It’s no secret that as children our nutritional needs change as we grow up and become more active. But did you know that your nutritional needs change as you age throughout adulthood, too?
As we grow older, the concept of a healthy diet remains the same — we need a balanced and nutritious diet to help us look and feel our best. However, the composition of our diet can be adjusted to best satisfy our needs in every age bracket.
Keep reading to learn what foods make up the healthiest diet for your age range and body.
The Best Diet for (All of) Your Best Years
In Your 20s and 30s
If you’re in this age range, chances are you have a pretty busy schedule. School, work, social obligations, exercise, and chores fill up your schedule. You may wonder how anyone has time to consider nutrition with everything else you have going on, but it’s important to make your diet a priority in your 20s and 30s.
The way you eat now sets the tone for your health in the future. Considering having a family? Start forming the healthy habits now that you hope your children will adopt as they grow and learn.
Remember to incorporate the following into your diet to be sure you are getting the proper nutrients for your current and future health:
- Calcium-rich foods
- Whole grains
In Your 40s
Your metabolism slows down in your 40s — something most people know to be true. But instead of counting calories and restricting foods to combat weight gain, experts suggest putting a focus on exercise and healthy diet.
Healthy eating in your 40s will prepare your body for many more years of activity, plus help protect against illness and injury. Protect your body from heart disease, Alzheimer’s and more by making good choices in the kitchen and exercising regularly.
Things to prioritize as you prepare meals in your 40s include:
- Antioxidant-rich foods
- Iron-rich foods
- Vitamin D
In Your 50s
At age 50 people, some people start to experience health problems such as high cholesterol, high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes. To avoid these conditions and eat the healthiest diet for your age, it may be a good idea to monitor fat and sodium intake as you enter your 50s.
More specifically, you should be monitoring saturated fat, such as those in animal products. Additionally, stay hydrated by drinking 6-8 glasses of water a day.
What to eat:
- Omega-3 fats from fish and eggs
- Whole greens
- Heart-friendly foods
60 and Up
As we age, our bodies become less skilled at absorbing vitamins and minerals from food. It is important to start taking the necessary vitamins and minerals to combat this problem.
Additionally, individuals over 60 should adjust their diet to combat the risk of heart attack and stroke, compensate for lowered activity levels, and make up for reduced Vitamin D from less time spent outside.
Be sure to incorporate these foods and vitamins:
- Vitamin B12
- Vitamin D
If you have questions about proper nutrition in your diet, want to learn more about the components of a healthy diet, or want to work with our team on any aspect of your health, reach out to Neck & Back Medical Center online.