As some-one fast approaching fifty, I was pleased to read the research which showed that of 340,000 people are happiness increases as we pass middle age and was published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
We live in an aging population with more and more people surviving into their 70s and beyond. By 2050, it is estimated that 43% of Europeans will be over the age of 60. Due to medical advances, most older people are just as fit and active as when they were younger, making 50 undoubtedly the new 40!
Studies show our stresses, anger and worry reduce and we begin experiencing greater daily joy than younger adults. Researchers said the results are consistent with earlier research suggesting increased “wisdom” and emotional intelligence with age – at least through middle age.
Older people also have an increased ability to control their emotions, reflect constructively on experiences and use this experience to frame negative events in a balanced manner. So our fifty year olds are no longer sitting by the fireplace in their jumpers and slippers, they are in fact pursuing a social life and looking for personal fulfilment away from the financial worries, relationship difficulties and burdens of being parents.
Many more fifty-somethings see themselves as young and are adopting lifestyles which include pursuit of hedonistic goals, fun sports and imitate younger ways of living. The findings back up those of a British study that showed that happiness is U-shaped over life, being at its highest in the young and old and bottoming out in middle age.
As a forty something, I am now pleased to hear that life truly begins at 50!
Tips to Keeping you Healthy when you are over 50!
Walk or run up stairs rather than taking the lift, go to the gym, kick a ball around or go cycling/ swimming with family or friends. Take up an active hobby such as ballroom dancing, bowls, swimming, golf, rambling, cycling or horse-riding and make new friends. Dig out an old skipping rope, pogo stick, trampoline or other exercise equipment you once bought to gather dust; use it while watching the evening news. Walk or cycle reasonable distances rather than taking the car. Cycle or walk to a local park or a country pub at the weekend. When staying at home, put more effort into DIY, cleaning and gardening. Reinstate the old tradition of a family walk after Sunday lunch – kick leaves, skim stones, throw a frisbee and have fun!
To boost your memory: To remember an important fact, keep repeating it silently to yourself. Write memory-jogging notes of things to do and place them within easy sight. Try to learn at least one new fact, or memorise a snippet of poetry, every day. If you keep losing something (eg keys) form a mental photograph of where they are every time you put them down. Get plenty of rest and sleep.
To gain the optimum anti-ageing protection from your food, eat fresh produce, especially fruit and veg. Some say that eating a large raw-food salad per day, including as wide a variety of plants as possible, eg avocado, fennel, chicory, mixed baby leaves, watercress, spinach, grated carrot, peas, tomato, cucumber, sweetcorn, grated beetroot, grated broccoli, nuts, seeds etc. Avoid foods that are smoked, pickled or salted. Cut out all polyunsaturated fats, margarine, vegetables shortening and hydrogenated fats – only use extra-virgin olive oil or rapeseed oil.