AustinPUG Health

AustinPUG Health


While we love to tell our kids – and anyone else who will listen – about the wisdom, knowledge, and experience we’ve gained with age, there is a cold, hard truth about getting older that we avoid just as surely as we tout those advantages: our bodies are slowly failing.

“Slowly” is the key word there; we aren’t exactly about to kick the bucket after hitting 40, after all, but that doesn’t mean that taking early precautions is a bad idea, and this is where a renewed dose of vitamins comes in, making the difference between focusing on getting older and tackling our middle age with verve and gusto.

Whether you’ve taken the time to notice it or not, the passing years have taken a toll on your body, leaving you to cope with the aftermath as everything from your immune system to your bones steadily progress on their downward slope to old age. Thankfully for me and my fellows in aging, taking the time to identify the vitamins that can help and integrating them more fully in our diets is a proven path to better health as we move towards 50 and beyond.

Best Vitamins for Guys Over 40

Before we get started combing through the very best vitamins for men our age, let’s first take a look at two of the realities of reaching the ripe old age of 40, namely a sharp decrease in metabolism, and a reduction in the generation of certain enzymes that are required for proper digestion and nutrient uptake.

The first problem, reduced metabolism, is solved simply by taking in less calories than we used to, avoiding the troubles that come with excess fat build-up and all of its nuances. With your body unable to build muscle mass as quickly as it used to, excess calories can quickly find themselves stored as fat in cells, making a cutback on foods, especially particularly unhealthy ones, the first step in looking forward towards a healthy second half of your life.

The second problem, the reduction in the enzymes that aid in prime digestion that begins at about this age, can be tackled by upping your intake of antioxidants, those staunch enemies of the free radicals that threaten you with everything from fatigue to cancer. Whether you cope with this enzyme reduction by eating more broccoli, drinking green tea, or adding any other antioxidant-rich foods to your plate, you’ll be lowering your risk for a variety of troubles.

Now that the stage is set for a healthy start, let’s take a look at the vitamins that men over 40 should focus on in order to promote the best possible health for our next 40 years.

Vitamin B6

If there is a single body part that guys universally worry about as they age, it is definitely the prostate. Hidden away, never to be seen, the prostate has a surprisingly high probability of causing us grief at some point in our lives, and passing the age of 40 only increases that likelihood.

In an effort to stave off the ills of an angry prostate, specifically benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), a non-cancerous affliction of that gland that can cause serious pain and ruin an otherwise healthy sex drive, doctors recommend taking at least 1.3 mg of vitamin B6 per day. This handy vitamin will serve to reduce prolactin levels in your body, preventing the loss of testosterone and helping to keep your prostate functioning happily and healthily.

Vitamin B12

Aging causes all sorts of chemical changes within our bodies, one of the most prominent of which is the loss of hydrochloric acid in the stomach. You may think of it mostly as the bringer of heartburn, but this acid is a very important part of the digestive process, allowing your body to more easily take in the vitamins and nutrients that are contained in the food you eat. This reduction in your body’s manufacturing of hydrochloric acid translates into digestion that isn’t as good as it once was, often ending in a deficiency in vitamin B12.

Studies show that more than 25 percent of men will suffer from such a deficiency by the time they hit 50, causing ill effects such as fatigue, joint and muscle pain, memory loss, nerve malfunctioning, and more. In order to avoid these irritations and the more serious problems that an extended lack of vitamin B12 can cause, doctors recommend that gentlemen over 40 take 1,000 mcg of B12 each day, most easily done in the form of a dietary supplement pill.

Vitamin E

Vitamin E has a few particular benefits when it comes to men over 40, but the most important of them is its ability to act as an antioxidant within your body.

Again with the antioxidants! How did we end up back here, you may be asking? The power of antioxidants simply cannot be overstated, especially in well-aged bodies that have seen their fair share of polluted air, radiation, and, potentially, unhealthy habits like smoking. All of these things combine to promote free radicals within our bodies, little monsters that run amuck in our cells, causing a variety of potential problems, cancer first and foremost among them.

Because vitamin E is particularly difficult to get enough of via food sources alone, doctors suggest that men past the big four-oh take 150 to 250 mg in supplement form each day.

Lycopene

Not a vitamin in the strict sense of the word, but a beneficial compound closely related to them, is lycopene, a weapon especially useful to men in our quest for healthy, quiet prostates. Besides reducing your risk for prostate cancer, lycopene also provides an increase in general energy, and lowers your risk of degeneration in vision as you age.

Lycopene can be found most commonly in tomatoes – it’s actually the compound that gives those fruits their bright red hue! Make a point to include tomatoes with your meals as often as possible in order to ensure that you’re getting enough lycopene, and always remember: the redder the tomato, the more lycopene is has to offer your body!

Diindolylmethane (DIM)

Another non-vitamin, DIM is a natural chemical found in many green vegetables, and it is particularly important to men over 40 thanks to its ability to increase your production of testosterone, helping to offset the natural loss of that hormone that age causes. Known best for its ability to provide increased energy levels, DIM also promises to help keep your libido at a healthy level, a side-effect none of us are likely to argue with!

Men who take regular doses of DIM have also reported easier weight loss, faster muscle building, and other physical benefits, though researchers are still working to understand whether this is an innate effect of the compound, or if those benefits come as a result of increased energy; either way, they are valuable, especially as we proceed into middle age.

While it can be found in small amounts veggies such as broccoli, brussel sprouts, and cauliflower, doctors generally recommend that DIM be taken in supplemental form in order to ensure that you’re getting enough; luckily, it can be found in many common multivitamins for men.

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