways to ensure each piece of furnishing counts in your home, keep reading as we explore the art of purposeful furnishing and how to transform your home into a harmonious sanctuary.
Functional Elegance: Choosing Pieces With Dual Roles
Multifunctional furniture is the cornerstone of purposeful furnishing. Think of a sofa that transforms into a bed, a coffee table with built-in storage, or a bookshelf that doubles as a divider. These dual-purpose items maximise space and add a touch of sophistication to your home. It’s the marriage of form and function, where practicality meets elegance.
Learn more >> https://seniorslifestylemag.com/featured/furnishing-with-purpose-how-to-make-every-piece-count-in-your-home/
The most popular board games in America:
Chess: The most popular board game in America, with an average of 490,983 monthly searches
Monopoly: The best-selling board game of all time, with over 275 million units bought since its inception in 1935
Checkers: The second top-selling board game, and the oldest board game, first introduced in 3,000 B.C.E.
Scrabble: Invented in 1948
Clue: From 1949
Candyland: From 1949
Rummikub: From 1950
FRIDAY OCT. 20, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
Wednesday October 18, 2023
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“Winning may not be everything,
but losing has little to recommend it.”
Not Everyone Gets the
Full 3.2% COLA Increase
— Here’s Why
By Vance Cariaga
The Social Security Administration announced its 2024 cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) last week, and as expected, the COLA will be 3.2%. More than 66 million retirement beneficiaries will see the 3.2% COLA beginning in January 2024, the SSA said in a press release, and about 7.5 million Supplemental Security Income (SSI) recipients will see higher payments in late December.
The reason is that the COLA is applied to your primary insurance amount (PIA) rather than your current benefit — and the two are not always the same. According to the SSA, the PIA is the benefit you would get if you elect to begin receiving retirement benefits at your full retirement age. At this age, the benefit is neither reduced for early retirement nor increased for delayed retirement.
The PIA formula itself is more than a little complicated. It’s based on the sum of “three separate percentages of portions of average indexed monthly earnings,” the SSA said on its website. The portions depend on the year a recipient reached age 62, became disabled before age 62, or died before you reached age 62.
to Protect Brain Health
in Older Adults, Scientists Say
By CARLY CASSELLA
Sex is a natural, common, and pleasurable part of human life, yet its impact on the health of the brain is surprisingly understudied.
A longitudinal study on life, sexuality, and mental sharpness in the US has now shown that sexual activity in older people, who do not live in nursing homes, is linked to better cognitive function down the road.
The dataset is nationally representative and includes information on how often Americans have voluntary, partnered sex (not necessarily intercourse), the level of pleasure they derive from that sex (orgasm or no), and how emotionally satisfying they find their sexual relationships.
Read more >> https://www.sciencealert.com/sex-appears-to-protect-brain-health-in-older-adults-scientists-say
10 Reasons Americans
Move for Retirement
Discover the motivations driving U.S retirees to move during their golden years.
By Chris Kissell
We have all heard of the traditional retirement dream: After decades of work, you move to a sandy beach or the mountains to enjoy golden years of bliss.
But that’s not how retirement turns out for the majority of folks. In reality, 63% of retirees stay in the home where they lived before retiring, according to a recent survey of 2,100 retirees by the Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies.
However, that still leaves a sizable number — 37% — who do pick up stakes and spend their retirement somewhere else.
Among those who relocate, these are the most common reasons for finding a different home for retirement.
How this 77-year-old widow
lost $661,000 in a common tech scam:
I realized I had been
defrauded of everything’
By Greg Iacurci
Marjorie Bloom, a retired civil servant, was the victim of a “tech support” scam in 2021. Criminals used cryptocurrency to carry out the fraud.
Bloom, now 77, lost her life savings: $661,000.
Her experience highlights the growing threat of fraud that targets older adults.
In the spring of 2021, Marjorie Bloom waited for a phone call that would never come.
Over the course of the previous month, the retiree had wired hundreds of thousands of dollars into cryptocurrency per the suggestion of someone she believed to be a trusted confidant. The man claimed to be a “fraud investigator” at PNC Bank, where she’d been a longtime customer.
At his behest, Bloom, a widow who is now 77, liquidated her nest egg — savings, stocks, an annuity — for a total of $661,000.
The action was supposedly preventative: The “investigator” persuaded Bloom that criminals, using stolen personal data, were in the process of pilfering her life savings. To protect her money, he said, she had to move it quickly — and covertly. Divulging the problem to anyone, even her three children, could compromise their efforts, he said.
Read more >> https://www.cnbc.com/2023/10/08/how-one-retired-woman-lost-her-life-savings-in-a-common-elder-fraud-scheme.html
THE FITNESS CLOTHING INDUSTRY
BY STEPHANIE RAFFELOCK
Most people, if not everyone, recognize the benefits of exercise. An entire industry has been built around promoting proactive health, with both food and drug commercials emphasizing diet and exercise.
It seems, however, that the companies that promote exercise the most are the fitness clothing lines like Athleta, REI and Lululemon.
These companies have been great in showing us inclusiveness with diversity of body types, ethnicity, moms and kids, etc. But if you are over 60, evidently you don’t exercise… or at least that’s what the ads portray.
IS COLLEGE NECESSARY?
Like many people from the baby boomer generation, during the late 1960s, my main focus was on one thing: finishing high school and getting into college. That's what everyone, especially our parents, emphasized. Failing to graduate high school and go on to higher education was seen as a major letdown by both the students and those around us. Now, as an adult reflecting on those college years long past, I question if it was all worth it.
When we think back to high school, sure, we attended classes and teachers did their best to provide us with a well-rounded education. However, our primary aim as students wasn't necessarily to absorb knowledge. Instead, it was to pass each class so we could move forward, graduate, and move on to college. We hardly considered what would happen if we didn't succeed, if we just barely scraped by and couldn't secure a spot in any college. The message we received was clear: the only path to happiness and success (read: financial stability) was through obtaining a four-year college degree. If you didn't achieve this, it was believed you were destined for a life of demanding manual labor with meager compensation.
Do you recall junior year in high school? It was the year everything was supposed to click into place. We spent our entire academic lives, starting from 1st grade, working towards reaching junior year. Why? Because that's when you had the chance to take the SATs, the ultimate test that supposedly determined your future. Not because it assessed what you'd actually learned, but because it gauged your ability to take tests. And your score on this one test carried immense weight. It took many years for me to realize how much of a fallacy that belief was.
I think a well-rounded education in liberal arts is important. It's crucial to learn reading, writing, appreciate literature, do math, and understand foreign languages and history. However, these subjects don't necessarily prepare us for real-life situations. When we graduated high school, how many of us knew about things like credit ratings, insurance, managing finances, buying a home, or creating a budget? What about basic car maintenance, home repairs, or job hunting? It seems like we were expected to know all of this right after college. And if you didn't, the idea was that you'd be making so much money that you could hire someone else to handle those everyday tasks. Unfortunately, this has led to a generation of well-educated individuals who might struggle with practical life skills, and their value is often solely judged by their financial status.
I was the first in my family to go to college and graduate. I'm glad I did it. That degree ensured I always had a job. Those years taught me a lot about research, solving problems, and dealing with people. I have a decent grasp of art and culture, enough to hold my own in conversations. But sometimes, I wonder if I would've been happier if I pursued a hands-on trade through my education. I might have made more money with less stress, doing something I truly enjoyed, instead of being stuck behind a desk all day, solving problems for other academics who couldn't even order office supplies.
I haven't been in school for a long time, and since I don't have children or grandchildren, I'm not familiar with current school curricula. However, I imagine there are high school juniors out there right now, busy with SAT prep and browsing college information. I can't help but wonder how many of them might be feeling socially anxious and stressed because of it and would rather be out in the garage building a boat, making pottery or whipping up a creme brulee….....
Today, 66% of senators
are over the age of 60.
While senators have historically been older than the American population, consider how the median age in the U.S. is 39 according to the 2020 U.S. Census, and the median age of the Senate prior to Feinstein’s passing was 65.
We can see in the below table how the Senate has become growingly older, influenced by longer lifespans and the increased likelihood of members running for re-election (and winning). In addition, members in the Baby Boomer generation, ages 58 to 77 years old, often have more resources and wealth to help secure their seat.
THURSDAY OCT. 19, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
Tuesday October 17, 2023
THIS BLOG IS BEST VIEWED IN
“When you're curious,
you find lots of interesting things to do.”
Social Security Survivor Benefits:
How much are benefits increasing
for widowers due to COLA 2024?
The COLA is the Cost of Living Adjustment which reflects inflation and the rising costs of life which must be reflected in benefits. Particularly for Social Security Survivor benefits, this is essential to keep up with rising expenses.
This means that Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits will increase by 3.2% in 2024.
Who is eligible for Survivor Benefits?
Various groups of people may be eligible for Social Security survivors benefits.
A surviving spouse can receive benefits at age 60 (or age 50 if disabled), and if the surviving spouse is caring for a child of the deceased worker who is under age 16 or disabled, they can receive benefits at any age.
A divorced surviving spouse can receive benefits at age 60 (or age 50 if disabled) if they were married to the deceased worker for at least 10 years and have not remarried.
Read more >> https://www.marca.com/en/lifestyle/us-news/personal-finance/2023/10/15/652bb254268e3e153e8b45cc.html
Where's the inheritance?
Why fewer older Americans are
writing wills or estate planning
By Daniel de Visé
Fewer older Americans are writing wills, research shows, a finding that could spell trouble for survivors.
The share of over-70 households with wills or trusts to distribute their assets after death has been in steady decline since the mid-2000s, according to an analysis published in August by the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College. Between 2008 and 2018, that share dropped from 70% to 63%.
The downward trend reflects the growing diversity of older America. Seniors are more likely than ever to be Black or Hispanic, and those populations are less likely than non-Hispanic whites to leave a will or receive an inheritance.
“We looked at who’s not writing wills,” said Gal Wettstein, a senior research economist at Boston College, “and it’s disproportionately non-Hispanic Blacks and Hispanics.”
Read more >> https://www.usatoday.com/story/money/personalfinance/2023/10/03/fewer-older-americans-are-writing-wills-planning-estates/70994383007/
Chronic diseases take a toll
on U.S. life expectancy
By Amy Norton
But a new study suggests that chronic disease among older Americans is actually the biggest factor.
After a century of steady improvement, Americans' life-expectancy gains nearly ground to a halt starting around 2010.
By 2019, average life expectancy for a newborn in the United States was just under 79 years, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease and Prevention. That was barely any different from the outlook in 2010 -- a striking reversal of previous trends.
8 Things You Should Stop Buying
After Your Kids Move Out,
Finance Experts Say
SAVE MORE FOR RETIREMENT WITH THESE BUDGET-BOOSTING TIPS.
By LAUREN GRAY
When your children grow up and leave the house, your life changes in more ways than one. Besides the emotional transition of recognizing their newfound independence, you may also notice logistical and financial differences, too.
"It's a major milestone that often marks a time of change and new opportunities for parents, including the opportunity to save more money," says Aleks Grigoriev, a finance and real estate expert and co-founder of Priority Home Buyers.
However, becoming an empty-nester can also be a time of emotional and financial disorientation. "I have seen many families struggle with adjusting their spending habits when their children move out of the family home," Grigoriev cautions. The key, he says, is to take a momentary pause to regroup and form an intentional plan for moving forward.
Wondering which expenses to cut from your budget when your kids move out of the family home? Read on to learn nine money-saving tips from seasoned finance experts.
“Going To The Movies Used To
Be Simple And Spontaneous”:
Older Adults Share Little
But Meaningful Things That
Modern Technology Has Made Obsolete,
And It’s Pretty Poignant
"Nowadays, everything moves so fast, people have short attention spans, and it's all about how productive you can be and how much money you can make. It's a fast-paced world now, and sometimes it sucks."
By Dannica Ramirez
Though it's true that modern-day technology has made life easier in many, many ways, there's no denying the special experiences that were forged from having the not-so-advanced gadgets and gizmos. Recently, the BuzzFeed Community reminisced over the small yet impactful moments younger generations might not be able to experience anymore thanks to modern technology. Here are some of the things people shared that, depending on your age, will have you feeling nostalgic or awestruck:
1. "Going to the movies! I mean, we have some really nice theaters and amenities nowadays, but younger folks don't know how simple and spontaneous it used to be. To find out what was playing at what times, we either had to read the newspaper, call the theater, or just show up to the theater and see what was on."
Learn more >> https://www.buzzfeed.com/dannicaramirez/older-adults-share-nostalgic-things-technology-made-obsolete
Disney turned 100 years old yesterday, joining the exclusive club of companies that made it through the Great Depression, World War II, the advent of the internet, Frasier, the social media era, and the Frasier reboot.
It’s an impressive feat, to be sure, but Disney’s still got a long way to go to catch the Cal Ripken of the corporate world. Japanese contractor Kongo Gumi was founded in 578 to build a temple, making it ~1,440 years old and the oldest company in the world still operating.
WEDNESDAY OCT. 18, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
Monday October 16, 2023
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“When words become unclear, I shall focus with photographs.
When images become inadequate, I shall be content with silence.”
― Ansel Adams
Social Security’s 2024 COLA,
While Modest, Could Still
Trigger Higher Taxes
By John Manganaro
What You Need to Know
- Though the COLA is smaller than the prior two years’ adjustments, it could still push seniors over key thresholds.
- The Senior Citizens League warns that many cash-strapped seniors could be surprised by higher taxes in the years ahead.
- The group advocates for adjusting these income thresholds to today’s dollars and continuing to do so annually.
- The 3.2% Social Security cost of living adjustment (COLA) for 2024 announced Thursday is well above the 2.6% average over the past 20 years, but a new retirement survey by The Senior Citizens League suggests older adults are still broadly pessimistic about their finances.
According to the survey, some 68% of odler adults report that their household expenses remain at least 10% higher than one year ago, although the overall inflation rate has slowed.
Read more >> https://www.thinkadvisor.com/2023/10/13/social-securitys-2024-cola-while-modest-could-still-trigger-higher-taxes/
Swindlers and scammers
keep finding ways to steal
so we need to be wary
After a lifetime of service, seniors dealing with the onslaught of telephone scammers.
By Mary Mitchell
That’s how a scammer’s conversation usually begins. It ends with me abruptly hanging up.
Greeting me with a “Hi, Mary,” like we are buds, is the first clue that the call is from a scam artist.
Since this is open enrollment season for Medicare — Sunday through Dec. 7 — it’s an excellent time to remind us there are scammers poised to steal our money by posing as government officials.
These hustlers prey upon senior citizens because they assume we are illiterate regarding technology.
Read more >> https://chicago.suntimes.com/2023/10/13/23915232/swindlers-scammers-seniors-ftc-starting-over
You only get Social Security
while you’re alive.
What happens to benefits
after you die?
By Lorie Konish
Social Security retirement benefits provide guaranteed monthly income for the duration of your retirement.
But when you die, your checks stop coming.
“You only get Social Security while you’re alive,” said Bruce Tannahill, a director of estate and business planning with MassMutual.
Surveys show retirees are tempted to claim benefits as early as possible to get the most out of the program.
But financial advisors typically suggest the opposite — waiting to claim to get the biggest benefit. That way, you get the biggest monthly checks potentially available to you.
Read more >> https://www.cnbc.com/2023/10/02/heres-what-happens-to-social-security-benefits-after-you-die.html
I'm 65 and Working.
Should I Enroll in Medicare?
It depends on how good your employer’s health insurance is.
Meet with an independent health insurance broker to get the best value.
By Amy McVay Abbott
You have reached the Medicare qualifying age of 65. But what if you are still working and have employer-sponsored insurance? What should you do?
Unfortunately, there is no easy answer. For the average person, understanding how your variables can affect what you purchase is confusing and challenging without expert help. There are, however, a range of options that didn't exist for our parents.
Take Mark L. Clark of Mooresville, North Carolina. He retired early as a human resource professional four years ago. He carried health insurance for his wife, Cindy, a market research contractor without benefits. Mark has a part-time job that offers benefits, but his employer's health insurance is expensive.
wreaking havoc across the US
— and it’s only going to get worse
By Tami Yang
There’s a sour side to pickleball.
The game’s rapid rise — between 2020 and 2022, it saw a 113% increase in participation, according to a 2023 Sports & Fitness Industry Association (SFIA) report — has made for ugly turf wars, furious noise complaints, violence, lawsuits and even potential criminal charges.
“I’ve had to go over to our recreational sports center and tell 70-year-old men: ‘If you threaten to hit our sports center director with the paddle again, I’m going kick you out,’ ” said Chuck Line, the city manager in Glendale, Colorado.
He never anticipated his job might include lecturing senior citizens about how to play nicely.
Sick, and no Health Insurance
"The U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Committee has initiated a process to provide financial aid to Mary Lou Retton, the 1984 Olympic gymnastics gold medalist, whose daughter has reported that she is in a critical health condition. According to USOPC spokeswoman Kate Hartman, this information was shared with USA TODAY Sports on Thursday morning."
I'm sure we all felt saddened to learn that a national icon had fallen seriously ill, fighting for her life due to a rare form of pneumonia. What surprised me the most was discovering that she lacked health insurance, leading to mounting medical bills. It's perplexing how someone well-known in their middle-age (she's 55) living in the wealthiest nation on Earth can be without health insurance. It reminded me of my own experience a few years ago when I, too, was uninsured and had to search for an affordable health insurance plan and how easy it can be to fall through the cracks.
Like many working Americans, I relied on my employer for affordable health coverage. They provided it, and while I chipped in a bit, it was much cheaper than if I had to pay for it entirely on my own. Even though I never actually used the coverage, just having it there was reassuring. It served me well until I lost my job and along with it, my insurance, at the age of 60. I eventually found a new job, but I wouldn't be covered under their plan for 6 months. So, I had two choices: take a chance on staying healthy for 6 months or pay for my own coverage. I opted for the latter.
I never had to worry about health coverage until I was in my twenties because I was covered by my family's plan. When I was no longer eligible for that, I found a job that offered a reasonably priced plan. Now, on my own, I was quite surprised when I found out how expensive health insurance really was. This was before Obamacare, which, while still costly, at least brought some competition among insurers.
I felt lost in a world that seemed like the "Wild West" of insurance. There were so many plans, sub-plans, extras, and deductibles, and just as many insurance companies. None of them had a plan I could afford. After weeks of searching and realizing it would take a big chunk of my earnings no matter what I chose, I settled for a basic hospitalization plan with a high deductible. Even that cost me $450 per month. I was grateful to have it, even though it was a financial strain. But what about those who don't have jobs that offer coverage, or pre-Medicare seniors like Mary Lou who have little to no income? Unfortunately, there's no clear solution for them.
In the past, we used to say that the United States and South Africa were the only developed countries without universal health insurance. Now, we can't even make that comparison because South Africa has improved. Around 20% of non-elderly people in the U.S. don't have health insurance at any given time. The differences in access to healthcare and health outcomes are much larger in the U.S. compared to other countries with reliable data.
The absence of a national health plan in the United States is a complex issue with historical, political, and ideological roots. Several key factors contribute to this situation:
1. Historical Development: Unlike many other industrialized countries, the United States did not develop a comprehensive national health system during the early to mid-20th century. Instead, it relied on employer-sponsored insurance and private markets to provide healthcare.
2. Fragmented System: The U.S. healthcare system is characterized by a mix of public and private providers and insurers. This fragmentation has made it challenging to establish a unified national plan.
3. Ideological Differences: The U.S. has a tradition of valuing individualism and limited government intervention in markets. There is a long-standing debate over the role of government in providing and regulating healthcare.
4. Powerful Interest Groups: The healthcare industry in the U.S. is immensely profitable, and there are powerful interest groups, including insurance companies, pharmaceutical companies, and healthcare providers, that resist major changes to the system.
5. Political Gridlock: The issue of healthcare reform has been highly politicized in the U.S. Attempts to pass comprehensive national health plans, like the Affordable Care Act (ACA) in 2010, have faced significant political opposition and legal challenges.
6. Complex Federal System: The United States has a federal system of government, which means that both the federal government and individual states have significant authority over healthcare policy. This can complicate efforts to implement a unified national plan.
7. Cultural Beliefs: There are differing cultural beliefs about the role of government in healthcare. Some Americans view healthcare as a personal responsibility, while others believe it should be a right guaranteed by the government.
8. Cost Concerns: Implementing a national health plan would involve a significant financial commitment, and there are concerns about how to fund such a system and its potential impact on taxes.
9. Historical Attempts: Past attempts to implement a national health plan, such as the proposed reforms in the early 1990s, faced intense political opposition and ultimately failed.
10. Path Dependency: The existing healthcare system has developed over time, and major changes can face resistance due to the complexities of transitioning from the current system to a new one.
Efforts to reform the U.S. healthcare system continue, but finding consensus on a specific approach that addresses the needs of all stakeholders remains a significant challenge. Various alternatives, such as expanding existing programs or implementing a single-payer system, are subjects of ongoing debate in American politics.
We have a congress that would rather focus on cutting the national debt and limiting government involvement than making American lives better with a true national health system. With over 200 million Americans aged 18 to 65, many could be without a means to afford health insurance. Hopefully, there will be a fresh effort to assist individuals like Mary Lou Retton, who are unwell, lack coverage, and are in a precarious situation.……………..
DIGITAL CAMERA SALES
A steady decline in sales of digital cameras through the years can be attributed to improvements in smartphones. Your phone is always nearby, and these days the built-in cameras are good enough to capture Instagram-ready pics.
In 2010, sales of cameras hit an all-time high of 121 million units. Last year consumers bought only 8 million units, according to the Camera & Imaging Products Association.
TUESDAY OCT. 17, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
Friday October 13, 2023
THIS BLOG IS BEST VIEWED IN
“Yesterday is a cancelled check;
Tomorrow is a promissory note;
Today is the only cash you have,
so spend it wisely.”
By Melissa D. Berry
Illicit actors are increasingly zeroing in on senior citizens to victimize them in a wide variety of tailor-made scams and fraudulent activities
Senior citizens — any individual 60 years old or older — are increasingly targeted because scammers perceive them to be less tech-savvy and more financially stable. It’s important to understand the nature of these financial schemes in order to minimize the risks of fraud.
Government imposter scams:
Government imposter scams cost seniors about $122 million in 2021. In these schemes, criminals contact seniors by phone, email, or text pretending to be from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Social Security Administration (SSA), or Medicare.
These scammers may tell seniors that they owe a debt that must be paid immediately or face arrest, asset seizure, or termination of benefits. They also create a false sense of urgency in order to get their victims to act immediately and avoid talking with anyone who might detect the scam.
Read more >> https://www.thomsonreuters.com/en-us/posts/investigation-fraud-and-risk/senior-citizens-financial-scams/
5 surprising facts
about assisted living
By Liz Weston
If you or a loved one can no longer live safely at home, assisted living may be the answer. Residents typically live in their own rooms or apartments and get housekeeping services, meals and help with personal care.
But facilities can vary enormously, and people’s expectations about assisted living often clash with reality, elder care experts say. Here are some important things to know.
1. Medicare doesn’t cover the cost
Medicare does not pay for “custodial” care, which is what assisted living facilities provide, including help with daily activities such as bathing, dressing, getting in and out of bed, and using the toilet. Most people pay for assisted living out-of-pocket if they don’t have long-term care insurance, says Amy Goyer, AARP’s national family and caregiving expert.
Nationwide, the cost of assisted living facilities averaged $4,500 a month in 2021, according to the latest figures from long-term care insurer Genworth. But costs range enormously depending on the area and the services provided, Goyer says.
Read more >> https://www.seattletimes.com/business/liz-weston-5-surprising-facts-about-assisted-living/
The secret to a long, healthy life
found in centenarians’ blood.
By Marc Lallanilla
For as long as people have been living and dying, explorers have searched for a mythical “Fountain of Youth.”
While nobody ever found that, medical experts believe they’ve found longevity clues much closer to home: in our blood.
New research reveals that the blood of people who’ve lived over 100 years has certain similarities: specifically, they have lower levels of three key compounds.
“Those who made it to their hundredth birthday tended to have lower levels of glucose, creatinine and uric acid from their 60s onwards,” co-author Dr. Karin Modig, associate professor at Sweden’s Karolinska Institutet, wrote in the Conversation.
Read more >> https://nypost.com/2023/10/10/the-secret-to-a-long-healthy-life-found-in-seniors-blood/
How much long-term
care insurance do I need?
What the experts say
BY ALY YALE
The cost of a nursing home, assisted living facility or live-in caretaker can be high. In fact, according to the Cost of Care Survey from Genworth, you could pay anywhere from $1,700 to upwards of $9,000 for it — and that's per month.
Fortunately, long-term care insurance can help you cover these costs without draining your savings or nest egg dry. This type of coverage is specifically designed to help with the expenses related to long-term care when you're no longer able to take care of your daily needs on your own.
In turn, long-term care insurance can be a smart bet for most seniors, despite the extra costs for a policy. But if you're considering investing in long-term care insurance, here's what you need to know about coverage options — and how much you should get to protect yourself.
How much long-term care insurance do I need? What the experts say.
There are two options when it comes to long-term care insurance coverage: Stand-alone policies and hybrid policies, which combine life insurance with long-term care benefits.
Read more >> https://www.cbsnews.com/news/how-much-long-term-care-insurance-do-i-need-what-the-experts-say/
LASIK And Seniors:
Safety And Efficacy Explored
By Amanda Leigh, O.D.
Our vision tends to deteriorate as we age, and seniors often rely on glasses or contacts to correct their vision. However, many seniors are now considering more permanent solutions to improve their vision, such as LASIK surgery. LASIK surgery is a popular option for vision correction due to its effectiveness in improving vision and reducing reliance on corrective eyewear. However, many seniors wonder whether LASIK is safe and effective for them, given their age and potential health conditions.
This comprehensive look will explore the safety, effectiveness, and potential outcomes of LASIK surgery for seniors. We will discuss the concerns and benefits of undergoing LASIK in one’s golden years, providing insights into the suitability of LASIK for seniors and helping them to make an informed decision about vision correction options.
LASIK, short for “Laser-Assisted In Situ Keratomileusis,” is a commonly known procedure called laser eye surgery for simplicity. This innovative surgery focuses on reshaping the cornea to correct vision, presenting a promising solution for individuals who wish to minimize or eliminate their reliance on glasses or contact lenses.
Learn more >> https://seniorslifestylemag.com/health-well-being/lasik-and-seniors-safety-and-efficacy-explored/
SUPPLEMENTING MY MEALS
Hello, it's me, the Faceless Foodie, and I want to explain why I have to spend a significant portion of my limited income on purchasing food, even though my room and board at the A.L.F. include meals. In simple terms, it's a frustrating situation. I could leave it at that, but it wouldn't be fair to my fellow residents if I didn't clarify why the food is unsatisfactory and why I resort to services like Instacart for my meals.
In my previous complaints, I've mentioned the poor quality of the meals provided here. I've pointed out that there seems to be a lack of understanding about how to prepare common American dishes like spaghetti and meatballs, beef stew, or fried chicken. It's almost as if the kitchen staff has never experienced traditional American cuisine. I've voiced my concerns about this countless times, but sadly, my feedback has fallen on deaf ears. Regrettably, I've come to accept this culinary ignorance as the norm and resigned myself to the situation.
However, I couldn't help but think about the nutritional value of the food we're served. I believe it's not up to par.
Let's start by taking a look at some photos illustrating my concerns.
In the first photo, you can see a recent breakfast. Despite the fact that the bagel appears overcooked, pay attention to its size in comparison to the sole protein item on the plate. It's evident that there is an abundance of carbohydrates.
The second picture features a dinner consisting of what is supposed to be stewed beef, corn, and a baked potato. Once again, observe the proportion of protein to starch. I doubt that those three beef cubes meet the nutritional standards established by the state Department of Health (DOH).
Lastly, we have the image on the right. Not only is it amusing, but its suitability as a source of a healthy lunch is questionable.
Besides not having enough nutritious food, we also struggle to get fresh fruits and vegetables. Even though we get a vegetable side with most meals, it's either canned or cooked to the point where it loses its vitamins. The salads are usually not very fresh, often just lettuce with a few bits of cucumber or carrots, and no tomatoes. Almost all fruit desserts come from a can.
I'm lucky to have some extra money after covering my Social Security expenses for my stay. I use it to enhance my meals, mainly by ordering fresh fruits like strawberries, kiwis, grapes, and blueberries, along with some delicious ripe tomatoes for salads. The cost of ordering food can be a bit high, so I can only do it once or twice a month. Fortunately, we now have a microwave in our common area, which allows me to heat up takeout or prepare some of my favorite dishes like hot dogs with beans, chili, or (Real) scrambled eggs from time to time.*
I'm not sure if all assisted living facility kitchens are as poor as ours. It's concerning to think that many elderly people might not be getting proper nutrition. Unfortunately, the Department of Health (DOH) doesn't provide much oversight. They do occasional surprise inspections, but those mainly focus on kitchen cleanliness, not the quality, variety, or freshness of the food we're served. Sadly, there's no avenue for complaints. Pas d'appétit……ff
*All of the eggs made here, except for the occasional fried or hard-boiled eggs, are of the liquid variety. The eggs are baked in an oven which makes them dry and crumbly.
DECLINE IN USE
OF PAPER CHECKS
Since 2018, the number of checks written has declined by an annual rate of 7.2 percent, according to the Federal Reserve. At its peak in 1995, 49.5 billion checks were written. In 2022 it was down to about 3.4 billion.
Checks are losing their luster as many people go online to pay bills, whether through a bank or a company’s website. It’s convenient and also avoids the growing problem of check theft and subsequent fraud.
Banks and companies are also all for electronic payments: They are cheaper and quicker to process those than checks.
SATURDAY AND SUNDAY,
OCTOBER14 & 15, 2023
NEXT WEEKDAY BLOG
MONDAY OCT. 16, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
Thursday October 12, 2023
THIS BLOG IS BEST VIEWED IN
“If a bird believes it is an eagle long enough,
it will eventually end up soaring like one.”
― Matshona Dhliwayo
Social Security Announces 3.2 %
Benefit Increase for 2024
Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits for more than 71 million Americans will increase 3.2 percent in 2024, the Social Security Administration announced today. On average, Social Security retirement benefits will increase by more than $50 per month starting in January.
More than 66 million Social Security beneficiaries will see the 3.2 percent cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) beginning in January 2024. Increased payments to approximately 7.5 million people receiving SSI will begin on December 29, 2023. (Note: some people receive both Social Security and SSI benefits).
“Social Security and SSI benefits will increase in 2024, and this will help millions of people keep up with expenses,” said Kilolo Kijakazi, Acting Commissioner of Social Security.
Some other adjustments that take effect in January of each year are based on the increase in average wages. Based on that increase, the maximum amount of earnings subject to the Social Security tax (taxable maximum) will increase to $168,600 from $160,200.
Social Security begins notifying people about their new benefit amount by mail starting in early December. Individuals who have a personal my Social Security account can view their COLA notice online, which is secure, easy, and faster than receiving a letter in the mail. People can set up text or email alerts when there is a new message--such as their COLA notice--waiting for them in my Social Security.
People will need to have a my Social Security account by November 14 to see their COLA notice online. To get started, visit www.ssa.gov/myaccount.
Information about Medicare changes for 2024 will be available at www.medicare.gov. For Social Security beneficiaries enrolled in Medicare, their new 2024 benefit amount will be available in December through the mailed COLA notice and my Social Security's Message Center.
The Social Security Act provides for how the COLA is calculated. The Social Security Act ties the annual COLA to the increase in the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) as determined by the Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics.
To read more, please visit www.ssa.gov/cola.
How to Save Money on Hearing Aids
If you have Medicare,
try these strategies to save on hearing aids.
By Rachel Christian
Affording hearing aids is challenging if you’re an older American on Medicare.
That’s because Original Medicare — which covers a majority of beneficiaries — doesn’t cover hearing aids, fittings or hearing exams.
That’s right — not a dime. And hearing aids are expensive: The average cost for one pair ranges from $3,000 to $6,000.
About 1 in 3 people between the ages of 65 and 74 have hearing loss, and nearly half of people 75 and older have difficulty hearing, according to the National Institute on Aging.
Read more >> https://www.moneytalksnews.com/slideshows/how-to-save-money-on-hearing-aids-with-medicare/
Social Security Update:
There’s a New Cut-Off
for Earnings —
What It Means
For Your Retirement
By Vance Cariaga
Just because you collect Social Security benefits doesn’t mean you have to stop working. In fact, plenty of Social Security recipients still earn income from work — but for many, their benefits are reduced depending on their age and how much they earn.
As previously reported by GOBankingRates, the Social Security Administration considers you “retired” when you start receiving retirement benefits. If you are younger than full retirement age and earn more than the SSA’s yearly earnings limit, your benefits might be reduced. The full retirement age is either 66 or 67 years old, depending on if you were born before or after 1960.
The SSA occasionally puts in new earnings test limits regarding work income. On Oct. 12, 2023, the agency is likely to announce a higher limit for 2024, Motley Fool reported. The new cut-off should give Social Security beneficiaries the leeway to earn more money without their benefits being reduced.
are still a ‘public health threat’
for America's older adults, says CDC
By Melissa Rudy
Older adults in the U.S. remain at higher risk of hospitalization due to COVID-19, according to a new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Adults age 65 and older accounted for nearly 63% of all COVID-related hospitalizations between January and August 2023, the CDC reported on Friday.
In a majority of those cases, the patients had "multiple underlying conditions," according to the agency’s report.
The most common of those conditions were diabetes, kidney disorders, coronary artery disease, chronic heart failure or cardiomyopathy, and obesity.
Read more >> https://www.foxnews.com/health/covid-hospitalizations-still-public-health-threat-older-adults-cdc
3 Times It Pays to Claim
Social Security Before
Full Retirement Age
By Maurie Backman
If you sign up for Social Security before reaching full retirement age, your monthly benefit will get reduced for life.
There are circumstances that certainly warrant an early filing.
A reduction in benefits isn't optimal, but in some cases, it can make a lot of sense.
The monthly benefit you get from Social Security could be just the thing that sustains you throughout retirement. So it stands to reason that you wouldn't want to reduce that benefit -- right?
Well, there's an easy way to help ensure that your monthly Social Security benefit isn't slashed. All you need to do is wait until full retirement age (FRA) to sign up. That's when you're entitled to your complete monthly benefit based on your personal wage history.
Read more >> https://www.fool.com/retirement/2023/10/01/3-times-it-pays-to-claim-social-security-before-fu/
Why Making a Family Tree
Can Be a Heartwarming Experience
By Trevor McDonald
We often reflect on the past as we age and hit our twilight years. We think about the good and bad times and the people that impacted our lives. Often, this is our family, and it might dawn on us that we don’t know as much about our family as we thought we did.
Family is one of the most priceless treasures that we have in our lives. It is a bond that is irreplaceable, providing us with love, comfort, and support every single day. However, as generations pass by, we tend to lose track of our family roots and our family’s culture, traditions, and history.
Making a family tree can be one of the most heartwarming experiences that one can undertake, as it provides a deep connection to our ancestors, uncovering stories about our family’s past and the challenges and sacrifices that they’ve made.
Let’s explore why making a family tree can be a heartwarming experience.
Learn more >> https://seniorslifestylemag.com/health-well-being/why-making-a-family-tree-can-be-a-heartwarming-experience/
What Animal Has the Best Eyesight?
It’s not a simple task to declare which animal has the best vision, as there isn’t a single clear winner. Choosing the best eyesight in the animal kingdom is complicated because every creature has developed visual qualities (or a lack thereof) to suit their survival needs. Also, a lot of factors can be involved in ranking animals’ eyesight.
If you’re considering which animal can see the farthest with the most precision, though, eagles take the crown. The eagle eye is among the sharpest and most fearsome in the animal kingdom. Eagle eyesight is estimated to be around four to eight times stronger than that of the average human. Despite eagles weighing an average of 10 pounds, their eyes are roughly the same size as human eyes. Not only does eagle vision excel at long distances, but they also have extraordinary color resolution and clarity. Eagles are capable of identifying five uniquely colored squirrel species and can locate prey even if it’s hidden. An eagle is believed to be able to spot a rabbit more than 2 miles away. As the eagle plummets from the sky to strike its prey, the muscles around its eyes continuously modify the curvature of the eyeballs to sustain sharp focus and accuracy throughout the whole process, including the attack itself.
FRIDAY OCT. 13, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
Wednesday October 11, 2023
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“I don't even like old cars. I'd rather have a goddam horse.
A horse is at least human, for God's sake.”
___J. D. Salinger
Older People With Money To Burn
Are Driving the US Economy
Last year, people 65 and older accounted for a record share of the country's consumer spending
By Patrick Cooley
The U.S. economy has so far defied forecasts of a recession, with consumer spending powering on despite the steepest interest rates in decades and stubbornly high inflation.
Why? One significant but overlooked reason is the growing population of elderly people, a group who often don’t need to borrow money or worry about getting a pink slip because they already own a home and are retired, The Wall Street Journal reported Sunday.
Last year, Americans 65 and older accounted for 22% of spending — the highest share since records were first kept in 1972 and up from 15% in 2010, the Journal reported, citing a Labor Department survey of consumer expenditures from September. Elderly people made up 17.7% of the U.S. population, Census figures from August showed — the most in more than a century.
The most common advice seniors ignore
from their doctors revealed
A survey of 2,000 U.S. seniors looked at how they meet their fitness and health goals and found that 46% admit they don’t have any in place.
Even so, 86% of seniors take their health more seriously now than when they were younger.
While almost two in five (39%) say they tend to take a proactive approach to their health, only 32% will seek out their doctor as soon as they start to feel unwell.
Others tend to wait out the storm and hope to feel better (22%) or try to remedy themselves (42%).
Read more >> https://nypost.com/2023/10/09/the-most-common-advice-seniors-ignore-from-doctors-revealed/
RSV more severe than COVID-19,
flu in older adults, CDC data show
- New data show that although there are far more COVID-19 and influenza hospitalizations, RSV caused more severe outcomes.
- For the first time, vaccines against all three respiratory diseases are available.
- Fewer older adults are hospitalized with respiratory syncytial virus than COVID-19 or influenza, but those who are experience more serious outcomes than patients hospitalized with the other two illnesses, new CDC data show.
The other two studies include data showing that RSV hospitalizations are most common among adults aged older than 75 years, and that less than one-quarter of adults aged older than 65 years who were hospitalized with SARS-CoV-2 infection had received a recommended COVID-19 booster vaccine.
Last month, the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases reported findings from a survey that showed most adults in the U.S. are not concerned about COVID-19, influenza or RSV, despite ongoing worries about a fall “tripledemic.”
For the first time ever, vaccines are available for all three illnesses, including updated COVID-19 shots and the world’s first vaccines against RSV.
Read more >> https://www.healio.com/news/infectious-disease/20231005/rsv-more-severe-than-covid19-flu-in-older-adults-cdc-data-show
Will a Medicare Part B Premium Hike
Wipe Out Your 2024 Social Security COLA?
By Maurie Backman
- Based on cooling inflation, 2024's Social Security COLA is looking to be a lot smaller than 2023's.
- A large increase in the cost of Medicare Part B could leave seniors in the lurch.
If the cost of Part B rises a lot, seniors on Social Security could be seriously out of luck.
We're getting really close to finding out what cost-of-living adjustment, or COLA, seniors on Social Security will be getting in 2024. The reason that raise hasn't been officially announced yet is that it's based on third quarter inflation data.
While we've wrapped up the third quarter of the year, a 2024 COLA can't be calculated until data on the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) arrives for September. And that information won't be released until Oct. 12.
Meanwhile, based on CPI-W readings from July and August, the non-partisan Senior Citizens League is projecting a 3.2% Social Security COLA for 2024. That number has the potential to wiggle a little bit based on September's CPI-W reading, but it's a reasonable assumption based on the data we have to date.
Read more >> https://www.fool.com/retirement/2023/10/07/will-a-medicare-part-b-premium-hike-wipe-out-your/
Retired Couple Books
51 Back-To-Back Cruises
Because It’s Cheaper
Than a Retirement Home
By Regina Sienra
Have you ever taken a vacation and had so much fun that you wished it could go on forever? For Marty and Jess Ansen, a retired Australian couple, they enjoyed being at sea so much that they have booked 51 back-to-back cruises. And while this is a product of their 40-year-long love for sea travel, it is also informed by another factor—the couple realized that living on cruises is less costly than staying in a retirement home. So far, they've spent close to 500 days sailing around the world.
“Cruising is what we do. Once COVID-19 came, we couldn’t cruise, so we booked as many as we could once it started again,” the husband explained in an interview with Australia's Today. “Eventually I said to my agent, ‘Look, whatever comes, book it,’ and that’s how it got to be such a long cruise.”
Once COVID restrictions were lifted, the couple began their adventure aboard the Coral Princess in June 2022, which recently docked in Sydney to restock the ship before making its way to Hawaii. Once that trip is over, they'll board another cruise, the Crown Princess, to sail around the world once again.
Learn more >> https://mymodernmet.com/retired-couple-books-51-back-to-back-cruises/?utm_source=join1440&utm_medium=email&utm_placement=newsletter
Throughout history, Jews have survived by following two key principles: not causing disruptions and keeping a low profile. Back in biblical times, even though the Romans weren't fond of the Jewish community in and around Jerusalem, they let them live without much interference because the Jews didn't stir up trouble. They didn't attempt to convert the Romans, who believed in multiple gods, to Judaism, nor did they incite rebellion. This approach worked well until someone came along asserting there was only one god that everyone should worship. This not only angered the Romans but also upset many Jews who were doing fine by not attracting attention.
This strategy of laying low helped Jews endure in a predominantly non-Jewish world for centuries. Even during the Inquisition, when they were hunted, tortured, and killed, they still tried to remain inconspicuous. They were never really liked, but they were tolerated as long as they stuck to themselves. Even when they were forced into ghettos, they didn't voice complaints. They held onto the belief, as they always have, that eventually everything would be okay. This continued until November 9th, 1938, when German Nazis launched an attack on Jewish individuals and their property as the initial step in trying to eradicate the Jewish population. They came frighteningly close to succeeding in the Holocaust, during which six million Jews lost their lives in concentration camps.
One might believe that the imminent threat of widespread extinction would at last capture the attention of the global Jewish community and make them realize that their strategy of staying low-key was ineffective. However, it wasn't until 1948, with the establishment of the state of Israel, that Jews received this message and started to assert themselves, not for territorial dominance or authority, but simply for the right to exist. This is why, for those who feel that Israelis have been too severe in safeguarding their homeland, it's important to remember that it took an astonishing 5708 *years for Jews to reach a point where they declared they'd endured enough and decided to stand up and defend themselves.
Despite its early achievements, Hamas seems to have overlooked Israel's unwavering commitment to prevent any large-scale loss of Jewish lives. Bearing this in mind, I am confident that Israel will persevere, and this recent endeavor to obliterate the Jewish homeland will not succeed. The mantra of "Never again" stands strong. …..
*1948 in the Hebrew calendar translates to 5708.
WHO INVENTED THE AUTOMOBILE?
The invention of the automobile is a complex and gradual process that involved the contributions of many inventors and engineers over several decades. However, credit for creating the first practical, gasoline-powered automobile is generally attributed to Karl Benz.
In 1886, Karl Benz, a German engineer and inventor, built a motorized vehicle that he called the "Benz Patent-Motorwagen." This vehicle was powered by an internal combustion engine fueled by gasoline. It had three wheels and could carry two passengers.
It's important to note that while Karl Benz is often credited with creating the first practical automobile, there were other inventors and engineers working on similar technologies around the same time. For example, Gottlieb Daimler and Wilhelm Maybach, also German engineers, developed a gasoline-powered engine around the same period.
These early automobiles were significant milestones in the development of modern transportation, and they laid the groundwork for the automotive industry that would later revolutionize the way people travel around the world.
THURSDAY OCT. 12, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
Tuesday October 10, 2023
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“Spending money to show people how much money you have
is the fastest way to have less money.”
― Morgan Housel
2 Reasons Not to Worry About
the Future of Social Security
By Maurie Backman
- Many workers are convinced that Social Security won't be around once they retire.
- The actual situation may be far less dire than you think it is.
A lot of people are down on Social Security. Here's why you don't need to stress.
Will Social Security be there for you when you retire? If you ask today's workers, that's questionable.
In fact, many people are convinced that Social Security is on the brink of ruin, and that their retirements are doomed because of that. But here's why the situation isn't as terrible as you might think it is.
1. Social Security's main revenue source isn't going away
Social Security gets the bulk of its funding from payroll taxes. And for that reason alone, the program will continue to be viable for many years despite near-term financial shortcomings.
It's true that in the coming years, Social Security expects to owe more in scheduled benefits than it collects in revenue. It's also true that benefit cuts might have to happen once the program's trust funds run dry -- an event that may be on the table in about a decade from now.
But Social Security can continue to sustain itself by continuing to tax workers on their income. And since people will perpetually need to work, the program should have a perpetual source of funding.
Read more >> https://www.fool.com/retirement/2023/10/08/2-reasons-not-to-worry-about-the-future-of-social/
Why More Retirees
Are Going Back to Work
Many older adults are unretiring to save money and get more social interaction
By Linda Childers
After Ray Hurtado of Haverford, Pennsylvania, retired eight years ago from his job at a health care company, he began thinking about how he wanted to spend his retirement years.
“I’m in good health, believe in aging well and plan to be around for a long time,” says Hurtado, 68. “I started looking for opportunities where I could meet new people, challenge my mind, and also make a meaningful contribution.”
The solution, he decided, was to start working again. Hurtado is one of many Americans who have unretired, a post-pandemic trend that’s seeing some retirees rejoin the workforce. Many are returning to work to offset inflation, increase their social interactions, and find a new passion and purpose.
Old And Facing Federal Prison
By Walter Pavlo
The Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) incarcerates nearly 160,000 inmates in its 122 institutions. Of those, less than 3% (4,544) are over the age of 65, many of them have been in prison for many years. However, older inmates, particularly incoming white-collar offenders, pose challenging issues for the BOP.
According to the BOP, most of those in federal prison, nearly half, are in for drug offenses, and 22% are there for weapons/explosives/arson ... few of these type of crimes involve senior citizens. However, older Americans who participate in fraud can face years in prison similar to those with drug or other offenses. With their incarceration comes additional challenges for the BOP that struggles with a myriad of problems including shortages of staff.
While the BOP has seven medical centers, it is not known for its world renowned medical care. Those medical centers are used for chronically ill inmates, many of whom have been in the system for years and were moved from other prisons across the federal system. BOP medical centers provide services like....
Read more >> https://www.forbes.com/sites/walterpavlo/2023/10/07/old-and-facing-federal-prison/?sh=dbf1c816b07e
How to Protect Your Retirement
From Nagging Inflation
Social Security’s cost of living adjustment, coming next week, helps
retirees keep up with their bills, but there are other strategies for coping.
By Mark Miller
The Social Security cost of living adjustment for 2024, expected to be announced Thursday, is forecast to be 3.2 percent, far below the 8.7 percent increase older Americans received this year. The smaller increase would reflect the cooling of consumer prices, but inflation is an ever-present risk that should be a consideration in your retirement plan.
Although Social Security is adjusted annually for inflation, it will cover only part of your spending in retirement. Over a retirement that could last several decades, inflation can erode the buying power of your other assets, forcing a quicker spend-down and threatening your standard of living. For example, a retirement portfolio valued today at $250,000 would buy the same amount of goods as $137,000 in 2000.
“Inflation really is another form of longevity risk,” said Joel Dickson, global head of advice methodology at Vanguard. “If your portfolio going into retirement is projected to be able to satisfy your spending needs for 30 years, an inflation shock might mean that it can only do that for 27 years, and those last three years aren’t being covered.”
Read more >> https://www.nytimes.com/2023/10/06/business/retirement-social-security-cola-inflation.html
Charted: Retirement Age by Country
The retirement landscape can look completely different depending on what country you’re in. And charting the retirement age by country reveals a lot of differences in the the makeup of a labor force, both for economic and cultural reasons.
This graphic delves into the current and effective retirement ages across 45 nations in 2020, based on comprehensive data from the OECD 2021 report.
Defining Retirement Ages
Before we dive into the numbers, let’s clarify the measurements used by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD):
Learn more >> https://www.visualcapitalist.com/retirement-age-by-country/?utm_source=join1440&utm_medium=email&utm_placement=newsletter
SENIORS AND CONSUMER SPENDING
US consumer spending has remained surprisingly strong despite rising interest rates, and a senior spending spree could explain it. According to the Department of Labor, Americans aged 65 and older accounted for 22% of consumer spending last year, the highest percentage since records began in 1972. It also helps that 17.7% of the US population is 65 and older, the highest on record dating to 1920. Better health, longer lifespans, and changes in attitude toward saving for a rainy day after the pandemic have boomers feeling OK about their finances.
WEDNESDAY OCT. 11, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
Monday October 9, 2023
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"The trouble with super heroes
is what to do between phone booths."
by $140 billion a year—
enough to wipe out
By Jake Johnson
A report published Wednesday estimates that privately run, government-funded Medicare Advantage plans are overcharging U.S. taxpayers by up to $140 billion per year, a sum that could be used to completely eliminate Medicare Part B premiums or fully fund Medicare's prescription drug program.
Physicians for a National Health Program (PNHP), an advocacy group that supports transitioning to a single-payer health insurance system, found that Medicare Advantage (MA) overbills the federal government by at least $88 billion per year, based on 2022 spending.
That lower-end estimate accounts for common MA practices such as upcoding, whereby diagnoses are piled onto a patient's risk assessment to make them appear sicker than they actually are, resulting in a larger payment from the federal government.
Read more >> https://www.rawstory.com/medicare-advantage-overbills-taxpayers-by-140-billion-a-year-enough-to-wipe-out-medicare-premiums/
America’s gerontocracy dilemma
By Jeffrey J. Matthews
Joe Biden, 80, and Donald Trump, 77, are clearly not the country’s best 2024 presidential candidates, yet they cling tightly to power in their respective parties. Similarly, despite health problems and concerns about her mental acuity, California Sen. Dianne Feinstein refused to resign from office. She died on Sept. 28 at the age of 90, hours after casting her final Senate vote. Iowa Sen. Chuck Grassley, 90, recently won reelection to a seat he has held since 1980 and if he survives, he will be 95 years old when his current term expires. He might run again.
The gerontocracy dilemma also extends to the federal judiciary. Just because the judges and justices are granted lifetime appointments, that does not mean they should serve until they die. Case in point: Ruth Bader Ginsburg. During the final years of the Obama administration, there were public and private appeals for the justice to voluntarily retire, allowing someone younger and healthier to be appointed. At the time “the notorious RBG” was in her early 80s and had suffered through bouts of cancer. Ginsburg refused to step down from the bench and died at 87, allowing the Trump administration to select her successor. Today, the court’s elders are Clarence Thomas, 75, and Samuel Alito, 73.
Social environments are
of nutritional risk among
By Kathy Beerman, PhD
According to a new study published in The Journal of Nutrition, a supportive social environment may protect against nutritional risk among middle and older-aged adults.
Older aged individuals are more vulnerable to nutritional risk and health outcomes related to inadequate nutrition due to physiological changes associated with the aging process. In addition, social circumstances such as eating alone, insufficient help with grocery shopping, and meal preparation may also contribute to nutritional risk in older aged adults. Evidence from diverse health-related research illustrates the importance of strong social ties. Furthermore, impaired social support networks are not only associated with increased risk for mortality, but also poor nutritional behaviors. Numerous social factors such as being married, having a sense of trust and security in the community, and participating in religious organizations are also associated with good nutritional status. While the relationship between individual social factors and nutritional health has been previously evaluated, the simultaneous relationship between multiple social factors and their overall contribution to the strength of the social environment has not been considered. As social factors may act synergistically to affect nutritional outcomes, an investigation that assesses multiple social factors in combination is warranted.
To bridge this knowledge gap, Nielsen (McGill University) and colleagues assessed the relationship between distinct profiles of social environment and nutritional risk status among adults. Latent structure analysis was used to identify profiles of social environment, which were composed of individual measures related to support including network size, social support, social cohesion, and objective social isolation. Evaluation of the consumption of major food groups (whole grains, protein foods, dairy products, and fruits and vegetables) by social environment profiles and nutritional risk status was also assessed. To explore whether associations varied across life stages, analyses were conducted among the total sample as well as by middle-aged (40-65 years) and older-aged (>65 years) subgroups.
Read more >> https://nutrition.org/social-environments-are-important-determinants-of-nutritional-risk-among-older-aged-adults/
Not All Older Adults
Reap Cognitive Benefits
of Life Satisfaction
Summary: A new study delves into the link between life satisfaction and cognitive functioning in older adults. Surprisingly, while many studies advocate life satisfaction as a cognitive booster, this study suggests that it doesn’t benefit everyone.
High life satisfaction did enhance cognitive functioning in most individuals, but it fell short for those with low socioeconomic status, in poor health, or facing psychological challenges. This granular analysis unveils the nuanced relationship between contentment and cognitive health.
Life satisfaction has varying effects on cognitive functioning based on socio-economic, health, and psychological conditions.
Only half the older adults surveyed benefited cognitively from high life satisfaction.
The concept of “response shift” suggests people might adjust their quality-of-life standards in challenging situations, which may influence reported life satisfaction and its health effects.
Cause of Alzheimer’s disease
may be completely different
than we think, study explains
Australian researchers have made a startling discovery in the treatment and understanding of Alzheimer’s disease, the most common form of dementia. In a radical departure from traditional treatment approaches, scientists from St. Vincent’s Hospital in Sydney managed to restore memory without removing the notorious protein clumps, beta-amyloid, often linked to Alzheimer’s.
At the heart of this discovery is the brain’s nerve cell connections, or synapses, believed to be the storage units for memories. Alzheimer’s patients frequently lose these connections, leading to severe memory loss.
“People living with Alzheimer’s experience a loss of these nerve cell connections which has been speculated to cause debilitating loss of memory that is synonymous with the disease,” says study author Bryce Vissel, a professor at St. Vincent’s Hospital who led the international team behind this work, in a media release. “Our research set out to answer the question: by rescuing these connections, can we rescue memory? We now have compelling evidence, in a model of Alzheimer’s, that preventing the breakdown in these synapses is possible. This in turn rescues memory, offering a new way forward to understanding and treating the disease.”
Learn more >> https://studyfinds.org/memory-protein-clumps-alzheimers/
Looking Forward To Winter
In the northeastern part of our country, the seasons change abruptly. One week it's warm and sunny, and the next it's cold and rainy. It's like nature suddenly realizes it's time for fall but forgot to transition smoothly.
When I was a teenager, I really hated winter because it meant dealing with snow. I was the youngest person still living at home, so I had the job of clearing snow from the sidewalks, front and back walkways, and the driveway. Our corner house meant I had to shovel a lot of sidewalk, not just a path, but the whole stretch. Therefor, for me, winter was not my favorite season.
Today, winter doesn't hold the same significance as it did when I was young, mainly because I no longer have to face the harsh weather. I don't have to battle the elements anymore - no shoveling snow, no digging my car out of snowdrifts, no braving freezing winds on my way to work. Winter is just like any other season for me now. The only drawback is that I won't be able to enjoy sitting outside in the sun for a few months, and that truly saddens me. Still, it's a small price to pay for not having to deal with the harsh weather.
In fact, there's another drawback to winter. Winter is a time when everything slows down, like how living things hibernate and then come back to life in spring. We seniors understand this comparison well. The fight for life and the inevitability of death are always present in our assisted living facility. Almost every day, an ambulance takes one of our residents to the emergency room, and occasionally, we lose a friend. For most of us, we're in the later stages of life, similar to the winter season.
I see winter as a challenge to overcome, just like any other obstacle in life. It's a reminder that everything has a conclusion. It also signifies the chance to begin anew when winter ends and spring arrives. This can be tough, especially when you're in your 70s and not in the best health. Yet, despite the challenges nature presents, we face each day. We put on our special socks and shoes, pick up our canes, walkers, or wheelchairs, and venture forth.
There's a saying that goes, “Each new day is the first day of the rest of your life.” This holds true, except for one day - the day we pass away. So take out the comforter from the closet, turn up the heat, make some hot soup. Spring is just around the corner.
ARE THERE PAY PHONES ANYMORE?
At their peak in 1999, more than 2.1 million pay phones were in service across the U.S. Fewer than 100,000 were in operation by 2016 according to the Federal Communications Commission.
And it’s only gotten worse. The last public pay phone was removed from New York City in May 2022. Pay phones disappeared as mobile phone usage exploded.
“The steady and steep decline over more than a decade of the number of pay phones in service demonstrates that they no longer play as critical a role in society’s communications as they once did, as would-be users rely instead on mobile subscriptions,” the FCC said in a report analyzing pay phone usage.
So where can you find pay phones these days? Some hotels, gas stations, convenience stores and hospitals may have one, but it’s a rarity.
TUESDAY OCT. 10, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
Friday October 6, 2023
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“If you can't convince them, confuse them.”
_____Harry S Truman
Assisted living is being abused
By Matt Baird
Before leaving for college, I spent a lot of time working and volunteering in assisted living. The main facility that I worked at had a large hospice program, and it took in a lot of residents with late-stage Alzheimer’s. When I tell people about my experience working with elderly folks, I am usually commended for the nobility of the job. Often, they ask if it is sad or depressing being in an environment with people who cannot take care of themselves anymore; they believe it must be sad to be around people who I know are in their final years.
Honestly, it is sad to interact with people for months or years while watching them deteriorate. Since it was never a full-time job, I was not as emotionally attached to the residents as the caregivers and staff, but I still felt heavy when I heard that a resident who I interacted with a lot passed away.
More than anything, the deaths of the residents I spent time with made me think about geriatric care and the complications of elderly life. Every day, thousands of seniors reach the point where they cannot live a safe, independent life, and their closest relatives have to consider a difficult question: how do we best take care of them in their final years?
You May Be Paying Too Much in Taxes
on Your Social Security Benefits.
Here's How to Lower Them
By Mark Henricks
Millions of Americans rely on Social Security benefits for all, or a portion, of their retirement income. Up to 85% of Social Security benefits are subject to federal income tax, depending on your total household income. However, Fidelity recently presented options for taxpayers to reduce how much they pay in taxes on Social Security benefits. Delaying Social Security claims and reducing withdrawals from traditional IRAs are two popular ways Social Security recipients can lower their tax bills. Some others may also work, depending on your specific situation.
A financial advisor can help you minimize taxes on your Social Security benefits. Speak with an advisor today.
Social Security Tax Basics
You must pay taxes on Social Security benefits if your combined income exceeds certain thresholds. Social Security uses a figure called combined income to determine whether your income is above the thresholds where owe taxes on benefits. The formula for determining your combined income is:
Older Adults With ADHD
at Higher Risk of Car Crashes,
By Lara Salahi
Older adults with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) may be at higher risk for car accidents compared to adults without the disorder. Findings from a new study suggest that inattention and impulsivity associated with the condition can impair cognitive function and driving abilities.
Researchers analyzed data from the Longitudinal Research on Aging Drivers (LongROAD) project, a large-scale, prospective cohort study of drivers aged 65 to 79 years. They collected data on driving, health, and medication use for up to 44 months to assess the prevalence of ADHD.
Of the 2832 adults that were included in the study, 1179 were aged 65 to 69 years, 984 were aged 70 to 74 years, and 669 were aged 75 to 79 years. Participants resided in New York, Maryland, California, Michigan, and Colorado.
Which Legal Remedies
Seniors Can Get
If Children Abandon Them?
What can be more painful for seniors than their children disowning them during the dusk of life? Nothing, but the pain can be reduced to some extent, at least in financial terms.
By Amit Sethi
People work continuously their whole lives, and most of their financial planning revolves around their children’s careers and securing their retirement lives. People often dedicate their entire lives towards building their children’s careers, assuming that later, their children will also take care of their retirement needs. However, after retirement, many people are disowned by their children for whom they sacrificed their entire lives. At such an age, seniors can’t return to work and spend the rest of their lives in sorrow and grief. Here are some legal remedies that can provide relief to such senior people disowned by their children.
Options Available To Seniors Who Are Abandoned By Their Children
Venket Rao, founder of Intygrat Law Offices LLP, explains: “The Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizen Act, 2007, endeavours to safeguard the rights of senior citizens on their properties and articulates the following measures:
Read more >> https://retirement.outlookindia.com/plan/financial-planning/which-legal-remedies-seniors-can-get-if-children-abandon-them
I'm a Professional Designer
and Here Are 10 Ways
I Maximize My Closet Space
LISA ADAMS, DESIGNER AND CEO OF
LA CLOSET DESIGN, WILL HAVE YOU ORGANIZED IN NO TIME.
By ABBY REINHARD
Summer is over, meaning you're likely swapping out your sundresses and shorts for sweaters and jeans. If you love cozy season, you're probably excited to sport these fall looks, but what you may not be excited about is the resultant lack of closet space. Autumn and winter clothing naturally take up more room than lighter summer wear, but according to Lisa Adams, designer and CEO of LA Closet Design, your dressers and storage space don't have to be cluttered. Ahead, Adams shares her main tips for organizing your closet, combining aesthetic appeal and functionality. Read on for her 10 tips to revitalize your closet and maximize space.
Weekend Closet Makeover
1- Get rid of what you don't need or wear.
When it comes to freeing up closet space, the first step is to weed out anything that you don't want anymore. According to Adams, this process doesn't have to be limited to the times when you're switching out seasonal wardrobes.
"Purge regularly," she advises. "You want to make sure that the items you bring into your dream dressing room are truly the pieces you love and will wear! If something doesn't fit or isn't being worn, take action. Tailor it, donate it, or consign!"
Why should seniors care who’s in charge?
Do Republicans hate old people?
There are several reasons why older Americans should pay attention to who leads our government. They worry about policies that affect their well-being, like healthcare, income assistance, housing, transportation, and long-term care. Seniors are also uneasy about increased spending on programs like Social Security and Medicare. Concerns arise due to a potential shortage of caregivers, and they are afraid the federal government might not offer enough support for older people.
Historically, older individuals have been a source of contention for Republicans. For instance, when the Social Security Act was passed in 1935, a significant number of Republicans voted against it. This is consistent with the party's stance against government-funded assistance programs for those in need, as they believe it fosters dependency. Instead, they advocate for personal responsibility and self-sufficiency.
Republicans aren't necessarily against older people, but they might prefer a scenario where older folks aren't a part of their vision for America. This is because without having to allocate resources for older individuals, they could redirect funds towards priorities like strengthening the military, assisting big businesses in times of trouble, supporting the fossil fuel industry, and promoting their policies, such as restricting abortion, controlling access to certain books, limiting immigration, and making it more challenging for some people to vote.
Considering that Conservative Republicans want to limit spending on social security and Medicare, why do so many seniors support them?
Senior citizens' support for conservative Republicans is not solely based on their positions regarding Social Security and Medicare. The relationship between conservative Republicans and senior citizens can be complex and multifaceted. While it's true that some conservative Republicans advocate for limiting spending on programs like Social Security and Medicare, it's also important to understand that senior citizens, like any other demographic group, have diverse political beliefs and priorities. Here are some reasons why many seniors may still support conservative Republicans:
Seniors, like other voters, may align with Conservative Republicans on social and cultural issues such as abortion, gun rights, religious freedom, and traditional family values. These issues can be more important to some seniors than economic policy. Additionally, Conservative Republicans often advocate for lower taxes, and some seniors may prioritize tax cuts and economic growth over increased government spending on social programs.
The majority of older Americans have grown up believing that a free and open market is the best way to keep prices down. Conservative Republicans often emphasize market-based solutions and private sector involvement in areas traditionally managed by the government. Some seniors may believe that market-driven approaches can lead to better outcomes in healthcare and retirement planning.
Of course we can’t rule out that some seniors may not fully understand the policy positions of Conservative Republicans or may be misinformed about the potential impact of these policies on programs like Social Security and Medicare. And let us not forget party loyalty. Some seniors have been long-time supporters of the Republican Party and may continue to vote for the party regardless of specific policy positions. Party loyalty can be a powerful factor in voting behavior.
In my opinion, many older people are holding onto a vision of America from the past. They remember a time when white, middle-class individuals seemed to have everything. Back then, we often pursued our desires without thinking much about the impact on others. It wasn't out of hate, but because we had the opportunity. We also believed that American businesses would support us throughout our lives, including retirement. However, this was a time when the U.S. produced more goods than the rest of the world combined. Unfortunately, that era has passed. Now, minority groups are rightfully seeking their share as American citizens. We've become too expensive in the manufacturing industry, and we're part of a global community. Other nations are striving for the "American Dream" and are willing to go to great lengths to achieve it. But us seniors are resistant to change; we're not quick to adapt. The conservative Republicans understand this and are hoping that seniors will overlook the loss of their freedoms and benefits. Let's hope we all realize the situation before it's too late. …
And finally, this…
The American Society on Aging Joins Allies Across the Globe in Celebration of Ageism Awareness Day
TheSeniorLog.com and the American Society on Aging will celebrate Ageism Awareness Day on Oct. 7, 2023. Modeled after the United Nation’s International Day of Older Persons (Oct. 1), Ageism Awareness Day provides an opportunity to draw attention to the existence and impact of ageism in our society.
“We live in an aging society, which is a wonderful, remarkable thing,” says ASA’s Interim President & CEO Leanne Clark-Shirley, PhD. “But too many of us view aging with fear, denial and even hostility. We are all growing older. We can’t afford to limit ourselves and other people with such negative and harmful views, and why would we want to? Let’s lean into the opportunities, diversity and full range of experiences that come with aging.”
The most widespread and socially accepted form of prejudice, ageism is defined by the World Health Organization as “the stereotypes (how we think), prejudices (how we feel) and discrimination (how we act) towards others or oneself based on age.”
Evidence shows ageism is widespread in society and can be found everywhere, from our workplaces and health systems to stereotypes we see on TV, advertising and in the media.
Facts about the line of succession:
1. After VP, House speaker, and president pro tempore of the Senate, the list includes Cabinet secretaries in order of their agencies’ creation. So, the Secretary of State is fourth in line, while the Secretary of Homeland Security is last, at No. 18.
2. Nine VPs have assumed the presidency mid-term, but no one lower in the line of succession has. The closest we ever got: Andrew Johnson (who had been Abe Lincoln’s VP) was impeached in 1868…but was acquitted by the Senate.
3. VP Dick Cheney served as acting US president for a total of 4.5 hours when George W. Bush was sedated for colonoscopies in 2002 and 2007. More recently, Kamala Harris became the first woman with presidential powers for 85 minutes during Biden’s colonoscopy in 2021.
NEXT WEEKDAY BLOG
MONDAY OCT. 9, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
Thursday October 5, 2023
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“The world would be a different place
if Adam was allergic to apples.”
― Marin Darmonkow
Why Do People Care Less
About Music as They Get Older?
Taylor Swift’s new album, 1989, has sold over 1.5 million copies so far—and not just to teenage girls. A Time reporter admitted his whole office was upset they couldn’t stream the album on Spotify. "Saturday Night Live" suggests a “cure” for adult Swift fans.
Swift may have cross-generational appeal, but there’s a difference between how kids and adults respond to music. In a 2013 paper in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, a team of psychologists, led by Arielle Bonneville-Roussy at the University of Cambridge, designed a study to look at how our music-listening habits and attitudes toward music change over the course of our lives.
Other researchers had observed correlations between various personality traits and taste in music: preference for classical music and jazz is positively associated with openness, imagination, liberal values, and verbal ability; preference for “intense” music like heavy metal and punk is correlated with sociability and physical attractiveness.
Would you rather be
useful or youthful?
Here’s what 83% of
older adults said in a survey.
By Mark A. Stein
Ken Dychtwald has been watching, measuring and forecasting the aging of America for almost half a century, so it is hard to believe he could be surprised by much in his research any more.
But like any curious and open-minded researcher, the 73-year-old founder of the Age Wave consulting firm in Orinda, Calif., was delighted to learn from a survey his firm had commissioned that a majority of survey respondents aged 65 and over say they believe their best years are happening now or are still ahead of them.
That optimism is not unlike the tone of Dychtwald’s memoir, “Radical Curiosity,” which he has updated with stories about the COVID pandemic and a harrowing account of his daughter-in-law’s battle with a flesh-eating bacteria.
Read more >> https://www.marketwatch.com/story/would-you-rather-be-useful-or-youthful-heres-what-83-of-older-adults-said-in-a-survey-b64b3ed5
Most Older Americans Object
to Cancer Screening Cutoffs
Based on Life Expectancy: Poll
By Cara Murez
While guidelines for cancer screening have begun factoring in life expectancy, a new poll shows a majority of older adults disagree with age cutoffs based on how long a person is expected to live.
The University of Michigan National Poll on Healthy Aging queried more than 2,500 adults aged 50 to 80 by phone and online in January 2023.
The poll found that 62% of people in this age group thought that national guidelines for stopping cancer screenings in individual patients should not be based on how long that person might have left to live.
“Personalizing cancer screening decisions to each patient’s health situation, rather than using one-size-fits-all age cutoffs, could benefit both very healthy and less healthy patients in different ways,” said study author Brian Zikmund-Fisher, a health care decision-making researcher and professor from University of Michigan's School of Public Health, in Ann Arbor.
Read more >> https://www.usnews.com/news/health-news/articles/2023-09-29/most-older-americans-object-to-cancer-screening-cutoffs-based-on-life-expectancy-poll
Setting goals, small changes
reduce fear of falling
By Laurie Fullerton
Fall prevention is a challenge for all older adults and this September the Brookhouse Home participated in a structured course sponsored by the National Council on Aging.
Through a series of workshops, residents were encouraged to set goals and make small changes to reduce fall risks. A Matter of Balance is designed to reduce the fear of falling and improve activity levels among community-dwelling older adults. The program includes eight two-hour classes presented to a small group of 8-12 participants led by trained coaches. The course emphasizes that falls are controllable, and helps set goals for increasing activity levels, making small changes to reduce fall risks, and exercising to increase strength and balance.
The curriculum included group discussions, mutual problem solving, role-play activities, exercise training, assertiveness training, and a few homework assignments.
Read more >> https://www.salemnews.com/news/setting-goals-small-changes-reduce-fear-of-falling/article_3f93b63e-58b8-11ee-a171-376b8316442d.html
10 Ways to Make Your Gray Hair
Soft and Shiny, According to Stylists
SWITCH UP YOUR ROUTINE IF YOU'RE GOING FOR GLOSSY GRAYS.
By JULIANA LABIANCA
The product recommendations in this post are recommendations by the writer and/or expert(s) interviewed and do not contain affiliate links. Meaning: If you use these links to buy something, we will not earn a commission.
Deciding to go gray can be an empowering experience. So long, expensive salon colorings, root touch-up kits, and dye-induced damage. In their place, you've got gorgeous natural locks and a streamlined maintenance schedule. But what's the best way to keep your gray hair soft and shiny?
If you think you can simply keep up your previous haircare regimen, think again. Gray hair requires its own unique routine to keep it looking its best. We asked hairstylists to share their favorite pro tips for achieving glossy gray strands. Read on to find out how they recommend caring for your gray hair, so your natural hair color can shine.
How to Make Gray Hair Soft and Shiny....
1. **Diverse Varieties**: There are over 7,500 known cultivars of apples, each with its own unique flavor, texture, and color.
2. **Origin**: Apples originated in Kazakhstan in Central Asia. They have been cultivated for thousands of years and are one of the oldest known fruits.
3. **Nutrition**: Apples are a good source of fiber, vitamin C, and various antioxidants. They are also low in calories and fat-free.
4. **Symbolism**: Apples have cultural and religious significance in many societies. They are often associated with knowledge, temptation, and health.
5. **Year-Round Fruit**: Due to modern storage techniques, apples are available year-round, even when they are not in season locally.
6. **Most Popular Fruit in the World**: Apples are one of the most widely consumed fruits globally. They are a staple in many diets.
7. **Johnny Appleseed**: John Chapman, also known as "Johnny Appleseed," was an American pioneer and nurseryman who introduced apple trees to large parts of Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois during the early 19th century.
8. **Apples Float**: Apples are about 25% air, which is why they float in water. This makes them an ideal fruit for water-based activities like bobbing for apples.
9. **Apple Diversity in America**: The United States is home to a vast array of apple varieties. Some well-known ones include Granny Smith, McIntosh, Red Delicious, and Gala.
10. **Apple Trees Can Live a Long Time**: With proper care, apple trees can live for a very long time. Some trees in Europe are known to be over 100 years old and still bear fruit.
Remember, while apples are a nutritious and delicious fruit, it's also important to wash them thoroughly before eating to remove any potential pesticides or contaminants.
FRIDAY OCT. 6, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
Wednesday October 4, 2023
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“If man makes himself a worm
he must not complain when he is trodden on.”
Katy Perry’s Mansion Battle
Inspires ‘Katy PERRY Act’
to Protect Elders
The veteran’s family revealed the “Protecting Elder Realty for Retirement Years” Act (clever!) as the real estate debacle reaches a courtroom.
By Kady Ruth Ashcraft
If you thought Katy Perry’s political influence stopped with her belting “Firework” in front of the up-lit Lincoln Memorial for President Biden’s inauguration, then boy were you wrong. Perry’s latest legal battle with an octogenarian over real estate has inspired a pledge called the Katy PERRY Act, unveiled this weekend, that a few dozen local and state legislators have endorsed.
“The Katy PERRY Act addresses the risks of elder financial abuse, especially as it relates to property and real estate sales and transfers,” a website for the act explains. Behind it is the family of 84-year-old Carl Westcott, the 1-800-Flowers founder who Perry and husband Orlando Bloom purchased a $15 million Montecito mansion from in July 2020.
Read more >> https://jezebel.com/katy-perry-act-1850892275
boost muscle mass
and cut fat in older adults
By Dr. Priyom Bose
A recent study published in the journal Nutrients describes the effects of plant-based protein interventions on physical function, body composition, and strengths in the older population, as well as whether exercise improved the efficacy of these interventions.
Study: Effects of Plant-Based Protein Interventions, with and without an Exercise Component, on Body Composition, Strength and Physical Function in Older Adults: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials. Interventions, with and without an Exercise Component, on Body Composition, Strength and Physical Function in Older Adults: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials.
Aging is associated with sarcopenia, which is the progressive loss of skeletal muscle mass, strength, and performance. The development of sarcopenia is associated with many health-related issues, including functional decline, higher risk of falls, loss of independence, and higher hospitalization rates.
Read more >> https://www.news-medical.net/news/20230924/Plant-based-proteins-boost-muscle-mass-and-cut-fat-in-older-adults.aspx
in older adults sometimes difficult
By Amy Pollick
While depression is not a natural part of aging, about 7% of the general population of elderly adults has been diagnosed with major depressive disorder
While depression is not a natural part of aging, about 7% of the general population of elderly adults has been diagnosed with major depressive disorder, according to psychologist R.Y. Langham.
The Centers for Disease Control estimates up to 13.5% of elderly patients receiving home health care or who are hospitalized may struggle with this disorder.
Dr. Langham notes older adults have several risk factors that contribute to depression. “Chronic medical illnesses, cognitive decline, and the side effects of medications can play a significant role. Additionally, life events like decreased mobility, social isolation, bereavement, or even a history of depression can make older adults more vulnerable.”
5 Ways Your Social Security Payments
Could Be Reduced
By Keith Speights
- If you owe money to federal agencies, there are several ways your Social Security payments could be reduced.
- It's possible that Medicare Part B premium increases could cause your Social Security payments to decline.
- There's also a big Social Security reduction on the way in the future if nothing is done to prevent it.
Uncle Sam could cut your Social Security payments for a few reasons.
Retirees are used to their Social Security payments going up. Every year, the Social Security Administration (SSA) looks at the cost of living. If it has gone up, so do benefits. Even if the cost of living declines from one year to the next, there's no cut to Social Security benefits.
Read more >> https://www.fool.com/retirement/2023/09/29/5-ways-social-security-payments-could-be-reduced/
35 Best Soup Recipes
If there's one thing I love about cold weather, it's soup! Read on to find over 30 easy soup recipes I'll be making all fall and winter long.
Soup season is here! There’s a lot to love about fall – beautiful weather, changing leaves, cozy baked goods, and hot drinks – but the soup recipes are hands down my favorite part. I adore soup. I love making it, I love eating it, and I love packing up the leftovers so that I can enjoy it again the next day. When I’m stressed, I turn to soup because I find it meditative to cook. When I’m snowed in, I turn to it because I keep a stash stored away in my freezer. And when I’m in need of a healthy reset, I turn to it because it just makes me feel good inside.
To celebrate the start of soup season, I’m sharing my best tips for making soup recipes, as well as 35 of my favorite soups. In addition to classics like French Onion and Butternut Squash Soup, you’ll find a host of inventive, veggie-forward soup recipes like Golden Turmeric Noodle Miso Soup and a creamy White Bean Chili. I love them all, and I hope that you do too.
Best Tips for Making Soup Recipes....
Learn more >> https://www.loveandlemons.com/soup-recipes/?utm_campaign=mb&utm_medium=newsletter&utm_source=morning_brew
On Tuesday, during our dinner discussion at the A.L.F, we talked about the advantages and disadvantages of living here. Interestingly, we found that there were more advantages than disadvantages, and surprisingly, we all had very similar opinions. The main issues we had were with the food and privacy. However, we all agreed that the best thing about living here is the constant availability of assistance when needed, and we believe that the increased monitoring is a fair trade-off for some loss of privacy.
I initially found it surprising that the staff and management here were so involved in my personal matters, including my finances, location, health, and diet. I've always been independent, so it was tough to entrust so much of my well-being to others. I used to complain about it, but as I've grown older and faced the challenges of aging, I've become more open to accepting assistance.
I'm lucky that I can still manage my everyday tasks, such as handling money, taking care of my health, and looking after my appearance. I'm also able to shop online and use my credit cards normally. I communicate with others politely and thoughtfully. However, moving around has become more difficult for me. Unfortunately, I don't anticipate this improving, so I'll likely require more assistance from others, which I'm not looking forward to. I'm mentally preparing for when that time comes. I hope the transition will be smooth. I also hope the people helping me will respect my desire to maintain some independence and won't rush into taking over my life completely….
We always assumed that worms’ greatest contribution to our diets was being the perfect shape for gummy candy, but a new study published in Nature Communications found that earthworms help produce 140 million metric tons of food per year by making soil more fertile. That’s more than the 120 million metric tons Russia expects to produce this year and would make the creepy crawlers the fourth largest global producer if they were a country, according to The Guardian. The slimy guys contribute to 6.5% of the world’s grain harvests and 2.3% of legumes, the study said.
THURSDAY OCT. 5, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
Tuesday October 3, 2023
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“Autumn is a visual gift given by nature to
raise the morale of human beings
who is worried as they enter the dark days of winter!”
― Mehmet Murat ildan
8 Tips to Relieve Senior Insomnia
By Chris Draper
Just like everyone else, seniors have problems sleeping. Many seniors have trouble falling asleep or wake up after only a few hours. Some wake up continuously throughout the night and get up at a very early hour. Because of this they are so fatigued during the day that they have trouble with their daily activities. Senior insomnia is important to understand and address to improve senior health and well-being.
What are the most common causes of insomnia and improper sleep habits with seniors?
Pain or medical conditions
Health conditions such as arthritis, asthma, diabetes, osteoporosis and Alzheimer’s can interfere with sleep as well as cause pain that leads to frequent awakenings. Talk to your doctor to address underlying issues.
Inconsistent sleep patterns
Try to sleep at regular hours and get up at the same time each day. Don’t consume alcohol or caffeine before bedtime or fall asleep with the TV on. Make your bed as comfortable as possible and keep the room dark and quiet. If you smoke, try not to smoke before going to bed.
Social Security Cuts:
6 Things To Know for
Financial Planning for 2024
By Andrew Lisa
In 2024, America’s 67 million Social Security recipients will technically get a raise, but the boost to their benefits will be so marginal that the gain will feel more like a loss.
Legislation from 1973 provides for annual cost-of-living adjustments (COLAs) designed to preserve the purchasing power of Social Security benefits as inflation drives up prices over time. The faster prices rise, the more the SSA increases the yearly COLA.
However, the agency’s method for calculating the adjustments has advocates worried that the coming year’s increase will leave many recipients struggling to do more with less.
Waist-calf circumference ratio
shows potential as indicator
of mortality in older adults
A greater waist-calf circumference ratio was associated with an increased risk for all-cause and cause-specific mortality.
Researchers believe WCR may outperform BMI in this regard.
A metric that combines measurements of central obesity and muscle mass — called the waist-calf circumference ratio, or WCR — predicted older adults’ risk for mortality from all causes, CVD and other specific causes, a study showed.
Researchers have been searching for ways to replace BMI and waist circumference as indicators of obesity because they cannot differentiate between fat and muscle mass, thus providing new means to predict health outcomes.
Miao Dai, from the department of geriatrics at Jiujiang First People’s Hospital in China, and colleagues wrote in BMC Public Health that whereas WCR was thought to be a better predictor of health outcomes vs. BMI, calf circumference (CC) or waist circumference (WC) alone, “no studies have investigated the association between WCR and mortality risk among older adults.”
Read more >> https://www.healio.com/news/primary-care/20230928/waistcalf-circumference-ratio-shows-potential-as-indicator-of-mortality-in-older-adults
The Golden Bachelor
Is No Way to
ABC is retreading an old format to appeal to older viewers. That way, failure lies.
By Bobby Ghosh
As an increase in cord-cutting leaves networks with smaller audiences, a strategy to attract more senior viewers — traditional network TV’s bread and butter — has become more essential.
If we are to believe the publicity campaign around The Golden Bachelor, which starts airing Thursday evening, ABC wants the show to right two wrongs: That romance among senior citizens does not get enough attention; and that not enough programming is created for that age group, the network’s core viewership.
Those goals are, respectively, commendable and commercially sound. But I am skeptical ABC can thread that pair of needles with a retread of a hoary old reality TV format originally designed to exploit the brazenness of twentysomethings looking for love in luxe locales. Since Disney CEO Bob Iger hinted over the summer that the company’s linear networks were on the chopping block, you have to to wonder if ABC doesn’t care at this point or is just bad at programming.
Read more >> https://www.bloomberg.com/opinion/articles/2023-09-28/the-golden-bachelor-is-no-way-to-entertain-seniors
These adorable Japanese robots
are being used for elder care
A new Canadian study is seeking to evaluate the usefulness
of AI-powered robots in supporting senior citizens.
By Loukia Papadopoulos
Dr. Lillian Hung, Canada Research Chair in Senior Care and assistant professor of nursing at the University of British Columbia, is trying out two Japanese robots, called Kiwi and Mango, which may have the ability to provide companionship for senior citizens in Canada, reducing their loneliness.
This is according to a press release by the institution published this week.
So much more than a cute toy.
The two social robots may resemble miniature versions of the Teletubbies but they are so much more than a cute toy. They actually possess complex artificial intelligence systems that allow them to adapt to their environment, communicate, recognize faces and voices, and even provide hugs to mimic the warmth of a genuine pet.
Learn more >> https://interestingengineering.com/innovation/these-adorable-japanese-robots-are-being-used-for-elder-care
WHY DO LEAVES CHANGE COLOR IN THE FALL?
Leaves change color in the fall due to a combination of environmental factors and physiological changes within the plant. Here's how it works:
1. **Day Length and Temperature**: As summer transitions into autumn, the days get shorter and temperatures drop. This signals to the plant that it's time to start preparing for winter.
2. **Chlorophyll Breakdown**: Chlorophyll is the green pigment in leaves that helps plants carry out photosynthesis, the process by which they convert sunlight into energy. In the growing season, chlorophyll is continuously produced and broken down. But as the days shorten and temperatures drop, the production of chlorophyll slows down and eventually stops.
3. **Other Pigments**: When the chlorophyll breaks down and disappears from the leaves, other pigments that were present in the leaves become more visible. These pigments include carotenes (which produce orange and yellow colors) and anthocyanins (which produce red and purple colors).
4. **Carotenes**: Carotenes are always present in leaves, but they are usually masked by the dominant green of chlorophyll. As the green fades, the yellow and orange pigments become more apparent.
5. **Anthocyanins**: Anthocyanins, on the other hand, are produced in some species as a response to cool weather and excess sunlight. These pigments are not present in leaves throughout the growing season. In some trees and plants, they are produced in response to the combination of bright, sunny days and cool nights. This is why some leaves turn vibrant red or purple in the fall.
6. **Nutrient Resorption**: Before leaves fall from the tree, the plant reabsorbs some of the nutrients from them, particularly nitrogen. These nutrients are stored in the plant to be used in the next growing season.
The exact colors and timing of fall foliage can vary depending on the type of tree or plant, its location, and the specific environmental conditions of that year. This is why you might see different shades and hues in different regions during the fall season.
WEDNESDAY OCT. 4, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
Monday October 2, 2023
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“All that is gold does not glitter;
not all those who wander are lost;
the old that is strong does not wither;
deep roots are not reached by the frost..”
― J.R.R. Tolkien
Assisted living supply increasing,
but access remains a challenge
for most older adults
By Kimberly Bonvissuto
Three years after the COVID-19 pandemic hit the nation, major gaps in care for older adults and people with disabilities persist, particularly in attracting and retaining the long-term care workforce and providing access to care.
The AARP unveiled its new Long-Term Services & Supports State Scorecard on Thursday, providing a state-by-state analysis of long-term care across the country. The association ranked and measured state performances across all LTSS areas using 50 indicators across five dimensions: affordability and access, choice of setting and provider, safety and quality, support for family caregivers, and community integration.
For the first time, more than half (53%) of Medicaid LTSS spending for older adults and people with physical disabilities went to home- and community-based services — up from 37% in 2009, according to the LTSS Scorecard.
Read more >> https://www.mcknightsseniorliving.com/home/news/assisted-living-supply-increasing-but-access-remains-a-challenge-for-most-older-adults-aarp/
3 Hard Truths About
the Future of Social Security
By Katie Brockman
- Social Security is a lifeline for many, but it's been struggling in recent years.
- Between benefit cuts and changes to the program, the future is uncertain.
- Now is the time to start preparing for these potential changes.
Social Security isn't as reliable as it once was. Here's what you need to know.
Millions of older Americans rely on Social Security to make ends meet in retirement, but the program has been facing financial problems for years. Contrary to what many people believe, the program isn't going bankrupt. However, there could be big changes on the horizon -- which may affect your monthly checks.
It's unclear exactly what the future holds for Social Security. But regardless of whether you're already retired or planning on retiring in the near future, there are a few hard truths to start preparing for now.
Read more >> https://www.fool.com/retirement/2023/09/28/3-hard-truths-about-the-future-of-social-security/
RSV Vaccine Side Effects:
What Older Adults Should Know
Before the Shot
By Sherri Gordon
With RSV (respiratory syncytial virus) season almost in full swing, medical professionals are urging people to speak to their healthcare providers about getting vaccinated.
Two vaccines, Arexvy (GSK) and Abrysvo (Pfizer), have already rolled out; both are single dose and approved for people aged 60 and older, and Abrysvo has also been approved for those between 32 and 36 weeks pregnant to help protect newborns. These are the first RSV vaccines ever available.
These are “great [tools] to protect some of our most vulnerable patients,” Nora Colburn, MD, an infectious diseases specialist and clinical assistant professor at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center, told Health.
Over 65? Beware Medical Debt
4 million owe a record $54 billion
By Jon Marcus
Two years. That’s how long Donna Domingo has been fighting with her insurance company over a medical expense.
A diabetic, Domingo needs an insulin pump, which the insurance company considers a prescription medication, not a piece of medical equipment. That makes her share of the cost nearly $500 for each three-month supply.
“There’s no drug in it. It’s a device,” says Domingo, 62, who worked in the pharmaceutical industry for 27 years. “How can you bill me for a medical device under a prescription program?”
Disabled and living on Social Security, she says she had to cut into the rest of her household budget to keep paying these bills.
“How am I supposed to afford this? I’m taking it out of food money,” says Domingo, who lives in Port Jervis, New York.
10 Most Charming Towns
in the U.S. for a Fall Getaway
By ABBY REINHARD
There's something special about vacationing in the autumn months when the air is pleasantly "crisp," and we can pack our favorite jeans and sweaters. Maybe you have dreams of snuggling by the fire with your partner, having a girls' weekend somewhere fun, or taking the kids to explore the golden fall foliage. Whatever you have in mind, now is a great time to plan a trip and immerse yourself in those cozy, comforting vibes—and travel experts have plenty of suggestions for the most charming towns for a fall getaway. Read on to find out where they recommend you post up and embrace the seasonal scenery.
1- Asheville, North Carolina
If you're looking for the perfect autumnal escape, look no further than Asheville, North Carolina.
How much more time would you like to have in your life? A hundred, two hundred, three hundred years? Perhaps even forever? I believe most people have pondered this question at some point. Many religions promise the gift of everlasting life, but they don't specify whether it's on Earth. Personally, I'm unsure if I'd want to exist indefinitely in a heavenly realm where everyone is always in white and exceedingly devout. I prefer a more earthbound life. One where I could enjoy doing what I like until the time comes when I’ve had enough. Then, I would decide when to pack up an shuffle off this mortal coil.
It seems I'm not the only one who believes humans can live much longer than what's typically expected. Many individuals are actively working on finding ways to prevent or completely eliminate the causes of human death. Influential figures like Jeff Bezos, Elon Musk, and Peter Thiel are investing significant amounts of money in startups that aim to extend our youth or even defy death. I suppose if you're that wealthy, you'd prefer to have more time to enjoy your riches rather than watching them go to waste on foundations, charities, or relatives. Then there's a man in California who, at the age of 46, * has assembled a team of doctors and scientists committed to keeping him alive for as long as possible. With his substantial wealth (estimated to be over 100 million dollars), he has the means to pursue his dream. But what about the rest of us regular folks who are nearing an age where simply making it to the next year is seen as a blessing?
The biggest reason I wish to live longer isn't about wealth, love, or even personal desires like pleasure. No, I want another fifty or even one hundred years just to witness what comes next. I'm curious about what the future has in store for humanity. The rapid progress of technology and the swift depletion of our natural resources suggest that there will be intriguing times ahead. I want to be around to see it all unfold.
What will the 30th generation of the iPhone be like? What will power our cars? Can we erase poverty and make housing more affordable? Will dementia and Alzheimer's be things of the past? We've already begun efforts toward all these goals. Don't you wonder how it will all turn out? And looking further ahead, what about the distant future? Will we connect with beings from another world? Will we even want to? I crave answers to all of these questions. It's like reading a captivating book only to discover the final chapter is absent. It feels quite unjust.
I want to make it clear that I don't wish to go back in time or be 17 again. I appreciate the wisdom and clear thinking that comes with age. I simply want to be part of the positive changes that may happen globally. And if that doesn't happen, I still want to witness what unfolds…..
*Read about it here >> https://time.com/6315607/bryan-johnsons-quest-for-immortality/
GOLD BUYING TIPS
1. **Understand Your Objectives**: Determine why you want to invest in gold. Is it for wealth preservation, portfolio diversification, or speculation? Knowing your objectives will help shape your investment strategy.
2. **Research Different Forms of Gold**: Gold can be purchased in various forms, including coins, bars, jewelry, and exchange-traded funds (ETFs). Each form has its advantages and drawbacks, so it's important to understand them before making a purchase.
3. **Verify the Purity and Authenticity**: If you're buying physical gold, ensure it's of high purity. The most common measures are karats for jewelry and fineness (parts per thousand) for bars and coins. Look for reputable dealers and consider obtaining a certificate of authenticity.
4. **Choose a Reputable Dealer**: Only buy from reputable and well-established dealers. Check for certifications, customer reviews, and any affiliations with recognized organizations like the Better Business Bureau.
5. **Beware of Counterfeits**: Counterfeit gold exists, so be cautious. Use reputable dealers and consider conducting additional tests, like the magnet test, specific gravity test, or seeking the assistance of a professional appraiser.
6. **Consider Storage and Security**: If you're purchasing physical gold, you'll need a safe and secure place to store it. This could be a bank's safety deposit box, a home safe, or a specialized storage facility.
7. **Keep an Eye on Market Trends**: Understand the factors that influence gold prices, such as inflation, interest rates, geopolitical events, and currency fluctuations. Staying informed will help you make more informed investment decisions.
8. **Diversify Your Portfolio**: While gold can be a valuable addition to your investment portfolio, it's important not to put all your resources into a single asset. Diversification can help spread risk.
9. **Be Prepared for Volatility**: Like any investment, the price of gold can be volatile. It's important to have a long-term perspective and not panic-sell in response to short-term fluctuations.
10. **Consider Tax Implications**: Depending on your jurisdiction, there may be tax implications when buying, selling, or owning gold. Consult a tax advisor to understand the tax treatment of gold investments in your area.
Remember, investing in gold, like any other investment, carries risks. It's important to do your own research and consider seeking advice from financial professionals before making any significant investment decisions.
TUESDAY OCT. 3, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
Friday September 29, 2023
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“Love speaks in flowers. Truth requires thorns.”
― Leigh Bardugo
4 Questions To Ask About
an Upcoming Surgery
By Kayla Keena
Patients and their loved ones should always ask questions to understand their treatment better and feel more secure in the treatment decisions. Below, we’ve compiled some good questions to ask your doctor about an upcoming surgery to learn more and make an informed decision.
What Is the Operation, and Why Is It Necessary?
First, if the surgeon or doctor hasn’t thoroughly explained it already, ask what the operation you or your loved one is for. You need to understand what the operation is and why your doctor recommends it.
.If you already know the recommended surgical procedure before a meeting with the surgeon, consider looking up the surgery online to learn more before the meeting. Have them explain why this surgery, in particular, is the best treatment option as opposed to other surgical procedures or treatments.
Read more >> https://seniorslifestylemag.com/health-well-being/4-questions-to-ask-about-an-upcoming-surgery/
Want the Max $4,555
Social Security Benefit Check?
Here's the Salary You Need.
By Trevor Jennewine
- The highest Social Security benefit you can receive in 2023 is $4,555 per month, up from $4,194 last year.
- Social Security benefits are calculated based on lifetime earnings and claiming age.
- Workers must meet or exceed the maximum taxable earnings limit for 35 years and delay benefits until age 70 to qualify for the maximum benefit.
Not many people make enough money to qualify for the maximum Social Security benefit.
Most retired workers depend on Social Security benefits to make ends meet. In fact, because benefits represent guaranteed income, they tend to become increasingly important as other sources of income such as retirement accounts are depleted over time. That means current workers have good reason to maximize their future Social Security payout.
However, most Americans are unclear on how to do that. Only 14% of adults surveyed by Nationwide Retirement Institute strongly agreed with the following statement: "I know exactly how to maximize my Social Security benefits."
Read more >> https://www.fool.com/retirement/2023/09/27/max-social-security-benefit-heres-salary-you-need/
about Social Security
that can help you
plan your retirement
By Kyle' D. McKinney
Social Security benefits are part of the retirement plan of almost every American worker. If you’re among the many people covered under Social Security, you should know what your future benefit may be. Monthly benefit payments will likely be an important part of your retirement income.
We base your benefit payment on how much you earned during your working career. Higher lifetime earnings result in higher benefits. If there were some years you didn’t work or had low earnings, your benefit amount may be lower than if you had worked steadily. If you never worked and did not pay Social Security taxes, you may be eligible for spouse’s retirement benefits. You must be at least 62 years old, and your spouse must already be receiving retirement or disability benefits.
Read more >> click here
HAVE YOU NOTICED THESE
SUBTLE BALANCE CHANGES?
BY CLAUDINE AHERNE
Have you recently found yourself thinking more about your balance? Have you noticed changes in your balance? Are you feeling unsteady or wobbly in certain places or situations?
It’s easy to overlook subtle changes, especially when life keeps us busy.
But these small shifts can be early indicators of changes in your balance. Ignoring them means missing out on the chance to take proactive steps.
In this article, we’ll explore:
- The early signs that your balance might be shifting.
- Why it’s crucial not to ignore these changes.
- Three actionable steps you can take today if you’ve noticed changes in your balance.
Read more >> https://sixtyandme.com/balance-changes-alert/
Elevating Seniors’ Active Lifestyles:
The XP3 Court™ Custom Orthotic
By Dr. Christine Foss
In an era where active living is at the forefront of healthy aging, the XP3™ Court Orthotic by Foot Levelers emerges as a pivotal tool for seniors. This remarkable advancement in orthotics is designed to enhance performance, prevent injuries, and support an active lifestyle for those who cherish sports like tennis, pickleball, volleyball and basketball.
Preventing Injuries: A Key Concern for Active Seniors
For active seniors, participating in sports isn’t just a pastime; it’s a way of life. However, it’s no secret that the risk of injuries tends to increase with age, particularly when engaging in high-impact activities. Active seniors aged 65 and older face the risk of experiencing a fall—a pervasive concern that makes falls the primary cause of injuries and injury-related fatalities within this demographic. Shockingly, one in every four older adults encounters a fall each year in the United States, highlighting the pressing issue of falls within the aging population and underscoring the importance of senior safety.
Learn more >> https://seniorslifestylemag.com/health-well-being/elevating-seniors-active-lifestyles-the-xp3-court-custom-orthotic/
At The A.L.F....
My Ice Cream Meltdown
It's Friday, which means it's "Ice Cream Social" day at the Asylum. Every Friday at 3pm, a group of resident ice cream “junkies” head to our auditorium where our staff takes orders for custom-made ice cream sundaes. We usually have chocolate or vanilla, but you can add syrup, sprinkles, and cherries to either or both. I usually go all out and ask for everything.
To say I love ice cream is an understatement. It's more like saying the Pope loves Jesus. Honestly, I'm obsessed with ice cream. If I had my way, I'd have it for every meal (Bacon, eggs, and a chocolate cone, please). While it's not my only indulgence, it's definitely my number one.
Even as a kid, I didn't really like cake, candy, or the usual salty snacks like potato chips, pretzels, or salted peanuts. Even those super sugary kids' cereals didn't appeal to me. But if you mentioned ice cream, I'd get excited like a hungry dog hearing an electric can opener.
I think my love for ice cream comes from the fact that it wasn't as easy to get back then. See, the freezers in regular fridges were small, so only "important" stuff could go in there. Things like Birdseye frozen spinach, Minute Maid orange juice, or one of my mom's homemade creations took priority over something as fun as ice cream. This meant the only way I could satisfy my craving was to trek down four flights of stairs, brave the traffic on busy Bedford Avenue, and go to the candy store where, for 15 cents, I could get a Breyer's Dixie cup filled with my favorite flavor, chocolate.
I recall that the small cups used to come with a convenient wooden spoon. Regardless of the type of freezer the store had, the contents of the cup remained frozen solid even in hot weather. The cold ice cream would often break the wooden spoon into pieces, leaving only your tongue to enjoy the chocolaty goodness. Eventually, as the ice cream melted, you could use the remaining bits of the spoon to scoop out the rest. As an added bonus, the Dixie cup lids featured collectible images of TV or movie stars. The most enjoyable part was licking the ice cream off the pictures of Hopalong Cassidy or Roy Rogers.
Surprisingly, I stuck with Breyer's ice cream for a long time. Then, what used to be a simple dessert turned fancy with brands like Hagen Dazs, Frusen Gladje, and Ben and Jerry's. The 15-cent treat turned into a $5.00 pint. And the basic chocolate flavor transformed into options like Rocky Road, Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, and Cherry Garcia. But despite the price, my love did not diminish. I always had a pint or two in my fridge. And, after a particularly lousy day at work, I found comfort knowing that my “sedative” was only a few steps away.
Today, I still savor ice cream. Sadly, just like when I was young, my small refrigerator can't keep things frozen anymore. So, I rely on occasional desserts after dinner, the Mr. Softee truck's bi-weekly visits, or special ice cream events like today's organized by our activities director. I can hardly wait.
As the week comes to a close, I want to remind you to check out our weekend content. There's always something new, along with the opportunity to enjoy articles from our archives. Have a wonderful weekend, indulge in some ice cream, and come back on Monday for more. Oh, and don't forget the sprinkles!…..
* The Mr. Softee man only comes in the warm weather months meaning his visits will soon end.
The most popular flowers in the world
Roses -These flowers come in many colors, sizes, and shapes, and can symbolize many aspects of humanity, such as beauty, innocence, war, politics, and romance. Roses are often given on special occasions, such as weddings, anniversaries, and Valentine's Day.
Carnations -These flowers are often used in bouquets, especially for Mother's Day celebrations.
Daisies -There are over 32,000 different species of daisies, and they are often used in gardens and floral arrangements.
Hydrangeas -These flowers are known for their large flower heads and come in many colors. They are often used as the focal flower in big bouquets.
Other popular flowers include:
Gerbera, Tulip, Lily, Calla Lily, Orchid, Iris.
Roses have been featured in many works of art, literature, and poetry. They have been given to people for centuries to symbolize love, beauty, and romance.
NEXT WEEKDAY BLOG
MONDAY OCT. 2, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
Thursday September 28, 2023
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“Noodles are not only amusing but delicious.”
of Medication Errors
By Amanda Chen
A study found that about 10% of deaths in the United States result from medical mistakes. The nation ranks third in terms of fatalities.
You put your trust in the medical professionals and pharmacists at a hospital or other healthcare facility to safely provide the medications you require. Unfortunately, you might occasionally put your trust in the wrong people. Numerous patients each year receive the incorrect treatment for their wounds and ailments.
There are several places where specialized Louisville medical malpractice attorneys have seen medication mistakes occur, including clinics, nursing homes, hospitals, pharmacies, and doctor’s offices. This type of medical negligence may cause fatalities or severe injuries.
Read more >> https://seniorslifestylemag.com/health-well-being/legal-consequences-of-medication-errors/
A Good Way to Lose Everything
BY JANE WELLS
Your mother is slowly losing her mind, and you’re concerned that she’s going to give away all of her money to a niece, or to your brother, or a caregiver, maybe her ex-husband, even a Nigerian prince. She’s built up quite a nest egg over the years, making her a target.
Mom needs someone to intervene before she loses everything, someone with authority beyond power of attorney for medical or financial decisions. You decide there needs to be legal intervention, so you seek out a lawyer. The lawyer files paperwork for an emergency hearing to make your mother a ward of the state who needs a legal guardian. You are confident that the judge will pick someone competent.
Probably you, right?
Then, in a surprise move, the hearing takes place, but you’re not notified. During the hearing, a judge appoints a professional guardian — sometimes called a conservator — to take over your mother’s affairs. You’ve never heard of this person, and eventually this stranger is named your mother’s permanent guardian.
Online tool could help older adults
age in setting of their choice
By Kimberly Bonvissuto
Aging in America is difficult for some older adults, who can face an array of challenges that include housing, healthcare and food insecurity, along with outdated policies that contribute to increasing poverty rates, according to experts speaking Thursday. For senior living providers, those challenges can prevent older adults from moving into their communities.
The Elder Index, an online tool, can provide policymakers, researchers and everyday people with a better understanding of the true cost of aging in America, experts from the National Council on Aging Equity in Aging Collaborative and the University of Boston at Massachusetts said in a briefing highlighting the tool. That improved understanding ultimately could enable older adults to live in the setting of their choice.
“Aging well in America should be a right, not a privilege for just some,” NCOA President and CEO Ramsey Alwin said.
Read more >> https://www.mcknightsseniorliving.com/home/news/online-tool-could-help-older-adults-age-in-setting-of-their-choice/
Seniors have stopped eating at
Cracker Barrel, Olive Garden —
and it’s not clear when they’ll come back
By Lisa Fickenscher
Retirees have lost their appetite for Cracker Barrel and Olive Garden since the pandemic — and it’s not clear when they’ll come back, according to the chains’ top brass.
No amount of biscuits and gravy or unlimited pasta refills seems to be enough to entice the 65-and-older crowd as they continue to pinch pennies amid high inflation and duck the coronavirus, according to Rick Cardenas, chief executive of Darden Restaurants, which owns Olive Garden.
“I do believe that they were a little bit more spooked on the COVID side,” Cardenas told analysts on a Thursday conference call.
Read more >> https://nypost.com/2023/09/22/seniors-have-cut-back-on-dinners-at-cracker-barrel-olive-garden/
America embraces prenups:
50% of adults open to signing
By Carly Mallenbaum
Half of U.S. adults say they're open to signing a prenup, according to new data — preconceived notions about romance and matrimony be damned.
Why it matters: More fiancés (millennials in particular) want to protect their assets before they tie the knot by signing prenups, contracts previously linked to only the rich and famous.
By the numbers: 50% of U.S. adults said they at least somewhat supported the use of prenups, although about only 1 in 5 married couples has a prenuptial agreement, according to a September Harris Poll survey conducted for Axios.
Learn more >> https://www.axios.com/2023/09/24/prenup-rates-us-marriage?utm_source=join1440&utm_medium=email&utm_placement=newsletter
Oodles of Noodles
Y’all are eating a whole lot of Cup Noodles. The demand for instant noodles jumped 2.6% globally to a record high of 121.2 billion servings last year as inflation drove up food prices, according to figures from the World Instant Noodles Association. The just-add-water dinner is most popular in China and other Asian countries, but Big Slurp is gaining ground in North America, too. Demand spiked 17.2% in Mexico in 2021 and another 11% last year. In the US, their popularity dipped 1.4% in 2021, but sales rebounded by 3.4% in 2022. Two major Japanese noodle companies are planning to set up factories in the US by 2025 to meet the growing local appetite.
FRIDAY SEPT. 29, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
Wednesday September 27, 2023
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We are hardly ever grateful for a fine clock or watch when it goes right,
and we pay attention to it only when it falters, for then we are caught by surprise.
It ought to be the other way about.
These 5 jobs put workers at
a greater risk of dementia:
By Ben Cost
So much for the expression “healthy body, healthy mind”: People who work more physically demanding jobs could be more likely to contract dementia, per a study detailed in the science journal The Lancet.
“Our work also highlights what is called the physical activity paradox – the association of leisure time physical activity with better cognitive outcomes, and how work-related physical activity can lead to worse cognitive outcomes,” said head author, Vegard Skirbekk, a professor of Population and Family Health at Columbia Public Health, per the Sun.
He and his team conducted the study in collaboration with the Norwegian National Centre of Ageing and Health and the Butler Columbia Aging Center.
Read more >> https://nypost.com/2023/09/18/these-5-jobs-put-workers-at-a-greater-risk-of-dementia-new-research/
Meals on Wheels America Rallies the Nation
to Call on Congress to #SaveLunch for Seniors
as Federal Funding is Being Threatened
With the September 30 federal funding deadline approaching, Meals on Wheels America – the leadership organization supporting the network of more than 5,000 community-based programs across the country that are dedicated to addressing senior hunger and isolation – is calling upon Congress to #SaveLunch for millions of American seniors as key hunger relief and nutrition programs are being threatened. The organization is asking everyone to take action by visiting www.savelunch.org to send a direct message to your Members of Congress, urging them to protect and increase funding for Meals on Wheels services.
This appropriations deadline coincides with the one-year anniversary of the White House Conference on Hunger, Nutrition and Health and the administration's commitment to increase federal funding for programs like Meals on Wheels and end hunger by 2030. Approximately 37% of local Meals on Wheels program funding comes from the federal government, primarily through the Older Americans Act. This represents just one hundredth of 1 percent of the entire federal budget. Funding has neither kept pace with inflation nor the rapid growth in America's senior population. In fact, one in three programs has a waiting list with seniors spending an average of three months waiting for vital meals. Funding levels provided by the Older Americans Act would need to increase by $32 million this year just to keep pace with inflation.
Read more >> https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/meals-on-wheels-america-rallies-the-nation-to-call-on-congress-to-savelunch-for-seniors-as-federal-funding-is-being-threatened-301938179.html
Increasing Steps by 3,000 Per Day
Can Lower Blood Pressure in Older Adults
'It’s exciting that a simple lifestyle intervention can be just
as effective as structured exercise and some medications'
An estimated 80% of older adults in the U.S. have high blood pressure. Maintaining healthy blood pressure can protect against serious conditions like heart failure, heart attacks, and strokes.
A new study including Linda Pescatello, distinguished professor of kinesiology in the College of Agriculture, Health and Natural Resources, found that adding a relatively minimal amount of movement, about 3,000 steps per day, can significantly reduce high blood pressure in older adults.
Pescatello worked with Elizabeth Lefferts, the lead author of the paper, Duck-chun Lee, and others in Lee’s lab at Iowa State University. They published their findings in a recent issue of the Journal of Cardiovascular Development and Disease.
Read more >> https://today.uconn.edu/2023/09/increasing-steps-by-3000-per-day-can-lower-blood-pressure-in-older-adults/#
Never past your prime!
13 peaks we reach at 40 or later –
from sex to running to self-esteem
Ageing doesn’t have to mean slowing down. In fact, you’re more likely
to win an ultramarathon in midlife, not to mention get happier,
wiser and more body confident
By Emma Beddington
It’s easy to fixate on everything you’re getting worse at as you age. I’m 48, and trying to remember a phone number long enough to dial it, write under time pressure or sprint after the bus all leave me marvelling – if that’s the word – at my evaporating abilities. Muscle and bone mass decline from your 30s, and midlife can feel like a slippery, baffling slope towards decay (yes, I am fun to be around, thank you for noticing). But are there things even someone as ancient as me can still get better at?
The assumption that ageing is inevitably a process of cognitive and physical decline is one Daniel Levitin, professor of neuroscience at McGill University, sought to challenge in his book The Changing Mind. “Our societal narrative is not based on science – it’s based entirely on prejudice,” he tells me. “Contrary to popular myth, we never stop learning or growing new brain connections.” Hearing this, I’m reminded that my newfound love of birds has furnished me with a shiny new mental library of calls and feather patterns. I’ve also managed, with practice, to improve my terrible sight-singing at choir.
10 Fun Part-Time Jobs for Retirement
By Maryalene LaPonsie
Retirement is often portrayed as lazy days at home broken up by afternoons spent on the golf course. However, not everyone wants to spend their golden years unemployed.
“It isn’t always about making money,” says Izzy Kharasch, president of consulting firm Hospitality Works Inc. “It’s about social interactions.”
Many retirees seek part-time jobs to help fill the days and meet new people, as well as earn income to supplement retirement savings. If you're interested in joining the ranks of working retirees, here are some ideas for fun part-time jobs.
Learn more >> https://money.usnews.com/money/retirement/second-careers/articles/fun-part-time-jobs-for-retirement
Oh, it's a long long while
From May to December
But the days grow short
When you reach September
When the autumn weather
Turns leaves to flame
One hasn't got time
For the waiting game
Oh, the days dwindle down
To a precious few
The lyrics of "September Song" used to be just pleasant words to me, sung by different artists I liked, such as Frank Sinatra, Willie Nelson, and my favorite, Jimmy Durante. But now, as I get older, those words hold a deeper meaning. They don't just bring sadness, they also remind me of the preciousness of every remaining moment.
As we get older, time seems to pass more quickly. Moments that used to feel long now seem to fly by. It's like when a roll of toilet paper gets smaller, and eventually, it's all used up. But unlike toilet paper, we can't get a new roll of time. Comparisons like this remind us that time is our most precious resource, and once it's gone, we can't get it back. It's common to look back on our youth and think we should have used our time more wisely, but that's not true. We were actually doing exactly what young people should do: exploring, having adventures, making mistakes, and learning.
A real way to waste time is to dwell on the past. What matters most is how we use the time we have now. Each of us has our own ideas about how to do that. Unfortunately, some older people choose to do nothing at all. I mean absolutely nothing. They don't read, hardly watch TV, skip planned activities, and, worst of all, hardly interact with others. In our assisted living facility, there are residents who haven't left their rooms for years. Their only human contact is with the aides who bring them meals and medication. But that's their choice. If it brings them comfort, who am I to argue? What concerns me are those who truly waste their time. Those seniors who spend their days harboring hate and ill will towards others.
While I was president of the resident's council, I really wanted to highlight how crucial it was for us to work together. I believed that holding onto hatred was the least helpful way to spend our time. Sadly, it felt like I was stating the obvious. The residents who came to the meetings were already on the same page. The ones who really needed the message were absent.
None of us are certain about how much time we have. If we knew, we might use it in ways that truly matter. Not everyone will be remembered for generations, and if that's what you aimed for, it's likely not to happen. However, if you want to feel like your life had purpose, do something for others. Whether through actions, words, or deeds, it takes just a small amount of your valuable time to be kind or say something nice to someone. Time is running out for all of us. How we use the remaining time might be the true legacy we leave behind.………………..
*Partial lyrics from “September Song” written by: Kurt Weill, Maxwell Anderson
THE WORLDS BEST SELLING WATCHES
The best selling watch brands in the world are Rolex, Omega, Apple, Fossil, Cartier, Citizen, Seiko, and Patek Philippe. Rolex is the most popular watch brand worldwide. The Rolex Submariner is the most popular watch in the world based on Google search volume.
THURSDAY SEPT. 28, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
Tuesday September 26, 2023
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“I am starting to think that maybe memories are like this dessert.
I eat it, and it becomes a part of me,
whether I remember it later or not.”
― Erica Bauermeister
Why Older Adults Are at
Higher Risk of Dehydration
Just like your hair color and activity levels, the amount of water you need to drink changes as you age. And because of that, older adults are more at risk for dehydration.
“With weather being hotter than before, coupled with people living longer, dehydration has become an even more important issue for older people,” says Taimur Habib, MD, who specializes in primary care and geriatrics for Hartford HealthCare Medical Group.
Why are seniors more at risk for dehydration?
The younger you are, the more water your body needs, but you still need an adequate amount of water as you age and you’re much less likely to drink enough.
The reason? First, your appetite and thirst tends to diminish as you age, says Dr. Habib. And certain medications can increase dehydration and require adjustments to your water intake.
Read more >> https://hartfordhospital.org/about-hh/news-center/news-detail?articleId=51410&publicid=395
Older adults at risk for dementia
see fast declines in household wealth
before dementia onset
BY KIMBERLY BONVISSUTO
Household wealth, especially financial wealth, declines much more quickly among people with probable dementia in the decade before dementia onset compared with older adults without a dementia diagnosis, according to a newly published research letter in JAMA Neurology.
A study led by Jing Li, PhD, MA, from the University of Washington, Seattle, compared trajectories in household wealth for older adults who developed probable dementia with those in a control group without dementia.
The researchers found that household wealth, especially financial wealth, declined much faster among people with probable dementia than those without dementia during the decade before dementia onset. Financial wealth included stocks, checking and saving accounts, money market accounts, certificates of deposit, bonds and other financial assets minus debt.
Read more >> https://www.mcknightsseniorliving.com/home/news/older-adults-at-risk-for-dementia-see-fast-declines-in-household-wealth-before-dementia-onset/
Social Security Benefits
Are Growing Too Fast
By Romina Boccia
Here’s an unpopular opinion: Social Security benefits are growing too fast. And this excessive benefit growth is one of the key reasons the program is unsustainable.
We’ve all heard that entitlement programs are suffering under the weight of a demographic shift. The American population is aging and living longer, as fertility has declined. Fewer new workers as the share of the senior population increases means fewer taxpayers available to cover the cost of old‐age benefits.
This is true. And it’s also true that we could solve a lot of the entitlement spending problem, without cutting a single penny from current benefits, by slowing the growth in benefits.
‘We’ll be living and working to 120 –
and it will start within a decade’
says doctor to the stars
By Jacquelynn Powers Maurice
It is a traditional Jewish birthday greeting: “May you live to be 120.” And so far, only one person in all of history is officially recorded as having made it that far.
But now a doctor tells The Post that living a full, healthy life to 120 will be attainable — starting this decade.
Dr. Ernst von Schwarz believes that rapid advances in stem cells mean living and even working far beyond current expectations is entirely within humanity’s grasp and that 150 will be normal by the end of the century.
4 Surprising Benefits of the Flu Shot
The vaccine can protect you from influenza, and it may have some other perks as well
By Beth Howard
Not getting sick from the flu is reason enough to roll up your sleeve for a flu vaccine every fall. And along with preventing millions of cases of influenza each year, flu shots also reduce hospitalizations for complications of this misery-making seasonal illness, which are most common among older adults.
A 2021 study from researchers at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that adults who got vaccinated were 26 percent less likely to be admitted to the intensive care unit and 31 percent less likely to die from the flu compared to those who were unvaccinated. There seems to be protection from illness even when vaccines aren’t perfectly matched to the strain of flu virus circulating (which happens because the shot is formulated months in advance).
But evidence suggests other payoffs beyond defense from fever, fatigue, chills and aches.
MOST POPULAR DESSERTS IN THE U.S.
The most popular desserts in the United States include:
Chocolate chip cookies, Ice cream, Pies, Doughnuts, Cakes, S'mores, Cheesecake, Fudge, Brownies.
According to a survey, ice cream, cookies, and chocolate are the most popular desserts. Ice cream is also the most popular dessert in the US, with the most Google searches in five states.
Some other popular desserts include:
Coffee cake, Latte, mocha, chai, matcha, and earl grey flavored cakes and ice creams
Boston cream pie, which combines vanilla cake, vanilla custard, and chocolate ganache
Monday September 25, 2023
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“It's one thing to stick to your guns.
It's quite another to hold those guns
to the heads of your citizens.”
― Lori Lifsey
How To Mitigate
The Looming Senior Care Crisis
By Rebecca Love
Rebecca Love is the Chief Clinical Officer at IntelyCare, the first nurse featured on Ted.com and a leader in nurse workforce innovation.
Long-term and senior care in the United States is in crisis. We have over 56.4 million people over 65. There are few, if any, good insurance-covered, affordable or scalable options to meet the needs of this aging population—in everything from housing to services to care. How we care for older people is a community issue—or it should be.
Our current approach of casting aside older adults isn't sustainable for them, their caregivers or society. We must shift our cultural view of aging to ensure that our senior citizens are welcomed and integrated into the fabric of community life, not shut away, out of sight.
Read more >> https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbesbusinesscouncil/2023/09/21/how-to-mitigate-the-looming-senior-care-crisis/?sh=587159b27dca
Proper treatment for hypertension
could avert 76 million deaths globally by 2050,
By Amanda Musa
The dangerous effects of high blood pressure are highlighted in a new report by the World Health Organization that identifies the condition as one of the world’s leading risk factors for death and disability.
Published Tuesday, WHO’s first report on the global impact of high blood pressure, also known as hypertension, offers recommendations on ways to combat the “silent killer.”
Hypertension, categorized as a blood pressure reading of 140/90 mmHg or higher, affects 1 in 3 adults worldwide, according to the report. It commonly leads to a number of other health problems including stroke, heart attack, heart failure and kidney damage.
Ageism in the Media:
An Insider’s Perspective
BY RICHARD EISENBERG
Older Americans and researchers studying aging agree: the media is ageist.
A striking 83% of adults ages 50 and older said in a 2021 survey from the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media and the NextFifty Initiative, “sometimes I feel the media/culture doesn’t realize how much they stereotype older people.”
And a 2021 study published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health found that negative descriptions of older adults in a 1.1 billion-word U.S. and U.K. media database “outnumber positive ones by six times.”
In addition, eight researchers wrote in The Journals of Gerontology that the pandemic led “an increasing portrayal of those over the age of 70 as being all alike with regard to being helpless, frail, and unable to contribute to society,” spreading those views in social media and the press.
Are We Losing the War on Cancer?
For half a century, we have thrown everything
we have at the disease, but we are no closer to curing it
BY RENÉE PELLERIN
CHRISTOPHER BOOTH walks into the examination room with a warm smile, pulls up a chair close to his patient, and leans in. He doesn’t check notes on a clipboard, doesn’t glance at a computer screen. He studies his charts thoroughly before entering so that patients have his full attention. Booth, a medical oncologist and professor at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario, specializes in gastrointestinal cancer. Most of the people he treats have advanced disease. In this Friday-morning clinic, he will see nine patients, most with complex cases.
A woman in her twenties who’d had colorectal cancer is frightened about a node on her lung. Booth assures her it’s just something to watch. An elderly man’s colon cancer has come back. It’s potentially curable, but the new tumour is in such a difficult place that removing it will require massive, risky surgery. It will be best to shrink the tumour first with chemotherapy. Another gentleman with relapsed metastatic colon cancer is here with his wife. They understand his disease is not curable, but they’re concerned the headaches he’s experiencing might mean it is escalating. They want to travel. A seventy-one-year-old woman, otherwise healthy, has pancreatic cancer. Booth must give her the disappointing news that she isn’t eligible for a clinical trial where she could have chemotherapy ahead of surgery. Her liver tests indicate it would be dangerous. Without diminishing the gravity of her situation, he offers reasons to be positive and promises that she will get the drug after the surgery.
Read more >> https://thewalrus.ca/are-we-losing-the-war-on-cancer/?utm_source=join1440&utm_medium=email
10 Must-Read Books for Seniors
By Alissa Sauer
Nothing beats a good book. Books can take us places we have never been, help us relive another time, and take us on great adventures – all without ever leaving home. Stimulating conversations across generations, bringing people of all walks of life together, books and the discussion surrounding them are powerful tools in improving the quality of life for anyone. Maybe that’s why book clubs are popping up at senior living communities all over the country. Or maybe it’s because reading has been linked to reduced stress, increased mental stimulation, and even improved memory. Whatever the reason, there’s no doubt that reading is a popular pastime among people of all ages – and especially seniors.
10 Books Loved by Seniors
From time treasured classics to more recent thrillers, here are 10 books that seniors shouldn’t miss.
1. The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah:
Hannah’s novel is a World War II page-turner featuring two sisters living in France when the Nazi’s invade. The sisters respond in very different ways to the occupation with one ultimately joining the Resistance and putting her life on the line for freedom. A popular book for all generations, The Nightingale is a must-read for anyone who loves historical fiction and cheers for the underdog.
2. A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman......
It’s Not Always Easy
Many people in their 40s, 50s, and 60s like to offer advice to senior citizens about dealing with the changes that come with old age. However, they may not truly understand what it's like to be old, as there's a significant difference between being "middle-aged" and being genuinely elderly.
Many older Americans read articles on blogs and websites tailored to their age group. These articles emphasize the benefits of activities like exercise, good sleep, socializing, healthy eating, and, my favorite, maintaining a positive outlook. I understand that there are seniors in their 80s and 90s who excel in activities like Pickleball, swimming laps in a large pool, or even completing marathons, and to them, I offer my heartfelt admiration. However, for the majority, it's not that they don't recognize the value of such a lifestyle, but rather, they face physical limitations that prevent them from doing so.
Even seniors who have been active throughout their lives can't avoid the effects of aging on their bodies. Even the most physically fit among us have no built-in defense against debilitating conditions like arthritis, osteoporosis, heart issues, lung problems, or kidney diseases, where the body's components wear out over time. You can't go for a run if your knee joints have deteriorated significantly. And how many rounds of tennis can you enjoy with lungs operating at only 50% capacity? It's incredibly challenging to maintain a positive outlook when each doctor's visit results in another medication you need just to prolong your life a bit longer.
I've consistently aimed to maintain a positive perspective, not in an overly optimistic manner, but with the belief that there's a solution for every challenge. Worrying about problems seems pointless and only deepens one's sadness or discontent. However, recently, it's getting tougher to stay positive. It's challenging to feel confident about the present when the future appears grim, and each day introduces new discomforts or the monotony of repeating the same routine becomes overwhelming, making sleep seem like the best escape.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not about to give up. And, with the help of an anti-depressant and some Tylenol , I’ll forge ahead, facing whatever test of my sanity comes along. But I just want to let you know that it’s okay to feel down once in a while. And that you are not the only old person who feels life is slipping away. And, by all means, take whatever the so-called experts on aging preach to you with a grain of salt. Let them walk a mile in your orthopedic moccasins before they are qualified to give you any advice……………..
 Please note: Never take any medication without the advice of a doctor. However, much of what you are feeling can be brought into perspective after consulting with a mental health professional.
IF THE GOVERNMENT SHUTS DOWN
WHAT HAPPENS TO SOCIAL SECURITY,
MEDICARE AND OTHER BENEFITS?
The Social Security Administration would continue to issue retirement and disability benefits, and payments would continue under the Medicare and Medicaid health programs.
Military veterans' benefits would also continue, according to a 2021 contingency plan.
Food assistance administered through the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program could be affected, as grocery stores would not be able to renew their licenses.
TUESDAY SEPT. 26, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
Friday September 22, 2023
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“I was sad because I had no shoes,
until I met a man who had no feet.
So I said, "Got any shoes you’re not using?”
― Steven Wright
How to handle selling a home
when moving into an assisted living facility
Families must make a number of important decisions when an aging relative decides the time is right to move into an assisted living facility.
Such facilities help older individuals who are having trouble living independently. In addition to finding a suitable facility for a loved one, many families must decide what to do with their aging loved one’s home.
Aging individuals with companions such as a spouse or a live-in partner may not need to sell their house if that person will not be moving to the assisted living facility with them. However, many partners also choose to move, and family members may need to sell their current home to pay for their loved one to stay at an assisted living facility. The senior care experts at Caring.com note that selling a home when a loved one decides to move into an assisted living facility can present some emotional aspects that are not necessarily present when selling one’s home. In recognition of that and some additional difficulties associated with this unique situation, Caring.com offers the following tips to help families navigate the process as smoothly as possible.
Regular consumption of cheese
may promote better cognitive health,
By JOY SAHA
A recent study published by the Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute (MDPI)'s journal titled Nutrients suggests that regular consumption of cheese may be linked to better cognitive health among older adults. The study analyzed data from 1,516 participants aged 65 and above, who were recruited from a broader geriatric survey that the team conducted once every two years. The participants, who were all based in Tokyo, Japan, were closely assessed on their dietary habits, with special focus on their cheese consumption.
Participants' cognitive capabilities were also measured using the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE), a popular 30-point test for evaluating cognitive function among the elderly. For this research study, a MMSE score of 23 or below signified lower cognitive function. "Previous studies have shown that a dietary pattern characterized by a high intake of soybean products, vegetables, seaweed, milk, and dairy products, together with a low intake of grain products, is associated with reduced risk of developing dementia; moreover, a high intake of milk and dairy products reduces the risk of developing dementia, especially Alzheimer's dementia," the study noted.
Read more >> https://www.salon.com/2023/09/19/regular-consumption-of-cheese-may-promote-better-cognitive-health-study-suggests/
Older adults with prior head injury
nearly twice as likely to sustain future fall
- Researchers examined more than 13,000 older adults with and without prior head injury.
- Those who suffered a prior head injury were almost two times as likely to suffer a subsequent fall.
Older adults who sustained a prior head injury were nearly two times as likely to sustain a future fall compared with those who did not have a prior head injury, according to a poster presentation.
“We wanted to look at the relationship between head injury and future fall risk,” Katherine J. Hunzinger, PhD, CEP, an assistant professor of exercise science at Thomas Jefferson University, told Healio at the American Neurological Association annual meeting. “Falls and head injury are most common in older adults.”
Read more >> https://www.healio.com/news/neurology/20230912/older-adults-with-prior-head-injury-nearly-twice-as-likely-to-sustain-future-fall
DOES WHAT YOU EAT REALLY MATTER
IN YOUR RETIREMENT YEARS?
BY JOE CARSON
We all know that as our bodies age, numerous changes take place. Some of these changes are good, some not-so-good, some we know about – some we do not.
For instance, you may not know that nutritional needs are among the top items that can change the most with age. However, some common misconceptions and fallacies surrounding these changes can have severe consequences if not properly managed.
Today I would like to take the opportunity to provide some clarity, guidance, and helpful information which will empower you to make choices that improve daily performance while diminishing the risk of preventable medical issues.
Myths and Facts About Nutrition;
Below are some of the more common myths and the scientifically supported facts which help to set the story straight:
Read more >> https://sixtyandme.com/myths-truths-nutrition/
Why Walking Only 3,867 Steps a Day
Is All You Need, Science Says
EVEN SHORT WALKS CAN TRANSFORM YOUR HEALTH AND HELP YOU LIVE LONGER.
BY LAUREN GRAY
With the rise in popularity of fitness trackers, reaching 10,000 steps per day has become a popular fitness goal. Now, a new Aug. 2023 study conducted by the European Society of Cardiology (ESC) and published in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology suggests that walking far less—just under 4,000 steps daily—can help you make significant strides in your health.
The new finding may be especially motivational for individuals who feel that bigger fitness goals are out of reach—and these are exactly the people who stand to gain the most from getting started. Adrian Todd, an occupational therapist, hiking coach, and the founder of Great Minds Think Hike, says the study serves as an important reminder that "something is always better than nothing." In other words, moving your body—whether for 10 minutes of walking, stretching, or weight lifting—is always better than skipping it.
Wondering what you stand to gain by walking for roughly 45 minutes per day? Read on to learn why 3,867 steps may be all you need to get yourself into better health.
When I moved here a decade ago, I had very little knowledge about assisted living. The brief tour they provided me two weeks before my move did not adequately prepare me for the actual experience of living here. They showed me the compact yet tidy rooms, the common areas like the library and dining room, and I observed well-dressed residents. At the end of the tour, I felt assured that this was the right place for my recovery and to reclaim some of my past life. While many of their promises held true, there was one unexpected aspect I wasn't ready for: a sense of apathy and indifference among the residents.
I thought I'd find a group of people with similar goals, dealing with different levels of mobility, all living together happily, united by a common purpose of making a tough situation easier. But what I actually found was a mix of people who only shared the desire to stay uninvolved and avoid causing any trouble.
After a few weeks, I began to figure out how things operated here. I noticed some problems that could be fixed to improve everyone's quality of life. The lines for morning medications were too long, which led to people pushing and cutting in line. Privacy wasn't respected, and the staff pried into residents' personal matters. Mealtimes in the dining room were always chaotic. I believed I could rally many, if not most, of the residents to speak up for change. I thought that if we stood together, we could make a difference. Unfortunately, all I managed to get were a few nods of agreement or sighs of resignation from the group.
I've never really been one to take a stand or get involved in causes. In college, I didn't join any anti-war groups or participate in protests or sit-ins. However, in the years before I came here, I experienced what I saw as the challenges of life in a nursing home, where they tended to assume complete control over patients' lives. While I understood the reasons behind it, it still bothered me. Now, in this less controlling environment, I felt it was time to be more assertive about my well-being. However, being an activist wasn't something that was seen in a positive light. Especially by my fellow residents, who saw me as a troublemaker and complainer. I quickly realized I was pretty much on my own in this thinking, except for one or two others. I couldn't gather support, and things stayed the same.
To this day, things remain the same. Although people have no trouble complaining privately, gathering genuine outrage seems nearly impossible. They don't realize that working together could lead to improvement. For instance, consider the food quality here. Almost everyone knows it's not up to par. Dishes often come out cold, overcooked, or poorly seasoned. Yet, even though they voice their dissatisfaction at the monthly food meetings, they seldom return their meals to the kitchen. Instead, they quietly endure the subpar food. Just imagine if everyone said, "Enough is enough" and sent their food back. Change would happen instantly. However, it's unlikely to occur. I know, I've tried.
Is apathy a symptom of old age? Maybe. But it seems the experts know as much about it as I do.
“Apathy is a common neuropsychiatric symptom in older adults that becomes increasingly prevalent with advancing age. It presents clinically as lack of motivation and reduced emotional, cognitive, and energetic behavior. Although clinically apathy appears to be related to depression, apathy is considered a distinct neuropsychiatric condition that can occur with or without depression. Apathy has been identified as a prominent behavioral symptom in Alzheimer’s disease and predicts decline in physical function in individuals with dementia. However, little is known about apathy as a marker of functional decline in healthy older adults.”
It seems I didn't realize the deeper reasons behind what I thought was indifference. People do care about how they're treated, but they often have more immediate concerns like pain, illness, and health issues. I've become more understanding as I've grown older. Maybe it's a sign of something else happening within me. What I can promise is that I'll keep striving to make things better for all of us.
Have a great weekend. Enjoy our weekend blog and we’ll be back early Monday with all new content……
1. **Oldest Footwear**: The oldest known footwear is a pair of sandals found in a cave in Oregon, USA, dating back to around 7,000 to 8,000 years ago.
2. **High Heels Were Originally for Men**: High heels were initially designed for men in the 10th century. They were used by Persian cavalry to help secure their feet in stirrups while riding.
3. **Platform Shoes**: Platform shoes, popular in the 1970s, were initially worn by Greek actors in ancient times to increase their height and visibility on stage.
4. **Expensive Shoes**: The world's most expensive pair of shoes are the "Passion Diamond Shoes" valued at $17 million. They are made from gold, leather, and adorned with 236 diamonds.
5. **Sneakers Name Origin**: The term "sneakers" came about because the rubber soles allowed wearers to move silently, or "sneak" around without being heard.
6. **Running Shoes for Different Surfaces**: Different running shoes are designed for specific terrains. For example, trail running shoes have aggressive treads for better traction on rugged trails.
7. **Shoe Size Variations**: The concept of standardized shoe sizes is relatively recent. Before that, shoes were often made to fit an individual's foot shape exactly.
8. **Shoe Production**: The global shoe industry produces over 23 billion pairs of shoes each year. China is the largest producer, followed by India and Vietnam.
9. **First Rubber Soled Shoes**: The first rubber-soled shoes were created in the early 19th century by Charles Goodyear, whose name later became synonymous with rubber-soled footwear.
10. **Shoe Museums**: There are museums dedicated solely to shoes. One of the most notable is the Bata Shoe Museum in Toronto, Canada, which houses a collection of over 13,000 pairs of shoes.
Remember, shoes have a rich history and have evolved significantly over time to cater to various needs and fashion trends. They are not only functional but also hold cultural, historical, and artistic significance.
NEXT WEEKDAY BLOG
MONDAY SEPT. 25, 2023
©2023 Bruce Cooper
Thursday September 21, 2023