Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Five Fabulous Anti-Aging Foods!

Do you have a friend looks 21, but is well over 35? Or a 70 year old grandmother with the spunk of a 15 year old? You could chalk it up to good genes or even plastic surgery. But, SURPRISE!! Slowing down the aging process is something YOU have control over. It all boils down to...SURPRISE again...your diet.The foods you eat make a huge difference in how your body responds to all aspects of aging, including your strength and stamina. Not to mention consuming the right foods can also fend off ills such as cancer and heart disease. Here are five foods you should have in your refrigerator that are guaranteed to help you turn back the clock.1. Spinach- Not only does spinach provide your body with calcium,but one cup of this fresh leafy green provides more than one and a half times your daily vitamin K requirement. Adequate intake of vitamin K can keep your bones strong and prevent fractures. Eating more spinach will also keep your eyes sparkling and clear because spinach is also a number one source of lutein and zeaxanthin, nutrients that make up part of the retina. 2. Curry Powder- Curry helps maintain your mental muscle because it is packed with tumeric, a spice that is rich in curcumin. Researchers believe that curcumin wards off Alzheimers by preventing the growth of amyloid plaques, sticky proteins that are toxic to brain cells. Curcumin also shields us from free radicals (formed when we metabolize oxygen).3. Tomatoes- Filling up on tomatoes may help protect your skin due to their main component, lycopene, which protects skin from oxidation that results from sun damage and leads to wrinkles. Eating tomatoes with olive oil can also aid in lycopene absorption.4. Almonds- Almonds are packed with hard to get vitamin E. One small handful delivers half of your daily dose! This nutrient keeps you graceful and agile. Some good ideas to incorporate almonds into your diet include spreading almond butter on a whole wheat English muffin along with a sliced banana and honey, sprinkling slivered almonds into low fat yogurt, or making your own trail mix with equal parts chopped almond and dried, chopped fruit.5. Chocolate- The flavonols in dark chocolate lower blood pressure, encouraging blood vessels to relax, keeping them youthful, supple and pliable. This is heart healthy news considering blood pressure typically rises as you get older. However, you don't need much chocolate to benefit from blood pressure lowering effects. Researchers recently found that just a quarter of an ounce of dark chocolate per day trimmed two to three points off hypertensive patients' blood pressure. Look for dark chocolate with at least 70% cocoa content.

1 comment:

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