Are you starting to notice a few extra inches around the waistline? Can’t handle those late nights quite like you used to? Have you started to notice changes in your skin?
Welcome to your 30s!
Often times, when people reach their 30th year, they start to really take their health seriously as the effects of aging slowly begin to come more apparent. Taking care of yourself takes on a whole new meaning when you hit your 30s. Your body slows down, your metabolism changes and you don’t always feel as energetic as you once did. You usually realize that aging is inevitable, and it’s happening to you too. Trust me, I know ― I’m there!
Of course, this doesn’t happen overnight on the last day of being 29. It’s a slow process (duh), but it’s usually associated with and starts to become more noticeable once you reach your 30s.
When you hear the term healthy aging, you probably think of senior citizens or people who are starting to get excited about retirement age, but that’s not the case. It’s always important to take care of yourself, but healthy aging is something to really start thinking about once you reach your 30th birthday.
So, here are three healthy aging tips for 30-somethings:
Sometime around your third decade, you start to lose muscle mass and function. It’s called sarcopenia, and you can prevent it by being active and including resistance training in your workout. If you don’t already, now is the time to make sure you are building muscle and creating a healthy habit of exercising that you will continue into your later years, as it’s a lot harder to reverse or slow down sarcopenia as you continue to age. Have you heard the phrase “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks”? While it can be done, the older you get the more difficult it is to change the habits you’ve developed throughout your life. So, you better start now!
Another important part of building muscle and preventing age-related muscle loss is making sure that you are getting enough high quality protein. Chances are you may not realize just how much protein you really need. If you’re an active adult, you should be getting at least 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight. That means, if you weigh 130 pounds, you should have a minimum of 47 grams of protein per day, and this amount increases as we age. Aside from helping you build and maintain muscle mass, protein helps to keep you full longer, which can help you fight cravings and avoid gaining extra weight as your metabolism inevitably slows. Try logging your food for a few days and you will be able to see how much protein you’re getting and whether or not you should increase your intake.
Increase Your Energy
Once you reach your 30s, like or not, you’re an actual adult, and you’ve probably got all of the responsibilities that come along with adulthood. Aside from the body’s natural tendency to want to slow down as you age, being pulled in a thousand directions can take its toll on your energy levels leaving you feeling sluggish.
It’s hard to feel like exercising and taking care of yourself if you don’t have much energy. If you haven’t already noticed, energy levels dip as we get older, something you probably start to notice in your 30s. So aside from eating the proper foods to stay active and healthy, make sure you’re getting enough sleep at night and, you guessed it, exercising. Exercising strengthens the heart, which in turn improves circulation and increases energy within the body. If you exercise regularly, you will not only see improvements in your overall health, but you start to feel the effects of increased energy which can play a huge role in every area of your life!
Even though exercising is the last thing you feel like doing when you don’t have any energy, the next time you are feeling tired and sluggish, stand up and do some jumping jacks or go for a walk, I promise you will feel better!
As you age, your nutrition starts to play an even bigger role in your health. Having proper nutrition can prevent you from a plethora of illnesses that become more likely as you age. It also plays a role in the appearance of your skin, which is something that people in their 30s start to take seriously. If you care for your body from the inside out, not only will you age more gracefully, but you’ll see less of the effects that aging has both on the appearance and on the health of your body.
You don’t have to eat a kale salad for dinner every night or start your day with a green smoothie, but you should pay attention to what you eat and learn why it’s good for you and what it’s doing for your body. The more you learn about your food and its properties beyond just tasting good, the more inclined you’ll be to make better choices.
It’s possible to stay young and vibrant well into your golden years, but you’ve got to plan for it. If you want the gift of youth to stay with you, you’ve got to work for it, and the time is now.