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Diet and Fitness

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Diet & Fitness


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Fitness Q&A- What Supplements and How to Start Exercising

Anne Elliott answers your fitness questions

What Vitamins and Supplements at 50plus?

How do I know which vitamins and supplements to take in light of overwhelming choice at chemists and health food shops and the many competing messages to buy? Should I detox?

I know just what you mean. It’s a minefield isn’t it? You will come across many competing opinions. I suggest you consider whether the answers you are given have any base in independent research and are accepted within the medical profession. It is an industry full of weird and wacky ideas.

Let me give you my view. It’s pragmatic, sensible and quite straightforward and in keeping with BMA and governmental health messaging. As long as you eat a healthy, broad diet there is absolutely no reason to take supplements unless:
Children might need a multi vitamin as their growth spurts vary: pregnant women should take folic acid and peri/menopausal women should take calcium.
If you are feeling any symptoms that concern you such as tiredness, aches or rashes, you should go and talk to your GP as you might have symptoms of something that should be investigated. If you are suffering from a vitamin shortage this can be properly identified and rectified through prescription.
A to detoxing What’s your liver for? Its an inbuilt detoxer.

The most important thing is to make sure you eat a varied and healthy diet. Here is the governments latest view on what is a healthy diet (right)


 How to get started with exercise

I haven’t done any exercise for years and I’m quite nervous about starting and don’t know what to do. I hated games at school. What do you suggest?

Firstly, let me congratulate you on an excellent decision. It doesn’t matter that you haven’t done anything for a long time. Anything you do will be positive for your health. You might want to start off gently. Physical activity doesn’t have to mean doing sport. It means you have to move more to use up calories so it might as well be fun. Walking is a great start. Go for a nice stroll in a pleasant environment and enjoy the fresh air. Why not take up swimming? This is an good way to exercise if you are quite overweight as the water will support your body as you exercise. Why not go dancing or join a class and learn. time will fly by if you are concentrating on learning new steps.

The thing to remember when you are starting is ‘little and often’. 15 minutes 5 times a week is better than 3 hours once a week. You want to get your body gradually used to moving again and if its fun, you’ll want to do it some more..

If you have a fitness question you’d like to ask Anne, please email editor@fabafterfifty.com .  Anne is looking forward to answering a selection of  your questions  over the coming months. Alernatively you can always  post your questions for Anne as  comments to this article.


ANNE ELLIOTT is 52. She has a Personal Training Practice that specialises in working with middle-aged clients and their associated health problems. She lectures in Sports Science at Middlesex University, is an ABAE boxing referee, is registered with REPS at Level 4 and is undertaking a Doctorate in exercise in middle age. Anne appears regularly in the media talking about her specialisation - exercise in middle age.

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  1. Rehman

    July 30, 2011

    Is there any reason, or cuase for feeling sick most of the time?
    Loosing weight? Panic attacks & Throids?

    Appreciate your advise

    • Ceri Wheeldon

      August 4, 2011

      Sorry to hear you are feeling unwell. We can’t respond to specific medical questions, but can only really advise that you visit your GP.It might be best that you make an appointment as soon as possible.

  2. Cay Moore

    January 19, 2013

    Thank you so much for this post. Found it very useful, considering I am just recovering from a bout of anaemia which I didn’t even know I had. wp.me/pKPh6-cm. Possible problems with my thyroids and my bones for which I have upcoming appointments at my local hospital. Desperately hoping that all will be well. Women and Men over 40 should definitely take more care of their health and lifestyle, and ensure that they have regular checks at their Doctor.

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