Often we see in the media information in regards to how woman experience physical and emotional changes as they age. Men also experience physical and emotional changes as they age; however they may not be aware of the types of changes that can occur. One primary reason men may experience these changes is due to a decrease in testosterone as they age. Men can experience a 1% decline in testosterone levels per year after the age of 30.
When testosterone levels are low, men can experience physical changes such as an increase in body fat, a loss of muscle mass, a decrease in strength and bone density and an increase in the waistline. Fatigue and increased sleepiness can also occur as well as changes in sleep patterns. Changes in sexual function are also common. Men may experience a reduced sexual desire as well as erectile dysfunction.
Not only can men experience physical changes from low testosterone they can also be impacted emotionally. They may find they are sad or depressed, have a lack of motivation and self-confidence and may have trouble concentrating.
Lifestyle changes in the areas of nutrition and exercise can make a big difference. Eating healthy can increase your energy. A diet rich in proteins, fruits and vegetables while limiting sugar and bad fats can make a big impact. Staying hydrated can improve energy levels as well. Everyone has different hydration needs based on their level of activity, size of their body, climate, etc.; listening to your body and using eight glasses a day, as a guide is a good rule.
Physical activity is very important. Doing some type of exercise or movement 30 minutes a day three to five days per week is a great target. It will help maintain strength, improve energy, maintain lean muscle mass and can even improve your mood as it helps release endorphins in our brain which help relieve stress and enhance pleasure.
Focusing on getting a good night’s rest can help with improved energy levels while allowing the body to recover and repair. It is important to limit alcohol consumption as this can interfere with your sleep patterns and also add empty calories to your diet and your waistline.
As a busy dad of four I know how difficult it can be to exercise regularly, eat healthy, sleep properly and have time for work and the family. The key is to be creative. We all have different schedules and demands but if we make living a healthy lifestyle a priority we can figure it out. Exercising when the kids go to sleep, including the kids in a home workout or exercising at work are just a few ways to be creative. I always like including the kids so we set a good example of living a healthy lifestyle.
Before you make any changes, make an appointment with your doctor for a complete physical to be sure you have a healthy start to your new lifestyle.
Note: Please consult with your doctor before starting any new exercise or nutrition program.