5 Anti-Aging Foods
We all know that sun damage is one of the biggest contributors to fine lines and wrinkles on our face, but did you know there are foods that help anti-aging, protecting your skin from the ravages of time?
As long as you’re alive, you are aging. We can’t do anything about that. However, you have enormous control over your rate of aging. I’m sure you have noticed the enormous variation in appearance of people in their 50s. Some people appear much younger than their age, while others look far older.
Of course there are many surgical procedures that can enhance a person’s appearance, but there are parts of the body, such as the hands, neck and legs that can reveal a person’s true age.
Over exposure of the skin to the sun’s rays generates inflammation, the production of free radicals and compounds that cause the breakdown of collagen and elastin. Inflammation causes tissue damage and a reduction in collagen means the skin loses its firmness. It also encourages the formation of deep lines in the skin of the face. The sun isn’t the only culprit though; anything that raises inflammation in the body also accelerates the rate of aging. Prime culprits are sugar, omega 6 rich industrial seed oils, wheat and alcohol.
Recently researchers have discovered that certain antioxidant compounds in foods have the ability to protect the skin from sun damage and therefore reduce the formation of wrinkles. Certain foods also have the ability to reduce inflammation in your body and therefore protect your skin. You’ll want to include as many of these good foods in your diet as possible if you’d like to slow your rate of aging.
Berries are beneficial because they are high in antioxidants and low in sugar. Berries are among the lowest sugar fruits, therefore even most diabetics can tolerate moderate amounts in their diet. Berries are also very high in fiber, meaning they stabilize your blood sugar, keep you full for a long time and have a bowel cleansing action. Their bright color means they are high in antioxidants that protect your tissues from free radicals. Try to include berries in your diet regularly; they can be fresh or frozen. Including berries and other brightly colored vegetables and fruits in your juices will give your body a powerful dose of antioxidants. See the juice recipes in my book Raw Juices Can Save Your Life.
If you want healthy collagen in your skin, it makes sense that you would include some in your diet. Collagen is found in skin, cartilage and marrow, therefore it is found in cuts of meat or poultry that contain bones and joints. Whenever you make your own bone broth, stock or make a soup out of bones, joints or marrow, you are consuming collagen. You can also find collagen in supplement form, such as from chicken cartilage. This contains a type of collagen called collagen type 2, which may have more potent benefits for the skin, connective tissue and joints. Collagen type 2 is found in Eternal Youth capsules.
If you want healthy, plump looking skin, you need to eat adequate fat. Avocados are full of beneficial fats, predominantly monounsaturated fats. This is the same kind of fat found in olives and macadamia nuts. Avocados are also high in folate, which helps to keep blood levels of homocysteine low. Homocysteine is an abrasive type of protein that can cause tissue damage if allowed to accumulate in the body. Because avocados are high in fat, they help to keep you feeling full for a long time. This means you’ll be far less likely to snack on sugary, high carbohydrate foods.
4. Oily fish
Another food high in good fats. Suitable varieties of fish include sardines, herrings, mackerel, anchovies, salmon and trout. Try to get wild fish rather than farmed fish, because it is higher in good fats and vitamin D. Modern diets are extremely deficient in omega 3 fats and that not only accelerates the rate of aging; it also raises the risk of arthritis, heart disease and depression. Not everyone likes the taste of oily fish. If you struggle to consume some two or three times a week, a fish oil supplement may help you or, if you would prefer, a vegan DHA supplement.
5. Grass fed (pastured meat)
Red meat can be very good for your health, depending on how it was processed and what the animal ate. Many people avoid red meat in the belief that they’re doing something good for their health. Ruminant animals such as cows and sheep that are fed grass actually have quite high levels of omega 3 fats in their meat. Red meat is also a good source of powerful antioxidants including co enzyme Q10, carnitine and conjugated linoleic acid. These compounds can help to reduce your risk of heart attacks and strokes but are also beneficial for your metabolism, making it easier to burn body fat.
The underlying message is to keep your diet based on natural foods that you have prepared yourself at home, and limit your consumption of packaged foods. I love this quote by Jamie Oliver.
The above statements have not been evaluated by the FDA and are not intended to diagnose, treat or cure any disease.