As women age, our bodies change. It is something that is out of our control and a natural part of life. Not only are we facing menopause, but stress is often a factor as we deal with caring for older children and aging parents. While these are all challenging issues, it is possible to ward off potential health issues by being aware of what the dangers are. The following is a checklist of the most common health issues to watch out for in your 40’s, so you can make these the best years of your life.
Most women experience higher stress levels in their 40’s. This is primarily due to financial responsibilities of older children, aging parents, and work. Higher stress levels can lead to a multitude of physical ailments including high blood pressure and stroke. Be sure to take time for yourself to keep stress levels to a minimum. Doctors recommend women in their 40’s get at least 30 minutes of exercise five days a week for stress reduction.
One of the things many women tend to run into when they get into their 40s is cancer. One of the most common types is breast cancer. This is a serious subject and it is one that you should meet with your doctor about. The doctor will likely check for lumps and other common signs for breast cancer. And should anything be found, the proper tests will need to be taken to be able to say for sure whether or not you have cancer. The doctor can also talk to you about preventive measures and how often you should have a checkup.
Cholesterol and Heart Issues
While heart problems are usually more of a common problem for men, it is still a problem for women. You want to make sure that your heart is in good shape. Are you exercising enough and are you eating right? This should be something you get checked out by a doctor and it should probably be done every so often. The doctor may prescribe medication to help out with your blood pressure and cholesterol. With that said, medication is not necessarily a bad thing as it is there to help out with any other complications that dieting and exercise is not. The doctor can also talk to you about other measure you can take about taking care of your heart as well.
Aging leads to the slowing of the metabolism, which can lead to weight gain during this time. Women going through menopause often report gaining weight, as well. If you notice the scale climbing, speak with your doctor. He will be able to help you determine what your BMI or body mass index is. Once you have this information, he may make dietary recommendations to help you reduce your weight to normal limits. This will keep you healthy and feeling your best.
As you are aging and likely gaining weight, another common disease that you can contract is diabetes. Therefore you really want to manage your weight and your diet to make sure that this does not become a problem in the future. However, this is preventable with the proper diet and exercise. However, if you are diagnosed with diabetes, a doctor can help you manage your insulin and blood sugar levels. It is not the end of the world, it can just make life and dieting less fun as it tends to have some restrictions.
Arthritis And Chronic Pain
The 40 is a time when many women begin to experience chronic pain. This is often due to the aging process and the onset of arthritis. Moderate exercise that is easy on the joints is an important part of managing chronic pain from arthritic conditions. Some activities that can help are swimming, walking, and bike riding. These exercises are low impact and won’t increase pain. Experts with Master’s in health policy say exercise promotes circulation and helps reduce inflammation as well as a better quality of life. If chronic pain is an issue for you, speak with your doctor who may be able to prescribe anti-inflammatory medications or vitamin supplements that may ease joint pain.
Your 40’s can be just as exciting as every other phase of your life. All it takes is a bit of attention to things that you may not have been concerned about before. Taking good care of yourself is the best way to ensure that you can be healthy for yourself and your family for many, many years down the road.