Healthy Aging Best Foods As You Age
High-fiber foods-such as fruits and vegetables, oatmeal, nuts, and beans-can help with constipation, which becomes more common with age, and they can also help lower cholesterol levels, manage blood sugar, and maintain a healthy weight. They can also help lower your cholesterol levels, manage your blood sugar, and enable you to maintain a healthy weight. If you’re a man 51 or older, aim to eat 30 grams of fiber a day. If you’re a woman, try to eat about 21 grams.
They are a great source of fiber and a rich source of B vitamins, which you will need more of as you age.B-6 and folic acid are key to keeping your brain healthy. Even a small shortage can make a subtle difference. Whole grains can also reduce your chances of developing heart disease, cancer, and diabetes. Don’t stop at whole-grain bread, though. Quinoa, wheat berries and whole-grain pumpernickel are also delicious options.
Yes, they are small, but tree nuts like almonds, walnuts, cashews, pecans and pistachios have great anti-aging powers. These crunchy snacks contain special nutrients that can help delay or prevent age-related heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, neurological disorders, and certain types of cancer. Nuts can also protect your brain as you age.
As you age, not only does your body lose water, but your thirst begins to diminish. This means it takes longer for you to know when you are dehydrated. Water is a healthy food in many ways. It cushions your joints, helps control your body temperature, and affects your mood and your concentration. Make it your goal to have eight glasses of water a day.
Fatty fish like salmon, albacore tuna, herring, and farmed trout should appear on your menu twice a week. The reason? They are high in DHA, the omega-3 fatty acid that is good for your brain. Low levels of DHA have been linked to Alzheimer’s disease, but get enough of it and you may improve your memory and ability to learn new things. If you don’t eat or like fish, algae, walnuts, flaxseeds and chia seeds are also good sources of DHA.
Protein-rich foods can combat the natural muscle loss that occurs with age. Whenever possible, enjoy protein in “real” foods like eggs, lean meats, and dairy products, rather than protein powders that may not give you as much nutrition.
The calcium in dairy products keeps your bones healthy. It also reduces your risk of osteoporosis, colon cancer, and high blood pressure as you age.After age 50, you need 1,200 milligrams of calcium per day, which you can get through fat-free and low-fat dairy products. Milk and cheese aren’t your only options. You can still reach your calcium goals with things like yogurt, rice and soy drinks, fortified orange juice, and tofu.
They are a delicious way to protect your brain as you age. Blueberries contain polyphenols – compounds that reduce inflammation throughout the body. They can reduce damage to your DNA, making some diseases more likely to occur. They also improve the ability of your brain cells to “talk” to each other. Fresh blueberries are the best because their polyphenol content decreases when you bake them into muffins, bread or pies.
Red and Orange Produce
Watermelon, strawberries, tomatoes, red and orange peppers – these fruits and vegetables are rich in a natural compound called lycopene. Studies have shown that foods containing lycopene may reduce your risk of certain types of cancer, as well as protect you from strokes.
The more candles you have on your birthday cake, the weaker your immune system – your body’s defense against germs – will be. Cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and cauliflower can help support it. They have a chemical called sulforaphane that turns on your immune cells so they are better able to attack the toxins that damage your cells and cause disease in the long run. By eating them regularly, you may reduce your risk of certain types of cancer.
Dark Leafy Vegetables
To keep your eyes healthy, eat plenty of vegetables like spinach, kale, and collard greens. The antioxidants they contain can reduce your chances of developing cataracts and macular degeneration. By eating at least one serving a day, you can also help ward off the slowdown in memory, thinking, and judgment that can occur with age.
You have plenty of reasons to perfect your guacamole recipe. Studies have shown that the antioxidants in avocados can improve your memory and help you solve problems faster. Avocados may also lower your cholesterol, cut your chances of developing arthritis, help you maintain a healthy weight, and protect your skin from sun damage.
Sweet potatoes are high in beta-carotene, which your body converts to vitamin A. This vitamin is key to healthy eyesight and skin. It also keeps your immune system strong. You have to eat 23 cups of cooked broccoli to get the same amount of vitamin A as in a medium sweet potato.For an extra boost, opt for the purple variety. The compounds that give it its bright color may slow age-related changes in your brain.
They do more than just add flavor to your food. Spices have antioxidants that can help you stay healthy through the years. Garlic, for example, helps keep your blood vessels open. Cinnamon can help lower your cholesterol and triglycerides (blood fats). Turmeric can protect you from depression and Alzheimer’s disease, and may also have anti-cancer powers. Use fresh or dried spices, but consult your doctor before taking any supplements.