Apparently the older population in the U.S. is feeling pretty good about their health prospects as they head into their golden years. A new survey reveals that those age 60 and up are feeling motivated about their well-being and actually looking forward to setting health goals and exercising regularly.
The National Council on Aging has released the results of its annual survey, titled the "United States of Aging Survey," that examines how U.S. seniors are feeling about their health. The responses were more positive then ever.
The organizations' survey found that over one-third of seniors (37 percent) claim they are already exercising every day. This was up from the 26 percent that claimed they did so every day in 2013. Further, these daily exercising seniors claim their life has been better than normal rather than worse (28 percent compared with 15 percent).
"More Americans are living longer lives than ever before," explained Rhonda Randall, chief medical officer, UnitedHealthcare Retiree Solutions. "It is highly encouraging to see more older Americans taking charge of how they age, making deliberate choices and setting goals to help themselves live healthier and more independently during their extended senior years."
When it came to finding motivation regarding maintaining their health later in life, a surprising number of those surveyed are finding it from within. When questioned on this, 39 percent said they are motivating themselves. Some 26 percent said the motivation is coming from their spouse and 15 percent claim their adult children are behind the push to stay fit.
The survey's organizers claim that for the first time in the three-year history of the "United States of Aging Survey," more seniors say the past year of their life was better than normal (24 percent) as opposed to worse than normal (22 percent).
"The findings show that seniors are moving in the right direction with their health, but there is still room for improvement," added James Firman, president and CEO of the NCOA. "Building upon this trend and getting even more boomers and older adults to take these simple steps are keys to creating a healthier and more productive society."
Perhaps most eye-opening, and equally encouraging were these numbers: 89 percent of older adults and 84 percent of younger adults say they're confident they can maintain a high quality of life throughout their senior years.
For the survey, the National Council on Aging explored different perspectives on aging preparedness. The 2014 survey oversampled key audiences, including low-income seniors (ages 60 and older with a household income of less than $15,000), socially-isolated seniors (ages 60 and older who live alone and express feelings of loneliness) and seniors from three different markets (ages 60 and older).