No fountain of youth in your backyard? We didn’t think so. That’s why we’re showing you five foods that can help you age better. By making the right food choices even in your younger years, you can guarantee a healthier you as you age. Aging may be unavoidable, but it doesn’t have to be debilitating.
Rooibos Tea is a popular South African herbal tea, which provides a host of health benefits. The tea is naturally caffeine free, and can serve as a great alternative to decaf coffee. It contains fewer tannins than most other teas, and tannins are notorious for removing needed vitamins and minerals from the body. The real reason we’re crazy over this tea is that it’s a good source of several antioxidants that you don’t get from other foods. Antioxidants help to clear the body of toxins that accumulate as you age.
The healthy Omega-3 fats in salmon are well known and the benefits are scientifically proven. When it comes to aging, Omega-3 fats help alleviate common health problems that occur as we age, including fighting inflammation and treating depression. Salmon is also a great source of calcium and vitamin D, essential vitamins for good bone health. For an easy-to-prepare option, try smoked salmon paired with some low-fat cheese. It’s the perfect duo!
The risk of cancer increases as you age, but luckily there are several foods that possess natural anti-carcinogenic properties, and blueberries are one of them. Low calorie and rich in sweetness and flavor, blueberries are a great, fiber-rich snack that can be enjoyed by the handful. Blueberries are also high in vitamin C, yet another invaluable natural antioxidant. Enjoy your blueberries on top of your yogurt parfait or a bowl of high-fiber cereal.
Oats are an easily accessible whole grain and are nutrient dense, providing several essential vitamins and minerals. Naturally high in fiber, oats are filling and can be served up hot or cold, overnight oats style. Fiber helps clear out unwanted cholesterol from the body, something many people struggle with as they age. Keeping your cholesterol levels regulated is important in maintaining your heart heath. For added benefits, try flavoring your oats with cinnamon or vanilla instead of added sugars.
These vibrant greens deserve a shout out! Brussel sprouts are a good source of B vitamins, which promote a healthy immune system and protein metabolism, so that your body has material available to re-energize and repair. Getting an adequate amount of B vitamins is also associated with a lower risk of cardiovascular disease and cancer. Brussel sprouts are easy to prepare: lay them out on a baking sheet, spray with cooking spray, sprinkle with salt and pepper and bake.
Tanya Zuckerbrot MS, RD, is a Registered Dietitian in New York City and the author of two bestselling diet books: The F-Factor Diet and The Miracle Carb Diet: Make Calories and Fat Disappear – with Fiber.