Welcome to the fabulous 40s! Although this is a great time in a woman’s life, the risk of a number of health conditions also increases. During this period of your life, your metabolism begins to slow down, your muscle mass begins to decrease, bone loss begins to occur and hormonal changes happen. By making wise dietary changes, you can help improve your health and decrease the risk of disease. If you are in your 40s, it is time to take a look at your health and make changes to become healthier.
After menopause, your risk for heart disease increases. To help prevent heart disease, you should consume a minimum of two servings of fatty fish, such as salmon, tuna, sardines, mackerel, herring or trout, weekly. If you are unable to two servings of fish each week, you can take a fish oil supplement. These supplements contain both DHA and EPA Omega-3 fatty acids, along with vitamins A and D.
Numerous studies have been done that shows the health benefits of fish oil. A study reported in the Investigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science journal stated that consuming DHA can help protect against age-related vision loss. Other studies have found that fish oil may help improve your cognitive functions and mental well-being.
Calcium is needed for strong bones. When you begin to go through menopause, your hormone levels begin to decline. The intestinal tract has estrogen receptors that help the body absorb calcium. When your hormone levels begin to decline, your body can no longer absorb calcium as it once did.
Fiber is the indigestible parts of plants that help push the foods you eat through your digestive tract. Fiber absorbs water during digestion and helps ease bowel movements. There are two types of fiber- soluble and insoluble. Soluble fiber dissolves in fluids. When this type of fiber reaches the digestive tract, it becomes gelatinous to help cleanse the digestive tract. Insoluble, on the other hand, doesn’t dissolve in water. This type of fiber does not change form during digestion.
Fiber also helps trap toxins and allows them to quickly pass through the colon. It helps prevent microbes in the gut from producing substances that can lead to colorectal cancer. Fiber also helps prevent constipation and regulates bowel movements.
If you are overweight, now is the time to lose those extra pounds. Losing weight can help minimize the symptoms of menopause. Make small changes to help you lose weight by removing tempting snacks and other unhealthy food choices, be mindful of what you are eating and eat breakfast.
Exercise is a great way to reduce the symptoms of menopause. It helps you relieve stress, lose weight and prevent muscle loss. To maximize the benefits of exercise, ensure that you get 150 minutes of moderate aerobic exercise. Additionally, adding in a day or two of weight training can help minimize bone loss. Strength training exercises help burn fat, increase muscle strength, rev your metabolism and build bone.
Antioxidants help protect your cells from free radical damage. The most common antioxidants are carotenoids, flavonoids, phenols, tannins, vitamin C and vitamin E. In the 1950s, it was discovered that free radicals can cause premature aging. Free radicals affect the mitochondria in the cells of the body, causing damage which can lead to cancer, degenerative eye diseases, dementia, diabetes, asthma, hardening of the arteries and inflammatory joint disease.
Studies have shown that women who eat a large breakfast experience a 21 percent greater weight loss than those who eat a smaller breakfast. Eating breakfast revs up your metabolism. According to researchers, breakfast should be your largest meal. This will help prevent your glucose level from dropping during the morning and help prevent cravings.
Everyone knows the importance of drinking water; however, most women do not drink enough. Dehydration can lead to a number of health issues, including digestive disorders, kidney stones, low blood pressure, muscle cramps, cognitive issues, shock and coma. As you age, the odds of succumbing to dehydration increases. Drink at least eight 8-ounce glasses of water each day to help prevent dehydration.
Your 40s is the perfect time to get your health on track. During this phase of your life, you will go through numerous changes, including menopause that can affect your body. Weight loss will no longer be as easy as it once was, you may begin to notice that your muscles are not as toned as they once were and you may begin to have aches and pains. Eating a healthy diet, ensuring you are getting the proper nutrients, exercising regularly and drinking plenty of water can help you stay healthy.