What Not to Eat After Turning 50
Once we reach 50, we tend to find that our body is no longer able to digest food the same way it did when we were younger. As our metabolism slows down, then our muscle mass begins to reduce and we can start to see changes in our weight. This is why we are going to talk about foods to avoid after 50.
So, this then means that we have to give a little more thought when planning meals to ensure that we meet all our dietary needs and stay a healthy weight. It does not mean for one moment that you cannot still enjoy some of your favorite foods, but it might mean smaller portions, or it becomes a treat rather than something you have every week.
All the Foods to Avoid After 50
Many of the conditions which are related to unhealthy diets do tend to happen more often as we get older and that includes diabetes, heart attacks and strokes. So these are pretty good reasons not only to watch your calorie intake but also think about how the foods you eat may be causing your body to struggle. With some foods thought to cause us more problems than others, we have put together a list of some of the key offenders.
Well, okay, not technically a food, but drinking too much can cause wrinkles to appear much more quickly. It is the caffeine that causes the problem and this is because it can increase the level of the cortisol in our bodies. This hormone helps us to cope with stress, but when there is too much circulating, it can cause result in the thinning of the skin, which then causes wrinkles to form.
One of the functions which can slow down as we get older is how quickly the stomach can empty its contents. This then means that there can be a higher risk of experiencing acid reflux caused by the stomach acid traveling up the throat. If you can feel a burning sensation in your chest and have a sour taste in your mouth, then that is probably being caused by acid reflux.
Foods that are high in fat, such as fried foods, already tend to remain in the stomach longer than other types of food. So, this then means that you are much more likely to experience acid reflux after eating them.
It has also been found that fried food can weaken the lower esophageal sphincter (the muscle that prevents acid from moving back up the throat).
Highly Processed Carbohydrates
Highly processed or refined carbs are ones that have been stripped of almost all their fiber, vitamins and minerals. When we eat these types of carbohydrates, it causes our blood sugar to spike, causing an overproduction of insulin. This then results in an increased risk of developing adult-onset diabetes.
To understand which foods cause these problems, we can check the glycemic index. Foods that are at the top of the end of the scale and which are likely to cause a blood sugar spike include white bread, cakes, pastries and white rice.
The other problem with these types of foods is that the feeling of fullness tends to last around an hour. So, sixty minutes later, your blood sugar levels drop, you start to feel hungry and reach for something else to eat.
Alternatives with a low GI include, stone-ground whole wheat or pumpernickel bread, oat bran, sweet potato and most fruits.
Heart disease is considered to be a leading cause of death for people over the age of 65, but the problems start to develop much earlier in life. By the time we reach 50, the walls of the heart begin to grow thicker and the valves which allow the flow of blood become more rigid.
Trans fats which are found in margarine are often the culprit here. They cause an increase in LDL cholesterol levels which are the ones we do not want, while decreasing the levels of HDL cholesterol which is the one, we do want. But the great news is that the damage which is done by trans fats can be reversed through a healthy diet. Check food labels and look for those with less than 1.5g of saturated fat per 100g.
Meats which have been through a curing process like hot dogs and bacon, are loaded with sodium. Just one hot dog sausage is likely to contain a quarter of your recommended daily allowance. So, it is no surprise then that many of us consume much more sodium than we should.
Now we do need some sodium, it is essential for fluid balance, for example, but we only need between 180mg and 500mg per day. When you are over the age of 50, it is recommended that you consume no more than 1,500mg per day. That is about two-thirds of a teaspoon.
When we consume too much sodium, it increases the risk of several different health conditions. For example, having too much sodium in your blood causes fluid retention. This, in turn, increases the likelihood of high blood pressure. When you are over 50, or 55 for a woman, you are already at greater risk for high blood pressure and eating a diet that is high in sodium just pushes it up even more. High blood pressure can then lead to health problems such as heart disease and stroke. Now you are educated about foods to avoid after 50.