6 Nutrients You Need If You're Over 40

After your 40's, your body begins to lose bone density, which is why calcium and vitamin D are 2 fundamental dietary nutrients.
6 Nutrients You Need If You're Over 40

Last update: 01 May, 2021

Vitamins are inorganic substances that can be found in different foods and are necessary for proper development and functioning of the body. After the age of 40, monitoring the amount of vitamins, minerals and nutrients we get becomes essential.

If you do not pay the required attention, you may experience negative changes such as loss of muscle mass, slow metabolism and increased risk of heart disease.

1. B-12


Sources of vitamin B.
Vitamin B12 deficiency is one of the factors leading to megaloblastic anemia.

Vitamin B12 occurs naturally in foods of animal origin, such as beef liver, poultry, fish, eggs, dairy products, cereals, and nutritional yeast.

It’s essential for the proper functioning of the brain, blood, and nervous system. According to the experts of the National Institutes of Health, a deficiency of this vitamin usually causes:

  • General weakness
  • Tiredness
  • Loss of appetite
  • Weight loss
  • Megaloblastic anemia

Normally, you get the necessary amount of B-12 from a diverse and balanced diet.

However, after your 40’s, the reduction of hydrochloric acid in the stomach causes problems in absorbing it. Therefore, many older adults should consume it through fortified foods or dietary supplements.

2. Calcium

Calcium is an essential mineral that’s present in foods like milk, cheese, and other dairy products. However, these products are not the best to obtain this mineral. Therefore, we should try to opt for more natural foods, such as: sardines, anchovies, cabbage, broccoli, turnips, soybeans, or almonds.

This mineral is fundamental to keep bones and teeth strong. Additionally, calcium takes part in blood circulation, the balance of the nervous system, and muscle contraction.

  • Due to all of the above, a calcium deficiency can cause illnesses like osteoperosis and rickets.
  • Although your bones absorb the most of the calcium that you need before your 30’s, after your 40’s, you slowly start to lose calcium.
  • Because of this, to prevent osteoporosis and other bone conditions, it’s important that you keep track of your calcium intake.

3. Vitamin D

Sources of vitamin D, including fish, butter, eggs, mushrooms, and cheese.
Vitamin D is key to bone development and the maintenance of good bone health.

This vitamin’s easily obtained when you’re exposed to sunlight and when you eat eggs and milk. This vitamin is essential for calcium absorption in your body because it also plays an important role in skeletal development.

Poor absorption of vitamin D can cause diabetes, multiple sclerosis, cardiovascular disease, and chronic illnesses.

  • Since the skin’s ability to absorb vitamin D deceases with age, after your 40’s, you have higher risk of developing a deficiency.
  • Our recommendation is that you pay attention to the amount of time that you spend under the sun, in a way that isn’t too much, but also isn’t too little. Don’t forget to spend at least a few minutes per day in the sun.
  • If you’re allergic to the sun or if spending time in the sun is impossible, include a vitamin D supplement in your daily routine.

4. Potassium

Potassium is an essential mineral for some basic-level muscle function and the nervous system. If you don’t consume a sufficient amount of potassium after your 40’s, you may notice:

  • Muscle pains
  • Muscle weakness
  • Dehydration
  • Cramps
  • Diarrhea
  • Constipation
  • Neuromuscular conditions

To make sure that you’re taking in the necessary amount of potassium, it’s important that you follow a varied diet that includes tree nuts, coffee, chocolate, and leafy green vegetables.

However, keep in mind that an excess of potassium in your body can create complications in your heart and gastrointestinal system. Therefore, if you’re going to take a potassium supplement, consult your doctor first.

5. Magnesium

Sources of magnesium.

Magnesium is an essential mineral and acts as a vital blood pressure regulator. It also is very important in the production of energy and in calcium absorption, just like in other essential metabolic reactions.

Due to the fact that magnesium is a part of chlorophyll, you can find it in leafy green vegetables, non-refined grains, legumes such as soy or beans, and in walnuts.

  • After your 40’s, it’s necessary that you carefully monitor your consumption of this mineral.
  • You should include foods that contain magnesium in every meal. If your diet is deficient, include a magnesium supplement in your routine.

6. Omega 3

Although omega-3 fatty acids are neither vitamins nor minerals, it’s important to add them to the list because they’re essential for your health after your 40’s. Omega-3 can be obtained through the following forms:

  • Animals: From fish oil and krill oil.
  • Vegetables: From plants such as flaxseed, chia seeds, hemp seeds, and soybean oil.

Eating these nutrients after your 40’s will help you control your blood pressure and bad cholesterol (LDL), two problems that are very common in that phase of life.

Omega vitamins also play an important role in memory retention and overall brain function.

Always prioritize good nutrition

Unless your doctor indicates otherwise, remember that it’s always better to obtain vitamins and minerals through the consumption of healthy foods, within a balanced diet. Vitamin supplements and pills are not mandatory in all cases.

Living a healthy lifestyle can prepare you for the changes ahead.

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