It doesn’t matter how old men get we all know life is better when we’re healthy. This is even truer when we hit that half-century milestone and leave our forties behind us. So, to keep you in peak condition for living life to the fullest, we have three simple tips to stay healthy after fifty. They’re easy enough to start today too.
Tip one: Keep lifting weights
For some reason, society has made men think that lifting weights is just for guys in their 20s. When we get older, we’re told to ditch the gym in place of extra hours at work, or that the golf club is better for us than the barbell. It seems like anything to do with heavy should be left to our pre-middle-aged selves.
However, like many social norms, this one can do more damage than good. That’s according to top researchers anyway, who recommend we should continue to lift weights well into old age. That’s right, according to the experts you’re nowhere near done. In fact, studies show that people with low muscle strength are 50 percent more likely to die earlier than their stronger peers.
Maintain your muscle mass and burn fat
Lifting weights helps men over 50 for a number of reasons. Firstly, it keeps you strong and helps you to maintain your muscle mass. You’re less likely to pick up a niggle from throwing things in the trunk or working around the house with a sturdy, rugged frame. Plus, it’s great for self-esteem and wellbeing to know you’re still capable and active.
Let’s not forget that lifting weights is a very effective form of exercise. So much so, that studies show it can be much better at shifting stubborn body fat than a stereotypical jog around the block.
Why does this matter? Because obesity is one of the highest killers among men over 50. Not only is it a precursor to issues like diabetes and heart disease, but excess body fat is also linked to low testosterone. We’ll look more at this vital hormone soon.
Benefits to mental health
Your third and final reason to continue lifting weights is your mental health. Scientists who wrote a paper examining 33 individual studies found that resistance training was a great way to treat symptoms of depression.
Further research has shown it to be an effective way of tackling anxiety too. Even if you feel you have unshakable mental health, lifting can provide a rush of feel good hormones to make it even stronger.
Tip two: Look after your hormones
When you were a young man your hormones almost looked after themselves. Arguably the most important and anabolic one, testosterone, was probably at it’s peak too. As a result, you most likely felt stronger, more assertive, and full of vitality.
Testosterone is the primary male sex hormone that’s responsible for a lot of your masculine traits. Growing up, it’s what made you taller, muscular, lean, and provided you with the changes experienced during puberty. It played an important role in making you a strong, young man, and thrived into your thirties.
Risks of low testosterone
Once men you got to around age 30, however, your testosterone began to drop by around one percent each year. You might have felt this in your physique, energy levels, or even libido. Unfortunately, this drop in your primary sex hormone is a simple, natural part of aging.
That’s why it’s integral to look after your testosterone. Symptoms of low testosterone can be seriously damaging to wellbeing, including but not restricted to; low libido and desire to have sex, impotency and erectile dysfunction, low mood, irritability, difficulty concentrating, and depression. On a more physical level, you might also feel weaker, notice a loss of muscle mass, develop breasts, and experience excessive fatigue.
Fix your nutrition
What can you do? Look at your nutrition closely to see if you’re including all the essential ingredients.
Testosterone relies on many different nutrients to thrive, which you should be able to get from a well-balanced diet. On a macro level, fats are incredibly important, as they’re primarily what steroid hormones like testosterone is made from. Carbohydrates can also be beneficial too, if you’re concentrating on the complex kind, with just a small sprinkling of simpler sugars.
Next, you have the micronutrients. These include the likes of zinc, magnesium, and vitamin D, which are available in a healthy American diet. Others, like boron and ginseng are less heard of, but are very impressive aids to bolstering your androgen hormones.
One step many men take to shore up their nutrition is to utilize a testosterone aid. Longstanding health and fitness website Greatest Physiques include them as part of their list of Best Supplements for Men Over 50, as a method of gathering all these essential ingredients. You can see their full list of the best dietary supplements here – https://www.greatestphysiques.com/supplements/best-supplements-for-men-over-50/.
Keep following tip one
If you’ve followed tip one, you’ll be working hard to benefit your hormones already. Researchers have found numerous studies connecting resistance training with healthier levels of testosterone. Growth hormone release also appears to be increased too, although like testosterone, the response isn’t as big in older men compared to the young.
However, not only are you physically building your body and stimulating testosterone production, but you’re relieving stress and anxieties – two male hormone inhibitors. The stress hormone cortisol is a known blocker of testosterone, meaning the more stressed you are, the more your anabolic hormone will suffer.
So, use lifting weights as a way to unwind, relax, and feel positive. Track your progress and use it as motivation to keep your diet consistent and focused.
Let these two tips keep you healthy well into your fifth decade. Your exercise regime should help to keep you physically strong, fit, and able, while also keeping your mind calm and composed.
Also, allow your good food choices to reward your efforts in both the kitchen and the gym. You’ll maintain more muscle, keep away dangerous body fat, and you should be able to enjoy the experience of healthy hormones for many more years.
Of course, you can give yourself a treat here and there, maybe a cake, beer, of glass of scotch on a Saturday. After all, men’s health over 50 is all about balance, so make these two tips the rule, and treats the well-earned exception.