Once you hit the big 4-0, it’s not only the number of candles on your cake that signifies you’re getting old, it’s also the achy feeling in your joints and the inability to slash those last five pounds off your frame. While aging in reverse is a miracle we’d all like to get in on, there are a few tweaks you can make to your diet to help slow down the process, such as eliminating certain foods that age you.

A natural way of stimulating hGH (human growth hormone) production is getting enough shuteye. “During sleep, the brain releases human growth hormone (hGH) into the bloodstream,” explains Lisa Jubilee, MS, CDN, founder of Living Proof NYC. “This occurs during the first stage of sleep, but during middle age the body produces less hGH. So if you’re in that age bracket and not sleeping well, your efforts to maintain a healthy weight will be compromised. Don’t skimp on sleep!” Even more reason: these 20 Surprising Ways to Lose Weight While You Sleep!


Drinking two glasses of water before every meal helped dieters lose an average of 15.5 pounds (five pounds more than the non-water drinkers) over three months in a study presented at the American Chemical Society's annual conference. Taking quick hydration breaks throughout the day also boosts your metabolic machinery, says JJ Virgin, celebrity nutritionist and author of The Virgin Diet Cookbook, and research shows staying properly hydrated keeps you feeling energized. Try to consume half your body weight in water ounces, Virgin suggests; a 150-pound person would drink 75 ounces a day.
“Many women find themselves sacrificing so much for their significant others, their children, their careers, and their volunteer service that by the time 40 hits, they haven’t done anything for themselves in years,” Honaman points out. “Retirement and empty-nesting will be here sooner than you think. Figure out who you are, and what you enjoy, so that you don’t wake up one day, look around, and wonder who that person is in the mirror.”
This diet, created by trainer-to-the-stars Tracy Anderson, has reportedly been tried by the likes of Jennifer Aniston and Lady Gaga. The gist of the 7-day eating plan? Eat jarred baby food for breakfast and lunch, followed by a low-calorie dinner. Anderson cites this as a way to “eliminate toxins”—a red flag because the body naturally expels toxins. This is nothing more than a short-term crash diet that is very low in calories and nutrients.
The pro football player turned outfielder for the New York Mets told GQ in February 2017 that he followed the keto diet and reported his favorite source of fat was avocado. The guy really loves avocados, and says he probably eats about four a day, adding them to everything from guacamole to smoothies. He rounds out his diet with eggs, sea bass, steak, and vegetables like asparagus. How I lost 50 lbs at 47 years old | My Weight Loss Journey

This is known as metabolic adaptation, says Bustillo. When we drastically reduce our calories for an extended period of time, our bodies adapt to needing that smaller number of calories, which decreases our BMR. The longer this underfeeding happens, the further our BMR may drop. [CAN WE USE THE 'STARVATION MODE' ANALOGY HERE? THAT MIGHT MAKE THIS A BIT EASIER TO GRASP--THAT YOUR BODY THINKS ITS STARVING SO IT HANGS ON TO EVERY CALORIE]
Difficulty on a Scale of 1 (I Feel Great!) to 10 (It Ruined My Life!): 3. The drink didn’t make me feel instantly Paltrow’ed, but it also didn’t make me feel actively bad. If I were someone who didn’t love/cherish breakfast, I could see myself making hot lemon water a routine. Since I do love/cherish breakfast, I’ll sip a cup on those afternoons I’m compelled to eat Cheez-Its recreationally.

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Slayton says that fortysomething clients come into her office saying things like, “I’m doing the same things I always did to lose weight and they’re not working.” “Of course they’re not,” she says. “With each decade, the weight rules change. Generally, we have to eat less and be more careful to get the same result. Once you realize this, isn’t it kind of liberating?”

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“As women, we have navigated the ‘mean girl’ stage of middle school, popularity contests in high school, workplace gossip, and even the mom groups,” notes Amy Rollo, a Licensed Professional Counselor Supervisor and owner of Heights Family Counseling. “Women in their 40s are tired and smarter. They no longer base friendships on popularity, but have learned to find their people. Those people are the ones that are there for you during divorces, death of a parent, and those trying times as a parent yourself. They are the ones that would drop everything and bring a bottle of wine, ice cream, and tissues to your place in a time of need. Women in their 40s understand how to find these friends.” Oh and speaking of? Here is The Single Best Way to Make New Friends.  

She may be the most beautiful woman in the world, but boy did she eat some crazy concoctions. Elizabeth Taylor turned to her own, let’s say, unique recipes to shed some pounds, like cottage cheese with sour cream over fruit, a peanut butter–smothered steak sandwich, and a “controlled pig-out,” where she once ate a whole pizza and hot-fudge sundae. 

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Some things, though, aren’t that simple. For instance, someone with a higher metabolism burns more calories at rest than someone with a lower metabolism, and can therefore get away with eating more food—even junk food. But a high metabolism isn’t a privilege reserved for a select few lucky enough to be born with it. You can raise yours and reap the benefits, too.

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