Health & Wellness

Did You Know Your Nutritional Needs Change as You Age?

Very few of us in our younger years worried much about what nutrients we were getting and how they were being used by our bodies. We just took our bodies for granted and assumed it would always be able to carry us around. We didn’t think much about not being able to walk a mile let alone walk around the block. We just got up and went, but as we age, we often realize that we took our bodies for granted and that we often forced to become less active. Our muscles start to weaken and lose their mass. Our backs start to hurt from standing and our legs just won’t carry us everywhere they used too.  We assume it’s just part of the aging process, but it doesn’t have to be. 

 

 

It’s essential for us to ensure that we have as little muscle loss as possible. Otherwise, a simple trip or fall can result in a mad rush to the hospital. Maintaining a healthy body mass is a fantastic way to stay young and participate in regular exercise. As you’re probably aware, protein is the fuel which encourages muscle growth. Strong muscles and strong bones are vital to surviving into our 70’s and 80’s with healthy active bodies and we need protein and proper nutrients to accomplish this.

 

 

 

Consuming the right nutrients is vital for preventing cancer and heart disease, but it is also vital for our brains.  For example, protein, which we need to maintain our muscles can also support or harm our brains depending on the amount we consume and the way our body absorbs it. If we have a build up of abnormal protein deposits in the brain we can develop dementia or Parkinson’s. This study at www.parcprovence.com/ has a more detailed explanation of this protein called Lewy bodies. Proper nutrition and food can help prevent and treat it. Here Dr. Axe https://draxe.com/ explains more about this and what foods we need to eat to prevent it.

 

Not only do we need to know what food and nutrients are good for us, we also need to know when is the optimal time to consume them. A research team in Holland found the best time for people over the age of 65 to consume protein was before bedtime. More importantly, it was better to ingest it in the form of a nutritional shake which is usually full of amino acids and iron and calcium. You can also make your own smoothies and add protein powder.

 

The recommended minimum daily amount is 0.8 grams for 2.2 lbs of body weight or about 55 grams for a person with a sedentary life that is around 150 pounds. As we age our body becomes less efficient at absorbing nutrients so we may need to increase the number of nutrients we consume in order to absorb the amount we actually need. 

 

The best thing to do is talk to your doctor about your nutrition. They can do a full blood workup and find out what vitamins you are lacking and what kind of supplements you need. I had a full blood workup that told me I had low magnesium and potassium so I added more bananas, and nuts in my diet.  I also take a daily multi-vitamin designed for women over 50. It is important to talk to your doctor before taking any supplements or vitamins as they may have an adverse effect on prescription medications you are taking.  For example, I am on medication for hypothyroidism and calcium prevents it from absorbing into my body, so my doctor recommended I take my vitamin in the morning and my other medications at night. It works for me but what works for you might be different. Talk to your doctor.

 

 

Getting older can impact many aspects of your life including your self-confidence. To look good is to feel good and to be as active as possible makes us all feel good. You want to look in the mirror and see a strong agile body, a body that sustains all the activities you want to do. We’ve all heard that saying “your body is a temple”, well, your body is your house and it’s the only one you get, so make it a strong sturdy house. Don’t just slap some paint on it and call it pretty. You need much more than curb appeal to make it for the long haul. Make sure the plumbing and the electrical is all up to optimal working condition. Make sure it has good bones and a solid foundation. Do what you need to do now to ensure that your house stands strong for a good long time. 

 

What are you doing for your body?

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