7 Foods Everybody Over 40 Should Eat

Monday, 21 Oct 2013 08:16 AM

By Charlotte Libov

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Once we hit a certain age, everybody wants to slow down the aging process. One of the simplest ways to stay young is to avoid eating unhealthy food. But there’s a flip side to that equation: There are certain foods that have extraordinary anti-aging properties. If we load our diet with them, they can dramatically slow our body’s life clock.
 
“Too often, people think about what they are eating only when they are trying to lose weight, but eating certain foods can not only potentially lengthen your life, but also improve the quality of your life as well,” says Charles Platkin, M.D., professor of nutrition and distinguished lecturer at the CUNY School of Public Health at Hunter College.
 
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Here is Dr. Platkin’s list of foods everybody over 40 should eat:
 
Almonds
All nuts are good for you, but almonds are especially healthful. In fact, an analysis of seven clinical studies found that eating one ounce of almonds daily as part of a healthy lifestyle lowers LDL cholesterol, reducing the risk of heart disease. But nuts are fattening, so don’t eat them by the handful, just about a dozen or so will do.
 
Cherries
Cherries are low in calories and antioxidant-packed, so they prevent heart disease and cancer. They make a great bedtime snack because in addition to high levels of healthy fiber and potassium, they are one of the few food sources of melatonin, a natural sleep aid. Cherries are inflammation fighters and are especially effective in bringing relief to gout.
 
Oatmeal
A proven cholesterol-reducer, oatmeal has more protein and fiber than other breakfast foods, which reduces your appetite the rest of the day.
 
Oatmeal for breakfast also restores and stabilizes your blood-sugar levels. Not all oatmeal is created equal; you get more nutrients from the old-fashioned kind than instant. Stir in fresh or frozen blueberries for an added antioxidant punch.
 
Broccoli
Few vegetables have as many anti-aging properties as broccoli. Broccoli is low-cal (one cup has just 44 calories) but is rich in vitamins A, C, and K (which helps keep bones strong). It is also a great source of iron and folate.
 
Broccoli is filled with phytochemicals that help block cells from becoming cancerous. Ounce for ounce, broccoli contains as much calcium as milk. The vegetable contains lutein and zeaxanthin, which keeps eyes young, reducing the risk of cataracts.

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Garlic
One reason garlic is so nutritious is it contains manganese, an essential trace mineral the body requires for a variety of functions. Garlic’s phytochemicals stimulate enzymes that detoxify carcinogens, potentially stopping cancer before it even starts.
 
It also reportedly stimulates the immune system as well. If you don’t want to risk the bad breath that can result from eating fresh garlic, try aged garlic supplements, which have been shown to lower blood pressure and cholesterol.
 
Pumpkin Seeds
Pumpkin seeds are tiny nutritional powerhouses that are valuable because of their rich magnesium content.
 
Magnesium is not only important for your body’s normal functioning, but it’s critical if you are taking diuretics, antibiotics, or cancer medications, which can rob the body of this vital mineral. Magnesium helps your body recover more quickly from strenuous exercise and illness.
 
Bananas
Most of us know that bananas are an important source of potassium, which can lower blood pressure and stop muscle cramps. The potassium also helps keep your heart strong. Bananas are rich in folate, vitamins C and A, and magnesium.
 
The tropical fruit also contains tryptophan, an essential amino acid that aids in the production of serotonin, the body’s natural “feel good” hormone. This protects against age-causing stress.

The complete version of this article first appeared in Health Radar. To read more, CLICK HERE.


Related Articles:
Cutting Inflammation Stops Diseases of Aging: Yale Researchers
Fruits, Nuts Boost Longevity: Study


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