2 years ago

Life after 50: How to care for your health and age slowly

Whether you’re enjoying early retirement, still working full time or busy with kids or even grandkids, there’s plenty to keep you occupied after 50. For many, it’s the most enjoyable time of their life, but it’s also the most important time of your life to look after a vital asset – your health. Getting old doesn’t necessarily mean feeling every year you’re aging. It’s possible to slow the process and feel healthy inside and out with a few self-care tips:

Keep active & stay fit

The best way to keep your body healthy as you age is to keep moving. We’re not suggesting you run a marathon or do significant strenuous exercise. A simple walk each day and some activities which work on your strength and flexibility will do wonders for your health. If you’re keen to get out and about, consider joining a yoga or pilates class. This type of exercise will improve your flexibility, agility and balance – vital to avoiding falls later on in life.

Get a regular and full medical check up

Just like an eye check up, hearing test or even getting your car serviced, keeping on top of your overall health is vital for living your best healthy life post 50. Booking in a regular appointment with your GP will ensure your health remains on the right track. It’s also a great way of finding or sorting out any niggles early, before they get worse or cause other issues to flare up.

Stay on top of screening tests

As a young child you get regular vaccinations and check ups but as you age, these health check ins become few and far between. While it’s easy to put your health on the backburner, the reality is that from the age of 50, health checks and screening checks are crucial. Your risk for developing a number of serious health conditions increases as you get older, so it’s so important to be on top of it. Depending on your health history and current health risks, consider the following guide:

  • Every year:

– Osteoporosis risk assessment and dental check up

  • Every two years:

– Heart disease risk assessment, blood pressure, mammogram (for women) and eye test.

– Take the free bowel cancer test that is sent to all men and women 50+. As the most common cancer in Australia, bowel cancer often develops without any symptoms, growing in the bowel for years undetected before spreading to the rest of your body. If detected early through the screening test, 9 out of 10 cases can be treated successfully.

  • Every three years:

– Blood glucose test

  • Every five years:

– Cholesterol check and a cervical screening test (for women)

A healthy balance in your diet is key

Whether you’re living pre or post retirement, being told what you can and can’t eat can be hard advice to swallow. While you can enjoy the odd treat now and then, try to keep everything in moderation. A balanced diet which is high in vegetables, fruit and healthy whole grains and low in saturated fats will set you up for success.

Sleep

While some struggle to get good quality sleep, it can work wonders for your health and wellbeing post 50. A good night’s sleep can help with weight management, mental stamina and reduce your risk of heart disease and stroke. Research has also found that when you sleep, your brain washes out harmful proteins (such as beta-amyloid) – a protein linked to Alzheimer’s disease.

 

 


Beach Street Family Practice is your go-to practice for health and wellbeing post 50. We also offer annual medical assessments for elderly patients, in coordination with your regular GP, which include an in-depth assessment of any health issues and conditions and steps and interventions to assist. To book an appointment with one of our friendly GPs, call 02 6654 1282.