Let’s face it. Getting older can be a real slap in the face.
Some days it can be hard to get out of bed—much less to chase after your grandkids. Because you just don’t have the energy you used to. (Or some days any energy at all, really.)
And you’re just, well… slower. Not only on your feet, either. Even your weekend crossword seems to take longer to finish.
If so, you might think fatigue and brain fog are just the facts of life after 50. After all, you’re supposed to slow down as you get older… right? WRONG!
Sleepwalking through your days, no matter your age is not normal. The truth is there could be another hidden culprit at work behind the scenes.
And the good news is that, unlike the march of time, this one can be reversed.
I’m talking about vitamin deficiencies, of course. And a stunning new study revealed just how widespread these hidden deficiencies can be.
In fact, two especially common deficiencies that can leave you feeling fatigued and foggy are so common that more than one in 10 of us may fall short.
1 in 8 seniors not getting enough B vitamins
The Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing recently uncovered a concerning trend among a sample of more than 5,000 European adults over 50. A significant number were deficient in two vital vitamins.
One in seven of the older adults tested fell short on folate. And one in eight of the volunteers were running low on vitamin B12.
And that’s a MAJOR problem. Because low levels of these critical B vitamins come with a whole host of potentially lethal risks. From anemia and increased infections to lasting, irreversible damage to your brain.
If you’re seeing any of the following signs, it could be your first indication that something is seriously amiss with your B vitamins.
- brain fog
- balance issues
- muscle weakness
- pale skin
But fortunately, there’s some good news. And an easy fix.
Give your diet a boost of B vitamins
Keep in mind this study focused on European adults. And here in the U.S. folate fortification is mandatory. So it’s likely that our folate—or B9—deficiency rate is lower, to begin with.
However, you could accidentally be lowering your OWN folate levels with something you’re doing to be HEALTHIER. Cutting back on junk carbs.
You see the very foods you’re supposed to be avoiding are often the ones that have folate added to them. And those are the highly processed and packaged grains such as breads, pastas, and cereals.
But don’t make the mistake of loading up on those junk carbs again. Instead, turn to dark green veggies (such as spinach and broccoli), beets, chickpeas, citrus fruit, and avocado which are all far healthier sources of folate.
B12 deficiencies, on the other hand, still strike up to 20 percent of Americans.
You’ll find this nutrient in animal products—such as beef, fish, cheese, and eggs. Aim to get at least one to four servings daily to help to get you where you need to be.
You may STILL need supplements
But here’s the thing. Even if you are getting your fill of all of these foods, you might STILL run into problems with deficiencies.
That’s because, as you get older, your body’s ability to absorb and assimilate vitamins… especially B12… takes a nosedive. And modern day living with its high stress levels, poor diet, and overdependence on antacids can make it even harder for you to maintain the stores you need.
In fact, vitamin deficiencies are so common that everyone over 50 should ask his or her doctor for a simple blood test. And if testing reveals you’re low, you should consider taking supplements including a daily B vitamins complex to cover your B bases.