As we say goodbye to our 30s and head into our 40s and toward menopause (or if we are already right in the middle of it), unpleasant stuff starts to happen. The hormonal changes that inevitably occur can really do a number on our physical as well as emotional well-being. Bouts of unexpected fatigue, skin problems that you’ve previously never had (which range from pimples and acne to wrinkles and fine lines), mood swings and excessive sweating are just some of the things that result from hormonal imbalances.
Thankfully, there are some easy steps you can take to make the transition a little easier, and which can possibly make you look and feel years younger too!
Choose Matcha for Your Afternoon Tea
As we age, our body’s ability to metabolise fat slows down dramatically. Which is why even if you feel like you have consistently maintained a healthy diet and exercise regime over the years, you might find yourself still desperately battling weight gain as you approach the 50s. Not something you want to hear, I know, but it explains a lot!
The great news is that researchers from Korea have indicated that a daily intake of two 250ml cups of matcha can come to your aid, reversing this slowing metabolism and helping you to lose two times more weight (and four times the amount of belly fat) than if you did not drink the tea.
So what is matcha, exactly? It is a finely ground green tea powder that has three times the amount of EGCG or epigallocatechin gallate than a regular store-bought green tea bag.
Walk Briskly on a Daily Basis
Want to stave off wrinkles and fine lines? You don’t need to sign up for zumba class and you can definitely skip the Botox injection. All you need is a pair of good walking or running shoes and find yourself a pleasant walking path. A brisk 30-minute walk every day is all you need to trigger the release of the hormone HGH, which is an anti-ageing compound that revitalises and rejuvenates the dermis and epidermis. According to some experts, this 30-minute daily walk can mean shaving at least eight years off the look of your skin. It is bound to contribute to heart health too.
Meditate for 5 Minutes
Did you know that our brain’s production of GABA—the neurotransmitter that’s responsible for providing us with calm and sustained energy—falls around age 40? It’s no wonder that over 65 percent of people over 40 years old have noticed their stamina and energy levels dropping.
On the bright side, there is a simple remedy that takes only five minutes. Studies are suggesting that just five minutes of meditation will raise GABA levels by over 25 percent and makes you calmer and energised for up to three hours after. Now is probably a good time to check out where your nearest meditation class is!
Use the Computer … and Read a Book
We spend a lot of time reading and hearing about how much we should all be limiting our screen time. The fact is that spending some time on the computer can actually benefit the brain.
One study has found that spending an hour on the computer doing an enjoyable activity each day (this can mean anything from organising family photos to emailing the people you love) can lower your chances for cognitive decline by over 40 percent. Furthermore, it can improve your memory as well as up focus and concentration levels within five days. This happens because using the computer releases acetylcholine in the brain’s frontal lobe.
So if you find yourself always searching for ‘missing’ keys and forgetting items on your grocery list, spend a little guilt-free time on the computer. Need more acetylcholine in your life? Thirty minutes a day reading a book will do wonders!
Don’t Walk on Eggshells—Eat ‘Em
Aches and pains may feel like part and parcel of growing old, but apparently, it may not have to be! One particular study has discovered that consuming natural eggshell membrane (from chicken egg shells) daily can reduce joint pain by more than 70 percent and even improve your mobility by over 40 percent—in one week.
It appears that the eggshell membranes are high in properties that are anti-inflammatory and that can help with the healing of joint cartilage. These include compounds such as hyaluronic acid and glycosaminoglycans.
Sleep with an Eye Mask on
Once you hit 50, your body’s production of melatonin drops dramatically and you become way more sensitive to light, which keeps you from falling asleep. So in order to help you get to sleep, you need to keep the light out by putting on a comfortable sleep mask. The mask will actually help to improve the pineal gland’s melatonin production almost immediately, which can help you to fall asleep up to 20 minutes earlier.