Nancy Teeter, RDN
Make these ten anti-aging foods part of your healthy diet and consider eating one serving of each on most days.
The phrase “An apple a day keeps the doctor away” may sound like an old wives’ tale, but studies show there is every reason to eat an apple each day. They are an excellent source of flavonoids which studies have shown may reduce the risk of cancers of the colon, liver, prostate and lung. In addition, animal studies suggest that the quercetin in apples may sharpen memory and learning and protect against oxidative damage that contributes to age-related brain disorders. The fiber in apples is good for your digestion.
By weight, blueberries (fresh or frozen) have more protective compounds than almost any other food. These anti-aging compounds lower your disease risks and they may help prevent memory loss. While blueberries are the highest, any berry eaten regularly can boost your health.
While all whole and intact grains help ward off heart disease, cancer, diabetes and hypertension, barley has unique characteristics. It’s been shown to aid in regulating blood sugar for up to ten hours after meals. Its insoluble fiber helps maintain large populations of friendly bacteria in the digestive tract and the soluble fiber helps lower the levels of bad cholesterol in the blood.
The carotenoids that give color to carrots protect the body against free radicals that damage our cells and lead to cancer and infection. Strive to eat a serving or other orange vegetable or fruit daily.
One cup of green soybeans (edamame) contain a whopping 22 grams of protein, as well as lots of fiber, folate and health-promoting isoflavones. Studies have shown that whole soy foods may decrease the risk of breast cancer in women and prostate cancer in men.
Almonds, walnuts, cashews and pecans are excellent sources of protein as well as magnesium and vitamins B and E. The monounsaturated fat in nuts can improve your blood cholesterol ratio.
Pulses include lentils and split peas as well as multiple colors and shapes of beans. They are nutritional powerhouses; high in protein, fiber, potassium and many more nutrients.
Wild salmon is a superior source of omega-3 fatty acids which promotes heart and brain health. Also, canned salmon promotes healthy bones due to the calcium and vitamin D content.
In addition to being an outstanding source of numerous anti-aging compounds, a cup of cooked spinach also provides five grams of muscle-building protein along with six milligrams of iron.
Yogurt or Kefir
Probiotic-rich cultured dairy is a terrific source of B vitamins, protein and calcium. The active cultures crowd out disease-causing organisms in the gut. Purchase these unsweetened and add your own fruit, honey and vanilla.
Nancy Teeter, a SaddleBrooke resident, is a registered dietitian nutritionist. She is an expert at helping people make healthy lifestyle changes to improve health, increase energy and reduce the risk of disease.