Heather Maack

Heather Maack

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Health Habits to Break in Your 40's

By the time you hit 40, you want to be celebrating accomplishments and taking time to enjoy the life you’ve built, but that’s hard to do if you’re not in good health. To make sure you’re living your best decade and beyond, experts recommend breaking up with these bad health habits ASAP.

  • Not practicing self-care - While we can’t eliminate all stress from our lives, we can find ways to reduce it, including self-care. Annie Poirier, body image expert and non-diet coach, says lowering stress can increase your mood, sleep, immunity and quality of life, while also lowering blood pressure and the risk of diseases. So whether your self-care is yoga or connecting with friends, make sure you make time for it.
  • Not getting enough sleep - As we get older, sleep can be harder to get, but not getting the seven to eight hours a night recommended by The Sleep Foundation can lead to weight gain and leave you at risk for heart disease and some cancers, too.
  • Not paying attention to your weight - Dr. Hector Perez, Chief Surgeon with Bariatric Journal explains that as you get older, your metabolism slows down, so it’s easier to gain weight. And excess weight can increase the risk for heart disease, diabetes and other health issues.
  • Not getting enough calcium - Women over 40 need 12-hundred milligrams of calcium a day, according to health coach Lindsay Tullis, but only about 30% of Americans are getting enough. That can lead to faster rise of osteoporosis, risk of blood clots and diminished bone health.
  • Not taking care of mental health - Tullis points out that risk factors for mental health issues rise as we get older and she emphasizes that taking care of mental health is just as important as physical health.
  • Not eating the right diet when hormonal changes happen - Ready or not, women over 40 are getting closer to menopause and registered dietitian Trista Best says not eating based on those hormonal changes can lead to weight gain, mood disorders, weakened bones and more. Research shows eating more omega-3 fatty acids, found in chia seeds and fatty fish, can reduce hot flashes and night sweats. Vitamins D and K, commonly found in dairy products, both help improve bone health, another concern for women in menopause because of a decline in estrogen.

Source: Eat This, Not That


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