Women often make comments, usually in jest, about their clocks ticking. Life is passing by them by, and they’re becoming unable to meet certain milestones or accomplishments. It turns out that perhaps our clocks are ticking, and it’s not a good thing. Beginning in the 1980s, women’s life expectancies have slowly been dropping, ending with a two and a half year lag behind those in other developed nations.
The Center for Retirement Research at Boston College recently published a study which indicates that women are now living shorter lives than in years past, and that they’re narrowing the age gap of life expectancy difference between men and women. This number is alarming for many reasons. Most notably, women in the US are now at the bottom of the list for life expectancy in wealthy nations. The research at Boston College noted that the shortening of lifespans is due largely to habits and illnesses that we develop early in life, not illnesses that women are experiencing as a factor of old age. Some of the health issues include obesity, illnesses related to smoking, cancer, heart disease, and stroke.
Weight Isn’t Just About A Number
Some of the more alarming causes for this decline in life expectancy can be traced back to the obesity problem that is plaguing the country. The Centers for Disease Control reports that over one-third of US adults are obese, which poses a huge health risk in many different aspects of your life. Obesity can have a number of causes, but it can pose an even larger number of bad health outcomes. These can include high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, stroke, sleep apnea and breathing issues, mental health struggles, certain types of cancer, pain, and osteoarthritis.
What Should I Do To Combat This?
For starters, it’s always easier and better for your body to maintain a healthy weight than it is to gain weight and then struggle to lose it and keep it off. Some people might think they’re only carrying a few extra pounds, so why make drastic life changes to lose it? But studies show that even a small five percent reduction in body weight can yield great benefits. If you see the numbers on the scale creeping up, or your jeans are becoming a little harder to button, you should start making some lifestyle changes. Take a look at what you’re eating and work toward a more balanced diet, including fruits and veggies, lean protein, and cut back on added sugars and high fat foods. Up your physical activity level, whether it means something as small as parking in the back of a parking lot when you’re going shopping, or adding some extra steps to your day. If you’re already physically active, take your routine up a notch and find a group exercise activity that can help with your motivation.
The Woman’s Clinic offers a Healthy Me program to help you achieve and maintain a healthy weight. One of the most important aspects for women’s health is to not skip your annual wellness visits. Make an appointment to visit The Woman’s Clinic today. We are here to help you through all stages of life!