Anything you put in the mouth affects both physical and mental health. Have you ever wondered why you have gained or lost a couple of pounds for no reason? Your diet has something to do with it! As with other things, diet also impacts the way you age. Specifically, it plays a role whether you age gracefully or whether you show signs of early aging.
The food choices you make also affect the rate at which your metabolism works. For instance, protein-rich foods may boost your metabolism, while refined carbs and complex carbs slow the metabolism because they are difficult to break down. When metabolic rate is slow, you are at higher risk for developing various health condition, all of which are associated, directly or indirectly. To cut a long story short, healthy foods help keep the metabolism going. On the other hand, junk food slows the metabolism, increase inflammation, and promote aging. If you want to age slower, you need to reduce inflammation and improve metabolic rate first.
The Role of Food in Aging
Poor-quality foods, like trans fats, cause inflammation – and aging is basically a chronic inflammatory state. Can you look older because you’re eating like crap? Absolutely.” – Timothy Harlan, MD, assistant professor at Tulane University School of Medicine
Avoid the following:
- Processed Meats
- Fatty meats
- Doughnuts and pastries
- Deep-fried stuff
5 Foods That Make You Age Slower
“Ninety percent of the diseases known to man are caused by cheap foodstuffs. You are what you eat.” – Victor Lindlahr
1.Beans and Lentils
Beans and lentils are loaded with protein and fiber, both of which stabilize blood sugar levels. Protein helps build muscle mass and provides energy while fiber promotes satiety which lasts for an extended period of time. Beans are quite low on the glycemic scale, which means that they provide the benefits above without causing inflammation or slowing down the metabolism.
Most of the health benefits of carrots come from their beta-carotene content, a potent antioxidant which protects the cells and DNA from free radicals like environmental pollutants. Free radicals are known to cause early aging, and beta-carotene works as preventative measure when it comes to this issue. Additionally, carrots contain falcarinol, a nutrient with powerful anti-cancer properties.
Replacing red meat with freshwater fish like salmon is a great idea, as it provides healthy fatty acids. It has been scientifically proven that omega-3 fats can protect against age-related cognitive decline. Salmon is also packed with potassium, a nutrient which helps prevent heart disease. As an added bonus, salmon is one of the few foods which contain large amounts of selenium, a mineral which keeps the metabolism running smoothly, regulates hormonal activity, and promotes thyroid health.
Soy products like edamame and tofu are known to help prevent cellular aging. Edamame is high in isoflavones, phytochemicals which provide anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, anti-cancer, and antimicrobial properties. Tofu has the same benefit, but with an added dose of essential amino acids and protein.
Citrus fruits like grapefruit, oranges, limes, tangerines, and mandarins are some of the best foods for slowing down the aging process. Here are some of their benefits:
- Contain large amounts of vitamin C, which acts as antioxidant, reduces inflammation, and fights infections
- Contain anti-aging carotenoids and flavonoids
- Prevent age-related cognitive decline like heart disease and various cancer types