So you're over 40.....Now what?

If you're over 40 your mind probably feels younger than your body, and you feel like you're falling apart. Where did all the years go? Didn't you just turn 24 on your last birthday?

Like magic, as soon as the 39th year ends, our bodies seem to turn against us like a toxic friend. Our metabolism goes to sleep, and weight gain is an unwelcomed certainty. You look in the mirror and sometimes see a stranger looking back.

Have you ever gotten up from a sitting position only to have your joints play a symphony of new sounds? What's worse is that our bodies play this symphony over and over again until we figure out it's origin and reach for a method of relief.

You have probably started to wonder about your health a little more, if you are eating right, or the fact that you should probably be exercising more.  Should you become a vegan or a vegetarian? What about dairy? 

Our goal is to hopefully provide you with relevent and cutting edge information that will enhance and enrich your life, so try to visit often.

Here are some of the ways that our bodies change as we age:

Weight gain

The biggest issue that we face as we age is the dreaded weight gain. After ruling out all of the usual medical culprits, such as chronic stress and hypothyroidism (where your body is not producing enough thyroid hormone to help you to burn stored fat), the true picture comes into focus.

It sometimes seems inevitable that we begin to expand around the waistline after the age of 40. We need to work out much harder than we used to just to see the numbers on the scale continue to increase. We can no longer eat whatever we want to without consequence.

The good news is that with a little practice and a few lifestyle changes we can turn things around! Keep in mind that excess calories of any kind can increase your waistline and contribute to belly fat. Although there is no single cause of belly fat, genetics, diet, age, and lifestyle can all play a role.

Changing your dietary habits can help you fight the battle of the bulge. Start by reading labels, reduce saturated fats, increase the amount of fruits and veggies you eat, reduce your portions, and eat more fiber!

The Skin

Skin often changes in cosmetic ways, such as becoming drier and losing it's elasticity, which causes the onset of wrinkles. Some skin disorders become more common as we age, such as whiteheads, blackheads, and skin cancer.

Some of the things you can do to keep the skin looking younger include: avoiding excessive exposure to the sun (this means that you should avoid outdoor activities in the middle of the day), eating a nutritious diet, and maintaining circulation through regular exercise. Believe it or not, exercising is good for the skin too! 

The skeletal system

The skeletal system often responds to aging through the loss of bone mass, or osteoporosis. According to the Mayo Clinic staff, in order to keep your bones healthy you should do the following;

  • Take 1,200 milligrams of Calcium daily  
  • Take Vitamin D (2000 I.U. daily) 
  • Exercise - exercise stimulates the cells that form bones. 

Muscle loss

It is very common to lose muscle mass as we age. In fact, we lose about 8% every ten years. Although most of us will experience some degree of muscle loss over time, how much and how fast we will lose it depends on how well we take care of our bodies. Exercising and staying active is the key to slowing down the loss of muscle due to aging.

The medical term for losing muscle mass as we age is called "aging sarcopenia." The process begins around the age of 25, but it becomes much more prominent after the age of 65. When we begin to lose muscle mass, our bodies tend to get weaker. As this progresses, it can limit our ability to take care of ourselves. Simple tasks like maintaining balance, getting dressed, walking, or using the bathroom can all become problematic when our muscles are in a weakened state.

 The nervous system

The Male Nervous System

 

The nervous system slows down as you age; this can result in a loss of your sense of smell, taste, hearing, touch, and sight.

These areas are being studied, but it is suggested that keeping your mind very active as you age is one of the best ways to maintain these systems.

 

 

 

 

 

 The Heart

The Human HeartOne of the most common causes of limited activity and even death in people over 65 is heart disease. Along with this, hypertension can increase as we age, and the respiratory system loses some elasticity. The chest wall stiffens and the respiratory muscles weaken. All of these things result in a measurable decrease in airflow.

For many people, keeping the heart and lungs strong through regular exercise, eliminating smoking, and maintaining a nutritious diet is all that is required to reduce the effects of age on the cardiopulmonary system.

  

 

 

 

 

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