Eating right provides your body with energy, fuel for your organs, and nutrients to maintain your health. These anti aging foods will provide you with the nutrients and minerals your body needs in order to remain robust, energetic, vital and most of all, young. Add these to your diet and you’ll feel the difference fast.
1- Olive Oil – When studies were carried out by the Seven Countries Study several decades ago, they found out that the reason behind the low rates of cancer and heart disease of those living in Crete were the monounsaturated fats found in olive oil. It’s widely-known that one of the key components of the Mediterranean diet is olive oil.
Since then, many studies have been carried out proving that olive oil is rich in powerful antioxidants called polyphenols that help ward off diseases largely related to aging, such as heart diseases and type-2 diabetes.
Polyphenols also contain potent anti-inflammatory agents, which help control cholesterol levels among other health benefits. Besides cooking with it and adding it to your salad, you can also use it as a natural moisturizer on your skin, as it can help prevent and reduce wrinkles due to its antioxidant content.
2- Olives – Since olive oil has such considerable health benefits, it is understood that its source would do the same. Olives are cute little salty fruits that provide great amounts of polyphenols and other phytonutrients that help protect your DNA and keep you looking and feeling younger. Make sure you eat the ones with the pits since removing the pits reduces the amount of phytonutrients found in each olive.
3- Fiber – Fiber is great at overseeing that your digestive system is running smoothly, helps ease constipation and keeps everything flowing smoothly. Fiber also helps moderate your weight, decreasing your chances of obesity. It also controls blood sugar levels and lowers your risk of diabetes.
Vegetables and whole grains provide a wonderful supply of dietary fiber, which also monitors your blood pressure, keeps your cholesterol levels in check, and lowers risks of inflammation.
Steel cut oats are high in soluble fiber, which reduces bad LDL cholesterol. Rich in healthier complex carbohydrates, whole oatmeal is one of the best-known comfort foods that boosts the release of serotonin, a feel-good hormone in the brain.
4- Yogurt – Yogurt is of course known for its high levels of calcium, which helps protect bones from osteoporosis. Yogurt also has the good type of bacteria, which helps the digestive system do its job, as it should. Yogurt has protein as well, for cell health and support of muscle, which naturally declines with age.
Choose yogurt that is fortified with vitamin D in order to get the most benefit out of the calcium, since vitamin D is needed for calcium absorption.
5- Turmeric – Turmeric’s yellow pigment curcumin helps prevent telomeres from shortening. These are the end caps of our DNA and when shortened are a leading cause in aging and degenerative diseases. The shorter they get, the more cellular aging takes place, as well as increased risks for heart disease, cancer, and Alzheimer’s disease.
6- Cold Water Fish & Seafood – Cold water oily fish such as tuna, wild salmon, mackerel, sardines, anchovies, and trout are great sources of omega-3 fatty acids.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids offer key health benefits in aging
- Reduction in elevated blood triglyceride levels
- Healthy cholesterol and heart health
- Can alleviate joint pain and stiffness that results from rheumatoid arthritis
- Limited research suggests that omega-3 fatty acids may help protect against dementia conditions, including Alzheimer’s disease and may also prevent age related gradual memory loss linked to aging. These studies are limited and so not conclusive, but they are promising.
- Proven to help keep your skin looking radiant and help prevent skin cancer
- One type of omega-3 fatty acids found in seafood, EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid), is known for its ability to protect and maintain the fibrous protein that makes your skin taut, and firm in your youth called collagen. EPA also repairs damage caused by the sun’s harmful rays.
- Omega-3s reduce low-grade inflammation from all the wear and tear on our bodies from stress, lack of sleep, unhealthy eating, and exposure to chemicals. We exhaust our immune system just cleaning up all that havoc wreaked on our bodies, which eventually accelerates the aging of our brains.
One of the best-known choices in fish for its anti-aging effects is cod, which contains selenium that protects the skin from sun damage and skin cancer by decreasing inflammatory compounds that can lead to tumor growth.
Seafood is also a wonderful source of protein, which helps build and sustain your muscles, and boosts your energy levels.
Oysters are rich in zinc, which is largely responsible for protein synthesis as well as the formation of collagen for younger looking skin.
7- Dark Chocolate – Eating dark chocolate drink will help curb your sweet tooth and is rich in flavonoids, which benefit the body by increasing blood flow to the skin. Flavonoids also absorb UV radiation, which means they protect your skin from the damaging effects of the sun.
They are also one of the best ways to main healthy functioning of blood vessels, which lowers your risk of high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, dementia, and even kidney disease. One or two ounce squares daily are quite enough to avoid weight gain, as chocolate is high in calories.
8- Nuts – Studies show that those who eat nuts regularly live an average of 2 ½ years longer than those who do not. Nuts give you heathy unsaturated fats and omega-3s. They also have a vast variety of essential vitamins, fiber, protein, minerals, and phytochemicals, including antioxidants.
A handful of almonds, roughly about 23, contain 34% of your daily nutritional value of vitamin E, which helps with anti-inflammatory process in the body. It also helps bolster the immune system and protects cells from the damaging effects of free radicals. Vitamin E is an antioxidant not made naturally by the body but can only be obtained from food.
Just two or three South American Brazil nuts provides the daily recommended value of selenium, a powerful antioxidant that plays a critical role in DNA synthesis. It also helps protect the body from oxidative damage that accelerates aging and promotes disease and infection. This mineral repairs cell damage and slows down the skin’s aging process, and its concentrations in the body begin to dwindle with age so obtaining it from food is important.
Eating a 1-ounce serving of nuts (one handful) 5 days a week is optimal to get their maximum benefit, you do not want to overdo it, as nuts are high in calories.
9- Seeds – Whether you prefer pumpkin, sunflower, or flaxseeds, if you’re including them in your diet, you’re on the right track. Seeds are rich in nutrients, plant proteins, and healthy fats. You can eat them on their own, or as snack bars, in your cereal, or on top of salads or desserts.
Sunflower seeds contain lignin phytoestrogens, which give a boost to your skin’s lipid barrier and prevent the breakdown of collagen, keeping your skin radiant and glowing.
Pumpkin seeds contain high levels of zinc, which helps reduce inflammation inside the body that may accelerate aging. For an afternoon snack, munch on ¼ cup of unshelled pumpkin seeds to get your daily dose of zinc.
Sesame seeds are high in calcium, fiber and iron as well as other key minerals such as magnesium, and phosphorous. Tahini, made from sesame seeds, can be used as a base for a Vinaigrette, or seeds can be sprinkled on salads, fish, chicken or inside sandwiches.
10- Blueberries – Blueberries are highly nutrient rich fruits that should be enjoyed every day. These delicious low calorie fruits are loaded with antioxidants to fight free radicals that can damage cells in the body and cause wrinkles.
Blueberries contain compounds that help prevent inflammation and oxidative damage, both of which are linked to age-related memory and motor function issues.
A study published by Tufts University reports that the blue color of blueberries results from anthocyanins, which help prevent oxidative stress, one of the key components of unhealthy aging. Anthocyanins also promote the production of dopamine in the brain helping to keep memory function healthy and boost positive mood.
Blueberries have more antioxidants than almost any other fruit. These antioxidants help protect skin cells against harmful UV-related damage from sun exposure, pollution and stress. Vitamin C keeps your skin looking youthful and wrinkle-free.
Here are more benefits of blueberries:
- Reduce risks of cancer
- Reduce cholesterol levels
- Reduce risks of heart disease and stroke
- May reduce risks of neurological diseases
- Brain and memory health
- Support immune system health
- Improve urinary tract health
- Improve vision and eye health
Strawberries contain natural anti-inflammatory agents called phytonutrients that protect your heart in addition to having cancer-fighting properties. They also contain large amounts of vitamin C, which helps prevent wrinkles and dryness of the skin, both symptoms of aging, one cup of strawberries delivers about 150% of the daily recommended amount.
Cranberries are chock-full of polyphenols, a powerful antioxidant. Polyphenols may help reduce the risk of cancer, as well as inhibit the growth of cancer cells, and reduce inflammation from gum disease and stomach ulcers.
Black Raspberries are powerful cancer fighters. They’re harder to find fresh, so it’s more likely you’ll find them in the frozen section.
Blackberries help prevent chronic diseases and reduce the risk of cancer since they contain a healthy dose of antioxidants, ellagic acid, as well as vitamins C and E.
Acai Berries contain antioxidants and are capable of destroying cultured human cancer cells. They can be mainly found in Brazil.
Cherries are rich in the anti-cancer agent known as queritrin.
11- Raw Garlic – Garlic is known as the triple-threat since it has antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal properties mainly due to the antioxidant, allicin, which is what gives garlic its potent taste and smell.
It protects the body from several types of cancer, is known to improve blood flow by relaxing blood vessels, may help prevent plaque from building up in the arteries, lower cholesterol, and help regulate blood pressure.
Once it’s been cut, garlic tends to lose its potency within one hour. So the best way to eat it is to take freshly chopped or pressed garlic, wait a few minutes so you get the maximum benefits then eat it, preferably by swallowing it whole, rather than chewing it. Powdered or dried garlic doesn’t have the same effect as fresh garlic does.
12- Swiss Chard – Swiss chard is a great anti-aging vegetable choice providing you with chlorophyll, a nutrient that is believed to block the effects of chemicals that cause cancer. It is very low in calories and nutrient dense, so can be enjoyed liberally every single day.
One cup of Swiss chard gives a day’s worth of vitamin K and beta-carotene for healthy bones, and eyes. The potassium in this dark leafy green helps to lower blood pressure, while magnesium and alpha-lipoic acid promote healthy blood sugar and insulin levels.
13- Tomatoes – Tomatoes get their gorgeous red color from lycopene, a pigment that helps keep your skin smooth and glowing. It also protects the skin from harmful UV radiations and helps prevent wrinkles.
Since lycopene is a powerful antioxidant, it is advised for heart health, strong bones, and possible cancer prevention. Lycopene can help to lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels in the blood.
The nutrients found in tomatoes are linked to prevention of the sticking together of blood platelets in the arteries, which helps reduce risks for stroke and heart attack.
Cooking tomatoes doubles their lycopene power and maximizes their anti-aging effects.
Other foods that contain lycopene:
- Pink Grapefruit
- Red Peppers
14- Watermelon & Cucumbers – Watermelon is a source of lycopene, which protects the skin from UV rays. Packed with lycopene, watermelon acts as a natural protector from the harmful effects of ultraviolet rays that damage and ages the skin, and creates sunspots. Watermelon is also packed with water to help hydrate and plump your skin for all natural anti-aging.
Cucumbers are great for skin. Cucumbers have the highest water content of any food. Cucumbers with an unwaxed peel offer silica to boost collagen production and reduce wrinkles for younger looking skin.
15- Bell Peppers & Guava – Bell peppers have high amounts of vitamin C, a potent antioxidant, which may prevent certain types of cancers and cardiovascular disease.
They go great with everything, on the grill, in your stir-fry and in stews. Even when eaten raw as snacks with dips or in salads, they provide 158% of the daily value of vitamin C, which plays a great role in the healing of wounds, in fighting off infections and bolstering the functioning of the immune system and skin health.
Guava is an exotic fruit packed with vitamin C, which boosts collagen production for smooth, youthful-looking skin. To get your dose of vitamin C, eat 2 cups of guava weekly.
16- Concord Grapes – Concord grapes are known for their dark purple skin and seeds, which are full of polyphenols, a compound proven to boost your brain power, keeping you sharp and alert.
They also bolster your arteries, reducing the risk of heart disease while increasing blood flow to the brain.
Since these grapes are harvested for a few short weeks during the fall, finding them fresh is very difficult, so opt for drinking 100% pure grape juice instead to get all the benefits of these potent fruits.
17- Mushrooms & Carrots – Many studies have been carried out on the healing powers of mushrooms.They can reduce and prevent inflammation, help fight cancer, boost the immune system, detoxify the body naturally and protect the heart.
Mushrooms also provide B vitamins, which are crucial for turning your food into sustainable energy and promoting healthy metabolism.
Carrots are rich in Beta-carotene, an carotenoid antioxidant that gives orange fruits and vegetables their color, and has powerful anti-cancer and anti-aging properties. Beta-carotene is converted to vitamin A in the body and is essential for healthy skin, eye health, and shiny hair.
As we age, our metabolism slows down, so we need to reduce the amount of calories we take in in order to avoid age related weight gain.
While it’s a fact that we can’t stop our bodies from aging, there are ways to slow down the aging process so you enjoy every moment of your life no matter your age.
The most important things are to frequently drink water throughout the day, eat the right types of food, and exercise on a regular basis.