While it is true that there is no magic potion that can slow the aging process, there are a few specific foods that help slow aging.
Exercise is still a big part of the equation for staying strong and flexible, but choosing foods that help slow aging can keep your energy up, overall health in check, prevent disease and slow some of the physical effects of aging.
Canada’s new Food Guide highlights the importance of eating more fruits, vegetables, lean meats, fish, healthy fats, plant based proteins and whole grains but which superfoods give you the most results in terms of slowing down aging?
10 Foods that Help Slow Aging
Starting with spice—Turmeric
Second cousin to ginger, turmeric has many uses in cooking and in keeping us healthy and feeling young.
Turmeric has been shown to be beneficial in a range of health related issues that centre around inflammation, including:
- Skin irritations, like eczema
- Kidney disorders
- Digestion, alleviating gas and bloating
- High cholesterol and more…
That’s because turmeric contains the chemical curcumin, which is a known anti-inflammatory and antioxidant thought to also be responsible for preventing Alzheimers from developing.
Sprinkle on your scrambled eggs, cook with veggies in a curry sauce or add it in our Lemon Turmeric Protein Smoothie!
A little bit of flavour—Garlic
Aside from warding off vampires, garlic is said to prevent heart disease and strokes by slowing the hardening of the arteries while also helping reduce inflammation.
The health benefit is in the sulfur compounds that are produced when garlic is crushed, pressed or chewed. Ounce per ounce, garlic contains off the charts nutritional value that your body needs, particularly as we age. These include manganese (23% of recommended daily amount, or RDA), vitamin B6 (17% RDA), vitamin C (15% RDA), as well as selenium, calcium, potassium, iron and vitamin B1.
So while I wouldn’t necessarily put a couple of cloves in a smoothie, it’s an excellent addition to a hearty vegetable soup with protein or your favourite tomato sauce recipe!
Another kind of fruit—Tomatoes
While defining a tomato as a fruit is more of a scientific distinction than an every day one, there’s no denying their health benefits. Filled to the brim with lycopene, which is a natural chemical compound that has been shown to help prevent certain kinds of cancers (prostate and lung, in particular) and ward off UV damage from the sun.
With more lycopene being released when crushed, mashed and heated (like in that fabulous tomato sauce recipe I mentioned above!), it’s a perfect addition to your anti-aging diet.
A favourite fruit—Blueberries
Talking about fruits that we actually think of as fruit, the blueberry is top of the heap. They are packed with vitamins like A, C and E as well as an age-defying antioxidant called anthocyanin that can help keep your cells rejuvenating, prevent collagen loss and boost your immune system while protecting skin from sun, stress and pollution. They make a great, portable snack for when you’re on the go!
In addition, blueberries contain fibre, potassium, folate, and no cholesterol whatsoever, making them a heart healthy option that just happen to taste great too. Particularly when added to a delicious smoothie, like a Blueberry Almond Vegan Protein smoothie.
A different kind of berry—Avocado
Interestingly, avocados are technically a fruit, and specifically, what’s referred to as a ‘single-seeded berry’. More importantly, they contain inflammation fighting healthy fatty acids that your body needs to prevent the negative effects of aging. Vitamin K,C,E and A, B vitamins, potassium, fibre, folate and cholesterol lowering properties, all help reduce your risk of heart disease.
Avocado also contains a healthy dose of protein, which if you are not a big meat or fish eater, can help in your quest to avoid age related muscle loss! You know what also helps? A Chocolate Avocado Protein smoothie! All the benefits of Boomer Nutrition Protein Powder, avocado and the pure delight of chocolate.
The best in green veggies—Broccoli
Vitamins C and K, a variety of antioxidants, fibre, folate, lutein, calcium… all beneficial in slowing aging and all can be found in broccoli.
While cooking helps release more health benefits, it’s not just for steaming. Broccoli is delicious in healthy, protein enriched salads, in soups and even on cheese nachos or that BBQ Chicken Pizza!
Feeling a little . . . Nuts
Almonds, walnuts, macadamia, cashews or brazil nuts are THE perfect snack for when you are super busy and on the run. Portable and delicious, almonds are packed with vitamin E which helps repair skin and protect from damaging rays. Walnuts contain fibre, healthy unsaturated fats, Omega 3s, and protein, they are a great addition to your anti-aging diet. A handful of nuts before you exercise or to stave off a late night snack attack will help you to keep your eating under control, and healthy too!
And if you feel like adding some to your smoothie, almond milk has a lot of the same benefits and is much easier to blend with protein powder and a banana!
Fish that packs a punch—Salmon
Speaking of Omega 3s, an excellent source of this heart healthy fatty acid is found in salmon. It’s an easy fish to prepare, tastes good and can help you limit your chance of having a heart attack or stroke.
An everyday good food—Eggs
Eggs contain complete proteins and come in their very own, disposable container. What could be better? Each egg contains all nine essential amino acids needed to make up a complete protein, vitamins A, D, E, K B2, B6, B12 and minerals such as zinc, iron and copper. They even come in Omega 3 enriched varieties, which is just a bonus.
They are the most versatile food to cook with, you can scramble or eat them sunny side up, make a frittata with veggies like broccoli and tomato, or just grab a few hard boiled ones out of the fridge for an on the go snack.
Don’t forget dessert—Dark chocolate
If you have a sweet tooth or just like to have a little something at the end of a meal, opt for a square or two of dark chocolate with over 65% cocoa. It has been known to reduce blood pressure, contains antioxidants and increases good cholesterol levels. Plus it tastes good!
Ultimately, slowing the aging process through exercise and diet is all about making good choices. Protein is essential in your meal plan for slowing age related muscle loss and many older adults don’t get enough of it. So add these 10 superfoods to your meal plan and throw in a protein smoothie here and there to make sure that you’re getting all the complete proteins, vitamins and minerals that you need for healthy aging.
Post this easy to read Infographic to your Healthy Aging Pinterest Board.