Staying Healthy: Baby Boomers Thriving Infographic
By the year 2015, 45% of the U.S. population will be 50 or older. However, staying healthy has become a prevalent trend for this age group. 82% of adults 50 and older use the Internet to research health and wellness. Since 1987, the amount of Americans heading to the gym age 55 and up has increased 266% (making it the fastest growing age group among gym members). Over the next decade, U.S. baby boomers will spend $1 trillion dollars on wellness-based services, a significant increase from the previous amount of $200 million.
With the modern advances in medicine, we are living longer, staying healthier, and looking better than ever. How can you balance being Fifty, Fit, and Fabulous?
Celebrities: Fifty, Fit, and Fabulous:
After turning 40, Depp made the switch to a healthier lifestyle (better late than never!) He cut down on smoking, started exercising onset, and began eating healthier, a decision largely influenced by his children.
Intense sword fighting training for Pirates of Caribbean motivated him to stay fit. His motto? “You're only as old as you feel.”
How does the first lady find time to stay fabulous? With activities like the famous “Bo Dance Party,” an event where the entire family runs around the house, throwing a ball for their dog, Bo (equal parts chasing and being chased)! Fun family activities are a great way to sneak exercise into your everyday schedule. Obama recently made the switch from cardio to yoga, focusing more on balance and flexibility.
For Brangelina, it’s always about the family. Brad has one secret to staying fit at fifty: active family vacations. He is frequently spotted out with his kids, playing, surfing, ziplining, always moving! What does Brad’s diet consist of? Low-sugar and low-carb to maintain his famous physique.
After 15 seasons of fighting crime and preserving justice on Law & Order: SVU, detective Olivia Benson hasn’t aged a bit, but how does Mariska Hargitay stay so flawless? Her diet mainly consists of produce, giving her skin a dewy, radiant glow. She frequently drinks a juiced concoction of kale, spinach, cucumber, celery, ginger, lemon, and a green apple. In the winter, Mariska sticks to the treadmill, in the summer, she swims regularly!
How To Be Fifty And Fit
B12 supports healthy nerve and blood cells. It is bound to a protein in food that must be released by pepsin during digestion. As we age, our stomach acid decreases, making it difficult for us to absorb certain nutrients like B12. It is usually found in fish and meat, but it can be taken as a supplement, either by shot or pill.
Give Salt The Slip
Our blood vessels lose elasticity as we age, putting us at risk for hypertension (high blood pressure). Significantly decrease or remove salt from your diet to lower your risk for stroke, heart attack, heart failure, kidney disease, and early death. In the average American diet, 72% of salt comes from processed foods.
What’s the ideal amount? Anything less than 1500 mg of sodium per day (about ¼ teaspoon). Foods to avoid include chips, frozen dinners, and canned soup. Ditch processed foods for whole grains, fruits and vegetables and instead of seasoning with salt, use flavorful herbs.
Up Your Calcium and Vitamin D
Vitamin D is needed to absorb calcium and, much like with B12, as the body ages, it’s ability to absorb vitamin D and calcium plummets. Post-menopausal women are at a higher risk for osteoporosis due to a lack of estrogen. After 50, the body breaks down more bone than it builds! So, add calcium to your diet with sardines, broccoli, kale, and low-fat or fat-free milk and yogurt. Your doctor can monitor your vitamin D levels and prescribe supplements if necessary.
Fifty And Fabulous
You should look as young as you feel. For those areas that are not affected by diet and exercise, there is an answer!
Most Popular Minimally Invasive Procedures
Plastic surgery patients over 50 are mostly concerned with facial aging, which can mainly be attributed to loss of skin elasticity and facial volume. These aging processes lead to folds, deep wrinkles, and sagging skin. What’s the best solution? A facelift is the best option for total facial rejuvenation, especially when paired with other procedures like chin implants, cheek implants, a neck lift, blepharoplasty (eyelid lift), browlift, or nonsurgical treatments such as fillers.
Laser skin resurfacing removes blotches, scars, wrinkles, lines, acne scarring, and other signs of aging or damage. The procedure makes skin look rejuvenated, smooth, and uniform in color. In 2012, over 500,000 laser skin resurfacing procedures were performed, and that number has since been on the rise.
You’re 50, own it! Regular checkups and specific tests become crucial at this age. 50 is all about prevention. That way, you can be fabulous for another 50 years.
Thyroid Hormone Test
Your thyroid produces hormones that regulate your metabolism. Get tested at 50 and every 5 years after.
The Rectal Exam
Rectal exams can uncover polyps or other warning signs of colorectal cancer (and prostate cancer in men). Get tested at 50 and every year after.
The truth is that hypertension is bad for your whole body, deteriorating function in your heart, brain, eyes, and kidneys. However, the test is simple, quick, and cheap!
High cholesterol can put you at risk for heart disease, heart attack, diabetes, and stroke. Get tested at 50 and every 5 years (more frequently if you’re at risk for heart attack) after.
If you were born between 1945-1965, you are among the group with the highest infection rate for Hepatitis C. Because blood was not tested for the virus at that time, most people are unaware they are infected. Therefore it is crucial to get tested at 50.
Health Screenings For Men
Of cancers that affect both men and women in the U.S., colorectal cancer is the 2nd biggest killer. 51,00 people die each year from colorectal cancer. The sad truth is that regular screening tests can prevent more than half of these deaths. There are currently three types of tests: High-Sensitivity FOBT (stool blood test), Flexible Sigmoidoscopy, and Colonoscopy. Your doctor can help you decide which test is best for you. Screening increases your chances of discovering polyps before cancer develops, or catch cancer in the earlier stages.
Health Screenings For Women
To detect Cervical Cancer in it’s early stages, it’s crucial that women have a Pap smear every 1-3 years until you’re 65 if you’re sexually active. After 65, if your previous screenings have been normal, or you have had a hysterectomy for non-cancer related issues, you do not need to have a Pap smear.
In The Last Fifty
Looking back on the last 50 years, there have been numerous developments in the medical field. Developing the CT scanner, the laparoscope, and vaccines for Measles, Mumps, Chickenpox, Hepatitis B, Hepatitis A, and Lyme Disease.
Who knows what amazing advancements develop over the next 50 years! However, we do know that diet and exercise now, is always beneficial further down the road. Start now so you can be 60, 70, 80, 90, 100 and fabulous!
Sources: Immersion Active, Cynthia Pasquella, She Knows, WebMD, Health.com Beauty & Style, Health.com, Good Housekeeping, The Dr. Oz Show, AAFPRS, Daily Mail, ASPS, WebMD Healthy Aging Guide, WebMD, AHRQ, CDC, AHRQ, Project Inform, Michelle Obama picture, Johnny Depp picture, Brad Pitt picture
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