People at the age of 40 should consider vitamins as an army which fight against health issues that occur as a result of aging. According to Kristin Kirkpatrick, who is a manager of programs for wellness nutrition programs at the Institute for Wellness at the Cleveland Clinic, the best way to create this army is by consumption of healthy diet. It’s especially important for people around the age of 40 to eat properly because their body is not working the same as it used to work when it was 20 years old. Certain changes start to occur, such as deterioration of muscle mass, weight gain, menopause, and chronic diseases including heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and etc. One of the possible solutions is to consume enough amount of proper vitamins. In the text below, you will find the essential nutrients you have to intake:
- Vitamin B12
Vitamin B12 should become your best friend once you turn 40 because it’s vital for proper brain and blood function. Children and youngsters get B12 from food they eat, including meat, fish, eggs, chicken, and etc. However, that’s not the case with people at 40. As the body ages, vitamin B12 is poorly absorbed because the levels of stomach acid deplete. So, it’s recommended to start getting 2.4 mg of B12 in a form of multivitamin or supplement on a daily basis.
When it comes to calcium, people have divided opinions about it. According to some, calcium intake cannot reduce the risk of fractures and at the same time, it increases the risk of stroke and heart attack. Despite this, many studies proved actually that calcium plays a major role in preserving bone strength later in life, as well. In addition, calcium is extremely necessary for other bodily functions such as nerve and heart functioning, muscle contraction, and other biochemical reactions. In case you don’t get the proper amount of calcium from the food you eat, your body absorbs calcium from the bones by so doing, it weakens them. The recommended dosage for women at the age of 40-50 is 1,000 mg on a daily basis, and 1,200 mg for women above 50. They should eat more calcium-rich foods such as sardines, tofu, broccoli, spinach, and almonds, as well.
- Vitamin D
Vitamin D protects against the changes that occur due to aging. Lack of vitamin D can cause heart disease, diabetes, multiple sclerosis, and colorectal cancers. The best dietary sources of vitamin D are fish, grains, cereals. However, the vitamin D a person gets from food is poorly absorbed, meaning that the best source of the vitamin D is the sun. But, not all of the people are exposed to strong rays because they don’t live close to the equator. For that reason, Dr. Kirstin suggests D3 supplement (D3 is the closest type of vitamin D that you get from the sun). It’s recommended to get 600 IU on a daily basis.
The main role of magnesium is to regulate blood pressure. This is extremely important for women at the age of 40 – 50, because they are already at a risk of high blood pressure because of aging. The lack of magnesium can lead to diabetes, heart disease, and inflammation. In addition, magnesium plays an essential role in nerve, muscle, and heart function. In order to make sure you get enough amount of this vitamin, test your magnesium levels. If you are deficient in magnesium, take it as a supplement. But, if you eat healthy diet, then there is no need to worry since you’re likely to get the proper amount of magnesium you need (320 mg on a daily basis). Magnesium can be found in beans, dark leafy greens, soy, seeds, nuts, and avocados.
Potassium balances the blood pressure regardless of your age. The recommended dosage of potassium intake is 4.7 mg per day. However, the benefits of this vitamin can be seen even with a smaller intake of potassium, for example 3.1 mg or 2 mg on a daily basis in women in postmenopausal phase. Dr. Kirkpatrick is against taking potassium supplements since they can damage the heart and the gastrointestinal tract. Also, it can provoke cardiac arrhythmias. The majority of people get potassium through consumption of bananas, chard, sweet potatoes, lentils, and beans.
Omega-3 are not technically vitamins, in fact, they are fatty acids that provide numerous health benefits. They fight against the negative changes which come along with aging, such as cognitive decline or increased risk of heart disease. According to many studies, omega-3 lowers blood pressure and the levels of “bad” cholesterol. They reduce the heart disease risk and improve memory and sharp thinking. It was found in a recent study that people having high levels of omega-3s had larger brains and because of that, they performed better on memory tests, abstract thinking, planning activities, in comparison with people with lower levels. You can get omega 3s from fish, flaxseeds, walnuts, and green veggies. But, if you want to make sure you get enough of them, you can take them as a supplements. So, if you are healthy, get 500 mg a day, if you have a heart disease take 1,000 mg, and if you have triglyceride get 4,000 mg.
Probiotics are essential nutrients for women 40+ because they have a crucial role in maintaining healthy gut and weight loss. Probiotics lower the risk of heart disease, diabetes, and stroke. You can get probiotics from seitan or other dairy or fermented soy products. if that’s not enough, take them as a supplement.