As we age, our bodies go through various processes inwardly. We have cells that are supposed to go through a certain stage and then die off. Sometimes though, these cells don’t die. They can become damaged and are then breeding grounds for diseases – including cancer – and multiply rapidly – known as free radicals. However, one way to combat that damage is by ingesting foods rich in antioxidants. But foods that have plenty of antioxidants aren’t just good for fighting back against diseases. They fight aging, too – and can keep you feeling physically young.
You might not have realized yet how potent anti-oxidant food is in the fight to help you keep your youthfulness. But foods like fruits contain powerful doses of vitamin C, which is known to fight against both disease and aging.
Foods High In Anti-Oxidants
You might not be able to prevent growing older, but you can prevent the side effects of aging – like poor skin tone and weakened health. Starting today, you can use these anti-aging foods to keep your body healthy and young inwardly and outwardly:
- Have plenty of fruits like pomegranates, cranberries, blackberries, blueberries and strawberries as part of your every day diet.
- Some vegetables are good anti-aging protectors, too. Have a few servings of carrots, sweet potatoes and romaine lettuce for the benefits these foods offer against aging.
- Leafy green vegetables contain a multitude of benefits against aging. They contain calcium and potassium, are rich in beta carotene and lutein, which helps battle aging in the eyes.
- For strong bones, look for foods rich in the vitamin K. Some examples of these foods are kale, turnip greens and spinach. Vitamin K helps the body’s heart health as well as bone health.
You’ll see lots of advertisements that go hand in hand with aging, telling people to consume lots of calcium for healthy bones – and while it’s true that you do need calcium for healthy bones, you can’t overlook the benefits of protein in an anti-aging diet. You’ll want healthy meats as your protein, though. Avoid red meats that can cause problems for your heart and opt instead for lean meats like poultry. Fish should be a staple in your meals because of the Omega 3 properties it contains.
Eating plenty of filling foods like whole grains to help battle aging – because they have a lot of fiber, which can protect against certain cancers. Whole grain oatmeal helps keep the heart healthy and is good to fight against health problems that can clog the arteries.
Some foods are known as anti-inflammatory foods and help keep you healthy as they fight against inflammation, which is linked to aging. Besides fruits and vegetables, these foods are olive oils, soy based foods, green tea and dark chocolate. Make sure you are getting some foods rich in anti-oxidants in your diet every day.
Blueberries for Anti-Aging
We all know that aging is a natural process; however, most people would like to slow their rate of decline in the interest of quality of life and longevity. One food rich in anti-oxidants that has come to the attention of those studying anti-aging is blueberries. Study after study has shown that these teeny weenie berries can be your superheroes in the battle against aging.
Prevent Mental and Cognitive Decline Among Seniors
Studies have shown that when flavonoids found in blueberries are absorbed into the bloodstream they are able to cross the blood brain barrier. In turn, certain regions of the brain that are responsible for motor and memory functions are positively influenced. Flavonoids can help boost neural pathways, improve cellular connections and stimulate the process of neural regeneration. These active compounds in blueberries also have brain-protective effects as they help reduce free radical damage, excitoxicity and inflammation.
Regular consumption of blueberries has been linked to a reversal of cognitive and motor decline that are common in aging individuals. Plus, they are a rich source of vitamins E and C which are nutrients that also function as powerful antioxidants.
Research results published by the University of Cincinnati showed that drinking a few cups of blueberry juice every day can give a person’s aging brain a boost by enhancing memory. The study had elders in their 70’s as participants who were given up to 20 ounces of blueberry juice daily for a period of two months.
A control group was only asked to consume non-juice drinks. The results revealed study participants who were provided with blueberry juice had significant improvements in their memory and learning abilities as shown in their test results compared with the control group. These findings should encourage everyone to drink blueberry juice on a regular basis as it may help forestall, if not mitigate, the process of neuro-degeneration.
Blueberries Have “Fat-Finding” Ability
As people age, cholesterol levels can become harder to manage – a common issue in older adults. Another benefit of blueberries is that they contain pterostilbene, a compound known to have a “fat-finding” ability.
This statement is based on a study which revealed that pterostilbene compounds found in blueberries possess the ability to bind to PPAR-alpha receptors and trigger a response in the brain which leads to a reduction of triglycerides and cholesterol in the body.
Helps Prevent Osteoporosis
Osteoporosis is another common health problem that aging individuals face. Results from a study conducted by researchers from Oklahoma State University and Florida State University showed that the nutrients found in blueberries can be beneficial in preventing the onset of osteoporosis.
Their findings were that regular consumption of blueberries can help prevent bones from weakening especially after menopause. Experts recommend that blueberries be eaten as a whole fruit rather than just drinking the juice to be able to obtain all its nutrients.
Blueberries for Better Eye Health
The anthocyanins found in blueberries are known for their eye-protective benefits. These anthocyanins play a crucial role in protecting the RPE or Retinal Pigment Epithelium cells against death which usually occurs in aging individuals.
And these are only a few of the many findings from studies conducted by experts which continue to prove the benefits of blueberries for preserving eye health and for protecting aged individuals against several ocular diseases.