By Ann Kulze, MD
Known in my world as the true elixir of youth – green tea is perhaps the easiest and most relaxing way of infusing our bodies and brains with age-defying antioxidants. Green tea provides over 4 thousand bioactive compounds including the famed “flavonoids” like berries and dark chocolate. One particular flavonoid – EGCG, unique to green tea, is one of the most potent antioxidants scientists have ever identified.
This divine indulgence is perhaps the tastiest way to eat yourself younger. Dark chocolate is exploding with powerful antioxidants that work in synergy to provide all 3 of the cardinal goals for slowing the aging process, namely boosting blood flow, reducing oxidation, and minimizing inflammation. For best results enjoy a prudent portion (1/2 to 1 ounce) of high quality (60% or more cacao) dark chocolate regularly.
Ginger and Turmeric
These 2 spices jack up the flavor of your dishes and provide the unbeatable, youth-enhancing combination of potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory power. Like other spices, ginger and turmeric provide a bounty of healthful phytochemicals. The flagship anti-aging compound in turmeric is called curcumin and it also provides turmeric’s deep, golden yellow hue. Dried ginger even beats out fresh ginger in its anti-inflammatory prowess.
Roasted Soy Nuts
A handful of roasted soy nuts is a stellar and tasty anti-aging snack. They have a glowing nutritional pedigree including omega 3 fats, antioxidants (vitamin E and selenium), and several key nutrients important for optimal blood flow, including potassium, magnesium, and phytoestrogens.
Lentils are arguably the most youth-enhancing “starch” nature has to offer. They provide a dense package of healthy vegetable protein, fiber, antioxidants, potassium, magnesium, and more folate than any other food. Like their legume relatives, beans, they are especially valuable for appetite and weight control because of their high fiber and protein make-up (excess body fat is a major age-accelerator).
This anti-aging blend of spices adds flavorful intrigue and color to your dishes and owes its principle component, turmeric, for its value in adding life to your years and years to your life. Sprinkle it into your rice, poultry, bean, and salad dishes for a quick and simple anti-aging kick.
Like other herbs, rosemary borders on a true medicinal agent in its beneficial effects in the body. Its savory leaves are filled with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds including super-potent carnosol. Rosemary also appears to boost insulin sensitivity which is especially beneficial in tempering the aging process.
Physically intact whole grains like brown rice are amongst the most disease-busting foods available, providing protection from our biggest culprits in premature death, including cardiovascular disease, many cancers, diabetes, and obesity. Brown rice provides a potent package of youthful agents that work in synergy, including fiber, antioxidant polyphenols, vitamin E, minerals, and B vitamins.