Over time, our worries change and evolve, and let’s face it, ladies, as we get older, our health concerns multiple and intensify. If you’re in your 50’s, 60’s, are approaching them, or are already into your golden years, there are specific issues for which you are particularly at risk.
As with many things in life, awareness—of what to look for and what’s going on with your body—can help you prepare. In fact, armed with knowledge and mindfulness, you can confidently take control of your life, and you can do everything you can to deal with what’s ahead, plan so that you can face issues head-on, and better yet, avoid or overcome the challenges that many face as they go through life.
1. Mood-Related Issues are a Concern as You Age
In this day and age, it’s hard not to feel a little down in the dumps from time to time; that’s completely normal. And as we get older, it seems like there’s more “stuff” that can happen in life to leave us feeling a sense of despair. For example, it’s not uncommon to feel like you’re not part of the mainstream crowd anymore, as more and more people communicate through “abbrevs” (that’s an abbreviation for “abbreviations,” which is ironic), such as ‘OMG’ and ‘SMH.’ And instead of face-to-face communication or talking on the telephone, people are more likely to use apps like SnapChat, Messenger, and Facebook.
Feeling like an outsider can lead to lower self-esteem, questioning your place in society, sadness, and even self-consciousness about your physical body. The best remedy is to make sure you stay active with a group of friends who share your likes and interests. Staying social is a big part of your mental wellbeing. In fact, community is a key component of healthy aging, and numerous studies indicate that social support is exceptionally important for optimal health.
While you’re at it, don’t forget to continue to do things that make you happy. Reading, learning, taking on new projects, traveling, engaging in social events, and maintaining intimate relationships can all help you keep your senses sharp and leave you with a happy fulfilled outlook on life.
If you’re not feeling like you have a handle on these areas, it’s important to take stock of the situation and make moves to improve it. It’s okay to seek help from a professional. Many people do.
2. Keep Your Skin and Bones Youthful
Especially as women, in a society that places a great deal of stock in youth and beauty, getting older can be hard, and for some, it can be downright devastating. Maybe you’re starting to notice crow’s feet turning into deeper wrinkles, looser, crepey skin, extra body weight creeping up on you, and a little more apprehension with your activities. What should you do?
You need to ensure you give your body what it needs to stay supple, strong, and mobile. Therefore, it’s imperative that you include some form of resistance training in your exercise routine. Weight-bearing exercises increase bone mass, and they also help build muscle and strength. With resistance training, you can confidently continue to be physically active and do the things you love to do well into your golden years.
Don’t forget to include stretching. Flexibility is a boon when it comes to staying youthful. Try incorporating yoga into your exercise routine. You’ll notice you’re more limber and less stressed, and what’s more, you’ll benefit from a boost in your immune system.
And make sure you eat a diet that’s predominantly made up of whole foods rich in protein, healthy fats, fibers, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, which are super-important for skin health. Supplements can help too, and here are some of our top choices for healthy aging.
3. Metabolism and Body Fat
Of course, among the most common complaints with age is a slower metabolism—along with an increase in body fat that typically comes with it. The good news is that this is not inevitable, and this is another reason why it is vitally important to stay on top of your diet and exercise. As discussed above, keeping your diet in check is a must, but we’re not just talking calories here. We’re also talking about making sure you get the right nutrients, an optimal amount of protein, plenty of healthy fats from whole foods, an adequate amount of fiber, copious amounts of antioxidants from plants, and the supplements you need to protect and revitalize your body.
A good starting point is to engage in a regular exercise program that includes weight training and cardiovascular training at least three times a week. Staying active and keeping your muscle mass intact will go a long way toward helping you stay fit—not fat.
4. Immunity and Health
Support your immune system and making sure it’s running at peak potential is a priority as you near retirement age. It’s important to make sure you have sufficient health insurance coverage, and you’ll also want to verify that it will continue for you after you make the transition from the working world to retirement life.
Make sure you schedule all needed medical exams and monitor your health. Preventive care is paramount and can go a long way toward peace of mind and life enjoyment.