10 Tips to Make 40 the New 20

They say life begins at 40. But what if you feel like you’re stuck in an older body? It’s time for a health check.

(SPOT.ph) Ever wonder how some people age so well? We see Hollywood actors who have been melting hearts since before we were born still rocking it in today’s movies. How do they retain the vigor to stay active? Locally, we have our own Amy Perez who, at 41, continues to bring vibrancy and energy to our favorite shows.

Maybe it's genes, maybe it's pure luck. But trying to live like an eternal 20-year-old requires hard work and discipline. You can start by changing the way you eat, since many diets promise a boost in energy with significant results in a week or less. But as a 40-something who has done time loving life to the fullest, you probably know that nothing as good as a healthy body comes so easily.

Here is the ultimate health guide for older adults who take the saying “age ain't nothing but a number” to heart.

Ride That Bike
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Apart from the world’s fight to reduce carbon emissions, riding those two-wheelers has serious health benefits for adults. Cycling is not as hard on the legs as running and not as hardcore as lifting weights, but pedaling also strengthens leg muscles and has essentially the same cardiovascular effects as running. A Harvard University study on the calories burned per physical activity found that a 155-pound person cycling leisurely at a pace of 10 to 12 miles per hour can burn up to seven calories per minute.

But probably the biggest advantage of cycling over other forms of exercise is that it has a utilitarian purpose. A form of active commuting, biking is a great way to get to work. This moderate activity keeps you in shape and saves you commuting and gas expenses too.

Bulk on fiber
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One nutrient that should always be in your diet is fiber. The average adult woman needs at least 25 grams a day, while men need 38 grams. Vegetables, beans, and whole grains are rich in fiber, which are filling and keep you from overeating. They also aid in digestion.

To get the recommended daily allowance of fiber, you can try psyllium fiber as a healthy addition to your diet. Available to every Filipino, it helps in making you feel lighter and go further even as you age—promoting gastrointestinal health and helping reduce the risk of diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. With no additives, no preservatives, no artificial colors, flavors, or sweeteners, an option you can easily purchase from the market is the C-Lium Fibre Supplement. It is available in 2 forms: (1) the husk which you can just mix with your favorite juice and (2) the capsule which you can take readily with a glass of water. So you can take whichever suits you best today.

Get enough z’s
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Adulting in your 40’s, you may be losing sleep over things like your mortgage, paying the bills, your children’s tuition, and maybe some challenges at work. Even worse, what little sleep you do end up getting may not be providing your body with proper rest due to the stress.

According to the National Sleep Foundation, the quantity of sleep for adults aged 27 to 64 years old is at least seven hours daily so they can be healthy, alert, and productive. Don't feel guilty about getting some shuteye. Sleep is not for the weak. Sleep is for hard-working adults like you who deserve to rest.

Watch what you eat
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Donuts sure look heavenly as always. Guess what: your body doesn’t need them. As people get older, their sense of taste and smell diminish. However, the ability to distinguish sweet tastes is retained the longest. This is why adults seem to crave more for sweets as they age. Unfortunately, this may result in a dramatic spike in blood sugar levels.

Slowly reduce sugar in your diet and let your taste buds adjust. Instead of sugar, use natural sweeteners such as honey or fruits. Check labels and always go for sugar-free products.

Start with small changes
Minimize and eliminate unnecessary snacking by introducing more fiber into your diet. Choose C-Lium Fibre by Pascual Laboratories, Inc.a brand of psyllium fiber available in drugstores and supermarkets nationwide.

Avoid drastic changes. You don’t wake up one day, realize you’re 40, and then abruptly decide to scrap fat, carbs, and sweets for good. Instead, make small changes that reap big rewards.

Add a side salad to your normal dinner, or substitute mashed potato with buttered carrots and peas. Make dessert portions smaller and have more fruits such as grapes or melon. Another small change is to consume more dietary fiber to satiate that appetite quickly.

Think small when eating

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You don’t need to completely ban certain foods from your diet. It is better and more realistic to eat smaller portions of everything you want. Try splitting the main course with a friend and don’t supersize anything. A serving of meat or chicken should only be the size of a deck of cards, while rice or pasta should be the size of a regular light bulb.

Healthy fast food choices

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If you can’t imagine life without fast food, at least try to make it healthier. Visit chains that include healthier options such as salad and fish in their menu, and steer clear of trans fats. And again, do not supersize your soda or fries. You may also consider bringing add-ons such as fruits for healthier sides.

Do yoga

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Yoga isn’t just for young people; adults are encouraged to strike some yoga poses too. Yoga reduces stress through slow, controlled breathing that decreases nervous system activity, which in turn helps manage blood pressure levels.

As you age, you experience low bone density levels, and yoga can help avoid that. It also improves your balance, sharpens your mind, and boosts your mood.

Relax, you got this
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As you age, your stress levels increase. With more worries on your mind, who can blame you? But you need to find ways to reduce stress to achieve mental and emotional balance.

A significant part of staying healthy is making time for rest and relaxation. Take a break when you have to and learn how to slow down. It also helps to build a support system.

Start a new hobby

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How about a new hobby? Stay active and embark on a new adventure by starting a hobby—one that keeps you moving such as bowling, outdoor photography, or flying drones is a good way to stay fit without much effort. Keep moving and have fun while you’re at it.

A 40-year-old body has different needs to stay healthy. If you want to feel like a 20-year-old at twice that age, it's time to make the necessary adjustments. More than any other time in your life, 40 is an important milestone for adopting healthier habits. Feeling 20 when you’re 40 will definitely require a lot more work and planning, but the results are definitely worth it.

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