The forties may have seemed scary or felt “too old” when you were younger. Yet, what they don’t tell women over 40 is that it can still be the best years of their life. Who hasn’t slipped and messed up and made some mistakes health-wise in their twenties or thirties? Most of us almost did. But if you think it’s too late to fix it, then you’re so wrong. Your forties is just another chance to put your health into perspective.
If we want to be somehow realistic, the thing about having it all can be a bit misleading for women over 40. You can have it all because a woman’s body endures certain changes in her 40s — for example, the metabolism slows down, and the estrogen can begin to weaken. No one teaches you enough about breast cancer, or perimenopause, or the long decade of unceasing pressure.
Of course, the younger version of you might have been able to manage all those late nights and all that fast food, but your body needs more attention and care after 40 if you want it to hold you strongly in your 50s, 60, and further on.
With that, we’ve summed up a list of 7 health mistakes that you need to stop making as soon as you enter your 40s; if not sooner.
Mistake #1: Skipping Birth Control.
In your 40, you’re not too old for birth control. They’re just as important in your 40s as they were in your younger years; if not more. Women over 40 are at major risk when it comes to unintended pregnancies. And that risk will not wane until you reach menopause. You have to talk to your doctor about your birth control options because there is a lot of options depending on your age and your overall health.
Mistake #2: Phone Addiction.
Phone addiction is a legit thing. It can cause discomfort and other complications; especially when it’s used at night. The blue light emitted from electronic devices can intervene with the body’s circadian rhythms which will lead to hard times trying to get to sleep at night. It can also stop the body from making melatonin which can flow for about 12 hours when blue light is avoided in the evening.
Mistake #3: Ignoring Teeth-Flossing.
A healthy flossing routine cleans away gritty, germ-like residue that can be found on the teeth and under the gum line and it’s really hard to get rid of with just a toothbrush. Smiles can be ruined because of this issue. Gum disease usually occurs when individuals are 30 to 40 years of age, and men are more likely to experience it than women as stated by National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research. There are a lot of flossing options and you will surely find what’s comfortable for you to use; at least one time a day.
Mistake #4: Disregarding Health Warning Signs.
If you have any peculiar discharge or some startling pain, it’s your body’s way of telling you something might be wrong. You should pay the needed attention. You got to identify the issues as early as you can; because the earlier it’s discovered, the more likely it will hopefully be treated. Always discuss any minor concerns you have with your doctor.
Mistake #5: Not Taking Care of Your Eyes.
Taking care of your eyes is just as important as taking care of your body. If you’ve had perfect eyesight all your life, don’t get too cocky. It might change in your 40s and you might even start wearing reading glasses and that is due to presbyopia. Presbyopia is a normal change that makes it tough to focus on nearby objects; and it’s an age-related change. If you haven’t had a thorough eye exam in a while, get one right very soon if you wish to avoid future eye problems.
Mistake #6: Neglecting Necessary Screenings.
Pap smears, breast cancer screening, colonoscopy and others are all recommended screens that you need to add to your to-do list. Some polyps, when undetected, can actually turn into cancer. Annual screenings for breast cancer are also so vital, especially for women over 40.
. Mistake #7: Dietary-Related Mistakes.
Women over 40 usually commit some real health-endangering dietary mistakes; either because that’s the way they’re used to do it, or because they don’t know their dietary lifestyle should be changing as well. A healthy diet along with moderate physical exercise can be enough to keep your body functioning at its best.
These dietary mistakes include:
1- Consuming too much sodium:
Sodium is not only in your salt, but you can also find it in your processed meat, soup, sauces, dressings, and more. The surprising fact is that most people consume more sodium than their body requires on a daily basis; on average, it is recommended to only consume half a teaspoon of sodium per day. Too much sodium can actually cause hypertension which eventually might lead to strokes or heart attacks.
2- Eating like you’re in your 20s:
Your young stomach also grows up with you, unfortunately. You might have been able to eat whatever you wanted when you were younger without worrying about weight gain, but this isn’t exactly the same as you age. In your 40s, you need to pay more attention to the portion sizes making sure to balance the vegetables, protein, and carbohydrates. Add some healthy fats in your diet and it’s time to realize that you’re too grown-up for those unhealthy fats. More importantly, try to reduce the amount of refined carbs, such as pasta and white bread. Try to save those as a treat once per week.
There are numerous effects for drinking water that we all know; these include healthier skin, a better immune system, and more. It has been proven that as you age, your water supplies are getting more and more drained. This will make it more necessary for you to step up your fluid intake game and remain hydrated.
As for working out and exercising, you need to have a weekly active time that is suitable for your age. And make sure to do it moderately and not over-do it.