Foods for healthy aging
Why is it that so many educated people only think about their health when something goes wrong and our medical insurance doesn’t quite cover the costs? The reality is that we need to take charge and realize that our health is our responsibility. Otherwise we may end up with a range of medial conditions from obesity and Type 2 diabetes, to depression and anxiety.
A great starting point to preserve our health and reduce the effects of aging is by eating healthier. This doesn’t mean that we cannot have the occasional unhealthy treat, but one can’t ignore the incredible health benefits that natural food has to offer.
Take a look at the tips below and make a conscious effort to improve your eating patterns.
Feed your brain
Inflammation plays a big role in everything from heart disease to dementia. So let’s start with cherries. Cherries are nature's own anti-inflammatory pills but they cost a lot less and don’t burn your stomach. They contain Cox 2 inhibitors similar to those found in pain medications such as Celebrex, but they also contain compounds called polyphenols that keep platelets in the blood from clumping together.
Strawberries, raspberries and blueberries also positively affect our memory as they contain chemicals known as ellagatannis that are also found right in the hippocampus, the brain's memory control center.
There is a good reason why fish is known as brain food and that’s because it contains omega-3 fatty acids, which are thought to be instrumental in maintaining brain function from early development throughout life. Components of these fatty acids go straight to the synapses of nerve cells, playing an important role in how neurons communicate with one another.
The skin benefits from the same things that one can do to strengthen your heart, control weight and lift your mood. We all know the recipe: get regular exercise, a good nights sleep and eat well. What we eat also has a great impact on our skin.
Once again, strawberries come to the rescue. They have more anti-aging vitamin C per serving than oranges or grapefruit. In fact research published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition shows that people who eat foods rich in vitamin C have fewer wrinkles and less age-related dry skin than those who don’t.
Green tea is filled with inflammation-fighting antioxidants and latest research shows that drinking green tea may reduce your risk of skin cancer. Add a squeeze of lemon juice to your cup and the tea’s antioxidants benefit the body longer.
Start your day with a bowl of oats for breakfast. They are full of omega-3 fatty acids, folate, and potassium and are rich in fiber. Oats also lowers levels of LDL cholesterol and helps keep arteries clear.
Add a bit of avocado to your meals to up the amount of heart-healthy fats in your diet. High with monounsaturated fat, avocados can also help lower LDL levels while raising the amount of HDL cholesterol in your body.
Salmon is super-rich in omega-3 fatty acids that can effectively reduce blood pressure and keep clotting at bay. Cardiologist Stephen Sinatra suggests that just two servings per week may reduce your risk of dying of a heart attack by up to one-third.
Probiotics, which include lactobacilli and bifidobacteria, keep the lining of the colon healthy. The good bacteria in fermented foods like yogurt and sauerkraut can make it through the gastric acid to the colon. Stick to natural yoghurt and avoid artificially sweetened brands.
Recent studies suggest that green and yellow-coloured vegetables are rich in carotene, vitamins C and E, and folate and may therefore help protect the stomach from cancer.
Although it might not be possible to stick to the perfect diet 24/7, including these super-foods in your diet is a no brainer.
Don’t wait until the damage is already done!