Are you approaching the big 4-0 and starting to feel like time is slipping through your fingers? Are you scared that your unhealthy teenage habits will catch up with you soon?
Does aging bring weird visions of joint pain, low stamina, and blurred vision?
Instead of feeling weighed down by regret (and fear), it’s time to start making positive lifestyle changes. Trust us; your body will thank you throughout the next decade of your life.
Hey, but where do I start?
If you’re unsure of where to begin, here are ten healthy habits you can adopt before you hit 40:
Start Getting the Important Screenings
Preventive care is the best way to keep your health in check, even after you turn 40. Start scheduling routine screenings for conditions like diabetes, high cholesterol, hypertension, and other heart-related problems.
Get regular eye exams, pap smears, mammograms, and colonoscopies done as well. Early detection is always better than late detection, so make sure you keep up with all the recommended screenings.
Some professionals, like veterans, might need special screenings like X-rays and lung scans. It is because they have a higher risk of developing mesothelioma due to past exposure to asbestos. It is necessary to get in touch with a doctor who can provide you with comprehensive mesothelioma screenings. Also, keep a trusted mesothelioma attorney in the loop from the start. They can help you with mesothelioma settlements if you get diagnosed.
Prioritize Mental Peace
Mental health is the foundation for physical health. Without it, you can’t expect to experience wellness in other areas of your life. We understand you might’ve experienced some painful moments over the years, but now it’s time to let go.
Start by cultivating positive self-talk. Instead of focusing on your negative thoughts, focus on the positive parts of your life and find ways to appreciate yourself.
Take a break from social media, make time for hobbies, journal your thoughts, and engage in meaningful conversations with friends. When you’re in a good place mentally, you’ll notice that the grass appears greener and life seems brighter.
Stable mental health also helps you maintain your relationships. You’ll be more present, attentive, and loving to your family and friends.
As we age, it becomes harder to maintain our weight and keep our metabolism running. It is because aging causes changes in the body’s hormones, muscle mass, and caloric needs.
That’s why it’s essential to start eating mindfully and in moderation, before you hit 40.
Consume nutrient-dense foods with a low fat, salt, and sugar content. Incorporate organic and fresh fruits and vegetables. Here’s a list of fruits with benefits according to age:
- Yellow squash for beta-carotene, an agent known to protect your eyes
- Tomatoes for lycopene, a carotenoid that helps with digestion
- Purple potatoes for anthocyanins, an antioxidant that helps fight inflammation
- Berries for vitamin C, which strengthens your immune system
You must also include grains like quinoa, oats, and barley that are high in fiber. Eat healthy fats like olive oil, walnuts, and avocados to help with cholesterol and weight management. And for muscle building, health, and energy, check out Gundry MD Bio Complete 3.
Your body approaches its peak physical condition in your mid-30s, so now is the time to invest in a healthy lifestyle that includes both strength training and cardio.
Start by getting your heart rate up for at least 30 minutes daily. Take brisk walks, go for a bike ride, or take up swimming. It will help you maintain weight, improve overall health, and preserve muscle mass.
You should also challenge your muscles with strength-training exercises to prevent frailty, stiffness, and joint pain. A combination of bodyweight exercises and weights (dumbbells) will aid in building muscle, burning fat, and improving bone health.
Here are a few exercises you can start with:
- Triceps dips (on a bench)
Keep Your Brain Active
Exercising isn’t only great for your body; it’s also an excellent way to keep your brain active. As we age, our cognitive functioning starts to decline. It could be because of excessive alcohol consumption, the development of degenerative dementia, or uncontrollable stress. If you don’t wish to be a part of this statistic, then it’s time to start engaging in activities that will keep your brain active.
Start by reading books or magazines. If you don’t have the time, then listen to podcasts or audiobooks. Take up a new hobby that will keep your brain running. Painting, gardening, and chess are some of the best options.
You can also test your skills on apps like Lumosity and Elevate, which offer fun and challenging games. Play puzzles, quizzes, and crosswords to keep your memory sharp.
Make Time for Sleep
Sleep deprivation is one of the most underrated health problems in our society. Insufficient sleep can lead to fatigue, poor concentration, a weakened immune system, and impaired judgment.
If you can sleep without requiring medical help or supplements, be grateful. Aging brings issues like restless leg syndrome, which can significantly affect your sleep quality. You might even face a few episodes of sleep apnea.
Experiment with your sleep schedule and find the one that works best for you. Stick to it as much as possible, and make sure you get at least 7 hours of sleep every night. It will keep your body energized and help reduce stress.
Here are some failproof tips to help you sleep better:
- Go to bed and wake up at the same time every day
- Avoid caffeine and alcohol before bedtime
- Engage in calming activities like reading, yoga, and meditation
- Keep your bedroom cool and dark
- Invest in a comfortable mattress, pillows, and bedding
Adopting healthy habits before your fortieth birthday will reduce your risk of developing chronic health conditions and diseases in the future. Eat a balanced diet that includes all nutrients, get your heart rate up daily, keep your brain active, and make time for sleep.
Once you make these habits a priority, you will be able to enjoy a better quality of life as you age. And who knows, maybe you’ll even be able to look and feel like a younger version of yourself!
Remember, healthy habits are the key to a life of longevity and vitality. So, start now and take care of yourself before it’s too late!