There’s a common notion that when you hit your 30s, the things that you put your body through in your 20s will come back to bite you. This is true, especially if your health was the last thing on your mind as you made the most out of your 20s.
However, it’s never too late to turn things around. Here are the common health mistakes that you must avoid making in your 30s and beyond:
1. Failing to educate yourself about health
It can take just a simple Google search of “Can men get fibromyalgia” or “risks of osteoporosis in women” to prevent a health condition lurking in the corner. The better you educate yourself about specific health risks for your age, gender, or genetics, the more likely you notice symptoms and go to the doctor for early diagnosis.
2. Not paying attention to what you eat
The older our bodies are, the less energy it needs to survive. Hence, if you are still eating like you are 21 years old, you might be putting yourself at risk of obesity and its consequences.
Maintaining a healthy weight relies more on your diet than your physical activity levels. That said, keeping yourself at an ideal weight requires a balanced diet with just enough calories to sustain your energy needs.
The number of calories you need per day depends on your age, height, weight, and physical activity levels. You can use online calculators to determine your caloric needs or consult with a licensed dietitian for a more accurate computation. Once you know how many calories you need per day, make it a point to pay attention to what you eat and not just eat whatever you want.
3. Skipping out on check-ups
Getting regular check-ups is essential at any age. But when you hit 30, getting screened for health problems become more crucial, especially if you are genetically predisposed to certain types of chronic illness.
Go to the doctor at least once a year for a complete check-up. The most important things you should get screened are your blood pressure, cholesterol levels, lipid profile, hormones, and blood sugar, among others.
4. Not drinking enough water
You might have gotten away with drinking coffee in the morning, wine at night, and barely any water in between when you were younger, but that doesn’t mean you can continue that habit into your later adulthood. If you are chronically dehydrated, it can lead to the formation of kidney stones, constant headaches, decreased kidney functions, and muscle pains.
5. Not exercising
We get it. You’re busy with your job, your family, your friends, and everything else in between. However, there is always time to exercise if you make time for it. That 30-minute episode on Netflix can be done with some cardio exercises in your living room. Those extra hours you have on the weekend can be spent hiking instead of laying in bed all day. When we hit 30 years old, it’s not as easy to exercise, especially with everything else taking up our day, but it is an essential factor in our health that can help prevent chronic illnesses in the future.
6. Depriving yourself of sleep
It might have been easy to run on four hours of sleep and an energy drink for the entire workday, but that’s when you were younger. Even then, depriving your body of sleep is as damaging as it is now that you are older.
A constant lack of sleep has many detrimental effects to health, namely: weight gain, memory problems, mood changes, headaches, low immunity, high blood pressure, and increased risk for chronic diseases. Now that you are older, you must get enough sleep every night, at least 7 to 8 hours a day.
7. Drinking too much
If you are still a heavy drinker, there is no better time to start moderating your intake than the present. For example, instead of having a nightcap before going to bed, reserve your alcohol intake for special occasions only. It also helps to remove all alcohol from the house to discourage casual drinking and let everyone know that you are trying to stop or limit your drinking.
Make your health a priority, and you will find that it can do wonders for the other aspects of your life. Regardless of your age today, reevaluate your health habits and always find ways to improve. Your future self will thank you for it.