How to have a healthy retirement
HEALTH goes to retirement school and meets a chronobiologist to find out how the change of rhythm can effect one’s well being. Also, in this edition, HEALTH looks at why anorexia tardive or the late onset of anorexia is a growing trend.
Studies show that some 10% of retirees suffer from depression. The change in the daily routine, adapting to different social standings and contacts all play a part. "The word retirement...what a villainous word...I am retiring...I am withdrawing...that's not true...in fact you're going to start something new," insists Philippe Rousseau, a chronobiologist who gives seminars on retirement.
A chronobiologist is someone who looks at how time affects our health. Retirement he says should not be seen as synonymous to inactivity but it does generally come when one is getting older and like it our not the body changes and these changes have to be accepted gracefully.
Sleeping patterns for example change throughout your life. As you age your body won’t sleep for such long periods at a time. This isn’t anything to worry about Philippe Rousseau says but its often because people see a difficulty in sleeping as a sign of being unwell that they find it very stressful. "Naturally enough if no-one tells you that sleep changes, you could think that your becoming insomniac and start taking medication, sleeping tablets or that to fix something that is in fact only a natural part of aging," notes Mr Rousseau.
Next HEALTH looks at anorexia tardive, or the late onset of anorexia. First identified in 1979, more and more men and women over 50 are now thought to be developing this disorder. Some clinics in the US say they now make up around 40% of their patients. In France, Doctor Alain Meunier is convinced that the late onset is actually more often than not a reoccurrence of earlier problems with food. However he admits that there are certain phases as women age when the body changes and so can become the focus of their attention once again.
"At a certain age, say around 50, around the time of the menopause...the body's form becomes a choice...Women either throw in the towel and in general put on weight...or they go in the opposite direction and over-react to the changes taking place...where they try to control the felinity of their body and start on all those diets etc," says Doctor Alain Meunier, psychiatrist and President SOS Anor.