Turning 40 – what to expect

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You CAN be fabulous at 40

Fabulous at 40. Yes, it’s true. You CAN be fabulous at 40! Just ask Jennifer Anniston, Julia Roberts, Kristin Davis, Nicole Kidman and Vanessa Williams.

40 is a time for freedom, fun and enjoying the good things in life. According to American academic and humourist, Gina Barreca, “Once we hit forty, women only have about four taste buds left: one for vodka, one for wine, one for cheese and one for chocolate.”

Body basics

Your body may have begun the aging process, but a healthy lifestyle, exercise and diet will keep you looking young for years to come. 

You can still be very physically fit at 40, especially if you’ve taken the time to become so in your 30’s. 

Your metabolism will slow a bit so you may have to watch your diet a little more carefully. 

Pregnancy is still possible

Turning 40 doesn’t mean having children is impossible. While there are risks associated with pregnancy in your 40’s, medical science has advanced significantly, and the chances of a successful pregnancy are higher than ever before. 

Women are having children well into their 30’s and 40’s these days, as they often pursue successful careers before having kids. Halle Berry was 41 when she gave birth to her daughter, Nahla Ariela Aubry. 

Following hormone treatment, and a devastating miscarriage in 2008, Mariah Carey gave birth to her twins Monroe and Moroccan in 2011, at the age of 42. 

Changing roles

If you had kids in your early 20’s, you may be experiencing empty nest syndrome as your youngsters go off to varsity, or pursue their own careers. This is a great opportunity for you to look at your own goals. Perhaps you would like to go back to varsity, switch careers, travel or start a new hobby. 

Changing hormones 

The symptoms of menopause can start in your 40’s. According to relationship expert and clinical sexologist, Leandie Buys, “A decrease in female hormone levels during menopause causes a number of symptoms which can result in a decrease in sexual desire. This is very normal, and there are a number of ways to overcome it.”

“If you discuss the situation with your gynae, they can recommend hormone replacement options, additional lubricants etc. Don’t despair. This is an exciting time for you and your partner to redefine your relationship and focus on both your physical and emotional intimacy.”

Financial security

You will likely be well into your successful career in your 40’s, and will hopefully have had the opportunity to invest your hard-earned cash. Having some savings or “rainy day” funds to play with can be exciting. Take a trip, buy yourself something you’ve always wanted, or invest in a new hobby. 

Keep a good handle on your health

In your late 40’s, you are more prone to developing health issues including high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, and heart disease. You can decrease your risk of developing these conditions by keeping a good handle on your health. Stay fit, and maintain a healthy lifestyle. 

Look forward to the future

The less you dread turning 40, the more fun it will be. Your 40’s can be adventurous, prosperous and exciting, so look forward to all they will bring. 

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