‘No dress rehearsal, this is our lives”. Fans of the rock band The Tragically Hip will recognize this lyric from their hit “Ahead by a Century”. But anyone entering their 40s will be able to identify with the real meaning of “this is your life”.
Generally speaking, in your 40s your occupational path has been chosen, whether or not you’ll have a family of your own is decided, and how your life will turn out becomes increasingly clear.
On the day-to-day side of things, you’ll also start facing more health-related issues, from needing reading glasses and finding out your cholesterol is high, to have more trouble losing weight and facing hormonal imbalances.
A healthy diet can help you deal with all the changes, both physically and mentally.
4 Healthy Eating Tips for Your 40s
Of course, all the usual healthy food and lifestyle advice, like eating more fresh fruit and vegetables, fewer processed foods and being more physically active, apply in your 40s as much as at any time in your life.
These tips are targeted at helping you better manage some of the health challenges that you might face for the first time in your 40s.
Keep Your Hormones Balanced
While menopause in women may be the best-known cause of hormonal imbalances as we age, men can experience symptoms of fluctuating hormones too It’s known clinically as andropause, and more affectionately as manopause. And they’re all more noticeable in your 40s.
For women, natural phytoestrogens, which include cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, Brussel sprouts and kale, can help support levels of estrogen in your body. In men, fatty fish, like salmon, and eggs can help maintain a balance of hormones, including testosterone.
More Heart-Healthy Foods
We mentioned the increased risk of heart disease as you age, but it’s never a bad idea to eat heart-healthy foods. Garlic, onions, leeks, olives (including cooking with olive oil), and green, leafy vegetables, like spinach and kale, are good for the heart.
Whole Grains Instead of Refined Grains
Weight management also becomes more difficult in your 40s. It’s important to keep things as manageable as possible by doing anything you can to battle the bulge, no matter how insignificant it sounds. Try to eat fewer calories through smaller portion sizes, on smaller plates and avoid obvious weight-loss enemies, like sugary drinks.
Transitioning from refined grains to whole grains can be one of the easiest and best adjustments you make. In addition to making you feel fuller due to the added fibre in whole grains, which include whole wheat, brown rice and oats, they also help you manage your blood pressure and cholesterol.
Get Into Omega-3 Fatty Acids
As healthy fats go, there are few that deliver as many benefits as omega-3 fatty acids. From improved eye health to better sleep, the list of health advantages you can enjoy from eating more omega-3s seems to get longer with the release of each new study.
In your 40s, eating foods that are rich in omega-3s, including salmon, oysters, flax seeds, walnuts and soybeans, will help you battle the inflammation that makes your joints sore and metabolic syndrome that can lead to weight gain, heart disease, cognitive decline, and even depression and anxiety.
The transition to healthy eating isn’t always easy. Getting reliable advice and support can be the boost you need to get off to a good start and stay on track for long-term results. The nutrition consultants at your nearest Herbal One location and ready to help you, including creating a personalized Herbal One Diet Plan just for you.
If you’ve always struggled to manage your weight, learn more about why in our article “This Is Why You’ve Never Been Able to Lose Weight”.