10 things all 40-plus women should do to stay healthy

-Oct 17, Hannah Hargrave, Health -

Your forties can be absolutely fabulous, but if you want to stay fit and healthy in the exciting decades to follow there are some things you should be doing now.

Every milestone birthday comes with a little extra baggage and forty is no different. We have to accept some changes to our bodies and our health but learning to address and tackle those issues to make way for healthy years ahead is more than half the battle.

Start strength training

Exercise is so important to maintain a healthy body and mind, but even if you’re a cardio queen who plays tennis three times a week and ran a marathon at 40, you should add strength training to your regime.
Not only can it increase your metabolism, it helps strengthen your bones. Bone density declines by 1% a year after your mid 30s so to stay strong and avoid injury down the line squeeze in some light lifting. You’ll appreciate the toning benefits too.

Breathe

You may think meditation isn’t for you but in today’s hectic and stress fuelled world it’s good to stop and take a few deep breaths to alleviate stress and slow down.
Just ten minutes a day of mindfulness or meditation can be beneficial. Stress essentially makes you age faster so when you’re feeling under pressure, relax and breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth taking deep breaths every time.

Related: How to meditate when you’re not that sort of person

Add protein

Your muscle mass drops as you age so in addition to adding some strength training to your routine you might want to ensure you’ve got enough protein in your diet.
You want muscle rather than fat because it means a faster metabolism – and we know how difficult it can be to keep the extra pounds at bay as we age.
Aim for 20 to 30 grams of protein at every meal.

Have regular check ups

There are a number of routine check ups which take barely any time but are essential to maintaining your health and keeping an eye on any potential future problems.
These include eye exams, smear tests, thyroid and mole checks, mammograms and blood pressure too. If you’re unsure of what check ups you should be having and how often contact your doctor who can help.

Reignite your romance

Fulfilling relationships are key to happiness and longevity so take the time to make yours with your partner the best it can be. Whether it’s making more time together, adding some adventure or livening up your bedroom antics, reigniting love, passion and even friendship will pave the way for a happier life.

Find time to socialise

Human interactive is imperative. Loneliness is now considered a dangerous epidemic which is seriously harmful to your health. With that being said, while we know it’s difficult with the commitments of family and work, you should make time for your friends. Always ensure you have a social commitment penned in on the calendar and stick to it too. Having a good, supportive network of friends has been shown to reduce blood pressure and reduce the risk of heart disease too.

Related: Dr Rangan Chatterjee: ‘Friendship is not a luxury for good health, it’s a necessity’

Add a supplement

Lumity Morning & Night Supplements are a fantastic addition to a healthy balanced diet and lifestyle. The three capsules taken twice a day – morning and night – help keep skin healthy-looking, hair and nails strong as well as supporting wellness levels, maintaining vitality and reducing tiredness too.
The all natural ingredients are specially formulated to work in harmony with your circadian rhythm and deliver the nutrients you need, when you need them as well.

Measure your waist

Don’t just look at what you weigh, look at your waist circumference. It’s actually even more important than what the scales say.
A round midsection is often blamed on middle age spread and simply accepted, but the spare tire is actually dangerous.
Females’ abdominal circumference should be 80cm or less and if it’s higher than that you’re putting yourself at risk of diabetes and heart disease.
Make healthier food choices and aim for 150 minutes of exercise a week. Cut down on processed foods and switch them out for healthy fruits and vegetables and you’ll soon start noticing a difference.

Make your heart a priority

Heart health isn’t something you probably think of when you’re in your 20s or 30s but keeping an eye on your ticker as you age is an absolute must. Prevention of heart disease is the most effective measure and if you haven’t already put your heart at the top of your health list it’s time to start now.
If you’re unsure of how to care for your heart we have plenty of tips below.

Related: Know your heart health numbers

Learn gratitude

So much time is wasted looking at what other people have and not appreciating everything in your own life. Social media adds to the stress-inducing, envy people are succumbing to, so consider ditching Facebook for while and concentrate on making a gratitude list instead. You’ll be amazed at how much you have when you take stock and write it down every single day.

If you found this article interesting you might also like to know how to keep your body flexible after 40 and if you haven’t hit the big 4-0 yet discover the science behind what happens to your body in your 30s too.

Healthy Beauty 24|7

Sign up to our weekly newsletter