You may have heard lately that fifty is the new forty. Maybe so, but sometimes fifty can feel a lot more like sixty, or more! Like it or not, we are getting older and there are going to be some changes in our bodies, and without action on our part, they probably won’t be pleasant. That said, there are still ways to retain something resembling the health of our younger bodies, but it takes some diligence and effort, so get ready!

Avoiding illness

As we age we become more susceptible to illness. If there’s a cold going around the grandkids we are first in line to catch it. Fear not, there are ways to dodge those germs! First off, if you see someone exhibiting signs of illness (sneezing, runny nose, coughing) then keep your distance! Many common bugs are spread by airborne particles expelled by an infected person. When the grandkids have colds, stay home and ring them up, your nose and throat will thank you. Another important step to ward off illness is to keep up to date on your vaccinations. If you are still working, chances are corporate flu shotsare available, so don’t miss out. Otherwise, stop in at your local health centre to stay up to date.

Proper diet

I know fast food tastes great when you are too tired to cook, or maybe you have a sweet tooth and crave chocolates before bedtime, even though you know you shouldn’t! Those empty calories are not doing you any favours… You can still indulge once in a while, in moderation, but the daily consumption has to stop. Your ageing body needs healthy foods to help it stay young! Dark, leafy greens and colourful fruits and vegetables give your body the vitamins and minerals it needs to be strong. Plenty of fresh fish and nuts ensure your brain stays sharp as a tack. The best thing about all this is that healthy foods taste great!

Move it or lose it

I know you don’t want me to say the ‘E’ word, but I have to! Exercise! Yes, I know it’s a pain but it doesn’t have to be. If we always keep fit, exercise isn’t only healthy, it’s fun and feels good, too! We just have to stay ahead of it before we lose all our youthful vigour. You don’t need to go out and join a gym or run laps around the track, just go for a walk, or take a bike ride. Swimming is the king of exercise, it’s low impact, aerobic, and uses just about every muscle in your body, plus it’s fun and feels fantastic. There are many more ways to improve muscle health, the main thing is to keep on moving! According to the government, we should be physically active every day, aiming for at least half an hour, but the more the better!

So, is fifty the new forty? If you stay fit it will feel like it at least!