After 50, the body begins to work against you and the best diet for women is actually no “diet” at all. The focus needs to be rather on a healthy daily eating plan that consists of whole foods to provide needed nutrients for the second part of life. Dear ladies, if you don’t eat in an altogether new way, you are bound to get mood swings, and rapidly gain weight. Scientific observation has shown that aging causes reduced ability to use calories from food, reduced function of hormones, depressed enzyme function and reduced ability to fight disease.
It’s time to give your body and brain food, they need to thrive on. The question raised- What Should I Eat?
Tips to Get Started
- Watch your calories: Use all your experience and knowledge to eat smarter, with highest quality calorie. Station your daily calorie intake at 1600 calories/ day if you are sedentary in order to maintain weight with 200-400 if you are active. That means a 300- to 400-calorie breakfast and a 400- to 500-calorie lunch, with a 200- to 250-calorie afternoon snack.
- Strive for nutrient-dense foods (high in fiber or protein) and make sure at least half of your grains are whole grains. Nutrient dense foods include fresh fruits and vegetables; lean meats and fish; beans and legumes; nuts and seeds; eggs and dairy. People who regularly feast on whole grains are 20 to 40 percent less likely to develop diabetes and cardiovascular diseases than those who rarely eat them, according to a 2004 University of Minnesota School of Public Health review.
- Eat Healthy Fats: Early 50 brings hot flashes, night sweats and mood swings which are just a few of the side effects of peri-menopause and menopause. If you experience these symptoms, eating healthy fats may help you manage them. Omega-3 fatty acids are found in cold-water fish like salmon, sardines and tuna. Flaxseed is good plant-based source of alpha linolenic acid, a type of omega-3. Snack on seeds and a few nuts, they contain Omega 6 and some Omega 3, replace butter with nut butter or tahini, buy seasoned seed mixes and use flaxseed oil for dressings.
- Eat only small amounts of solid fats. Limit saturated fat (found mostly in foods that come from animals) and trans fats (found in foods like store-bought baked goods and some margarines). A diet high in saturated and trans fats is particularly implicated in making PMS worse.
- Minimize foods with added sugars. Excess refined sugar consumption may increase insulin production which may aggravate bloating. It also can lead to a lowering of blood Chromium levels and cause increased urinary excretion of magnesium. Processed food which contain starches and sugars that are quickly broken down by the body have a high GI (The Glycemic Index (GI) is simply a ranking of foods, based on their immediate effect on blood glucose levels. It is a physiological measure of how fast, and to what extent, a carbohydrate food affects blood glucose levels.), i.e. they are converted into glucose rapidly and can cause rapid fluctuations in blood sugar levels which can make PMS worse. Middle age can sometimes bring with it insulin resistance and frank diabetes, so it makes sense to avoid too much refined sugar.
- Meet your calcium needs: Menopause brings an increased need for calcium to maintain bone health as the estrogen levels are low. Vitamin D promotes the absorption of calcium from the intestines. Hence, it is functional in preventing osteoporosis. Dairy products such as cow’s and goat’s milk, yogurt and cheese are among the best food sources of calcium. Broccoli, collard and turnip greens, almonds and Brazil nuts, soy foods and blackstrap molasses also provide calcium. The best way to get an adequate quota of Vitamin D is to take a walk in the sun, eat fish oils and fortified cereals rich in Vitamin D.
- Stay Hydrated with H20: Water plays many roles in keeping you healthy with age. It helps to digest food so you can absorb the nutrients you need. It gives you an important source of minerals like magnesium and calcium. Water moistens mucous membranes and lubricates the joints and cools the body through perspiration. Drink a lot of (10-12 glasses) of tepid water, watery soups and vegetable broths.
- Reduce the intake of Salt: to offset bloating and fluid retention. Do not eat more than 6-9 g of salt/day. The results of a new study by an American university suggest that hormonal changes following menopause may prompt salt-sensitive hypertension in women who never had a history of BP before menopause. In addition, the researchers found that, in a group of younger women who experienced a hysterectomy with ovary removal, the number of patients with salt sensitivity doubled within 4 months of their surgeries. All the tastes like sweet, salty, spicy and tangy should be in moderation.
- Eat many different colors and types of vegetables and fruits. They contain high amounts of vitamins, minerals, dietary fiber and plenty of other good stuff. As if this was not enough reason to include these fresh foods in your diet, it has been proven that fruits and vegetables can also help relieve symptoms in menopausal women. Boron is one chemical found in fruits and vegetables that benefits the body by helping prevent estrogen loss. Some of the foods that are rich in both phytoestrogen and boron are tomatoes, pomegranate, apples, grapefruits, oranges, strawberries, carrots, bell peppers, beets, turnips, cauliflower, cabbage, onions and soybeans.
- Handle Raw Food with care: Remember with age we are less able to fight infection. Keep raw foods apart from foods that are already cooked or won’t be cooked. Use hot soapy water to wash your hands, tools, and work surfaces as you cook.
- Minimize intake of alcohol, tea and coffee. Make a conscious effort to reduce the intake of stimulant drinks – to help rid your body of toxins and balance blood sugar. Alcohol, coffee, tea and chocolate contain stimulants such as sugar, caffeine and tannins these can exacerbate tiredness, anxiety, panic attacks and hot flushes.
Number of calories Women need over age 50 each day?
who is not physically active needs about 1,600 calories
who is somewhat active needs about 1,800 calories
who has an active lifestyle needs about 2000–2,200 calories
Menopausal symptoms are precipitated by hormonal decline. So what does it make to arrive at a healthy menopause? A nutrient dense diet, a wise intake of vitamins, and a positive mental attitude. If you want to prepare for it well in advance, begin early in your thirties and you will find yourself ahead of the game.