Thomas Rothwell

Recommended regular health checks by age

Global access to healthcare

10 June 2019

Regular health checks with your doctor or healthcare professional will help you to keep happy and healthy.  It’s important that we keep on top of how we are; both physically and mentally, so that if there are any problems, they can be looked at sooner rather than later. So where do you start? It can be hard to know what you should be having checked and how often, so we’ve taken a look at health checks at different ages – giving you a checklist to guide you through which tests to have, and when. 

The Basic Checks

There are some standard checks that we should be having. So, starting in your 20’s, book in some time at regular intervals to have these key health checks: 
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As we get older, some additional tests are needed to make sure our bodies are working at their best. In your 30’s, it could pay to start thinking about your cholesterol and blood sugar levels. In a world built around convenience, it can be easy for these risks to build up without us even being aware. Your 30’s is a great time to take notice and start making lifestyle changes to reduce your risk of developing problems later in life. 



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As you edge into your 40’s, there’s a higher risk of developing conditions such as heart disease, high cholesterol, cancer and type 2 diabetes. For the most part, these conditions are manageable and in some cases, even preventable – but, it’s worth starting to consider these added risks. For women, it’s recommended that mammograms and ovarian screenings are started, to look out for any potential issues. For men, it’s in your 40’s when prostate cancer becomes a bigger risk, so it’s now that you should start thinking about visiting your doctor for a prostate examination. If you have any family history of cancer, your doctor might recommend some additional checks for you too. 

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In your 50’s, you might start to notice the effects that what you were doing in your 20’s and 30’s has had on your body. Of course, cancer can affect anyone at any age, but it’s in your 50’s when the odds of developing cancer can more than double. Unfortunately, we don’t have any control over our genes, but we can think about our lifestyle choices and take extra measures to make sure we’re doing all we can to lower our risks, such as not smoking, wearing sun cream and keeping active. Additional health checks can help to rule out any potential problems nice and early, so speak to your doctor about these added tests if you have any concerns or family history of cancer or heart disease. 

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Written by Thomas Rothwell

Tom is a qualified sports nutritionist and mental health first aider. 

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Disease Prevention

Our actions and lifestyle choices at this moment in time increase disease risk and quality of life in the future. As Dr Mehmet Oz says, ‘genetics loads the gun, but lifestyle pulls the trigger’. Ultimately meaning, you can’t change your genetics, but you are in charge of the end result or how those genes ‘act’. Here are some tips of changes you can make now, to help yourself keep well in the future:

  1. Be aware of the medical history in your family and talk to your healthcare professional about it sooner rather than later
  2. Make your health a priority!
  3. Manage your weight
  4. Reduce your waistline
  5. Eat a balanced diet with plenty of whole unprocessed foods, rich in fruit and vegetables (eat the colours of the rainbow)
  6. Commit to moderate exercise for 150 minutes per week or 75 minutes if it’s vigorous exercise.
  7. Do some strength exercises that target all the main muscle groups
  8. Reduce sitting time throughout the day
  9. Non-exercise activity (walking etc) is just as important!
  10. Try and get 7 – 9 hours of unbroken quality sleep
  11. Manage your stress levels
  12. Don't smoke, or cut down.

Sources:
https://www.webmd.com/healthy-aging/ss/slideshow-health-problems-after-50