The Changes with Aging
Age is a state of mind but you cannot escape from its effects. Sooner or later your skin will develop wrinkles and you will have gray hair. But aging is not just skin-deep; aging can decrease your level of functioning, making you weaker, more inflexible and more prone to illnesses. As you age your heart begins to beat slower than before and your heart may become bigger. You may also develop stiffer blood vessels, making your heart pump harder to overcome this stress. This can further lead to the development of high blood pressure. Your bones and muscles may also shrink in size and become less dense. This further weakens them and makes you prone to fractures and other injuries. This is why older people are shorter than younger ones, due to the loss of strength and flexibility of muscles.
Aside from these changes, you feel more constipated, have loss of bladder control, and have a less efficient memory. So what must you do to combat these aging changes? One way to do so is to eat the right foods.
Eating foods rich in Vitamin B12 can build up stamina. This is because as we grow older, we lose a lot of Vitamin b12, especially during the ages of 50s and 60s. Vitamin B12 is found in animal foods and can help regulate the body's metabolism. It is also essential in maintaining the health of the brain and the rest of the nervous system. It is said that the body cannot assimilate Vitamin b12 levels well after the age 50.
Fiber-rich foods can be a solution to constipation and other gut-related problems. Fiber can stimulate the bowels to move more, thus facilitating easy digestion of food. About 21 to 30 grams of fiber is enough, which can be taken from fiber-rich foods such as whole wheat bread and cereals, fruits, vegetables and legumes.
Potassium-rich foods can lower blood pressure and can prevent the complications of hypertension such as heart attacks, heart failure, stroke and aneurysms. Potassium can actually counteract the effects of sodium which may be an effect of consuming a high-sodium diet. Examples of foods rich in potassium include potatoes, green leafy vegetables, sweet potatoes, raisins, dates, tomatoes, citrus fruits, beans and other foods.
Omega-3 fatty acids are also anti-aging supplements. Consuming foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids can sharpen your memory. As a person ages, he or she experiences cognitive decline; foods rich in omega-3 can improve cognitive functioning. Plus, omega-3 fatty acids can lower cholesterol levels and brings about improved cardiovascular functioning. Omega 3 contains polyunsaturated fats that are needed by our bodies, such as EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid). Good sources of EPA and DHA include vegetables, seaweeds, fatty fish, eggs, milk, cheese and yogurt.
Antioxidant-rich foods such as berries can also fight against aging. Antioxidants have the capability of protecting our bodies against free radicals which are a result of our body's metabolic processes and pollution. These free radicals act as poisons to our cells and are thought to lead to various illnesses such as dementia, heart disease and cancer. In eating berries, choose the ones darker in color because they contain more antioxidants. Berries have been shown to improve cognitive functioning and memory, prevent cancers and help reduce inflammation. Dark chocolate may also contain antioxidants and may improve moisture and glow of the skin by improving the body's circulation.
If you want to retard aging, you have to eat the right foods. If you want to know more on how to eat healthily, you can read other articles on this site.