Debunking Aging Stereotypes: Age is Just a Number

Title: Debunking Aging Stereotypes: Age is Just a Number

Host: Valerie Hatcher

Episode: 7

Release Date: 06/28/23

Show Notes:

In this episode of Aging with Grace & Style, Valerie Hatcher explores various aspects of aging gracefully. From embracing natural gray hair to taking care of the body from the inside out, she shares tips, advice, and inspirational stories to help listeners navigate life after 50. Topics covered include managing menopause symptoms, staying healthy and fit, finding confidence during life changes, and debunking age-related stereotypes. The next episode will dive deeper into emotional transitions and health priorities to keep in mind. Join Valerie as she provides knowledge and encouragement to help you celebrate your golden years with style and grace.

Episode Highlights:

In this episode of Aging with Grace & Style, Valerie discusses navigating life after 50 with confidence and grace. She shares stories of personal growth and newfound freedom experienced by women after 50.

She emphasizes the importance of taking care of one’s health from the inside out, particularly during menopause, by consulting with healthcare providers. She also recommends incorporating self-care routines such as exercise, skincare, hairstyling, and makeup.

Valerie provides tips for maintaining healthy hair and skin, including hydration, a vitamin-rich diet, and sun protection. She acknowledges that embracing natural gray hair is a personal choice and suggests there are different options for hair coloring. Additionally, Valerie gives tips for counteracting slow metabolism and encourages women to stay active, do strength training, and eat protein-rich foods.

Key Takeaways:

1. Embrace the signs of aging and be confident in yourself

2. Menopause brings unique experiences, such as hot flashes, mood changes, and sleep disturbances.

3. Take care of your health from the inside out to age gracefully.

4. Seek medical help when navigating through menopause.

5. Changes to diet and exercise should be discussed with healthcare providers or nutritionists.

6. Aging can be a time of personal growth and freedom.

7. It’s important to take care of your skin and hair to age gracefully.

8. Exercise, skincare, hairstyle, and makeup routines can help with self-care.

9. Age is just a number and it’s never too late to live a fulfilling, joyful life.

10. The next episode will focus on emotional journeys after 50 and health priorities to keep an eye on.

Connect with Valerie:

* Follow Valerie on Facebook and Instagram @iamvaleriehatcher. Comment or DM her and say, “I’m aging with grace and style,” so she knows exactly who you are.

* Reach out directly by email at

Join Us Next Time:

Stay tuned for more inspiring chats, tips, and stories about the midlife journey. Subscribe on your favorite platform so you never miss an episode! See you soon as we age with grace, style, and a touch of sass.


Valerie Hatcher [00:00:30]:

Hey there, beautiful ladies, and welcome to our new series on Navigating Life After 50. Today we're going to introduce a series and discuss the broad changes that can happen as we hit that half century mark. Then we'll dive into the physical transformations we might experience and how to manage them. But first, let's start off with our biweekly health hack. It's simple and actually it goes with our latest five to thrive episode. So if you haven't listened to that, then you might want to do so now. Try to incorporate more antioxidant rich foods into your diet. They help combat that.

Valerie Hatcher [00:01:17]:

Free radicals that contribute to aging. Think about adding more colorful fruits and veggies, nuts and even dark chocolate. Oh, my favorite. To your meals. Trust me, your body will thank you. Now, let's get into our topic. Turning 50 doesn't mean that we're old. As a matter of fact, it's far from it.

Valerie Hatcher [00:01:46]:

It's just a new chapter of life, ripe with fresh opportunities and experiences. A common myth surrounding aging is that life starts to decline after 50. Well, we're here to debunk all of that. So come with me and take a moment and consider what turning 50 really means. It's half a century of wisdom, experience and resilience. It's decades of friendships, loves, triumphs and yes, even losses. Every joy and every challenge has played a part in shaping us into the women that we are today. And that's something to celebrate.

Valerie Hatcher [00:02:31]:

Contrary to what society tells us, life after 50 can be a time of self discovery and personal growth. Many women find that they're more confident and self assured, less troubled by the opinions of others. And they feel freer to pursue passions that might have been sidelined earlier in life. So, an example to consider, my friend Susan. She shared her story with me. But Susan had spent her early life dedicated to raising children and advancing her career. And then when she turned 50 and the kids were out of the house or either on their way out, I think she probably had some in college and then one left at home who was graduating right around the corner. But she felt this newfound sense of liberation.

Valerie Hatcher [00:03:32]:

She told me, I've done my duty, now it's time for me. I've always loved painting, but never had the time or the confidence. Now I'm just dabbling. I'm taking classes, improving my skills, and I've even sold a few pieces. I found a joy in my 50s that I never knew in my thirty s and forty s, said Susan. So just like Susan, we all have the opportunity to rewrite our narrative, to define what our fifty s and beyond are going to look like. Turning 50 is not at all an end. It's a gateway, I think, to new adventures.

Valerie Hatcher [00:04:19]:

So, with that renewed mindset, let's discuss another important aspect of this chapter of our lives the physical transformations that we might experience as we age. Boy, these changes can be surprising and sometimes even challenging. But they're normal. They are a normal part of aging, and embracing them can open doors to new aspects of ourselves. Let's talk about physical changes, specifically menopause. As we step into our 50s, our body inevitably change. Hormonal shift leads us into menopause. Some go through natural menopause, and others, like me, have surgical induced menopause via hysterectomy.

Valerie Hatcher [00:05:10]:

But whichever way you get there, menopause pause brings his own unique set of experiences, such as hot flashes, changes in mood, and sleep disturbances. Yes, I said sleep disturbances. I used to think that I laid awake watching TV all night just because I like Law and Order. But then I learned that hormonal imbalance can affect sleep. So when my hormones in line, I sleep like a baby. Menopause is a significant milestone in a woman's life and one that deserves more attention and understanding. When we navigate through menopause, it's essential to maintain a conversation with our healthcare provider. They can provide a wealth of advice and medical solutions to help manage our symptoms.

Valerie Hatcher [00:06:02]:

Lifestyle changes can also make a significant difference. Regular exercise, a healthy diet, and good sleep hygiene can help manage that internal flame that they call hot flashes, mood swings, and other symptoms. Some women have even said that they find relief from things like yoga or acupuncture. Remember menopause. It's a natural process, and there's no one size fits all solution. But what's important is that you find what works for you. Now, let's talk metabolism. There is a change in our metabolism as we get older.

Valerie Hatcher [00:06:48]:

Do you remember being able to eat anything without gaining a power when you were younger? I recall eating honey buns and Diet Coke for lunch in high school and gained no weight. Now, I swear, if I look at a honey bun, I gain weight. Those days might seem so long gone as our metabolic rates slow down with age. But don't despair. They say a balanced diet and regular exercise can help maintain a healthy weight and boost our energy. So I recently started a new weight loss program, and they did a metabolic test. I always joke about my metabolism being slow, but they actually confirmed it. Now, most of that was probably because of my diet, and that needed to be cleaned up.

Valerie Hatcher [00:07:43]:

And I can always tell when my metabolism is starting to speed up, like now that I'm getting my diet in order because I'm hungry all the time, that's the stage I'm in now. And I reach for protein or do all those things that I know should help counteract my slow metabolism. And speaking of that, here are five tips that can help counteract our slowing metabolism. One is staying active. So regular exercise, particularly strength training, can boost our metabolism by building muscle mass. Muscles are metabolically more active than fat, so the muscle that you have, the more muscle that you have, the more calories that you burn. Even at rest. The second one is eating protein rich foods.

Valerie Hatcher [00:08:41]:

Our bodies burn more calories, digesting protein than it does digesting fat or carbs. The good stuff. And including more lean proteins in our diet can give our metabolism a boost. And I truly believe in this, because as I have upped my protein, the amount of protein that I eat, rather, there's a noticeable difference for me. And again, how I feel. And how I feel my metabolism is speeding up. Staying hydrated is also essential because water is essential in every process in our body to include our metabolism. Staying hydrated can help us burn more calories and even curb our hunger.

Valerie Hatcher [00:09:31]:

Sometimes they say, if you think you're hungry, drink some water, because it could be that you're just thirsty. Number four is get plenty of sleep. Lack of sleep can slow down your metabolism and lead to weight gain, prioritize getting a good night's sleep every night. So here's what worked for me when I can't sleep meditation. I select a long sleep meditation, either from my Insights app or my Peloton app, and before I know it, it's morning. So if you haven't tried meditation or listening to meditation on the app and you can't sleep, give it a try. I bet you it's going to work for you too. Number five is don't skip meals.

Valerie Hatcher [00:10:20]:

I've been known to do this thinking that, well, if I reduce calories by missing a meal or two, then that'll help me lose weight. But in reality, skipping meals can cause your body to go into starvation mode, which slows down your metabolism. Eating regular meals keeps your metabolism running smoother. So these tips, they align with advice from reputable organizations such as the Mayo Clinic, the American Heart Association, the National Institute on Aging. Everybody's body is unique, and what works for one person might not work for another. So it's always a good idea to consult with a healthcare provider or even a nutritionist before making any significant changes to your diet or your exercise routine. Finally, we see changes in our skin. In our hair, maybe we notice more wrinkles or gray hairs.

Valerie Hatcher [00:11:24]:

And while the beauty industry often tells us to fight these signs of aging, I say embrace them. Our wrinkles are badges of a life well lived. And our gray hairs? That could be a sign of wisdom. So to illustrate this, a good friend of mine, Helen, used to be real self conscious about her graying hair and would color it regularly. So when she turned 55, she decided, what the heck? I'm going to let my hair go naturally gray. So she found that not only did it look gray on her, but it also became a conversation starter. It gave her a newfound confidence, and she told me, I feel more myself now than I ever did before. Now, I'm not there yet, but I applaud those who are rocking their gray, taking care of our skin, and hair as we age is all about maintaining health from the inside out.

Valerie Hatcher [00:12:33]:

We talked about this earlier. Hydration, a diet rich in vitamins and antioxidants, and protection from the sun can all help keep our skin glowing and our hair strong. Of course, everybody has a different relationship with their gray hair. If you're not ready to embrace the gray just yet, then that's completely okay. You're with me? Hair coloring is really a personal choice, and it's a choice that, like I said, I make. There's so many options available, from salon treatments to at home dye kits. And then even for a less permanent option, you might want to consider a semipermanent dye or even a rinse. These gradually wash out over time and actually can be less damaging to your hair.

Valerie Hatcher [00:13:25]:

So let's also remember my friend Ellen, who chose to let her hair go gray naturally. Both paths are valid, either embracing it and going gray, or continuing to get color. And they both can lead to a newfound self expression and confidence. Now, we talked about hair, let's talk about our skin. So as we age, our skin undergoes several changes. It becomes thinner, less elastic, and it may show more signs of sun damage, such as age spots or wrinkles. This is a normal part of aging, but there are some steps that we can take for our skin and embrace these changes with grace. Moisturize regularly.

Valerie Hatcher [00:14:16]:

As we get older, our skin products produces rather less natural oils, making it drier. Remember, use a moisturizer what can help hydrate the skin and reduce appearance of wrinkles. The second is to protect from the sun. So while the sun is good for our vitamin D, the sun's ultraviolet rays can speed up skin aging, cause wrinkles and age spots. Wearing sunscreen and protective clothing when outside can help protect your skin. And number three is eat a healthy diet. Now, you've noticed a theme here. It seems that the diet plays a major part in everything.

Valerie Hatcher [00:15:04]:

A diet rich in fruits and vegetables, lean proteins, and healthy fats can help us look and feel our best. These foods provide the nutrients that our skin needs to maintain its health. And then number four, don't smoke. Smoking speeds up the aging process of our skin, contributing to wrinkles. So if you smoke, the best thing that you can do for your skin and overall health is to quit. And finally, number five, consider gentle skin treatments. So some people find that treatments like facials, microdermabrasion, or chemical pills help to refresh their skin's appearance. So a couple of days before my son's wedding, I had a hydrofacial at my dermatologist office.

Valerie Hatcher [00:15:55]:

Y'all, it was amazing to see all this stuff that came off of my skin. It was really enlightening. You think that you cleanse your skin every day, you wash it, you exfoliate, and so it should be clean. But after this facial, I saw particles of things that I was surprised were still there. But after that, my skin was so bright and glowing. As a matter of fact, talking about it makes me want to go have another one. I think I'll get that scheduled soon. But as always, consult with a dermatologist or a licensed skincare professional to see what treatments might be best for you.

Valerie Hatcher [00:16:38]:

Remember the changes. What we experience as we age are a testament to our journey and the lives that we've lived. Taking good care of our hair and our skin is one way what we can honor our bodies and age with grace. Now, we have a question from a listener, Diane in New York, who asked, how do I cope with the physical changes I'm experiencing in my 50s, especially when they make me feel less confident? Well, that's an incredibly relevant question, Diane. Remember, these changes are a natural part of the journey that we're all on. If you're struggling with certain aspects, know that you're not alone. Many of us have probably had those same feelings at one point or another. Or who knows? Maybe we currently have them.

Valerie Hatcher [00:17:33]:

And it's okay. It's okay to have those feelings, but it's also okay to seek help and to explore solutions. Talk to your healthcare provider about your concerns, whether they're related to menopause, skin changes or anything else. Also, self care routines can help you feel more in control. This could mean scheduling regular exercise or indulging in skincare rituals, or finding a new hairstyle, or maybe even having your makeup done at a beauty counter can make you feel fantastic. And those are all still part of self care. And remember our earlier stories. Susan discovered a passion for painting as she navigated the changes in her life, while Helen embraced her graying hair, finding newfound Confidence each of us can find our own unique path through these changes.

Valerie Hatcher [00:18:33]:

But thanks so much for the question. It was a good one. So, as we wrap up today's discussion, let's remember the physical and emotional transformations that we experience as we cross the 50 year mark are a testament to our growth and the journey that we've embarked on. Like Susan, we can use this as a time for self discovery and embracing our passions. Or like Helen, we can redefine what beauty means to us, even if it's as simple as just accepting our natural hair color. Our golden years can be a gateway to new adventures and the start of truly living on our own terms. So over the next couple of months, we'll continue to explore life after 50. We're going to dive into emotional transitions, health priorities, relationships, hobbies, career shifts, and much more.

Valerie Hatcher [00:19:41]:

My goal is that each episode arms you with knowledge, tips, and inspirational stories to help you navigate this exciting phase of life with confidence and grace. I encourage all of you to share your own stories, questions, and insights on our social media pages at I am Valerie Hatcher. Or email me at Let's support and inspire each other as we embrace life after 50, debunking myths and breaking stereotypes along the way. Remember, age is just a number, and there's no expiration date on living a fulfilling, joyful life. As we journey together, we'll discover that there's so much to look forward to in our quote-unquote golden years. And I can't wait to join you on this journey. So, in two weeks, we're going to dive into the emotional journey after 50 and the health priorities that we need to take or to keep an eye on.

Valerie Hatcher [00:20:48]:

It's going to be a conversation that you won't want to miss. So until then, stay bright, vibrant, stay curious, stay fabulous. And remember, we're aging with grace, style, and a touch of sassy.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.