If you’re a woman in your mid-40s, you’ve probably witnessed a number of fad diets and nutrition holy grails over the past few decades. Now that you’re (slightly) older and wiser, you’ll likely have settled into a pattern of eating that works for you, at least most of the time, and that you feel energized and nourished.
However, you may have noticed some changes in your body over the last few years. “For most women, peri-menopausal symptoms can start in their mid-30s,” says Stephanie Fabion, M.D., medical director of the Menopause Society of North America and director of the Mayo Clinic Women’s Health Center. “The typical age at which menopause begins is 45.”
Changes are sure to come, but making smart nutritional choices to help you age as gracefully as possible can help you enter the next phase of your life effortlessly.
Fabion pointed out that you may already be noticing weight redistribution due to weight gain, or increased composure around your abdomen. “We lose about 1% of muscle mass each year after age 50, and most adults gain about 1.5 pounds each year into middle age,” says Fabion. But she said weight gain, while difficult, is not inevitable.
“You can’t rest and exercise everything, so you have to pay attention to what you’re eating,” she said. “That said, you don’t have to deprive yourself. You can eat a beautiful, healthy diet full of fruits and vegetables.”
Here’s your “opportunity” to eat more nitrate-rich vegetables.
“Many women over the age of 45 are at increased risk of nutritional deficiencies, even when they are eating normally,” says Marianne Jacobsen, R.D.N. and midlife health expert. Did.
She said now might be the perfect moment to switch things up. “Health experts refer to this period in her life as a ‘window of opportunity,'” she says. “That’s because the decisions we make in middle age affect our health in later life.” Now’s a good time to increase your intake of nitrate-rich vegetables like leafy greens, celery and beets.
“These can help boost nitric oxide levels in women, which decline with age and hormonal changes,” says Jacobsen. “In fact, one study showed that two salads a day helped increase nitric oxide-related blood flow in middle-aged women.”
She also suggested a renewed focus on micronutrients such as magnesium, zinc, choline, omega-3s, iodine, B vitamins and selenium. “Aging and declining estrogen levels affect the amount of micronutrients the body absorbs,” she says.