woman at doctor

Turning 40 is no longer what it once was for women. While some women still fear 40, feeling as though they have aged passed their prime, the truth is that 40 really is the new 20. Women in their 40’s and beyond are in better shape, better health and more beautiful than they ever were before, proving that age truly is just a number.

Most experts agree that the key to maintaining vitality in your 40’s and beyond is taking care of yourself and staying healthy. While diet and exercise are important parts of a healthy lifestyle, so is making certain you are up to date on all of the proper and necessary health tests and exams. For women who are in their 40’s, there are certain tests you should be having done regularly to ensure that your body is healthy from the inside out. After all, it’s nearly impossible to take care of everyone else in your life if you yourself are not healthy. According to WebMD, here is a list of 5 tests to have done in your 40’s.

Mammogram: A mammogram is a test to check your breast tissue for cancer. While some women are recommended to have the test done in their 30’s due to family history, every woman should be having a mammogram done every 1-2 years beginning at the age of 40. While the test is admittedly uncomfortable, awkward and at times even embarrassing, it is still the best method for early detection of breast cancer, so suck it up ladies and schedule your mammogram today.

woman mammogram

Pap smear plus HPV DNA test: While most women are familiar with the pap smear, having had one done annually since their early 20’s, by the time you are in your 40’s your gynecologist should be adding an HPV DNA test to the mix. While this tests is only done every five years, it has been proven to be a much more accurate test for cervical cancer than the traditional pap smear.

pap smear

Blood sugar: While loading up on candy bars and sugary soda in your 20’s and 30’s may have been okay, once you hit your 40’s, your body can begin to react differently. The build up of sugar in your system can actually begin to overload your pancreas, eventually leading to diabetes. To make sure your sugar levels are in check, have a fasting blood sugar test done about every three years.

blood test

Cholesterol profile: With one in five Americans being diagnosed with high cholesterol, this is one test that should definitely be on your priority list. Having high cholesterol can lead to a plethora of issues including heart attacks, blocked arteries and even strokes. To ensure your cholesterol levels are where they should be, make sure to have this test done at least once a year.

high cholesterol

Eye exam: Not only are regular eye exams (once every two years), important to track any changes in your vision, you should also be having them done to check for certain eye diseases such as presbyopia, glaucoma and macular degeneration. Eye exams are one of the most overlooked exams by women, especially by those who do not wear glasses or contacts, so don’t forget to check this exam off of your list. Remember, these are the only pair of eyes you have, do everything you can to take care of them.

eye exam

So remember ladies, making time to take care of yourself needs to be a priority in order to live a long and healthily life. By keeping up with these simple and easy exams, you will ensure that your 40’s are truly fabulous.