Top 3 Habits For Older Women and Overall Health

Available for Interviews: Dr. Mimi Secor.

Dr. Mimi Secor is Nurse Practitioner from the Boston area. She has been specializing in Women’s Health for over 40 years now, is a national speaker and consultant, and is an international bestselling author of Debut a New You: Transforming Your Life At Any Age.

What Dr. Secor Can Say in an Interview on 3 Habits
That Can Help Women 45+ to Achieve Overall Health:

Three habits for women 45+ that can help with their overall health, wellness, and longevity are: exercise, healthy habits, and a positive mindset.

1) Exercise

Regular exercise, especially for women over 45 years old, provides numerous and profound benefits for our health, wellness, and longevity. According to research summarized in an article I recently authored (Secor 2020), these benefits include: Evidence-based physical activity health benefits:  

      • Reduced risk of heart disease, stroke, hypertension, type 2 diabetes, and excessive weight gain.
      • Reduced risk of cancer including breast, colon, endometrial, esophageal, kidney, stomach, and lung cancer.
      • Brain health benefits, including possible improved cognitive function, reduced anxiety and depression risk, and improved sleep and quality of life, possibly reduced risk of dementia.
      • For pregnant women, reduced risk of excessive weight gain, gestational diabetes, and postpartum depression.
      • For older adults, reduced risk of fall-related injuries and death from these injuries.
      • For people with various chronic medical conditions, reduced risk of all-cause and disease-specific mortality, improved physical function, and improved quality of life.

As summarized in my recent article, key physical activity guidelines for adults include:

      • Adults should move more and sit less throughout the day. Adults who sit less and get any amount of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity gain some health benefits.
      • For substantial health benefits, adults should get at least 150–300 minutes a week of moderate intensity or 75–150 minutes a week of vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity or an equivalent combination of moderate- and vigorous-intensity aerobic activity. Preferably, aerobic activity should be spread throughout the week.
      • Additional health benefits are gained by engaging in physical activity beyond the equivalent of 300 minutes (5 hours) of moderate- intensity physical activity a week.
      • Adults should also engage in muscle-strengthening activities of moderate or greater intensity and that involve all major muscle groups on 2 or more days a week, as these activities provide additional health benefits.

2) Healthy Habits

Learning how to develop and maintain healthy habits especially when stressed is a major key to living a healthy and long life. It is also essential to learn how to break unhealthy habits.

James Clear developed the concept of habit stacking which involves associating a new habit with an established one. An example of this is brushing your teeth (established habit) and adding to this habit, the new habit of drinking a large glass of water every time you brush your teeth. Habit stacking increases the probability of successfully adopting the new habit because it is associated with a well-established habit.

3) a Positive Mindset

Developing a positive mindset is critical for living a healthy, happy, long life. This is because chronic stress (physical and emotional) is linked to many health problems including cardiovascular disease, mental health disorders and many other health problems as well including early death. A positive mindset also helps us to act on our healthy intentions, whatever they may be, to exercise, eat healthy, drink water, and get adequate sleep.  

Activities that promote a positive mindset and reduce stress include: mindfulness practices like meditation; stress reduction strategies including exercise, sleep, music, stretching/yoga/massage, outdoor time, social connection, hobbies; developing self-awareness especially gaining insight into our thoughts/feelings. Negative thoughts generate feelings that lead to unhealthy behaviors/habits.

Other important mindset considerations include developing a healthy self-image, learning to execute healthy intentions (Do you know about the 5 second rule?), learning to manage excuses (the reasons we tell ourselves we can’t do something such as I’m tired, too busy, don’t have enough money, don’t know where to start, nothing ever works, I’ve tried everything, I’m too old, I am not a morning person, nothing ever works out for me, etc.).

Interview: Dr. Mimi Secor

Dr. Mimi Secor
 is a popular National Speaker and Consultant, educating advanced practice clinicians and consumers around the country and the world. She is the author of the book, Debut a New You: Transforming Your Life at Any Age.

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