Top 7 TED Talks to Improve Senior Living Outcomes

The nonprofit organization TED aims to spread great ideas in tiny, bite-sized morsels. The Internet now is home to thousands of “TED Talks,” short video segments touching on every aspect of life – and they are wildly popular.

For seniors, a range of thought-provoking TED Talks offer new perspectives on aging, wellness and ways to live a rich and fulfilling life at every stage. Here are a few of the best TED talks to intrigue and inspire seniors…

In her talk, Ann Fisher-Jackson sets out to redefine our expectations of aging. Today it is almost assumed that aging will mean a steady decline in one’s quality of life, but that need not be the case, says Fisher-Jackson, director of marketing at Keystone Technologies. Rather, technology can help drive a preventative model of care that will drastically improve the quality of life in our later years. Tools like passive falls monitoring systems will help to reshape our ideas of aging in the coming years.

Cognitive decline is among the greatest of threats to seniors’ quality of life, with Alzheimer’s disease impacting some 40 million people worldwide. Scientist Samuel Cohen shares a new breakthrough in Alzheimer’s research from his lab, and delivers a message of encouragement. “Alzheimer’s is a disease,” Cohen says, “and we can cure it.”

Looking for the secrets to a longer and healthier life? So is Dan Buettner. This explorer and educator studies the world’s “Blue Zones,” places whose oldest members live with health and vitality to record-setting age. He shares the common diet and lifestyle habits that keep them going past age 100.

Social entrepreneur Elizabeth Amini offers her “Top 10 Tips to Keep Your Brain Young.” She introduces brain stimulation games meant to stimulate memory, concentration, focus, and relaxation. The science comes from over 17,000 medical studies that teach how to potentially reduce the risk of early memory loss through lifestyle changes.

Author Isabel Allende is 71 and she has a plan for her life. “Me, I intend to live passionately,” she says. Allende speaks from the heart about her joys, her aspirations, and her plans to keep living a passionate life.

These days it seems people are living longer than they ever have before, but some wonder whether our quality of life is all that it could be. Psychologist Laura Carstensen offers a surprising answer to that common question: Yes! As the founding director of the Stanford Center on Longevity, Carstensen delves into the research to demonstrate that as people age they in fact become happier and more content, gaining a more positive outlook on the world.

Aubrey de Grey rejects one of the most fundamental assumptions underlying the human condition: That aging is inevitable. Instead, this British researcher argues that aging is a disease, one that can be cured. He describes it as “an engineering problem” and lays out a plan to identify and remedy all the biological components that cause human tissue to age.

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