Longevity can be achieved by ensuring you are following a healthy diet. This can be achieved by ensuring any of these four foods are included as part of a balanced diet and healthy lifestyle
Image: Getty Images)
Living a longer and healthier life is a dream for many.
Whether it’s for enjoying more of your retirement years, watching the grandkids grow up or simply enjoying more peace and quiet in a healthy state, what you eat will greatly determine this outcome.
Studies have found that eating healthier could extend lifespan by six to seven years in middle-aged adults, and in young adults could increase lifespan by about ten years.
Research has also found that changing from a Western diet to the optimal diet at age 60 would increase life expectancy by eight years.
For 80-year-olds, life expectancy could increase by almost three-and-a-half years.
With this in mind, what are four of the best types of food to include in your diet to help not only reduce a number of age-related diseases, but also to significantly boost your longevity?
Berries contain specific flavonoid molecules, which fight DNA damage and slow age-related damage to the brain cells.
Numerous studies have shown that blueberries especially protect memory-associated brain regions from oxidant and inflammatory damage helping to boost longevity.
They have also been linked to slower rates of cognitive decline and improved working memory and executive performance as we get older.
Green leafy vegetables
A study by US scientists says eating dark, leafy greens such as kale, spinach and Swiss chard can spark changes in DNA that can reverse aging by up to two years.
Doctors said the results of the study offered further evidence that what we eat contributes not only to day-to-day wellbeing, but may also increase lifespan and help protect against diseases including obesity, heart disease, diabetes, dementia and high blood pressure.
Leafy greens contribute to a healthy heart in a number of ways.
They contain potassium, which lowers high blood pressure; fibre, which keeps cholesterol in check; and folate, which protects against heart disease and stroke.
Avocados are high in fat with 60% of this being monounsaturated fats, which research suggests helps to protect against heart disease and lower blood pressure.
They are also an excellent source of potassium, folate and fibre, all of which benefit the heart and cardiovascular system.
“Avocados are a source of vitamins C, E, K, and B6, as well as riboflavin, niacin, folate, pantothenic acid, magnesium and potassium,” added Medical News Today.
All of these compounds found in avocados help with overall health and longevity.
Oily fish such as salmon and sardines are also particularly high in long-chain omega-3 fatty acids, which can help to keep your heart healthy.
Most of us should have more fish in our diet, including more oily fish.
Some people are concerned about mercury or other contaminants in seafood.
However, the benefits of eating fish as part of a healthy diet usually outweigh the possible risks of exposure to contaminants.
Omega-3 fatty acids may benefit heart health by:
- Lowering cholesterol
- Lowering blood pressure slightly
- Reduce blood clotting
- Decreasing the risk of strokes and heart failure
- Reducing irregular heartbeats.