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We all wish that there were a dietary supplement or some other special secret that would help us live longer, healthier lives. But in truth, the “secret” might have been right in front of us all along! While there’s no way to guarantee you’ll never experience a serious medical condition, we do know that a healthy diet consistently ranks as the best way to prevent heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and many other serious illnesses. Plenty of evidence also links certain dietary choices to a reduced risk of dementia, lowered incidence of depression, and even healthy, younger-looking skin and hair.
So, which food choices in particular are associated with an anti-aging diet?
Healthy fats. Healthy fats like those found in olive oil, fatty fish, nuts, and seeds help to lower inflammation in the body. The so-called “Mediterranean diet”, which includes these healthy fats along with fruits and vegetables, is associated with lower risk of high blood pressure, heart disease, depression, and dementia.
Opt for healthier carbs. Despite the fad diets that are all the rage these days, carbohydrates aren’t necessarily your enemy. But there are definitely “good” and “bad” carbs, so you can (and should) choose to consume the healthier ones. Opt for whole grains and fiber, and you can significantly reduce your cancer risk.
Avoid processed foods. Processed foods are usually high in trans fats, sugars, and simple carbs, and are low in nutritional value. These foods in general are associated with higher risks of obesity, heart disease, depression, high blood pressure, and cancer. At least one study has associated consumption of processed foods with decreased longevity.
Plus, we just don’t always know the long-term effects of food additives. We generally consider them safe, but science uncovers new truths all the time. It’s usually best to steer clear of anything that wouldn’t be in our bodies naturally.
These are all good choices to make, if you’re interested in an anti-aging diet. They can also be the foundation of an effective weight loss diet. If you’re interested in that aspect of a healthier lifestyle, please schedule an appointment with us to discuss your goals in more detail.