Read through to learn about the top 5 health concerns for people aged 40-50.
1. Heart health
Heart disease is the #1 killer for both males and females. It’s no surprise when you consider a rise in hypertension due to job stress, lack of exercise and obesity.
Symptoms of heart disease are very disabling like shortness of breath on physical exertion.
2. Breast Cancer
The most common malignant death in women after lung cancer, breast cancer increases with the following risks:
- Heredity- 5-10% linked to BRCA1 and BRCA2 gene mutations
- Family history
- Increasing age
- Excessive alcohol intake
- Hormone usage as in DES (diethylstilbestrol)
- Infertile or not child-bearing
- Menstruation before age 12 or menopause after age 55
- History of abnormal breast biopsies
- Chest radiation in the past
- Racial background- Caucasians have a greater risk than African-American women
3. Weight management
The second most voiced concern is that of weight maintenance. As we get older, our metabolism slows down. Combining this with job stress, spending inordinate time on the computer instead of the gym and a change in family life are all factors in watching the pounds creep up.
Measures to take include:
- Taking steps to eat healthy meals
- Eating several small meals throughout the day and don’t skip breakfast
- Establishing an exercise routine that can be consistent. Blend a cardio-workout with muscle shaping exercise plans.
- Walking 10-20 minutes daily
There are many apps available for download on smartphones. Some act as calorie counter and diet trackers (also assisting in which foods to select when dining out in restaurants).
There are many fitness apps which plan out and track your exercise routines, count steps and monitor vitals signs during exercise.
After 40, menstrual cycles may become irregular for many women. Stress and obesity contribute to a lack of periods. The lack of periods may be attributed to hormonal imbalance with early pregnancy detection missed.
For those who are trying to conceive, the biggest obstacle is fertility. Difficulties in conceiving increase in spite of in vitro fertilization and other fertility treatments.
After the age of 35, there is an increase in miscarriage and ectopic pregnancies. Even further, there is an increased risk of chromosomal abnormalities in the fetus with each year after 35. Genetic counseling is a good idea in planning for a pregnancy.
Depression can be triggered by hormonal changes that are seen after pregnancy or premenopausal.
Additional risk factors include:
- Heart problems
- Chronic medical issues
- Substance Abuse
- Marital discord
- Adverse reaction to some medications
- Stress in one’s daily life
- Vitamin deficiency
- Thyroid dysfunction
- History of childhood abuse
- Eating disorders
- Prior depressive episode
- Family history