How to help your parents manage a healthy lifestyle


Health is wealth, and encouraging your parents to maintain a healthy lifestyle will help them enjoy their later years to the fullest.

Singaporeans have one of the highest life expectancies in the world1, and you’ll often see senior citizens practicing early-morning tai chi, swimming leisurely in the pool, enjoying a round on the island’s golf courses, or even adventurously rollerblading along East Coast Park. This is a testament that age is not a barrier to healthy living, as remaining active is essential for our physical and mental wellbeing.

Encourage them to stay active in retirement

If your parents aren’t among those who exercise regularly, one of the best things you can do for them is to remind them that ‘health is wealth’ and that gentle daily exercise will help them lead happier and healthier lives.

The Health Promotion Board guidelines recommend that adults and seniors take 150 minutes a week of moderate-intensity activity, such as brisk walking, or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic exercise such as jogging and strength-training activities such as tai chi, twice a week2.

If your parents lead a sedentary lifestyle, they should check with their doctor before starting an exercise regime. If they have any existing health conditions, their doctor can advise on suitable activities.2 There are numerous opportunities for active seniors in Singapore and even gyms that cater specially to older members, so everyone will be able to find a suitable activity3,4.

You can find physical activity programmes at community centres, and virtual classes are often available on Zoom.5 But best of all, why not also combine family outings with some exercise?

Ensure they eat delicious healthy meals

Eating well is another essential component of an overall healthy lifestyle. If you prepare meals at home, it’s easier to control your ingredients, ensuring lots of fresh fruit and veggies while grilling and steaming food instead of frying it and limiting the sugar content in desserts.

But when eating out, it’s still possible to eat healthily, even in the hawker centres, by encouraging your parents to choose options such as fish or herbal tonic soups, wonton noodles, Ipoh hor fun, or a comforting bowl of porridge if it’s made with just a splash of oil.6 They can look out for the red and white Healthier Choice signs endorsed by the Health Promotion Board.7

Help them stay connected with friends and family

Socialising is a commonly overlooked aspect of healthy ageing.8 If you and your siblings are juggling work and a young family, your parents may feel a little left out. Making time for them is a bonding experience for all of you. But having their own social life and some independence ‐ maybe even a little paid work if they want it ‐ is also vital for their mental health.

There is no shortage of events for elderly Singaporeans to participate in, whatever their interests. If they’re shy about joining a new activity, help them by discovering where the nearest clubs and events are ‐ or help them to be tech-savvy so they can find out for themselves. Being online can also help them keep in touch with friends and family abroad.

Investing in security for them

Finally, we need to feel financially secure to have true peace of mind. For parents, this often includes ensuring that their children’s long-term financial future is also protected. Whether it’s checking that they are getting the best value from their savings and insurance and making ‐ or updating ‐ their legacy plans, it is never too soon to put all these matters in place. A family meeting (with your siblings, if possible) to clarify your parents’ financial situation and help them seek the best advice should leave you all feeling more secure.

This article is for your information only and does not consider your specific investment objectives, financial situation, or needs. We recommend that you seek advice from a Prudential Financial Consultant before committing to purchase a policy.

The information is accurate as at 17 May 2022 unless otherwise indicated.










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