17 Things People Over 60 Are Often Told to Avoid

As you grow older, it seems the list of things you’re supposed to avoid just keeps getting longer and longer! From alcohol consumption to following the latest fashion trends, this article will uncover 17 things that over-60s are recommended to stay away from and why.


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Caffeine is found in many beloved beverages and food items, such as coffee, tea, chocolate, and even certain medications! However, it can cause increased levels of anxiety and a higher heart rate, which you likely want to avoid. We suggest considering decaffeinated alternatives and reducing your intake gradually.

High-Sodium Foods

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Sodium leads to fluid retention, high blood pressure, and heart risks—all things that aren’t great for the health of those aged sixty and older. The American Heart Association suggests a limit of 1,500 mg/day. You can also opt for foods rich in potassium to counteract the effects of sodium.

Neglecting Sun Protection

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We all love to bask in the sun, but it’s more important than ever to wear sun protection as you age. There’s a continuous risk of skin damage and cancer, so be sure to use sunblock and wear protective clothing. Regular skin check-ups are also recommended for those in their sixties.

Ignoring Foot Health

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You may have been able to shake off a foot injury in your youth, but it’s best not to ignore your foot health as you age. Maintaining good foot health is essential for your mobility and overall well-being. So, choose supportive footwear and address foot problems early. Regular foot check-ups can prevent major issues.


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Alcohol is something you may have enjoyed drinking since a young age, but it’s generally recommended that you avoid it as much as possible as you get older. It can interfere with your medications and lower your blood pressure. Of course, moderation is key; consult a doctor for personalized advice.

Disregarding Dental Health

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According to the American Dental Association, “Dental conditions associated with aging include dry mouth (xerostomia), root and coronal caries, and periodontitis.” Dental health has a direct impact on your general health and quality of life, so regular dental visits are crucial. It’s also important to avoid bad oral hygiene practices.

Overlooking Eye and Ear Health

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As you age, you may overlook your eye and ear health—this is a mistake. Regular check-ups can detect issues early, and corrective measures can enhance your quality of life. Plus, good sensory health is crucial for independence, which is something you’ll want to maintain for as long as possible.


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Of course, you’ll want to avoid dehydration at any age, but this is all the more important in your 60s and beyond. As shared by the NIH, “Older people are more susceptible to dehydration than younger people. This is partly due to lack of thirst sensation and changes in the water and sodium balance that naturally occur as people age.” It’s important to drink water throughout the day.

Not Asking for Help

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Certain older individuals feel a sense of shame in needing to ask for help, but this should be avoided. Seeking assistance helps those in their sixties and beyond maintain their independence and safety. There’s no shame in asking for help when needed, including physical, emotional, or medical help.

Sticking to Old Routines

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Just because you’re getting older doesn’t mean you have to stick to the same old routines—it’s never too late to switch things up! An openness to new experiences encourages growth, and change can bring about happiness and new interests. Flexibility in your routine is very beneficial.

Neglecting End-of-Life Planning

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This is naturally something that you don’t want to think about, but it’s best to avoid putting end-of-life planning off. It’s important to have a plan for your peace of mind and family preparedness. This includes wills, medical directives, and funeral preferences. Discussions with family and legal advisors are advisable.

Hard, Tough Foods

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As published in the NLM, “Age related changes to eating and swallowing function means that there is a natural tendency for elders to self-select ‘soft’ foods due to loss of dentition and fatigue on chewing.” However, you may be tempted by hard, tough foods that are difficult to digest and may harm your dental health. It’s best to avoid these options!

Full-Fat Milk and Dairy Products

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Full-fat milk and other dairy products are often high in calories and may contribute to weight gain. These items are also associated with an increased risk of heart disease. We’d suggest avoiding them and opting for low-fat or fat-free dairy alternatives instead.

Grapefruit and Certain Medications

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Did you know that grapefruit interferes with numerous medications? This may not have been much of a problem when you were younger and healthier, but if you’re now taking more medications, you need to watch out for it. The FDA says, “Grapefruit juice can block the action of enzymes, increasing the amount of drug in the body and may cause more side effects.”

Processed Foods

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As tasty as they may be, processed foods are unfortunately high in salt, sugar, and unhealthy fats. These products are also linked to various health issues like hypertension and diabetes, which are more serious with age. It’s best to prioritize fresh, whole foods in your diet instead.

Following Fleeting Fashion Trends

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Trends can (and quite often do) quickly become outdated, which can be both expensive and a hassle to keep up with. Instead of following the latest trends, opt for timeless, well-made clothing. We suggest focusing on classic cuts and silhouettes.

Overdoing Accessories

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When it comes to fashion, those in their sixties are often told to avoid committing a fashion faux pas by overdoing it with accessories. Large scarves and heavy belts can overwhelm a look, so try to choose accessories that complement rather than dominate. Aim for a balanced, elegant style.

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