Nutrition Habits That Can Prolong Your Life
Eating well has extensive benefits for our health and well being. It also can help us live longer lives and deal with fewer health issues that used to be thought of as inevitable effects of aging. It turns out that nutritious, healthy eating habits can do way more than keep weight in check. These good habits can ward off disease, increase well-being, combat deficiencies and help improve overall quality of life.
Protein is important. Protein-rich foods such as lean meat, fish, eggs, soy and dairy are essential as you age, both for maintaining muscle mass and for helping prevent bone loss. That’s right, protein plays a role in the occurrence of osteoporosis in older adults. Eating too little protein could lead to the development of osteoporosis. But eating too much can also lead to bone loss, so a proper balance is necessary.
Water is life. Since 50-60% of our body weight is made up of water, it only makes sense that drinking enough water is vital to health. In fact, many of our common health complaints are due to a lack of water, including headaches, aching joints and muscles, lack of energy and hot flashes in women. Getting too little water can actually accelerate the breakdowns that occur in the body due to aging. It is also important to drink water regularly instead of only when you feel thirsty, because aging causes the body’s ability to monitor thirst to deteriorate.
Reducing fat, salt and sugar is one of your most beneficial health moves. The negative effects of saturated fat, salt and sugar on the body as you age are extensive and alarming. While good fat, such as that from nuts, seeds or healthy oils, is extremely important to older adults who have trouble keeping weight on, consuming too much saturated fat can lead to high cholesterol and heart disease. Salt is in many of the processed foods we buy already, so there is no need to add extra salt, as this can lead to hypertension. Sugar can have a huge negative impact on the body, from weight gain to diabetes to wrinkles.
Portion size is king. Eating smaller portions, along with smaller meals spaced throughout the day is a great health move that has the power to make us feel and look better, plus it can help us live longer, healthier lives. Eating too much leads to a host of issues, including weight gain, digestive issues and lack of energy. Paying attention to what you eat and sticking to smaller portions allows you to eat the foods you like, but also keep your body from storing those extra calories as excess fat. Much research shows many benefits to eating just what your body needs for increased energy, better weight control and a longer life.
Eating healthy foods such as antioxident-rich fruits and vegetables is one piece of the anti-aing puzzle, but the other habits that you establish for eating for a healthy, long life are just as important. Reducing unhealthy foods and habits, and increasing good habits will provide benefits that will pave the way for years of healthy living.