7 Tips for Ladies to Stay Healthy and Age Gracefully
After a certain age, ageing usually becomes a concern for many. This is especially so for women, as changes in physical appearances become more apparent with wrinkles and age spots starting to appear.
But there’s so much more to ageing than how we look. It's also about feeling confident as you get older, while ensuring that you have the means to fully enjoy life.
If you too would like to age gracefully, read on for tips on how you can achieve it through small changes to your lifestyle and some forward planning.
1. Maintain a balanced diet
Many of us are guilty of getting carried away with the busy-ness of work and family life, which may lead to us neglect our diets. However, a nutritious diet is essential for good health and is key to our well-being.
According to the World Health Organization(WHO), a healthy diet can help to protect you against many chronic diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease. For women, certain vitamins and minerals are especially important. For example, calcium helps with osteoporosis which women are more prone to, and whole-food diets can help alleviate the symptoms of menopause.
Try this: Try following the Health Promotion Board (HPB)’s guideline for a healthy diet, which recommends ¼ plate of wholegrains, ½ plate of fruits and vegetables, and ¼ plate of protein. Don’t rely on short-term or ‘fad’ diets, such as intermittent fasting and Keto, to lose weight. These diets are typically not sustainable and can even bring out health risks, like dehydration, fatigue, constipation and nausea, as they often cut out key foods.
2. Exercise regularly
Physical issues tend to increase with age. For example, loss of bone density is common among people as they age. Our metabolism also slows down which means that we burn fewer calories and store more fat. Here’s where exercise can help.
When done regularly, exercise can significantly lower our risk of diseases, such as heart disease and diabetes, and help us to better retain our mobility. An active lifestyle can also aid in lowering stress levels and improving sleep quality, as well as general mental health. Some exercises that are said to be good for women, especially those around their 50s, are strength training, stretching, jogging and swimming. For example, strength training improves strength and posture by helping to maintain bone strength and reducing the risk of lower back injury. Stretching aids in maintaining flexibility in the joints which tend to harden as we age. Finally, exercises such as walking, jogging and swimming are good for the cardiovascular system, which is beneficial for heart health.
Try this: Try incorporating 3 instances of simple exercise into your day, like walking home from the train station instead of taking the bus, or brisk walking as you run your errands. If you are up for new challenges, you can also try something new, such as spin class, pilates, or muay thai. For encouragement, consider using a fitness tracker to remind you to do and log your workouts, or find a fitness buddy! Remember, exercise is more than just about losing weight – it also helps to boost your health and overall well-being!
3. Get sufficient sleep
In this fast-paced world we live in, the value of sleep is often overlooked, neglecting sleep can take a toll on our bodies – both physically and mentally. Some serious issues that can be associated with sleep deprivation are high blood pressure, diabetes and various heart problems. It can also affect mental health, causing irritability and anger, and reduce your ability to deal with stress.
As such, remember that getting adequate and quality sleep is key in maintaining your overall well-being so that you don’t fall sick easily. A plus point is that studies have shown that well-rested people tend to have brighter complexions, clearer skin and fewer wrinkles.
Try this: Target to clock in 7 to 8 hours of sleep daily and establish a consistent sleep/wake schedule. For better quality of sleep, avoid screen time at least an hour before your bedtime. If you have trouble falling asleep, try meditating or reading a book to calm your mind. If you are a parent of a young child and sleeping through the night is out of the question, try getting short naps in the day for that energy boost.
4. Drink plenty of water
This may sound simple, but it’s true, and unfortunately, often overlooked. The health benefits of drinking enough water is aplenty – higher energy levels, better digestion, normalised blood pressure, healthy electrolyte balance, hydrated skin and more!
Try this: Drink at least 8 glasses of water every day, as recommended by HPB. Of course, do note that this is an estimated figure and required amounts may vary, based on your needs and activities. For example, if you exercise frequently and at high intensity, you may need to increase your water intake.
5. Enjoy your hobbies
With our responsibilities at home and in the workplace, we may sometimes lose touch with what fuels our own happiness. However, we should not forget the importance of having some me-time, doing things we enjoy which can help us to decompress after a long day of work. This can lift our moods significantly, giving us the boost we need to go about our everyday lives.
Try this: Do something you enjoy! Spend time in nature, revisit old hobbies, pursue new ones, or volunteer – anything that brings you joy. You could, for example, spend your day hiking at Sungei Buloh Nature Reserve with your loved ones. Or think about something that you’ve always loved or was interested in doing, that you might have had to give up along the way to make time for your commitments. It could be anything, for example music, sports, cooking or something techie – just do it!
6. Stay socially connected
Try this: Find activities that you and your friends or family can enjoy together such as high tea, escape rooms, or fun workshops – the sky’s the limit! Alternatively, consider using a fitness tracker and take the opportunity to start challenges with your loved ones, so that you can motivate each other!
7. Plan for retirement
Aside from all the physical and social concerns that you might have when it comes to ageing, don’t forget that it’s also important to think about your financial health as well. After taking steps to put yourself in the best physical, mental and emotional health, it’s important to be sure that you’ll be able to support a good quality of living as you move into your next phase of life – whether it’s through savings, investments, or building passive income streams. Take care of this early, so that when you’re older, you’ll have the peace of mind to focus on living your best life.
Try this: Make plans to safeguard and grow your savings while receiving protection. Check out Income's Gro Saver Flex Pro to find out how you can tailor your insurance savings plan to achieve your financial goals.
Yes – it is natural to worry about the challenges and uncertainties that ageing can bring along. However, there are many ways that can aid you in ageing healthily and gracefully, so that you can continue to enjoy quality of life. With the right care, the best is yet to come. Here’s to ageing gracefully, ladies!
To find out more about how you can take better care of yourself financially, connect with an Income advisor today!