Anti-Aging Foods

The effects of aging on body weight have been discussed in recent years, as the life expectancy of our population increases, along rates of diet- and lifestyle-diseases including obesity, type II diabetes, and heart disease. In addition, women’s metabolic rates slow as we age, particularly after menopause.

BananasLuckily, there are foods that help combat this type of weight gain.  The most important reality to consider about incorporating particular anti-aging foods into your diet is that as we age, our bodies experience an increase in free radicals, molecules of oxygen that contribute to the onset of diseases often associated with aging (heart disease, cancers, osteoporosis, and Alzheimer’s).  By eating a diet rich in antioxidants, we can help reduce the chances of developing these diseases.

So what foods should we eat to combat aging?  In general, think about eating whole foods rather than processed foods and making meals a combination of a lean protein and a whole grain. Whole foods, particularly fresh fruits and vegetables, are loaded with vitamins, antioxidants, and fiber that improve cell function, reduce your chances of getting sick, and keep you feeling at your best.  Lean proteins, including white meat chicken, fish, legumes, and low-fat dairy products, provide your body with essential amino acids that aid in proper cell function and also boost your metabolism.  Whole grains, including whole wheat, oats, brown rice, whole grain pasta, keep you feeling full longer and they may also reduce your chances of developing diabetes, heart disease, or other cancers.

Looking for a few specific recommendations?  Here are a few anti-aging super foods:

  • GarlicBlueberries contain incredible amounts of antioxidants, protecting your body against free radical damage.
  • Garlic promotes healthy cholesterol levels, reducing the risk of heart disease.
  • Avocadoes contain healthy monounsaturated fats to help regulate cholesterol, vitamin E to promote healthy skin, and potassium to prevent fluid retention and high blood pressure.
  • Nuts are highly caloric, but contain valuable minerals that promote healthy aging, healthy skin, and a healthy metabolism.  Walnuts, for example, contain potassium, magnesium, iron, zinc, copper, and selenium.  Eat them in moderation to avoid weight gain.
  • Bananas are rich in vitamin B a nutrient necessary for red blood cell function, immune system function, healthy brain activity, and estrogen processing.  If you don’t like bananas, try eating other foods high in B vitamins, including eggs, lean meats, milk, and potatoes.
  • Finally, water is essential for ridding the body of unhealthy toxins, feeling good, and a healthy metabolism.  Drink at least eight glasses per day.

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