Sarah Williams, of Affordable Healthcare 123 Tees, Shares 5 Tips to Stay Healthy and Fit as You Age

Iffley Road Photoshoot - 23rd September 2016. (Photo by Jordan Mansfield)

A healthy lifestyle is important at any age, but even more so in the second half of your life. As the body ages, metabolism slows down, DNA strands accumulate damage, the digestive system becomes sluggish, muscles mass is lost, and bones are prone to osteoporosis due to a reduced level of sex hormones. These changes cannot be fully prevented, but they can be slowed down considerably by a healthy lifestyle. Here Affordable Healthcare 123 Tees gives insight into the five most important ways you can take care of your body as you grow older:

1. Eat healthy, unprocessed food

A healthy diet rich in natural, unprocessed foods, is crucial for everyone, but even more so for older people. Make sure your diet contains enough fiber from fruit, vegetables, legumes, and whole grains. Consume white meat and fish instead of red meat, which is known to cause cancer and heart disease. Try to avoid foods rich in saturated fats such as cheese and cream and eat more foods rich in unsaturated ones such as olive oil and nuts. Never consume more alcohol than the recommended limit, and last but not least, avoid added sugar as much as you can.

2. Take your supplements

As you grow older, some supplements can be crucial for maintaining your health because they prevent and fix some nutrient deficiencies that can appear with age. Older people need more calcium and vitamin D to prevent osteoporosis, while vitamin B12 supplementation can help maintain a healthy nervous system. Fiber supplements can be very beneficial for a slower, aged gastrointestinal system, while omega 3 supplementation will promote general health, reduce inflammation and protect your heart.

3. Use sunscreen

As skin ages, it accumulates UV damage that shows as age spots, wrinkles, and moles. Excessive UV damage can even result in skin cancer, which can be very dangerous. If you wish to stay young and keep your skin healthy, use a sunscreen with a high SPF factor whenever you go out in the sun, even for a short time, whether it’s winter or summer. Completely avoid tanning, and have a dermatologist check your moles frequently for any changes that could indicate malignancy.

4. Exercise

The older you get, the higher the positive impact exercise has on your heart, brain, muscle, and bone health. Several sessions of cardio training a week are necessary for preventing issues such as heart problems, high blood pressure, and obesity.  However, don’t make the mistake to assume that cardio is enough. Strength training is also crucial for maintaining muscle mass and preventing osteoporosis as you grow older.

5. Have regular health checkups

A lot of the diseases associated with aging can be more easily treated if caught early.  By checking your blood pressure, cholesterol, glucose and triglyceride levels you can make sure you have a healthy heart and are not at risk of diabetes. A skin cancer screen can ensure the early detection of any moles that have become malignant. Breast and cervical screenings for women and prostate checkups for men can prevent sex-specific cancers.

Growing older does not have to mean becoming unfit and unhealthy. Enjoying a healthy, active life as you grow older is easy if you follow some simple rules. Eating a diet rich in natural, unprocessed foods, exercising, taking the right supplements and making sure you get your regular health checkups are crucial for keeping your body in top shape as you pass middle-age.

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