Tag Archives: over 50 health

7-Step #Vacation Strategy for No #Weight Gain! #weightmanagement #weightloss

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We just returned from vacation and the first thing I did the following morning is get on the scale! Vacation offers lots of opportunities to overeat, especially when dining at all-you-can-eat restaurants. For years, I gained weight during every vacation, but now I have a 7-step “no weight gain” strategy that works!

  1. Eat 2 meals per day instead of 3 meals
  2. Start breakfast with a bowl of oatmeal
  3. Top off breakfast with fruit
  4. Minimize carbohydrates (muffins, bagels, donuts, bread)
  5. Minimize breakfast meats (bacon, sausage)
  6. Snack on fruits and a handful of nuts for lunch
  7. For dinner, eat fish and vegetables with minimal carbohydrates

The Cafe Amalfi Restaurant at Hilton Beach Club offers a breakfast buffet for $17, which includes everything! I begin each breakfast with a large bowl of oatmeal (with raisins and a teaspoon of brown sugar), which provides fiber for “regularity.” For those of us who are over 50, staying “regular” while on vacation is a top priority! The buffet includes omelets, so I order an “eggbeaters” omelet with green pepper, onions and tomatoes (no meat or cheese). I love muffins but they are high calorie carbs, so I eat half a muffin. I estimate half a muffin at 150 calories, so I know I need to work off 150 calories that day. I top of breakfast with fruit, such as red, sweet, juicy watermelon!

I skip a formal lunch, but when I get hungry in early afternoon, I snack on a banana (for pottasium) and handful of heart-healthy cashews. For dinner, I eat fish, such as salmon, haddock, grouper, red snapper, or scallops. Vegetables such as broccoli, spinach, and salad provide nutrients and fiber. I love bread, so I eat it in “moderation” at dinnertime. As soon as we get back to the hotel, we exercise! Walking and riding stationary bike works off the bread calories!

If you are over 50 and have discovered tips for weight management during vacation, please share your tips by joining us at The Fifty Plus Network:

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Enjoy Peaceful Bliss at the Beach! #over50 #travel #retireyourway

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It’s the day after the Memorial Holiday weekend in Virginia Beach, Virginia. One would think the beach and beachtown would still be overflowing with vacationers, however it is surprisingly very peaceful … Why? The weather is cloudy with a light rain … a perfect opportunity to enjoy peaceful bliss at the beach! Listen to the waves crash on the shore. Listen to the seagulls chirp. Feel the ocean breeze on your face and in your hair. Look at how far and wide the ocean extends … as far as the eye can see … Stretch out your arms and see if you can match the vastness of the ocean. The ocean is a natural stress reliever. If you are unable to travel to the beach, take a virtual trip to the beach! Watch and listen to the beach video below …



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5 Steps to Take Control of Your Medical Care! #health #healthy

Doctor and Patient [Photo Courtesy: http://commons.wikimedia.org]

If you are in your 50s, you have seen many doctors in your lifetime. The 50s are a critical decade because that is when the “chickens come home to roost.” If you have been health-conscious all of your life, maybe you can escape your 50s without too many medical problems. However, if you are like most people, and you ate what you wanted, drank what you wanted, and never got enough sleep or exercise, chances are you will experience a medical warning in your 50s! Washington Post contributor Sandra G. Boodman wrote an excellent article on examples of medical mysteries that occur for various reasons. She listed the following steps to reduce your chances of becoming a medical mystery:

  1. Get a Copy of Your Medical Records
  2. Be Persistent and Follow Up
  3. Don’t Go Alone
  4. Come Prepared
  5. Trust Your Instincts

Medical Records

When my gynecologist retired a few years ago, I asked for a copy of my medical records to give to my new gynecologist. I had been seeing my old gynecologist since I was 16, and when he gave me my medical records, there were only 3 – 4 pages! I asked him about the rest of the records, and he said there would be a $50 charge for him to copy  all of my medical records. I felt it was very important for my new gynecologist to see my entire medical history, so I paid the $50 and gave the big stack to my new gynecologist so she could determine what was important for her to keep.

Be Persistent

Whenever I get bloodwork or any laboratory tests performed, I call in a few days and ask for a copy of the results. My spouse is just the opposite, who figures if there is anything wrong, the doctor’s office will call. According to Ms Boodman’s article, this is not always the case. I have had to “encourage” my spouse to be more proactive and follow up with the doctor’s office for test results.

Don’t Go Alone

I am a very independent person, so I have never thought twice about going to the doctor’s office alone. However, now that I am in my 50s, I realize that it is very important for someone else to know my medical history. A medical emergency can occur, and someone else needs to know what medications you take on a regular basis, and an overview of your medical history.

Come Prepared

Since you only get a few moments with your doctor, it is important to make the best use of your time! Before your appointment, make notes about your questions, symptoms and concerns. After your appointment, jot down the doctor’s answers to your questions, so that you won’t forget! Also, take a copy of your medical records and/or lab test results that you think may be related to your medical concerns.

Trust Your Instincts

If you have a gut feeling that something doesn’t seem quite right, get a second opinion! Listen to your intuition! The Internet is a valuable resource. I use it to search for prescription drug side affects. If I plan to see a new physician, I search the Internet for reviews. When I needed to have surgery, I searched for the top surgeons in my geographic area. Two names popped up and I searched for reviews on their names. One of the surgeons had hundreds of online reviews attesting to his bedside manner, his willingness to answer questions, and his follow-up after surgery. I met with 3 surgeons, one of whom was world-renowned, one at Johns Hopkins University, and the one I found on the Internet. The world-renowned surgeon was in his late 70s and was not willing to answer questions. The surgeon at JHU was recommended by my spouse’s co-worker, who recently had surgery. He was nice enough and answered my questions, but he didn’t have the number of surgeries under his belt. The medical literature stresses that the number of medical procedures a surgeon has performed is an important evaluation factor. The surgeon I found on the Internet, who was listed in Washingtonian Magazine’s Top Doctors, met all of my requirements. He had performed more than 3,000 surgeries, had excellent bedside manner, and answered all of my questions without rushing me. My instincts told he that he was the one! Now that several months have passed since my surgery, I am extremely happy with my decision!

For more details on taking control of your medical care, click here. Join us at thefiftyplusnetwork.com as we take more control over our medical care!

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Campus Life Makes Us Feel #YoungatHeart! #over50 #younger #50plus

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On an overcast Autumn afternoon, we attended the last football game of the season for our college football team! Visiting our alma mater’s campus in our 50s made us feel invigorated! The football stadium has been refurbished due to an influx of funds from CapitalOne. The athletics program was in the ACC, and now in the Big 10! We gets lots of questions about the university’s decision to move from the ACC to the Big 10. We believe the decision was about money and resources. Several years ago, the athletic program was in financial difficulty. The move to the Big 10 gave us access to financial resources and the students can use library resources and take classes at all of the the Big 10 unversities! It’s a win-win for everyone except our football team LOL! One downside we have noticed is that the Big 10 offensive and defensive lineman are much bigger than the ACC lineman! It will take several years of recruiting to beef-up our offensive and defensive lines!


As we walk around campus, remembering old buildings and seeing lots of new construction, brings back a flood of memories … What was once a parking lot is now a new building! We pass by the dormitories where we recall lots of dorm parties! Cole Field House used to hold the basketball games, but is now the Student Union building. The basketball team now plays at Comcast Center.


Being around young people makes us feels young! Their energy and excitement about the future is contagious! It forces you to remember your own youth, goals and aspirations. Think back … did you accomplish all of the goals you set when you were in your early 20s? If not, why not? If the goal is still important to you, why not pursue it in your 50s or 60s or 70s?


When you are in your early 20s, your whole life is ahead of you. You don’t spend much time thinking about obstacles, or limitations. You feel invincible, like nothing can stop you. Remember how good that felt? Visiting your alma mater may shake something inside of you. It may encourage you to pursue a passion you had as young adult!

Have you discovered an experience that made you feel “young at heart?” If so, share your experience by joining us at thefiftyplusnetwork.com:

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Canned Foods May Increase Blood Pressure! #over50 #health #healthyliving

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For the past 2 years, I have had difficulty controlling my blood pressure. When I am stressed, it spikes. I thought it was job stress. When my doctor recommended blood pressure medication, that’s when it became serious for me. When I went to the pharmacy to fill the prescription, the pharmacist requested to speak with me about the medication, which was unusual. Never before had a pharmacist requested to speak to me about a medication! The prescription was for 10mg of Amlodipine. The pharmacist asked about my blood pressure, and I told him what I had experienced over the last couple of years. He cautioned me that Amlodipine was a “calcium channel blocker,” which opens the arteries to improve blood flow. The most important statement he made to me was that once you start taking these types of drugs, you cannot get off. My doctor told me that I may only have to take the Amlodipine for 6 months, until my blood pressure stabilized. The pharmacist also told me that Amlodipine has 3 side effects:

  1. Dizziness upon standing up
  2. Swollen ankles or swollen lower legs
  3. Lack of energy

I told the pharmacist that it was always important to me to avoid having to take any medication on a regular basis. He responded that I needed to be very aware of my diet. He mentioned that canned foods have lots of sodium and preservatives that can increase my blood pressure. BINGO! For the last few years, I have been eating canned beans everyday for lunch and dinner. My reason was to add fiber and protein to my diet, and to lose weight. The beans helped me to meet both goals. However, I failed to notice the amount of sodium per serving.

The FDA recommends no more than 1,500 mg of sodium per day. When I added up my sodium intake per day, it was 2,000 mg! I was shocked and relieved. Now, I had the answer to stabilizing my blood pressure without taking medications. My daily goal is to cut my sodium intake in half, so I am cooking Bulk Dried Navy Beans – Non GMO (Three Pounds) myself instead of buying them in a can. I cut my daily Special K Cereal, Original, 18-Ounce Boxes (Pack of 3) breakfast to one cup of cereal instead of 2 cups. Even the 2% Lactaid milk has 125 mg of sodium per cup! I am looking at the label of everything I eat to make sure I stay below my daily goal! I am determined to avoid having to take blood pressure medication. Join us at TheFiftyPlusNetwork as we get healthy!

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