Three diet changes that women over 50 should make right now
Your body changes as you age, so your diet needs to change, too. For women over 50, eating the right foods becomes even more important to avoid health problems.
These tips from Mayo Clinic can help ensure you’re getting the nutrients you need:
1. Calcium for bone health: Osteoporosis gets a fair amount of attention, and most older women understand that the risk of developing this bone disease increases with age. In fact, one in three women over 50 is at risk of a bone break caused by osteoporosis. Women over 50 need 1,200 milligrams of calcium daily. Use the Nutrition Facts label on food products to keep track of your intake.
2. Protein for healthy muscle mass: Older women tend to sit more, exercise less. That compounds a natural loss of muscle mass. By the time women near 80 years, they may have lost as much as half of their skeletal muscle mass. Eating enough protein reduces the impact of that muscle wasting. Healthy plant-based diets that don’t include meat, a major source of protein, can still provide plenty of protein if you make savvy choices. Consider more soy, quinoa, eggs, dairy, nuts, seeds
3. Vitamin B-12 for brain function: As women age, they absorb fewer nutrients from their food. One key nutrient they may not be absorbing enough of is vitamin B-12, which is essential for maintaining both healthy red blood cells and brain function. The best sources of vitamin B-12 are eggs, milk, lean meats, fish and fortified foods like cereals and grains.
Some aspects of skin aging may be reversable
Some common skin changes appear gradually as you age — age spots, freckles, discolored blotches, wrinkles, sallowness, roughness, very dry skin and leathery toughness.
Some skin changes, such as fine wrinkles from sun damage, may be reversed by treatment with retinoic acid. This treatment can also improve your skin’s texture, reduce discoloration and increase collagen. Other effects of aging aren’t reversible. But they may be treatable. For example, you may choose to have a rough patch or skin tag removed for cosmetic reasons. Or you could talk with your doctor about procedures for smoothing wrinkles and improving the appearance of your skin.
Aging can affect sense of smell
Your sense of smell and taste are connected, and they can change as you get older. In fact, changes in smell or taste can also be a sign of a larger problem.
Many problems cause a loss of smell that lasts for a short time. This temporary loss of smell may be due to a cold or flu that causes a stuffy nose; COVID-19, which sometimes causes a new loss of smell; allergies (try to avoid things you’re allergic to, like pollen and pets); a growth or polyp in the nose or sinuses that give you a runny nose. Having the growth removed may help.
Some medications like antibiotics or blood pressure medicine, can affect your sense of smell, as can radiation, chemotherapy, and other cancer treatments. Tell your doctor about any changes in your ability to smell.
— National Institute on Aging (NIH)