On Saturday, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center published results of a new study which finds that group exercise classes could be a great way for older consumers to fight loneliness.
While the COVID-19 pandemic has made it difficult to host these classes in person, the researchers found that participating in virtual classes has yielded similar benefits.
According to the report, loneliness is connected to higher rates of depression, anxiety and suicide. “Experts say social isolation can have the same impact on an older person's health as smoking 15 cigarettes a day,” states the report.
“As the demographics of our country shift, more people are living alone than ever before,” said researcher Dr. Allison Moser Mays. “The number of adults over the age of 65 in the U.S. is expected to reach more than 70 million by 2030 -- double what it is now. We need sustainable ways to help this burgeoning population thrive as they age, or there will be widespread consequences.”
Mays added that "these classes had already been shown to reduce the risk of falls in seniors, and this was the first demonstration that they also reduce social isolation, to the best of our knowledge."
For the complete report, click here.
Locally, the Key Biscayne Community Center offers a variety of 50+ virtual programs for island seniors. Click here for this week’s virtual programming calendar.
Also, island seniors are automatic members of the island’s ASK (Active Seniors on the Key), a program sponsored by the Key Biscayne Community Foundation. For more information, click here.