Do you do a good enough job controlling what goes into your body? When it comes to longevity, nothing is more important than your diet. Today, we will be going over what a superfood is, the different types of superfoods, the best diets for longevity, and the worst foods for longevity.
What Are Superfoods?
If you try to stay on top of dietary trends, chances are you have heard the term “superfood” tossed around a million times. But what exactly is a superfood? Superfoods are typically plant-based foods that contain high nutritious value and are widely considered good for one’s health.
It should be noted that there are no set criteria for determining what is and isn’t a superfood. It’s mostly a marketing term for foods that have health benefits. Foods commonly labeled as superfoods contain a wide variety of nutrients such as antioxidants, healthy fats, fiber, and phytochemicals. Adding these foods to your diet can help improve both your longevity and your overall well being.
What Is The Top Superfood?
What an interesting question. While many different types of foods can be labeled “super,” there isn’t one food that rules them all. It would be great if we could point to one food and say, “this food here is the magical key to good health and disease prevention,” but alas, we can’t. Instead, we recommend adding some of these top superfoods to your everyday diet:
- Dark leafy greens
- Green tea
- Nuts and seeds
- Olive oil
Of course, how you prepare this food is also important. Eggs can be incredibly nutritious, but they lose value once they’re topped with cheese, hollandaise sauce, and placed on an English muffin.
What’s The Best Food To Eat For Longevity?
When it comes to living a healthier and longer life, your diet is arguably the most important factor. The nutrients we eat play a big role in how our body ages. If you want to age gracefully, like most of us do, eating healthy is mandatory. Here are some of the foods you need to add to your diet so you can extend your lifespan:
- Vegetables - Broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, kale
- Salad greens - Kale, collard greens, mustard greens, spinach, lettuce
- Nuts - Walnuts, almonds, cashews
- Seeds - Flax, chia, hemp, pumpkin
- Berries - Strawberries, blueberries, goji berries
- Beans - Red beans, black beans, chickpeas, lentils, split peas
- Mushrooms - Shiitake, oyster, maitake, reishi
- Onions - Yellow onions, leeks, chives, shallots, scallions, garlic
Adding these foods to your diet can also help you better manage your weight, as weight management plays a huge role in longevity.
Foods That Can Shorten Your Lifespan
Just as important as the foods you do eat are the foods you should avoid. Common chronic diseases can be tied to diabetes, obesity, heart disease, autoimmune disease, and high blood pressure, all of which can be caused by a poor diet. If you’re looking to improve your longevity, here are some foods that shorten your life, you need to avoid:
- Instant noodles
- Instant soups
- Breakfast cereals
- Energy bars and drinks
- Chicken nuggets
- Ready-made meals and snacks
- Packaged snack foods
- Foods made using industrial processing
Just because these foods are bad for you doesn’t mean you need to avoid them forever. It’s important to spoil yourself now and then to prevent a potential burnout. Try cutting your consumption of these foods down significantly.
Best Diet For Longevity
If you want to live longer, why don’t you follow some of the diets practiced in the healthiest places in the world? There are currently five “Blue Zones” spanning across the planet. These Blue Zones contain more centenarians than any other place in the world. Here are some of the diets they follow:
- Mediterranean diet - Practiced around the Mediterranean Basin. The diet focuses on plant-based foods along with healthy oils and small servings of fish, dairy, and lean meats.
- Blue Zone Diets - Most Blue Zone Diets contain plant-based foods with limited added sodium, sugar, and processed foods.
- Okinawa diet - The average life expectancy for women in Okinawa is 89 years old, the highest globally. That’s because their diets consist of green leafy vegetables and yellow vegetables.
- Shepard’s diet - This diet consists of healthy fats, vegetables, ethically produced meat and dairy, unprocessed whole grains, and fresh herbs.
- California diet - This diet includes a decreased dependence on added sugar and white flour.
- Sardinian diet - Sardinia is one of the five Blue Zones. A Sardinian diet emphasizes barley, goat’s milk, fennel, tomatoes, fava beans, and almonds.
To maximize these diets, pair them with healthy lifestyle choices. This includes regular exercise, a healthy sleep schedule, and no smoking or excessive drinking.
Do Vitamins Increase Longevity?
When it comes to longevity, it’s important that we closely monitor our cellular health. This is where vitamins and longevity become closely intertwined. Vitamins can help keep the cells in our bodies healthy, dramatically improving longevity by decreasing the risk of cellular diseases. Some of the vitamins linked to longevity include:
- Vitamin K
- Vitamin D
- Omega-3 fatty acids
It’s hard for many people to get the recommended daily dose of these vitamins through our diet. That’s where supplements come into play.
Supplements May Help
Another way to improve longevity is through a process known as autophagy. This is the body’s way of replacing older, damaged cells that can harm the body with newer, healthier cells. You can help induce this process through a polyamine known as spermidine. Spermidine can be difficult to obtain through your diet alone. Fortunately, spermidine supplements are designed to help you reach your daily intake of spermidine.