Senior Nutrition Myths

Senior Nutrition Myths

senior nutrition mythsThese senior nutrition myths are untrue, unhealthy and pose various health risks.

Population aging is one of humanity’s greatest success stories. But at the same time, it is also one of the greatest challenges to cope with in the existing lifestyles.

An apple a day keeps the doctor away; a common notion that most people grow up with. We are told to eat a good amount of leafy green vegetables, drink plenty of water and so on. These methods do ensure a good nutritious diet and they usually work, mostly when we are kids until we reach the adult age.

 However, for a senior citizen the food laws applied are slightly different. Seniors not only require a nutritious diet but also good amounts of adequate sources of minerals like calcium and vitamin rich food. Many a time seniors find themselves falling prey to a number of myths that surround their basic dietary and nutrition needs.

Dr. Sriniwas Thakur, Consultant Geriatrics, Fortis Hospital, Mulund dispels some of these senior nutrition myths.

Myth #1: Loss of appetite can be ignored

It is normal that appetite changes with age; metabolism slows down and caloric requirement decreases. Energy output also drops as compared to younger people. However, completely losing your appetite is not a good sign; it may very well indicate an underlying problem like poor dentition, difficulty swallowing, a thyroid gland related problem or other serious health conditions. Weighing oneself on a regular basis helps keep track of optimal weight count and monitors weight loss.

Myth #2: Seniors have slower metabolism and thus require fewer nutrients

While seniors require fewer calories, and their food volume is lesser than younger adults, they too require a healthy amount of nutrients. As we age, physical activity tends to decrease therefore our bodies ability to absorb nutrients also decrease. This entitles a senior to more nutrient consumption. It is recommended for a senior to increase their consumption of vitamins such as Vitamin D and B12 and calcium, through natural sources or supplements recommended by their physician.

Myth #3: Seniors who are not overweight can consume sugar, salt & fat in large amounts

People who appear thin but have good eating capacities and enjoy burgers, sweets and other fatty food items tend to be looked at as healthy; the underlying truth is that they too are at risk of developing Heart diseases, Diabetes due to improper sugar consumption, Cholesterol problems, Alzheimer’s disease and so on. Seniors who are on the slighter thinner frame should nevertheless adopt a well-balanced diet and healthy eating option to keep health risks at bay.

Senior Nutrition Myths #4: It is ok for a senior person to skip meals

Skipping a meal causes a person to overeat during the next meal. Blood sugar levels drop often causing dizziness. It is recommended that even if you are not hungry, eating small portions will suffice, especially for seniors. Those who eat 5-6 small meals will have reduced chest congestions, breathing problems and insulin levels will be moderate. Skipping meals will make the body crave food at odd hours which is unhealthy.

Myth #5: As long as you eat you’re healthy:

Elders living alone usually find it difficult and tiresome to cook meals; this makes them opt for readymade food options or tend to snack on packaged food. These types of food include high amounts of salts, added preservatives, sugar etc. which are not a healthy option, resulting in major health risks.

Myth #6: Artificial supplements are a must as we grow old:

It is a common misconception among people that as we grow old, we need to take multivitamin and calcium supplements. It may unnecessarily lead to problems like constipation, diarrhea and even malnutrition. Relying too heavily on artificial supplements for your nutrition is not good. It should be taken only if advised by your doctor, along with a balanced healthy diet.

Senior Nutrition Myths #7: It is ok to avoid food because of constipation or bloating:

A very harmful myth. It is not only the quantity but also the quality of food that matters with our toilet habits. It is very important to consume foods that are rich in fibers if one is having constipation or bloating, rather than take over the counter medications or decrease their food intake.

Ensuring that you watch what you eat will ensure your health being in a good condition too. And most importantly, it is better to seek the help of your doctor, if suffering from loss of appetite or weight loss or weight gain and get timely medical attention. As rightly said, ‘Prevention is better than cure’.

Best Anti Aging Foods You Should Be Eating

anti agingAlthough the fountain of youth and anti aging has yet to be discovered, there are other ways you can slowly turn back the hands of time. Sure, you can spend hundreds of dollars on creams that promise you’ll look 20 again, but save those extra dollars. Instead of spending on the outside, start focusing on the inside.

What am I referring to exactly? Well, it’s your diet of course! Yes, that’s right, the foods you eat daily can go a long way in either speeding up or slowing down the aging process. So, if you want to look and feel forever young, you should be eating the anti aging foods listed below.

But how can food work to turn back the hands of time? Well, studies conducted at Washington University School of Medicine found that eating foods that contain nicotinamide mononucleotide (NMN)—a compound already naturally produced in the body—has a positive effect on the aging process. Their research was conducted on animals, but may very well translate to humans too.

NMN can be found in a variety of fruits and vegetables. Although the mice in the study consumed water with high levels of NMN—much greater than what is found in fruits and vegetables—even regular consumption of NMN-rich foods can go a long way in keeping your insides “forever young.”

Aside from NMB foods, there are other essential compounds required to promote anti-aging. So, if you want to start the anti aging process from the inside, you’ll want to begin incorporating the following foods into your diet.

Best anti aging foods you should be eating daily

  • Avocados
  • Edamame
  • Broccoli
  • Cucumbers
  • Peanuts
  • Mushrooms
  • Green tea
  • Oranges
  • Squash
  • Carrots
  • Orange bell peppers
  • Raspberries
  • Pomegranates
  • Almonds
  • Seeds
  • Fatty fish
  • Olive oil

These are just some of the foods that contain the essential vitamins, antioxidants, and compounds to help you achieve inner anti aging. Research suggests that following the Mediterranean diet is also a good way of eating for anti aging. Numerous studies have linked the Mediterranean diet to lower rates of Alzheimer’s disease.

The Mediterranean diet helps promote anti aging because it is full of olive oil, fatty fish, and plenty of fruits and vegetables that work to promote overall good health. Essentially, steering clear of fatty foods, saturated fat, processed food, and refined food is a good rule of thumb if anti aging is a priority for you.

 

Seniors Nutrition-5 Smart Ways

Seniors Nutrition-5 Smart Ways

seniors nutritionIf you have concerns about whether you’re getting the right seniors nutrition, you’re not alone.

The fact is, people’s nutritional needs change as they get older and the convenience of eating fast food or frozen meals that are packed with sodium and sugar make it tough to eat healthfully.

Luckily, there are a number of things you can do to get back on the right track with foods that will help keep you healthy and happy.

1. Keep an eye on portion sizes.

For many people over 65, maintaining a healthy diet often comes down to portions and frequency. When it comes to portions, smaller is better, and it’s healthier to eat several small meals than overeating at one sitting.

2. Make a plan and stick with it.

Seniors nutrition and care experts emphasize the importance of planning out meals and snacks before hitting the supermarket. You can make a detailed list of food and beverages to last several days or up to a week, and plan to make a couple of meals in larger quantities that can be safely stored for later meals. Having a weekly plan and sticking with it will help ensure that you get the seniors nutrition you need.

3. Nutrient-dense, whole foods are best.

Nutrient-dense foods are those that are full of fiber, protein, vitamins and healthy fats but that don’t have a lot of calories. Examples include fresh produce, fish, poultry, lean meats, eggs and nuts.

It’s essential to develop a daily eating plan that consists of whole foods that will provide the nutrients you need to thrive in your golden years.

4. Don’t underestimate the importance of H20

Proper hydration is often overlooked as part of a healthy, balanced diet for adults, but it’s especially crucial for seniors. Adults over 50 have a greater chance of becoming dehydrated as their sense of thirst declines, for one. Experts suggest that you always have a glass of water with easy reach.

5. Consider healthy meal delivery options

A  growing number of meal services deliver the ingredients and recipes for healthy at-home meals. For seniors, these services help reduce the time needed for meal preparation, and as a bonus – many offer meals that are pre-portioned and packed with healthful ingredients for good seniors nutrition.

Longevity The Best Fruits

Longevity The Best Fruits

longevityThe science is clear: Eating the right foods can lead to a longer life or longevity.

Most fruit is inherently nutritious for longevity and good for you. With all of the antioxidants in colourful berries and fibre from whole fruits to the banana’s potassium content, fruit is easily the best way to naturally curb your sweet tooth. Some stand in higher on the list than others though.

When it comes to the most nutritious fruits, we want to take into consideration the healthiest fruits for longevity, weight loss, and good choices for diabetics because natural sugar is still sugar, after all. We’ll take into account disease fighting properties and components that provide preventative benefits from keeping your eyesight sharp to providing a source of healthy brain food.

Berries

Any variety will do, but including plenty of berries in the diet might be the key to longevity. A 2013 study focused on the polyphenol (an antioxidant) intake of participants showed that the individuals with the highest intake were at 30% reduced risk of death. Pretty cool, huh? Blueberries are also a good fruit for diabetics considering the average serving of 3/4 cup contains just 16 grams of carbohydrates with a low glycemic index score of 41. Perhaps their low sugar and GI also makes berries the best fruit for weight loss.

Pomegranates

These seedy (and messy) little fruits are nutritional powerhouses for longevity. They’re often touted as one of the healthiest fruits and for good reason. Pomegranates arguably have the most powerful antioxidant properties of all fruit. A unique compound found in pomegranates called punicalagin is fantastic for the heart and blood vessels. This antioxidant can lower cholesterol and blood pressure, ultimately warding off disease and preventing things like heart attacks and strokes, easily tacking on a few extra healthy years.

Apples

The phrase “An apple a day keeps the doctor away” holds more truth than you might think. Adding an apple to your morning routine could keep you in tip-top shape. Besides, with all the variety, there’s an apple for every eye. Green apples are lower in sugar than red apples making them helpful for weight loss and a good fruit for diabetics. Granny Smiths are even beneficial to regulating blood sugar. With tons of soluble fibre, apples can help you stay satiated making them an ideal afternoon snack. Every apple variety boasts anti-cancer properties, the red coloured fruits being highest in antioxidants. Just remember to eat the skin!

Cranberries

Cranberries aren’t just for the beloved holiday sauce, and we’re certainly not giving props to the gel you might find in a can. Nope, we’re talking the fresh stuff. Dried cranberries and cranberry juice pack the same power, but keep in mind concentrated sugar content especially if you’re diabetic. Fresh cranberries are low in calories, pack in some vitamin C, have loads of antioxidants, and score low on the GI scale with a glycemic load of 2. Fresh cranberries are good for protecting the cardiovascular system and the liver. You can boil them down with a natural sweetener or other berries for a lovely sauce or jam.

Guava

This might be the most obscure of the healthiest fruits on our list, but don’t give up on the search for one of these if you aren’t having luck at the supermarket. Chances are, you can find them at an ethnic grocer. This winter fruit is one of the best foods for a long life and overall health. Guava boosts immunity and lowers your risk of cancer with its potent antioxidant content. It’s one of the best fruits for diabetics considering its high fibre count and low glycemic index. Vitamin A can even help keep your eyesight in good shape while its magnesium can help to lower stress. Finally, its B vitamins will keep your brain sharp leading to a better quality of life, even as you age.

Papaya

Ah, yet another fruit we often overlook or don’t consume often. While apples and bananas are fine and dandy, papaya is a true superfood. The ripe papaya is sweet, juicy and luscious with a tropical flavour you’ll want to indulge in. These fruits can help boost digestion with their enzymes which is more potent in an underripe fruit. Papayas contain loads of antioxidants and vitamin C which helps protect the heart and is even thought to prevent Rheumatoid Arthritis. The fibre in the fruit is able to lessen your risk of colon cancer by binding to cancer-causing toxins in the colon.

Grapefruit

With 52% of your daily vitamin C and 23% of your daily vitamin A per 100 grams, this low-sugar citrus fruit is a stellar addition to your breakfast staple dish. It’s famously known as one of the best fruits for weight loss. The juice from grapefruits can prevent kidney stones, cleansing the liver, and even preventing prostate cancer. Thanks to its high antioxidant levels, this fruit has some serious super powers. Pink grapefruit has even been shown to reverse the damage of cigarette smoke in the lungs and prevent lung cancer. Pretty crazy, huh? Finally, grapefruit is good for gum health making it helpful in preventing oral cancer.

Kiwi

These little guys are serious powerhouses for a long and healthy life. By the way, if you’re not eating the skin, you should be! The fuzzy fibre keeps you full and helps cleanse your digestive tract of toxins. Kiwi is also great for restoring alkaline balance, which essentially means its high mineral content counteracts all of the acidity we take in. Alkaline balance can lead to better sleep, skin and energy for a more vibrant life. Kiwis fight blood clotting making them one of the healthiest fruits for fighting heart disease and reducing triglycerides (the “bad” cholesterol).

Tart or sour cherries

Now here’s a fruit where the juice is nearly as nutritious as the fruit itself. It might be easier to find tart cherry juice than it is to find the whole fruits anyways. Listen up if you’re looking to get better sleep. Cherries are packed with anthocyanins which provide anti-inflammatory effects similar to Ibuprofen without any negative side effects. Less inflammation in the body can help to prevent cancer, cardiovascular disease, metabolic syndrome, and Alzheimer’s disease, which inevitably means a longer life. Tart cherries also protect muscles and promote quicker recovery after a tough workout. Finally, due to tart cherry juice’s natural way of making melatonin, this stuff is great for a bedtime elixir.

Cantaloupe or rockmelon

While most melons are a good choice when it comes to choosing healthy fruits, cantaloupe is the shining star in this category. Their high levels of vitamins and minerals boast benefits such as cancer prevention, a boost for the immune system, healthy skin due to the beta-carotene, and lessened stress and anxiety symptoms due to their high potassium. Cantaloupe has also been connected to improved insulin metabolism, so this is a suitable fruit for diabetics. It’s one of the best fruits for longevity.

The Best, Nutritionist-Approved Autumn Food

The Best, Nutritionist-Approved Autumn Food

autumn foodAutumn can bring a time of change with different foods coming into season. Here are 5 healthy autumn food suggestions.

1. Figs

Figs are in plentiful supply during autumn and a great option when it comes to boosting fibre intake. Figs offer a powerhouse of nutrition including potassium, calcium, magnesium, iron and copper. Figs can be eaten raw, poached or baked, served with yoghurt for a quick breakfast or snack.

2. Beetroot

Beetroot is an in-season autumn food and root vegetable rich in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. It is a nutrient-dense and versatile option when it comes to autumn vegetables. Try freshly grated and added to meals, fermented or roasted and tossed through cooked grains.

3. Miso

Miso paste is made from fermented soybeans and can be used as a stock, to make soup, in dressings or as a marinade for meat. Once opened, it lasts for up to two years so it’s a great ingredient to have on hand in the fridge.

4. Lentils

Lentils as an autumn food offers  a great source of plant-based protein along with fibre. A slight chill to the air often has us craving more hearty and warming dishes. Lentils are quick way to create a meal sure to satisfy. Use in soups, stews, stir-fries or warm salads.

5. Fermented vegetables

A strong immune system is needed leading into the cooler months and fermented vegetables like sauerkraut and kimchi are rich in live enzymes and good bacteria. They’re made by adding salt to vegetables (such as cabbage) and allowing the process of lactic acid fermentation and growth of friendly bacteria over time to create a nutrient dense ‘condiment.’

Beat The Aging Process With 5 Key Tips

Aging is inevitable. No matter how hard we try, it will catch up with us eventually, but that does not mean that you have to sit back and let it prematurely take your youth beat the aging process away. No, there are things you can do starting right now to beat the aging process, and maintain your youthful looks and vigor well into an age nobody will be able to guess!

These tips are extremely simple- there’s no magic pill here. Read on to find out  five keys tips to beat the aging process you should be doing:

Sleep More

Sleeping is one of life’s simple pleasures, and something that should come naturally to everyone. However, more than half of the USA’s adult population is chronically sleep deprived, in the sense that they get less than the recommended 8-9 hours nightly, many days running. Sleep is the one thing that everyone has going for them, since it is the hit reset button for your body.

During sleep, repair ensues, so that proteins in the skin are fixed, hormone production is ramped up, and the process of rebuilding in general. Chronic sleep deficiency inhibits the ability of the body to fix structural defects, including in DNA, which can accelerate greying of hair, wrinkling of skin and deterioration of organs.

Get Your Veggies

Eat lots of vegetables. It doesn’t really matter which, but include a variety of different ones, as each bring something different to the table. Most vegetables are extremely low calories, making them perfect for bulk at mealtimes, as you can eat a lot, and not get a lot of calories. In addition, vegetables are full of fiber, which keep intestinal and colon health on point, as well as tons of anti-oxidants, vitamin and minerals, which fend off free radicals and compounds that damage DNA and promote aging.

Shed Bad Recreational Hobbies

Sure, watching TV late into the night is a bad hobby, and it is damaging, but it is not bad in the sense we are referring to. The ways we are talking about, relate to drinking, smoking and eating junk food. Excessive alcohol consumption places undue stress on the liver that’s primary job is to remove toxins from the body, and in some cases makes it unable to do its job. This accumulation of toxins is bad for health, and kick starts the aging process.

Smoking, on the other hand is worse in many aspects. With negative effects ranging from the lungs, to blood vessels and more, smoking can age you 25 years in just 5 years. Nutrient delivery suffers, so skin ages and wrinkles far sooner than it should, and you increase the risk of dying from complications of the lung.

Stay Happy

We don’t expect you to be euphoric all day long, but being happy has proven benefits over being sad, or pouty. This can be explained by endorphins, feel-good chemicals produced in the brain that boost mood, reduce heart rate and blood pressure, and reduce stress levels as well.

Practicing mindfulness meditation is one of the best ways to develop your appreciation of the little things in life, and improve your happiness and outlook not to mention the fact that frowning just speeds up development of wrinkles and fine lines!

Weight Train

A little jogging or cycling is good at any point of your life, but in order to diminish the effects of aging, weight training is a must. Not only does muscle help you fill out your clothing, but it can also help prevent skin from sagging, wrinkling, or your posture from stooping.

Nothing screams old like a hunched back and sagging skin, but luckily, weight lifting can delay this for years to come, not only that, but your overall mobility will be kept in check, and you will look great, so hit the weights!

You can beat the aging process by taking a few simple steps!

Superfoods for Seniors

superfoodsWhat are superfoods? We hear about them in the news as being something we should consume on a regular basis. Why and what are they?

Superfoods are loaded with nutritional value and contain powerful antioxidants. Antioxidants fight against free radicals that cause damage to cells. They are important for seniors because they reduce the risk of common health conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, inflammatory diseases and even cancer.

Antioxidants also help boost the immune system and can actually slow the aging process. Many types of foods are considered superfoods, but some in particular – including one spice – are especially beneficial for seniors.

The Superfoods

Tomatoes reduce the risk of heart disease, prostate cancer and digestive tract cancers. They can also improve bone health. Lycopene, which is the pigment responsible for a tomato’s red color, helps eradicate cancer-causing free radicals in the body. Lycopene has also been linked to a decreased risk of osteoporosis in women.

Green tea not only reduces the risk of certain cancers, it also improves brain function, reduces inflammation and reduces the risk of depression and diabetes. Furthermore, green tea has long been an ancient anti-aging secret among people in China and Japan.

Consuming red wine has several surprising benefits including reducing the risk of heart disease. Red wine can improve good cholesterol (HDL), blood clotting and has anti-aging properties. It also can promote a lowered risk of tooth decay and gum diseases as well as the risk of osteoporosis. If on medication, be sure to consult a physician before adding red wine to your diet since mixing alcohol and medication can be dangerous.

Another heart-healthy food is dark chocolate, which can reduce the risk of diabetes and improve brain function.

Pomegranates are considered a cure for menopausal hot flashes, gastric irritation, conjunctivitis and viral infections such as the flu.

Beans and peas are loaded with antioxidants, vitamins and minerals that exhibit anti-inflammatory properties. Good examples include chickpeas, kidney beans, lentils, black beans and red beans.

Cinnamon is a “super spice” and helps decrease the risk of heart disease and diabetes, lowers bad cholesterol levels, and has anti-inflammatory and medicinal properties. It can also help regulate blood sugar by improving sensitivity to insulin. Additionally, even just smelling the aroma of cinnamon boosts cognitive processing and visual motor responses.

As far as antioxidant properties, blueberries have been ranked as possessing one of the highest antioxidant properties of all fruits and vegetables.  They are a rich source of dietary fiber. Blueberries are also a potent source of vitamin C in that one serving meets 25 percent of the daily required needs. In addition to improving brain function and reducing the risk of heart disease, diabetes, and cancer, blueberries enhance the immune system and help prevent urinary tract infections. One study suggests that blueberries hinder the formation of tumor cells.

All of these super foods can be found in your local grocery store or food market.


Anti Aging: Get Your Antioxidants

Anti Aging: Get Your Antioxidants

anti agingA healthy and anti aging diet is important at any age, but becomes critical, as you get older. The truth is that lifestyle diseases that stem from diet and lack of physical activity are killing us.
According to the Centers For Disease Control, almost 900,000 Americans die prematurely every year from lifestyle diseases, which include heart disease, stroke, and cancer and 20% to 40% of these deaths are preventable. More often than not, it is lifestyle choices that dictate these conditions.
The World Health Organization reports that lifestyle diseases account for a staggering 70% of all deaths, and that more than ever before diet and lack of physical activity is driving these numbers in both industrial regions and developing countries.
Aging is an inevitable process; it will happen regardless of what you do. However, there are ways you can take the process in hand that offer a bit of a “slow down” with anti aging of the process in order to avoid many preventable diseases that cause premature death.

The best place to start? By feeding your body with the foods, it needs to optimize performance and health.

The Single Best Way To Anti Aging – Consume Antioxidants

You would have likely heard the word antioxidant but may not fully understand what it means or what it does within the body. Let’s clear that up.

See, as we age, every single day of our lives we are exposed to oxidative damage. It is simply a fact of life. Cells and DNA become worn out the longer they exist, and eventually they are unable to replicate to 100%.

This is the process of aging taking place. Stress from everyday life just compounds oxidative damage, and can accelerate the aging process, exactly what we are trying to avoid.

Anti Aging Benefits Of Antioxidants

1. Prevents UV Damage From The Sun – damage from the sun can accelerate aging of the skin and result in cell mutations.

2. Boost Heart Health – can keep cholesterol levels within a normal range, clear blood vessels and promote normal heart rhythm.

3. Strengthens The Immune System – you become less susceptible to illnesses that sap away health, as well as more resistant to various types of cancer.

With that in mind, where are these antioxidants found? Luckily, in a variety of veggies and fruits, so for best health, and graceful aging, consider getting more of these in your diet:

Berries

Berries are among some of the fruits with highest antioxidant content, being able to positively boost health. Think of blueberries, strawberries, and cranberries as ones you should be getting more of.

Though not ideal to be consumed in mass amounts (due to sugar content) they do provide a massive dose of antioxidants, reducing pro-inflammatory compounds and slowing down hastened aging and they are also one of the lowest sugar fruits.

Cocoa

Cocoa has many more functions that making chocolate, as it is actually a health food. Rich in polyphenols, one of which is epicatechin, cocoa has a myriad of health benefits, including potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant ability. Cocoa is actually superior in antioxidant profile when compared with green tea or even red wine.

Cruciferous Veggies

Extremely rich in antioxidants and phytonutrients, cruciferous vegetables can help prevent cancer, improve blood lipid values and encourage the removal of waste from the body. Coupled with the fact that they’re excellent free radical scavengers, cruciferous vegetables can and should be consumed daily.

Brightly Colored Veggies/ Fruits

Think of carrots, bell peppers and citrus, all foods that contain high number of bioactive compounds. In terms of carrots, they contain high levels of Beta-carotene, a type of vitamin A that has super potent antioxidant abilities.

Coupled with the high Vitamin C levels of bell peppers and citrus, these fruits and veggies provide a massive anti aging effect in those who consume it. Tomatoes are also rich in lycopene, a rare antioxidant that is especially helpful to men’s health.

Conclusion

Antioxidants with their anti aging qualities are your best insurance against the rigors of aging. They help safeguard heart health, eye, and skin along with fortifying your immune system.

Consuming a mix of both fruits and vegetables ensures you get the widest spectrum of phytonutrients available to prevent lifestyle diseases and maintain a healthy weight.

Anti-Aging With A Fruit-Rich Mediterranean diet

anti-agingPeople who closely follow the anti-aging Mediterranean diet — especially by eating fruit — may be more than a third less likely to develop age-related macular degeneration (AMD), a leading cause of blindness, according to a recent study.

Many studies have confirmed the health and anti-aging benefits of the Mediterranean diet, which emphasizes eating fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, nuts, healthy fats and fish, and limiting red meat and butter.

The diet has been shown to improve heart health and reduced risk of cancer, but there has been little research on whether its benefits can extend to eye disease.

To determine this, researchers studied a Portuguese population to see whether adherence to the diet impacted people’s risk of AMD.

Their findings revealed a significant reduction in risk in those who ate a Mediterranean diet most frequently, and particularly among those who consumed more fruit and caffeine.

Researchers at the University of Coimbra in Portugal studied 883 people age 55 or older in the central region of the country between 2013 and 2015.

Of those, 449 had AMD in its early stages before vision loss, and 434 did not have AMD.

Researchers assessed their diets based on a questionnaire asking how often they ate foods associated with the Mediterranean diet.

The more they ate anti-aging foods associated with the diet, the higher the score, from 0-9. Those who closely followed the diet scored a 6 or greater. Their findings were as follows:

Higher diet adherence scores meant lower AMD risk

Of those who did not closely follow the anti-aging diet (scored below a 6), 50 percent had AMD. Of those who did closely follow the diet (scored 6 or above), only 39 percent had AMD.

This represents a 35 percent lower risk compared to those who did not adhere to the diet.

Fruits were especially beneficial

Researchers analyzed consumption of foods and found that people who consumed higher levels of fruit were significantly less likely to have AMD.

Of those who consumed 150 grams (about five ounces) or more of fruit a day: 54.5 percent did not have AMD and 45.5 percent had AMD.

Overall, people who ate that much fruit or more each day were almost 15 percent less likely to have AMD, based on an odds ratio calculation.

Caffeine and antioxidants also were protective

Researchers used a computer program to analyze the participants’ consumption of micronutrients, according to their answers on the questionnaire.

They found higher consumption of antioxidants such as caffeine, beta-carotene and vitamins C and E was protective against AMD.

Of those who consumed high levels of caffeine (about 78 mg a day, or the equivalent of one shot of espresso): 54.4 percent did not have AMD and 45.1 percent had AMD.

While caffeine is not considered part of the Mediterranean diet per se, consumption of caffeine-containing foods such as coffee and tea is common in Mediterranean countries.

The researchers opted to look at caffeine because it is a powerful antioxidant that is known to be protective against other conditions, such as Alzheimer’s disease.

“This research adds to the evidence that a healthy, fruit-rich diet is important to health, including helping to protect against macular degeneration,” said Rufino Silva, M.D., Ph.D., lead author of the study.

 

Anti-Aging Best Tips From A Nobel Prize Winning Biologist.

anti-agingThis latest anti-aging advice comes from a Nobel prize-winning molecular biologist and a team of researchers. According to these experts, they have found scientific ways to slow down the human body clock.

The team’s suggestion emphasizes taking care of one’s DNA to retain youth. With proper DNA care, specifically the telomeres, people can prevent wrinkles, gray hair, exhaustion, and illness. Telomeres appear like the plastic bits that cover the end of shoelaces.

According to researchers, the longer they are, the more youthful one’s appearance. Further, the team claims to have scientifically-proven methods that will keep telomeres long and healthy. Their suggestions appear in the new book titled The Telomere Effect.

Science’s Best Anti-Aging Tips

The researchers found the food we eat affects telomeres. Some food could encourage telomeres to grow and flourish, leading to slow aging. However, people should also avoid certain foods.

Refined sugar is one of the worst foods for the DNA. It could speed up aging inside and out. Soft drinks are one of the main sources of “harmful” sugar. The researchers found two cans of soft drinks daily could make telomeres around 4.6 years older than those in non-drinkers.

“Instead of a diet high in sugar, aim to have a diet high in fiber and protein to avoid damaging insulin spikes that can lead to diabetes and all-around damage to our telomeres,” said Dr. Elizabeth Blackburn and Dr Elissa Epel..

Monitor Your Shape, Not Your Weight

Blackburn and Epel said, aside from reducing sugar consumption, people should also devote time for their shape. They found a waistline bigger than the hips could lead to faster aging.

What’s The Right Food To Eat?

The team recommends a diet full of fiber, vitamins, and nutrients can keep you younger inside and out. Their best anti-aging tips include eating whole wheat bread, whole wheat pasta, brown rice, vegetables, and fruit.

Carbs, dairy, and fats also appear friendly to telomeres. People can get these foods by following the Mediterranean diet