The food you eat is just as important to age reversal as face creams and serums. Discover the best anti-aging foods you should start eating today.
Are you constantly bombarded with advertisements for anti-aging creams, lotions, and serums? Modern society is obsessed with youth, and women are often targets for marketing ploys that prey on their fear of aging. Yet, you don't need to spend thousands of dollars on fancy products and treatments to slow aging. Changing your diet is one of the easiest ways to slow aging and even display signs of age reversal. So let's dive into the best anti-aging foods you can incorporate into your diet for life-long results.
Beans and Legumes Beans and legumes promote longevity. They provide fat-free proteins loaded with anti-aging properties like antioxidants. The antioxidants in these foods, saponins, and phytosterols, may help fight wrinkles. They also have plenty of nutrients supporting mental health and protecting against an aging memory. If you're concerned about aging skin, it's also wise to think about other aspects of your health as you age too. Beans and legumes make for an excellent source of plant-based protein to add to your diet. Plus, they are low cost. There are thousands of ways to prepare beans and legumes. Toss or blend them in a soup. Add them to a salad. Or create a bean salad. You'll never run out of ways to prepare them.
Extra Virgin Olive Oil Extra virgin olive oil is full of healthy fats and antioxidants, like tocopherols and beta carotene, that help reduce inflammation. In fact, monounsaturated fats (MUFAs) make up most of the oil's compounds. Some studies show that a diet high in MUFAs may reduce skin aging. The elevated levels of MUFAs and antioxidants in extra virgin olive oil seem to lower the risk of skin aging significantly. Buying a cold-pressed oil will have an even higher antioxidant concentration because it requires less processing. There are many ways to enjoy extra virgin olive oil. For example, you can drizzle it over a salad or roasted veggies. For something a little more involved, whip up a batch of hummus. You'll be consuming several foods great for anti-aging in one dish! Then, pair it with your favorite veggies for the ultimate nutrient-dense meal!
Flax Seeds Like fish, flax seeds are a great source of omega-3 fatty acids. In addition, flax seeds specifically contain alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), which helps support a healthy skin membrane. They also help promote skin hydration, which is vital in anti-aging. Flax seeds may even help improve skin smoothness, but more research is needed. You can sprinkle flax seeds over your cereal, oatmeal, and even pudding! If you're baking bread or cake, toss them in. For a vegan option, grind flax seeds into a fine powder and use it as an egg substitute.
Green Tea Although not a food, ancient Asian societies have consumed green tea for thousands of years because of its health benefits. It wasn't always known for its anti-aging properties, but its well-established antioxidant benefits. Green tea is high in polyphenols, which include:
Epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG)
Green tea helps fight free radicals in the body. Free radicals are unstable molecules. They are a normal byproduct of cell function. But, they can also form in response to external stressors, like:
Free radicals damage your cells when present in high amounts. Antioxidants help stabilize free radicals, leaving them unable to cause harm. You may have noticed that many anti-aging skin care products have green tea extract, further proving the powerful effects of green tea. So instead of having that second afternoon cup of coffee, think about having a cup of green tea instead.
More Anti-aging Diet Tips While adding these anti-aging foods to your diet will help slow the aging process, you should follow a few other tips. So let's explore these in-depth.
Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate! You've heard it before, but you need to drink plenty of water. Unfortunately, as you age, the systems that keep you hydrated begin to degrade, such as the kidneys. Sometimes medications can cause water loss too. Dehydration is one of the biggest age-related issues for many. The Mayo Clinic recommends men consume 15.5 cups or 3.7 liters of water per day. Women should drink 11.5 cups or 2.7 liters per day. Of course, you may need to increase your total fluid intake if you are:
In a hot or humid environment
In poor health
Pregnant or breast-feeding
You can also eat hydrating foods like cucumbers, tomatoes, and watermelon to increase hydration.
Add Colorful Fruits and Vegetables Filling your plate with an abundance of fruit and vegetables is a great way to fight aging. Fruits and vegetables are nutrient-dense and low in calories. This helps keep your body running optimally. Some of the best foods that promote anti-aging include:
Bell peppers (vitamin C)
Broccoli (vitamin C)
Carrots (beta carotene)
Citrus (vitamin C)
Leafy greens (vitamin C)
Pineapple (vitamin C)
Pumpkin (beta carotene)
Sweet potatoes (beta carotene)
Foods with beta carotene may protect the skin against UV rays. Sun exposure is the primary cause of premature skin aging. Vitamin C helps with collagen production. Quercetin is another anti-inflammatory agent that has potent anti-aging benefits. Like olive oil, avocadoes are rich in MUFAs and antioxidants. Pomegranates are an excellent anti-aging food that have antioxidants like:
They may decrease skin damage and skin discoloring caused by the sun. They can also help to protect and promote the production of new collagen. Tomatoes have a high lycopene content, which may help also protect the skin from sun damage. When it comes to fruits and vegetables, each has something to offer your body and improve your health. You can't go wrong with any you choose to eat.
Consider Plant-Based Protein As mentioned, beans and legumes help slow the aging process. But if you switch some of your meals from meat protein to plant-based protein, you'll be doing more for your skin. Meat protein is often associated with high cholesterol levels, heart disease, and inflammation. Eating a balanced diet with plant-based protein is a sure way to aid your skin in the aging process.
For example, try a vegan patty instead of having a beef patty for dinner! Several varieties will get your taste buds going, such as:
Black bean burger
Marinated portabello mushroom
BBQ tofu burger
If you notice improvements in your skin after eating less animal protein, consider going plant-based.
Limit Junk Food Another tip is to limit junk food. Understandably, you may not always be able to incorporate the foods mentioned into your diet. But if you focus on restricting added sugar, you can help slow the aging process. Junk food is linked to a host of health issues, not just aging, that could affect you 10-20 years from now. So cutting out junk food will help promote overall good health as well. Indulging in junk food every once in a while is acceptable. But don't make junk food your go-to or fall-back food option. Instead, plan ahead to have access to healthier food choices, even when you're in a rush or on a budget. Your whole body will thank you.
Big Takeaways: Antioxidants and MUFAs As you read this article, you may have noticed some overarching themes. Antioxidants and MUFAs seem to have a significant effect on keeping your skin looking young and healthy. While there is always more research to be done, packing your diet full of nutritious foods will go a long way in:
Protecting your skin from sun damage
Promoting collagen production
These are the critical components of anti-aging.
Tackle Anti-aging With Your Diet Starting Today Anti-aging doesn't have to come in the form of creams, treatments, and other expensive products. All you have to do is make some healthy lifestyle changes to your diet to get started. You should start seeing results within a few months. If you enjoyed this article, check out our blog for some fantastic recipes to try at home.