Eat Your Way To Longevity
Just work these foods and drink
into your daily and weekly meal plans and you'll be
getting extra vitamins, antioxidants and other
substances that will help your body fight
The avocado is a
wonder food when it comes to anti-aging and
longevity. First of all, avocados are delicious
(even more delicious when made into guacamole).
Next, avocados are filled with all sorts of great
nutrients that help your body make repairs and live
longer. Here's just a short list:
- Oleic Acid: This is a healthy fat that many believe
can be used to lower bad cholesterol while
increasing good cholesterol.
- Potassium: A cup of avocados contains about 25% of
your daily supply of potassium. Potassium helps
protect your heart and arteries and could reduce the
risk of high blood pressure and stroke.
- Folate: Folate is a great micronutrient and the same
cup of avocado contains around 23% of the folate you
need each day. People who get the right amount of
folate have a decreased risk of heart attacks (by as
much as 55%).
- Antioxidants: Avocados are a rich source of
antioxidants. These substances help your body fight
off damage from free radicals. This protects your
organs and tissues from damage over time.
Are you convinced? I hope so. Avocados are a
delicious source of multiple nutrients. Slice one up
and put it on your salad. Just remember to count the
calories (a cup of avocados has about 235 calories)
and be careful not to eat your avocado with too many
Walnuts are a great (and mercury-free) source
of omega-3 essential fatty acids. Eat a handful or
two a day for all your omega-3 needs. Walnuts are an amazing food for anti-aging. Why?
Because they are filled with almost all the omega-3s
you need each day. Just a quarter cup of walnuts
will give you 95% of the omega-3s that are currently
recommended. That will cost you just over 160
calories. A pretty good deal. Best of all, unlike
fish oils, these omega-3s do not have the risk of
There are certain parts of your brain that are
basically made of omega-3 essential fatty acids.
These are known as "essential fatty acids" because
your body cannot make them -- you must get them from
foods. By making sure you have enough, your brain
has a better chance at functioning at 100% today and
for years to come.
According to the FDA, walnuts may reduce the risk of
heart disease. This is primary because walnuts (if
eaten daily along with a healthy diet) can reduce
the level of bad cholesterol in your body. Just have
a small handful as a snack before lunch and before
dinner. If you happen to be allergic to walnuts, try
pecans or almonds -- they are pretty good for you as
3. Green Vegetables
Vegetables are not very exciting. You know
you should eat more of them - but do you know why?
The best explanation I've heard is this: Vegetables
spend their days out in the sun. They are constantly
bombarded by UV radiation in sunlight. This
radiation causes free radicals to appear in the
plants. To fight the damage caused by the sun,
vegetables have developed substances (called
antioxidants) that repair the damage. That's why
leafy green vegetables are some of the best things
you can eat -- the leaves are in the sun all day
long and have high concentrations of antioxidants.
So, not only do vegetables contain essential
vitamins and minerals for your body, they also
contain substances that help fight off damage caused
by free radicals. Focus on leafy green vegetables
and try to eat all sorts of colors and types of
vegetables each week.
If those reasons aren't enough to get you eating
your vegetables - try this reasons instead: If you
fill up on vegetables, you simply won't have room to
eat junk foods and high calorie meals. You'll lose
weight without even trying.
Water is good for you. This seems pretty basic.
Make water your
primary drink. This way, you'll be drinking a no
calorie, no chemical drink all day long instead of
the many, many high-calorie, high chemical
alternatives. We all have heard that we should drink 8 cups of
water a day. Turns out that that is a hard statistic
to prove. Drink as much as you can. Here's the reason:
If you drink tons of water, you won't be drinking
other things (like sodas) that are full of sugar.
This alone will increase your health.
Some people claim that drinking lots of water helps
"detox" your body by washing away all the chemicals
that build up.
You may also hear about "alkaline" water which is
supposed to improve your health by counteracting all
the extra acids in processed foods. Be sure to drink
good quality water. Some cities have excellent
drinking water (better than bottled water that you
can purchase in a store) and other cities have poor
water quality. Invest in a good water filter for
your home and you should be ok.
Berries are one of the best foods you can find for
anti-aging and longevity.
Berries are packed full of antioxidants and other
chemicals that your body can use to make repairs and
prevent some of the damage caused by aging. Best of
all, berries taste really, really good. Be sure to
eat your berries without any sauces or sugars. Just
enjoy them plain for their goodness. Berries
contain lots of antioxidants to fight free radicals
in your body and tons of other
nutrients to keep you healthy.
A great healthy-eating guideline is to eat foods
with different colors. This action will assure that
you are getting a variety of nutrients (the color of
fruits and vegetables comes from the chemicals in
the skin and pulp of the fruit). In general, darker
colors mean more nutrients. So, berries are
nutritious with all their rich blue and black
colors. Work them into your weekly diet. Focus on
strawberries, blueberries and blackberries. Be sure
to get organic berries; berries tend to collect
pesticides because of their high water content.
6. Green Tea
Green tea has been a longevity supplement in Asia
for thousands of years. It is a great thing to work
into your daily life. Green tea contains high
concentrations of just the chemicals your body
needs. Green tea is also inexpensive, delicious and
gives a mild (and gentle) energy boost from its
Popular in Asia for more than 5,000 years, green
tea is quickly becoming a health drink around the
world. All green tea is
made from the leaves of the Camellia sinesis plant.
Green tea's health benefits are said to come from
its high levels of antioxidants. Research has shown
that antioxidants help the body to remove damaging
free radicals. Because of its caffeine, green tea
should be avoided by infants and children. Pregnant
and breastfeeding women should drink green tea in
limited amounts. The most common use of green tea is
to help the body age well. The antioxidants in green
tea are thought to erase some of the negative
effects of aging on the body. Here is other popular
uses for green tea:
- Cancer prevention
- Cavity prevention
- Diabetes prevention and treatment
- Fertility treatment
- Heart Attack prevention
- Cholesterol and triglyceride improvement
- Memory improvement
- Increase alertness
- Weight loss
7. Red Wine
The benefits of red wine (in moderation) for health
have been known for ages.
Red wine is good for you -- it contains a substance
called "resveratrol" that help your body fight off
age-related illnesses. At the end of your day have a
glass or two to relax and unwind. You'll get the
benefits of a delicious drink along with the
anti-aging properties of resveratrol.
Red wine is high in flavonoids (a type of polyphenol),
which are antioxidants. One of the most studied
antioxidants is resveratrol, which comes from grape
skins and seeds. Antioxidants help prevent certain
molecules, known as free radicals, from damaging
Resveratrol helps prevent cancer by limiting tumor
To receive the benefits of red wine, it must be
drunk in moderation (1-2 glasses maximum per day)
The alcohol in wine may help produce more good
cholesterol. Research in yeast cells has shown that
red wine can increase life span by 80%.
Red wine has also been shown to help prevent the
common cold. Go ahead and enjoy a
glass or two with dinner.
Beans are a great source of healthy protein and
antioxidants. Really, beans are a wonder food. Beans
are a good source of protein. Unlike animal
protein sources (meat and dairy), beans do not have
any bad fat in them. Beans
are extremely high in antioxidants. In fact, a half
a cup of dried red, kidney or pinto beans contain
some of the highest amounts of antioxidants in any
Antioxidants are an important nutrient for
anti-aging and longevity. Antioxidants fight off the
damage caused by free radicals. This helps protect
your organs and tissues from long-term problems
caused by metabolism and unhealthy foods. The best
part about beans is that they fill you up with few
calories. Try to have at between 3 and 5 bean-based
meals each week. There are hundreds of healthy ways
to prepare beans.
Melons have some of
the best nutritional profiles of all the fruits.
They are delicious, refreshing and a great source of
vitamins and other nutrients. Melons are pulpy (so they fill you up) and contain
lots of vitamins for your body. Work melons into
your daily/weekly diet and you'll be reaping health
benefits as you enjoy them. Melons are like a big delicious vitamin. In fact, a
single serving of some melons can contain a whole
day's supply of vitamins.
One cup of cantaloupe contains over 100% of your
daily dose of vitamins A and C.
Watermelons are a good source of lycopene, a
substance that some research suggests may help
prevent prostate cancer.
Melons are a low calorie, dense food. That means you
can fill up on melon without eating too many
Chocolate (dark chocolate, that is) is good for you.
It has a balance of fats that don't harm your body
and tons of healthy chemicals that your body needs.
The only draw-back is that chocolate also has
calories. Have a little square every day, but don't
overdue it. Chocolate is made from plants, which means it
contains many of the health benefits of dark
vegetables. These benefits are from flavonoids,
which act as antioxidants. Antioxidants protect the
body from aging caused by free radicals, which can
cause damage that leads to heart disease. Dark
chocolate contains a large number of antioxidants
(nearly 8 times the number found in strawberries).
Flavonoids also help relax blood pressure through
the production of nitric oxide, and balance certain
hormones in the body. Dark chocolate is good for
your heart. A small bar of it everyday can help keep
your heart and cardiovascular system running well.
They lower Blood Pressure. Dark chocolate has also been
shown to reduce LDL cholesterol (the bad
cholesterol) by up to 10 percent. Chocolate stimulates endorphin production, which gives a
feeling of pleasure. It contains serotonin, which acts as an
it contains theobromine, caffeine and other
substances which are stimulants.
Here is some more good news -- some of the fats in
chocolate do not impact your cholesterol. The fats
in chocolate are 1/3 oleic acid, 1/3 stearic acid
and 1/3 palmitic acid.
Oleic Acid is a healthy monounsaturated fat that is
also found in olive oil.
Stearic Acid is a saturated fat but one which
research is shows has a neutral effect on
Palmitic Acid is also a saturated fat, one which
raises cholesterol and heart disease risk.
That means only 1/3 of the fat in dark chocolate is
bad for you.
Dark chocolate has far more antioxidants than milk
or white chocolate. These other two chocolates
cannot make any health claims. Dark chocolate has 65
percent or higher cocoa content. It may taste good
but some research shows that washing your chocolate
down with a glass of milk could prevent the
antioxidants being absorbed or used by your body.