Preserving Youthfulness: How to Keep Your Body Healthy at 20, 30, 40, 50, 60+

preserving youthfulness in your 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s

The search for the fountain of youth didn’t start with Ponce de Leon, and it’s unlikely to stop anytime soon. However, even with remarkable discoveries in science, putting the brakes on aging is beyond our grasp today. But that doesn’t mean we can’t slow it down a bit! In addition to knowing what to expect with aging, you can also appreciate how to keep your body healthy. In the process, you will not only look your best but feel your healthiest as well.

What to Expect in Your 20s

When you’re in your 20s, thinking about how to keep your body healthy may not seem like a priority. But the aging process is already in progress by the time we reach young adulthood. In your 20s, growth hormone production, as well as other hormone levels, start to drop. Skin elasticity and collagen production start to decline. And even our blood vessels begin to lose a little elasticity. And though not necessarily noticeable, some brain cell loss begins to occur. For most in their 20s, these changes are subtle and perhaps unrecognizable. But staying healthy during these years should become a priority if you are looking to slow down aging.

How to Keep Your Body Healthy in Your 20s

  • Perform 30 minutes of exercise every day. Exercise improves circulation and lowers cholesterol levels while helping your skin and mind stay healthy.
  • Eat healthily and supplement with Calcium, Vitamin D and Vitamin C. These nutrients promote healthy bone formation and skin collagen.
  • Invest in proper skin care. Proper skin care varies with skin types but starting early is essential for helping your skin stay healthy. Also, wear sunscreen!
  • Check your blood pressure often. High blood pressure can first develop in your 20s without any symptoms. Being aware of a rising blood pressure is, therefore, a very important strategy to stay healthy.

What to Expect in Your 30s

By the time you are in your 30s, lots of changes are occurring. Knowing how to keep your body healthy becomes more relevant. Reproductive capacity for men and women declines more rapidly. Your metabolism now slows making the risk for weight gain more significant. Likewise, muscle breakdown begins to surpass muscle formation, and those pesky gray hairs begin to appear. Other changes also include reducing saliva production, which may lead to early tooth decay. And lastly, lung capacity starts to diminish for the first time. Staying healthy requires some additional considerations as a result.

How to Keep Your Body Healthy in Your 30s

  • Perform both weight-bearing and aerobic exercise daily. Hitting the gym and lifting some weights helps you preserve your muscle mass while aerobics helps preserve lung and heart function.
  • Reduce calorie intake by at least 200 calories a day. Cutting back on your daily food intake helps you align your nutritional needs with your slower metabolism.
  • Supplement with key vitamins while eating healthy. Specific vitamins and minerals such as Vitamin B complex, Vitamin E, Vitamin C, and selenium can be important in warding off gray hair and tooth decay while also reducing overall inflammation.
  • Avoid alcohol, tobacco, and caffeine. These lifestyle habits can undermine reproductive potential. Therefore, should be avoided as much as possible in your effort to stay healthy.

What to Expect in Your 40s

The changes associated with aging during your younger years continue in your 40s. However, staying healthy deserves some additional attention at this point. In your 40s, loss of brain cells becomes more significant and loss of muscle mass also increases. Joint cartilage, as well as collagen levels in the skin, diminish further leading to wrinkles and potentially arthritis. Changes in reproductive hormones mean both men and women have reduced fertility. Also, bone loss begins to occur more rapidly, particularly in women. Finally, continued loss of elasticity in your arteries combined with atherosclerotic plaques can lead to heart disease. Knowing how to keep your body healthy in your 40s thus requires a bit more effort.

How to Keep Your Body Healthy in Your 40s

  • Eat a diet that is well-balanced and low in fats. In addition to the risk of increased vascular disease, fatty diets can promote weight gain that accelerates arthritis.
  • Women should eat diets high in beans, leafy vegetables, and lean protein. These foods have higher estrogen content and protein that helps reduce the risk of osteoporosis while maintaining muscle mass.
  • Stay mentally active and learn new activities and skills. Staying healthy mentally can help boost memory and mental clarity in addition to making you feel young.
  • Commit to daily exercise involving both weight-bearing and aerobic activities. Your bone, muscle, heart, and skin all benefit from comprehensive physical activity programs.

What to Expect in Your 50s

Staying healthy in your 50s means still addressing declines in muscle mass, bone density, and cognitive performance. At the same time, you will likely notice some other aging changes. Specifically, healthy gut bacteria can decline while many intestinal organs secrete fewer enzymes and fluids. This means the risk for constipation and digestive problems may increase. Women usually experience menopause in the early 50s with increasing risks for osteoporosis and heart disease. Other changes include slower wound healing, reduced sensations, and a higher risk for cataracts and macular degeneration. And the loss of skin pigment and subcutaneous fat means skin appears paler and thinner. Fortunately, several activities can help you in your goal of staying healthy and youthful.

man and woman in their 50s practicing yoga in a park

How to Keep Your Body Healthy in Your 50s

  • Supplement a healthy, well-balanced, high-fiber diet with probiotics. This will help with your digestive health while making sure your muscles, bones and other tissues receive good nutrition.
  • Appropriate skin care becomes increasingly important. Drinking plenty of fluids, exercising, and taking good care of your skin can all help preserve youthfulness.
  • Schedule regular eye examinations and prevention measures. In addition to regular eye exams, aerobic exercise, eye wear protection, and antioxidants may help preserve healthy vision.
  • Exercise several times a week and include weight-bearing and aerobic components. This is important for women post-menopause to promote good bone health. But it is important for everyone to reduce heart disease risk, improve memory, and promote healing.

What to Expect in Your 60s and Beyond

By the time you reach your 60s, it is not uncommon to have some loss of taste and smell. Also, cartilage loss is usually significant. Many individuals will begin to experience arthritic symptoms and loss of height. Other common symptoms may include hearing loss, which affects about half of all older adults. Many women will also experience bladder problems related to low estrogen levels. And voice volume and visual acuity, particularly at night, declines. Other aging features are well known including mild memory loss, reduced balance and agility, and continued loss of muscle mass. A few tips, however, can help keep your body healthy.

How to Keep Your Body Healthy in Your 60s and Beyond

  • Maintain a healthy diet and proper weight management. Heavier weight places increased stress on your spine and joints. Keeping a healthy weight is therefore important in later life.
  • Perform bladder exercises and training. In addition to pelvic floor muscle exercises, training your bladder to hold larger volumes of fluid may also provide benefits.
  • Keep up with your physical and mental activity. The phrase “use it or lose it” definitely applies to older adults when it comes to exercise and staying healthy mentally.
  • Stay active in your community and social settings. Isolation can become a problem for some older adults. Maintaining social connections with close friends and family members is another important aspect of staying healthy.

Common Themes for Staying Healthy

Keeping track of all the changes that occur during aging and knowing how to keep your body healthy can be challenging. But common themes for staying healthy can be seen in every decade of life. For example, eating a healthy, well-balanced diet that is low in fat and high in protein is always a good idea. Supplementing your diet with important vitamins and minerals also helps you in your goals of staying healthy. Physical activity and exercise can do wonders in preserving youthfulness. And keeping regular medical checkups to help remind you how to stay healthy is a great strategy. Age-related changes are inevitable, but that does not mean you can’t delay their effects. With these tips on how to keep your body healthy, you can enjoy greater youthfulness at every age.

About the Author

Dawna is a mom of two young kids, puppy lover, ice cream lover, chocolate lover, and lover of any ice cream with chunks of chocolate in it. She is the author of seven books, a business owner, certified health coach, motivational speaker, and creator of the 5-Day Detox and the 14-Day Clean-Eating Program. Dawna appears regularly on local and national television. She has appeared on the Today show, Martha, MSNBC, HSN, and morning news programs on NBC, CBS, ABC, and Fox. Dawna is a highly sought-after speaker and has done speaking engagements for Chobani, Disney, American Heart Association, Mass Mutual, Wharton Business School, Women’s Entertainment Television, PGA Tour, Super Bowl Leadership Forum, Susan G. Komen, and many more.
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