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Top 10 Over-50 Health Fails

Check out these top 10 over-50 health fails to make sure you aren't making any easily avoidable mistakes on a daily basis.

There are so many behaviors out there that we might initially think are positive and beneficial but turn out to be wreaking havoc on our health. Look back 60 years, when no one batted an eye at smoking and drinking. Now, we know that going through a pack of cigarettes and 3 martinis at lunch is probably not the wisest thing for our health. As you check through our list of the top 10 over-50 health fails, remember that humans are adaptable. We have the ability to change our behaviors when given new information. 

Are we saying that we need to be purists who should feel guilty for doing any of the things on this list? No. We are not perfect and we should not expect ourselves to be. The issue is in believing that something is healthy when it is fundamentally not. With that knowledge, you can make your own decisions. And hey, sometimes we just really want a glass of OJ with breakfast on vacation.

AGEIST’s Top 10 Over-50 Health Fails:

  1. Orange juice in the morning, or really any fruit juice at any time. Fruit contains fiber which helps avoid a big blood-sugar spike when we eat it. However, when we juice fruit, that fiber is stripped away to pretty much a glass full of sugar. Only moderately better for you than vodka in the morning. This is not a health drink, it is a blood-sugar bomb. If you want something sweet and fruity, eat the whole fruit. 
  2. Sweetened yogurt. Yogurt is fantastic for our health & digestion as it contains gut-friendly probiotics. However, yogurt that is sweetened with sugar can negatively impact digestion and spike blood sugar. This is a dessert product; this is not a health food. We recommend sugar-free yogurt with no additives. If you want to sweeten it yourself, use monkfruit. 
  3. Hours of slow cardio with no resistance training. This is better than zero activity, but if we are not building muscle we are losing muscle, especially as we age. We recommend a workout routine that incorporates cardio, strength training, balance, and stretching. Your body needs a range of movement and variety to stay vital.
  4. Pasta or pizza with no protein. Your blood sugar will go ape, and you are now inflammaging. Carbs aren’t the enemy. We need carbs. But we also need to make sure we are smart about how we eat. Having protein and having your carbs locked into fiber is a good start. 
  5. Soda. No explanation needed. Just say never. Send a case of Mountain Dew to your most despised enemy to hasten their demise.
  6. Big cushiony sneakers. Fashion debatable, function disaster. You are telling your feet to go into a coma. Think: wearing oven mitts on your hands and playing the piano.
  7. Mouthwash. Your mouth biome is your friend. If you nuke it with powerful mouthwash, your ability to make valuable nitric oxide for your circulatory system will be vastly diminished. 
  8. Drinking alcohol on an airplane to help fall asleep. Sleep, especially while traveling, is good but sleep while intoxicated is just not restful. Implement other relaxation techniques like meditation, a calming playlist, breathwork, or sleepy-time tea. Same goes for drinking alcohol before bed: not a good idea if your goal is restful sleep.
  9. Processed meat. Eating enough protein is one of the keys to maintaining a healthy weight while feeling full and satisfied. But it’s important to choose your protein sources wisely. Processed meats have been linked to an increased risk of various forms of cancer, heart disease, and diabetes. Be intentional about your food choices.
  10. Drinking a big glass of water before sleep. We are all for hydration but drinking a big glass of water right before going to bed could interrupt your sleep, causing more damage than good. It is better to steadily hydrate throughout the day and then taper off in the evening to avoid sleep disruptions. 
See medical disclaimer below. ↓


  1. No cushiony sneakers?!😳 What do you suggest instead? Please complete this piece of advice. It would be much appreciated.
    With thanks, Danielle
    P.S. And make the box for the agreement of data handling a bit bigger—looks like a speck on my phone😅

    • Barefoot shoes and sneakers. For more advice and knowledge look for Katy Bowman, The Foot Collective or Vivo Barefoot. Walk barefoot!

    • Tried so called barefoot shoes–disaster. Without proper support intense exercise won’t be done consistently so I’ll take a hard pass on barefoot. Switched over to Ryka shoes for women–not super cushy, properly supportive, big difference.

    • Hi Danielle,

      Thanks for the question. the issue with thick squishy shoes other than occasionally is it will cause the sensations and feedback we get from the bottom of our feet to be reduced and to atrophy. I am barefoot no shoes no socks in the gym if I am lifting or doing floor exercises. Same at home. My feet have become substantially stringer. If I am running outside or on a treadmill I wear a La Sportive trail running shoe which I chose for its rigidness. The five finger barefoot shoes are great if you can tolerate them, same with all the natural foot wear out there. I have relatively flat feet and I pronate, although this is improving with my PT. I could not stand or walk for periods of time in these sort of super flat shoes originally, as it was too much of a transition. Now I probably could though. My advice, and I am not a professional at this, would be to look for the least squishy, lowest incline shoes you can tolerate, and spend a lot of time barefoot. Try to spend a part of every day doing barefoot balance exercises. This will help activate your hip, ankle and foot, which may also be weak….. mine were.


  2. For the last 12 years I’ve ditched sneakers for Vibram 5-finger toe shoes. I walk, hike, cycle, paddle and generally get around in these unusual shoes that call attention to my feet, and give way to curiosity like, “Are they comfortable?” You bet. So much so that I’ve worked my fashion around them. My feet are way more healthier because of them. Think, going barefoot, but with some padding.


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The ideas expressed here are solely the opinions of the author and are not researched or verified by AGEIST LLC, or anyone associated with AGEIST LLC. This material should not be construed as medical advice or recommendation, it is for informational use only. We encourage all readers to discuss with your qualified practitioners the relevance of the application of any of these ideas to your life. The recommendations contained herein are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. You should always consult your physician or other qualified health provider before starting any new treatment or stopping any treatment that has been prescribed for you by your physician or other qualified health provider. Please call your doctor or 911 immediately if you think you may have a medical or psychiatric emergency.


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