The sheer amount of diet options available to women trying to gracefully move into later phases of life is overwhelming — and not all of them are healthy for your body.
Many women over the age of 50 are seeking for diets that will help them control symptoms of menopause or improve their general health.
The diets included in this article were chosen using the following criteria:
Evidence-based: Scientific evidence supports the diet’s health advantages.
Adaptable: Changes can be made based on your own choices and nutritional requirements.
Nutritionally balanced: You’ll consume a lot of healthy fats and protein, as well as good carbs and vitamins.
Simple to follow: Aside from providing clear guidelines and simple shopping lists, the diet does not necessitate the use of supplements.
Not overly restrictive: You won’t have to cut out whole food categories from your diet.
Here are 5 of the best diets for women over 50.
1. Best plant-based: the Flexitarian diet
The Flexitarian diet is a semi-vegetarian diet that is mostly plant-based but includes meat, eggs, dairy, and fish on occasion.
This eating pattern is currently more famous among women who want to reduce their meat consumption for health, animal welfare, or environmental reasons.
The Flexitarian diet is an excellent choice for anybody looking to increase their consumption of fiber and plant protein while still recognizing the nutritional value of animal products and wanting to consume them as needed.
According to the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women’s Health, committed vegetarians and vegans are more likely to be deficient in nutrients such as iron and omega-3 fats, which are vital for women’s health.
In comparison to such restrictive diets, the Flexitarian diet contains more iron and omega-3 fatty acids from foods like red meat and fish. It is also richer in calcium, which is a crucial vitamin for maintaining bone health in postmenopausal women.
According to a preliminary research, this dietary pattern may provide extra benefits for body weight, heart health, and diabetes prevention.
Heart disease is one of the major causes of death for women over the age of 50, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Furthermore, rates of high blood pressure, a key risk factor for heart disease, rise dramatically after menopause.
The Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet is intended to prevent and cure hypertension, generally known as high blood pressure.
It is recognized for its low sodium content and concentration on foods high in calcium, potassium, and magnesium, all of which have been shown to help lower blood pressure.
The amount of sodium you may consume depends on your unique needs. Some people restrict their salt intake to no more than 2,300 mg per day, while others limit it to as little as 1,500 mg.
The DASH diet consists mostly of vegetables, fruit, and low fat dairy, with low quantities of whole grains, legumes, nuts, seeds, fish, and chicken also included. Red meat and sweets are typically avoided but allowed on rare occasions, while processed or cured meats are prohibited.
Limiting salty, ultra-processed meals in favor of nutrient-dense, whole foods provides additional benefits including lower cholesterol and better blood sugar regulation.
The key risk factors for dementia are age and gender, with women having a much higher frequency than men. In fact, women account for nearly two-thirds of those suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, the most common form of dementia.
The MIND diet was created to help people lower their risk of Alzheimer’s disease and other kinds of age-related mental decline.
The abbreviation MIND stands for “Mediterranean-DASH Intervention for Neurodegenerative Delay.” It includes components of the Mediterranean and DASH diets that have been demonstrated to improve brain health, as the name indicates.
Whole grains, berries, leafy greens, legumes, olive oil, and fatty seafood are all highlighted. Fried meals, red meat, butter, cheese, and desserts are strictly forbidden.
Several studies have demonstrated that the MIND diet lowers the risk of dementia. While individuals who stick to the diet completely are at the lowest risk, even those who adhere only moderately may see a slower pace of mental loss.
The Mediterranean diet is usually ranked as one of the healthiest eating patterns for basically everyone, including women over the age of 50.
This diet is recognized for its low saturated fat level and is based on the eating habits of people in Greece and Southern Italy in the 1960s. It is primarily composed of vegetables, legumes, fruit, nuts, and whole grains, with olive oil serving as the primary source of added fat.
The Mediterranean diet is mostly plant-based, but it also contains moderate amounts of fish and dairy, as well as small amounts of eggs, chicken, and red meat.
Decades of study show that this diet lowers your chance of developing chronic, age-related illnesses such as heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and mental decline.
One study also linked the Mediterranean diet to a 30% lower risk of obesity in perimenopausal and postmenopausal women.
Because of its adaptability, the Mediterranean diet outperforms several other popular diets. No foods or dietary groups are forbidden; even desserts and red wine are permitted in moderation.
If you’ve tried plenty of diet plans and are ready to break the dieting cycle for good, intuitive eating might be the answer.
Chronic restrictive dieting can have a number of negative consequences, including bone loss, rebound weight gain, disordered eating, and a lower quality of life.
Intuitive eating is an anti-diet approach that aims to change your diet mindset and help you develop a healthy relationship with your body and the foods you consume. Dietitians who believe that continuous dieting causes physical and psychological damage created it.
Intuitive eating is comprised of ten core principles centered on ideas such as making peace with food, valuing your health, and coping with emotions without the use of food.
There are no forbidden foods, and there are no restrictions regulating portion quantities or meal scheduling. Instead, the objective is to teach you how to listen to your body’s natural hunger and fullness cues so that you no longer need to rely on a specific diet to sustain yourself mentally or physically.
According to a recent study, intuitive eating is associated with better psychological health and a lower risk of disordered eating.
Additional study shows that people who adhere to this strategy are more likely to maintain a healthy weight, while it is important to note that weight loss is not the aim.
If you’re a woman over 50, the ideal diet is one you can stick to long term – yet it might not look like the best diet for your friend, sister, or neighbor.
Your diet should contain meals that you love, that make you feel well, and that supply all of the nutrients your body needs.
Consider your own needs while choosing amongst the diets on this list.
Choose the DASH diet if your primary objective is to lower your blood pressure. Try intuitive eating if you want to focus on self-care and a healthy relationship with food. If you just want to eat a better, more balanced diet, the Mediterranean or Flexitarian diets may be appropriate for you.
You may have noticed that the aforementioned diets have a lot of overlap. Each focuses on nutrient-dense, minimally processed foods high in vitamins, minerals, fiber, healthy fats, lean protein, and antioxidants – all of which are important components of any diet you’re considering.
Women over the age of 50 should pay extra attention to their dietary consumption, particularly calcium, vitamin D, protein, and B vitamins. If you don’t believe you’re receiving enough of these nutrients, simple dietary changes or supplements may be in order.
Remember that you do not need to make major dietary changes. Even if you are not adhering to your chosen eating pattern perfectly, little, incremental efforts may nevertheless give considerable health advantages.
Consult your healthcare provider before making any big changes to your diet or adding supplements to your routine to confirm it is appropriate for your needs.
It’s often hard to decide which diet is ideal for a woman over 50, especially if you’re experiencing physical changes linked with aging.
The Mediterranean, Flexitarian, DASH, and MIND diets, as well as intuitive eating, offer several benefits to your heart, brain, and general health.
Choosing the best one for you necessitates careful evaluation of your unique objectives and dietary requirements. The optimal diet is one that you can stick to over time and that keeps you feeling your best.
We hope this article provided all the information you need about diets for women over 50. If you have any comments or opinions please share them in the comment box down below.