Written by: Chloe Pearson
Photo via Pixabay by LightStarGod
Women often take on so many roles in their lives–caregiver, provider, housekeeper, partner–that it’s hard for them to focus on themselves. Finding the time, energy, and motivation to take care of ourselves can be difficult, but there are many small things you can do to help the flow of energy and moods remain on track.
Keeping in mind that hormones are responsible for much of the balance in our lives, it’s important to remember that our bodies change as we age and therefore, our needs change as well. What worked for you twenty years ago will likely not have the same effect today, and that goes for rest, exercise, and diet. Here are some of the best tips for taking care of yourself throughout all the changes life throws your way.
It’s not just about choosing whole grains, limiting caffeine, and eating the right serving of vegetables every day, although those things are important too. It’s also about which vegetables you’re eating, how you prepare them, and what time of day you consume. Don’t skip breakfast, as you’ll need that energy to get you through the morning; no woman can subsist on coffee alone! If you’re not a big breakfast person, something small–such as a bowl of oatmeal or an apple with peanut butter–will do. Integrate nuts into your diet, as well as flaxseed, which has enormous capabilities for a woman’s body and has shown in studies to reduce a woman’s risk for certain types of cancer. Dark green veggies, such as kale and broccoli, are good to keep on hand.
Get enough rest
Many women struggle to keep up with their job, work at home, helping the kids with homework, and their relationships to the point that it’s hard to get to bed at a reasonable hour. If you’re staying up late and rising early, you’re depriving yourself of much-needed rest, so sit down and make out a schedule that you know you can stick to. Don’t forget to ask for help when you need it, as well. Getting organized can help you figure out how to get everything done at a reasonable time and can help you beat stress, another big issue for women.
“The biggest issue I see in most of my patients is that they have too much on their plates and want to juggle it all. Stress can have significant health consequences, from infertility to higher risks of depression, anxiety, and heart disease. Find the stress-reduction method that works for you and stick with it,” says OB-GYN Alyssa Dweck.
Daily exercise is a must
Not only will a daily workout make you feel better, it can have excellent effects on your long-term health. Get up your heart rate with a fast-paced walk around the neighborhood or go for a swim during warmer months. Keeping the blood flow nice and regular is one of the keys to lasting good health.
Watch your vitamin intake
Women need calcium for strong bones and to prevent osteoporosis, but too much can take a toll on other parts of the body, including kidney stones and possible heart disease.
“If you’re under 50, shoot for 1,000 milligrams per day, while over-50 women should be getting 1,200 milligrams per day mainly through diet — about three servings of calcium-rich foods such as milk, salmon, and almonds,” says Dr. Dweck.