Women are constantly striving to find out the secrets to aging gracefully. The truth is that your environment often sets many aging patterns or results from genetics, so you don’t have control over how long you’ll live. However, there are ways to control how you age through clean eating to ensure longevity.
Excellent nutrition can extend your life. What you eat affects how you live and feel daily, so you should strive to get the best out of your foods and prioritize your health.
Make Simple Dietary Changes as You Age
Many women are under the assumption that caloric restriction is a way to be healthier and sustain longevity. However, studies from research within the Babraham Institute have shown that changing from glucose to galactose in your diet helps reduce signs of aging without needing a calorie deficit.
Instead of restricting calories, look toward a diet with more whole foods. Processed foods and those high in saturated fat and sugar over time can encourage overeating and lead to severe health problems, including obesity, diabetes, and other chronic or inflammatory diseases.
Clean Eating Diet Example
It can help to examine what a daily routine of eating clean may look like to help as you age and want to focus on the longevity of life. Below is an example of what it would be like to go an entire day with clean eating:
- Start your day by having a large glass of water. Water is excellent for your body in many ways besides helping curb hunger and helping with weight loss; it’s ideal for your skin and overall health.
- BREAKFAST: Begin with a protein-rich breakfast, such as fruit with almond butter, oatmeal with fruit, or eggs with lean protein. Avoid sugary cereals and too many cups of coffee with sugar and cream (caffeine can help with brain activity, but in access, it can cause anxiety, increased heart rate, and other side effects).
- LUNCH: An excellent formula for your lunch is lean protein, carbs, good fats, and leafy vegetables. Consider a grilled chicken salad with Italian dressing, and don’t forget you can have a side of rice, cous cous, or sweet potatoes for some carbohydrates to keep your energy up.
- SNACKS: Look for snacks with more protein or healthy things for your gut, like prebiotics and probiotics. Greek yogurt, chickpeas, miso, and protein shakes are all great snacks to help you feel full and keep going.
- DINNER: As you do with lunch, look for protein, healthy fats, some carbs, and veggies to finish out your day. Avocados are great healthy fats, and when paired with a good lean protein like fish, turkey, chicken, eggs, and cottage cheese, you’ll have a great dinner for your aging body.
When dining out or on vacation, don’t feel you must always stick to your same foods and clean eating diet. It’s okay to let loose a little, indulge in more fat, or enjoy an alcoholic beverage or two. The key is moderation and understanding what your body needs in terms of nutrients to keep your body nourished and healthy.
Understanding autophagy is another excellent method to aid your health. Intermittent fasting is a technique that can work in your favor, where you block out a specific amount of time daily (usually eight hours) where you eat all of your foods. It works to help your body tap into fat stores to provide energy more efficiently, improve metabolism, and lower blood sugar.
Other Foods for Aging
While that was just an example meal plan to help you get started with clean eating as you age, there are specific foods and food groups that will help ensure you provide your body with more nourishment. Consider centering your meals and snacks each day around some of these great foods for longevity:
- Beans & Lentils
- Green Tea
- Flax, Chia, or Hemp seeds
Many of these foods not only work to help you age and live longer, but they reduce risks for health problems. They contain essential vitamins and minerals for your body, including omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants, fiber, and protein.
Longevity With Health
There are some helpful things you can do in addition to your nutrition that help with aging and longevity. Focus on these in addition to your foods:
- Getting good, quality sleep
- Exercise and movement – it doesn’t have to be extensive but consider incorporating a good walk into each day to keep your body active.
- Relieving stress – find healthy ways to cope with stress and anxiety.
- Relationships and connections with others
While these aren’t part of your clean eating habits, they are good and helpful tips to ensure that you focus on your health in other areas of your life. Nourish your body and care for it as you age. With clean eating, you can help provide longevity, energy, and less guilt when you do have moments of indulgence.
If you have questions or want to incorporate clean eating for your nutritional health, working with your medical professional for some suggestions can be helpful. Your doctor may also refer you to a Registered Dietitian or Nutritionist to help you get started with supplying your body with healthy choices to keep you living longer.