photos.demandstudios.com-getty-article-117-94-87322955_XSAs we age, our bodies’ important systems slowly start to become less and less efficient. This is true for just about everything — and, as it turns out, this includes how well we can metabolize and use the nutrients we’re eating.

A 2013 publication from Germany hypothesized that older people needed to increase their protein intake to make up for a diminished ability to create muscle (slowed anabolic response to food), and then brought forth evidence backing up this claim:

New evidence shows that older adults need more dietary protein than do younger adults to support good health, promote recovery from illness, and maintain functionality. Older people need to make up for age-related changes in protein metabolism, such as high splanchnic extraction and declining anabolic responses to ingested protein. They also need more protein to offset inflammatory and catabolic conditions associated with chronic and acute diseases that occur commonly with aging.

Today begins our series on nutrition and supplements for those 50 and older. Many forget that NUTRISHOP does not just cater to athletes, but to a wide range of people who simply are trying to optimize their nutrition to live the best, healthiest lives possible. Right off the bat, we can tell you this: Increasing your protein intake, as suggested in the study above, will work wonders for improving your livelihood even as you age.

Our two most popular options, PRO7EIN SYNTHESIS and FORZA PRO, are popular for a reason: They work. Ensuring you have enough protein in your daily diet is key to not only improving the way you look, but how you function and feel on a day-to-day basis.

There’s more to feeling healthy than just your muscle tone, of course: body fat, joint health, vitality, etc. We will hit all those topics this week, right here in this running blog entry. Stay tuned!

GENERAL HEALTH

According to the University of Rochester Medical Center, the older we get, the less effective our bodies get at absorbing critical nutrients. We also just eat fewer of them:

…Several aspects of aging may increase the likelihood of a deficiency in key vitamins and minerals, according to the National Institute on Aging. These include having a reduced sense of taste and smell; spending more time indoors; difficulty chewing; following a restricted diet because of a health condition; eating alone; experiencing loss of appetite; and taking medications that may prevent absorption of vitamins and minerals. Older adults also are at higher risk for dehydration because they may not notice when they are thirsty. (Source)

This might not only be applicable to senior citizens, too; even as young as 50, these aspects may start affecting our diets. That said, one of the best vitamin investments you can make to account for deficiencies in calcium, vitamins A, C and E, vitamin B12 and vitamin D, is NATURE’S FUEL. Its formula is among the best in terms of complete efficacy and there is no match for its absorption, meaning you get what you pay for when you take your vitamins. And for those who would tell you multivitamins are useless, we beg to differ: The American Cancer Society, referencing Harvard research, noted that over an 11-year study involving more than 14,000 subjects, there was an 8-percent decrease in cancer risk for men 50 and older:

Harvard researchers have found a possible link between taking a daily multivitamin over a long period of time and a small reduction in cancer. They analyzed data from the Physicians’ Health Study (PHS) II, which tested the effects of multivitamins in 14,641 male doctors 50 years of age or older. PHS II participants received either a multivitamin or a placebo for an average of about 11 years. The study was published early online Oct. 17, 2012 in the Journal of the American Medical Association. (Source)

JOINT HEALTH

As we age, the moving parts in our bodies that consistently are worn down, every day, little by little, start to go. Our joints are first and foremost on this list; it’s estimated that 37 million Americans suffer from some form of arthritis and that by 2020, it could be such an impactful malady that it could even affect the nation’s workforce:

 In 1994 the Centers for Disease Control reported that by year 2020, when one out of every two Americans will be over the age of 50, there will be a larger increase in new cases of arthritis than of any other disease in the United States. Among the leading causes of disability, arthritis heads the list; osteoarthritis is the most prevalent form and has the greatest economic impact. (Source)

JOINTHTHERAPEUTICSObviously, joint health is a huge concern. How can you help save yours? For starters, perfecting your exercise form and movements can help a great deal, making sure you are not exerting undue stress on joints or ligaments as you train. And while getting that down may take some time, there’s an easier fix still: supplementing for joint health.

JOINT THERAPEUTICS is the strongest, most complete joint support formula available designed to support healthy joints, relieve sore joints, improve mobility, strengthen and repair cartilage and connective tissue as well as reduce inflammation that leads to joint pain and discomfort. On top of actually helping to strengthen your joints for the future, JOINT THERAPEUTICS provides inflammation relief as well. Inflammation, one of the body’s responses to irritation or injury, has been associated with many conditions. It usually includes pain and sometimes redness and swelling in the area of the damage. The pain relieving, anti-inflammatory ingredients in our Anti-Inflammatory Complex are designed to support healthy joint function, assist in the healing of minor sprains, strains, muscle injuries, and the pain, swelling and tenderness that accompany sports injuries. This is accomplished by significantly reducing inflammation which can also bring effective relief to arthritic and sore joints as well as improve flexibility and mobility. These properties make this a popular alternative to prescription painkillers for the treatment of pain associated with arthritic joints.

– FIGHTING MUSCLE LOSS

We discussed earlier how muscle maintenance is important via diet, and why protein is so vital. However, as older people age, it does become more difficult to consume the same amount of calories and keep weight off, simply because exercise becomes more difficult (either to perform, or to schedule in). The deterioration of muscle tissue to fuel the body’s energy supplies is called “catabolism,” and it is a significant concern of fitness-minded folks — we call it “muscle-wasting,” as an example of how we view it.

The reasons someone 50 or older might worry about muscle-wasting include general day-to-day movement, easing the stress on joints and ligaments and decreasing pain and increasing agility associated with full-body movements you do routinely (standing up, getting out of bed, getting into a car, etc.). One newer supplement that is becoming more and more popular with the plus-50 crowd is HMB — even drinks like Ensure are now including it. And it’s the star of BETABOL at NUTRISHOP.

betabolHMB is a naturally occurring compound produced when our bodies metabolize the amino acid leucine. Its main role has been found to be the repair, growth and preservation of muscle tissue, as well as the capacity to burn fat. The body spends precious resources with muscle repair — each rep you do results in microscopic muscle-fiber tears; the regrowth of these tears puts a huge energy strain on the body. Leucine is the only essential amino acid with the capacity to stimulate muscle protein synthesis, but it is essentially used primarily to repair muscle damage incurred while lifting. When it is metabolized, HMB is produced as a natural byproduct and aids in recovery.

What if, however, you could “free up” the leucine to stimulate muscle protein synthesis to develop NEW muscle, instead of merely repairing the damaged tissue? That is precisely where an HMB supplement like BETABOL comes in. An increase in HMB is designed to allow essential leucine to build new muscle tissue, in turn burning more fat.

In the Journal of Applied Physiology,  an Iowa State University study from 1996 examined the effects of HMB in detail, providing specific ratios to test subjects who engaged in weight-training exercise and also supplemented with protein (rich with leucine). The conclusion: “Supplementation with either 1.5 or 3 g HMB/day can partly prevent exercise-induced proteolysis and/or muscle damage and result in larger gains in muscle function associated with resistance training.” (SOURCE.)

The study points out that the muscle-building benefits of leucine have been scientifically backed for the 45 years, but that only recently has the byproduct HMB gotten any attention for its role in the process. By the end of the study, researchers found that the subjects that were using enhanced doses of HMB were experience higher levels of anti-catabolism, more fat loss and an increase in strength, muscle volume and recovery speed.