They say, “40 is the new 20”. Listed here are ten ways to make that statement true for you…
First off, let’s take a moment to celebrate making it to 40. Those 40 years are yours, and no doubt they’ve given you quite the ride so far. Some of you are holding on tight as the ride takes you up and down, round and round. But now it’s time to let go of the bar, hold your hands high, and scream with excitement as the thrills of life tickle your stomach. That’s because 40 is just another beginning, but with the advantage of vast life experience. That said, you are already perfecting being 40! These ten tips geared towards good health and well-being will surely have you mastering 40 and an even longer, healthier future.
Straighten out some of your curves
So what if you’ve collected some bulges in the last 40 years, you can literally start beating those bulges RIGHT NOW. (Yeah, you read that right!) This statement is solid gold as “beating the bulge” is one of the best ways to stay healthy after 40. Changing dietary habits and increasing physical activity can be started the moment you finish reading this list of tips. Better yet, these changes in habit don’t have to be drastic to start working. And best of all, it takes a miniscule fraction of the time to shed the pounds that it took 40 years to put on. Beyond the increased energy and well-being that losing weight offers, these changes greatly reduce your chances of developing chronic illnesses. Furthermore, you reduce the risk of heart disease by living fit and healthy. Women readers should take note that by losing weight, you can reduce menopausal symptoms and preserve what would otherwise be a decline in hormones.
Make friends with your muscles
Don’t stress about this tip, nobody’s suggesting you become a bodybuilder. However, you do need to treat your muscles to some regular healthy resistance. Muscles thrive on being worked and challenged. On average, those of us over the age of 40 lose around one percent of our muscle mass each year. This figure can be curbed drastically by flexing those muscles. Start gradually by using light weights while briskly walking. Better yet, if it’s in your means to do so, join a gym and weight train for better health. Keeping healthy muscle tone will not only benefit you now, but will continue to benefit you later in life.
Think about your thyroid
Most of us don’t spend a great deal of thought on our glands from time to time. But as we approach and continue on into our forties, the thyroid is a gland we should be conscious of. The thyroid is responsible for regulating energy and hormone levels in our bodies. As we move along through the later years of our lives, the risk and possibility of developing thyroid disease increases. Chronically feeling tired and issues with gaining or trouble shedding weight (despite diet and exercise) could indicate a thyroid issue. This makes it imperative to have regular thyroid screenings to ensure proper function.
So long cigarettes
Let’s be frank, by age 40 those who smoke know that cigarettes are detrimental to their health. The continued use of tobacco products despite this knowledge is proof of how hard it is to quit smoking. Furthermore, long-time smokers have more than likely struggled with several attempts to quit. Of all the tips listed here, this will be the hardest to overcome. Smokers also know that “quitting smoking will add years to your life” and that smoking contributes to a plethora of chronic illnesses. These illnesses include serious (if not fatal) conditions such as stroke and heart disease. However, quitting is not impossible and now that 40 is here, it’s not a bad idea to attempt to quit again. And if you don’t get to quitting this time around, try again and again. The average ex-smoker goes through 7-9 attempts at quitting before succeeding. If you’re a smoker struggling to quit, we wish you all the luck with your efforts. Also know this: You CAN quit!
The numbers game
When we were 20, there were some numbers that were not too important to us. But now that we’re double the number 20, those numbers that didn’t concern us are vitally important. These numbers are: blood pressure, blood sugar, body weight, and of course cholesterol levels. Regularly check and keep tabs on these numbers, they reveal volumes about your current health. In fact, these numbers offer an excellent forecast to potential health risks one might face in the future.
Frown upside down
There’s more to a smile than just a warm toothy gesture or by-product of laughter. In fact, oral health is intimately connected to cardiovascular health and function. Major reputable studies have concluded that there is a connection linking gum disease with heart disease. Furthermore, ongoing studies are linking gum disease with other chronic illnesses as well. Maintaining good oral hygiene and routine visits to the dentist can help improve overall health.
Sight, not sore eyes
Pay a bit more attention to your vision. Be honest with yourself when you doubt your ability to see as well as you have in the past. Especially if changes in vision occur over a short period of time. After 40, regular eye examinations are highly recommended. This is because as we age past 40, our vision can start to diminish. One of the biggest culprits of degenerative eye disorders is macular degeneration. This genetic condition impacts more than 9 million Americans over the age 40. However, the progress of the disease can be hindered by including lycopene and antioxidant rich foods in a healthy diet. Specifically red fruits and vegetables. You can also decrease your chances at developing cataracts by wearing sunglasses.
Fill up on fiber
Remember those days when you could eat anything without deleterious effects? You’re probably missing them and have noticed things have really changed. This is because as we approach and move on past 40, our metabolism slows down dramatically. With that slow down, the result is gaining unwanted weight. To counter this effect, the key is to reduce your caloric intake from sugars, sweets, and starches. Furthermore, those calories should be replaced by the increased caloric intake of fiber. Fiber is your friend! Lean protein, whole grains, fruit, low-fat dairy, and an abundant but diverse variety of vegetables are essential to a healthy diet after 40.
History repeats itself
By age 40, you should be aware of your family history including basic medical histories of your parents/grandparents. If you’re not aware of your family’s medical history, now is a good time to familiarize yourself. One example for women would be a family history where a mother and grandmother have both been diagnosed with breast cancer. In this case, it’s highly advised that the woman receives routine cancer screenings. Adversely, if a man’s father and grandfather both died of heart attacks, he should take all necessary preventative measures. Our parents and grandparents have given us a window of sorts into our own well-being through our genetic make-up. Use this knowledge to your benefit, your parents would want you to.
Maintain by prevention
From 40 and onward throughout life, prevention of chronic illness should be embedded in your consciousness. That’s to say, you should pay closer attention to your body than you have in the past. It’s well known that “an ounce of prevention is a pound of cure”. This is true for all of us, but at 40 the adage is especially true in it’s importance. We’re truly fortunate to live in a day and age where screenings and diagnostic procedures are not only accessible, but comprehensive. Truly state-of-the-art! One of the best preventive measures one can take to prevent the onset of chronic illness is a full body scan. This technology allows for the detection of the most minute abnormalities. Detection is possible several months and even years before any symptoms of irregularities present in a person. Be healthy and happy at 40 by seriously considering a full body scan. Contact Advanced Body Scan today for more information about how a full body scan can prolong a healthier, happier life!