10 Anti Aging Foods

For years, products have flooded the market promising to turn back the hands of time and rejuvenate aging bodies. Most of these products focus on reversing the physical signs of aging by improving skin elasticity, reducing cellulite, and building muscle tone, but these pricey creams and gadgets often miss out on one of the key elements in an effective anti aging regime: diet. Aside from proper hydration, adding certain foods to your diet can be the simplest and least expensive method to fight the damage that can occur to your body over time.

Exposure to the elements, free radicals, and a natural decline in your body’s ability to retain certain proteins and nutrients are the root cause of aging skin and problems with circulation, but the effects of these damaging elements can be significantly minimized by including a few new items on your shopping list. These foods jump-start natural mechanisms in your body that combat the loss of elastin, improve heart-health, and increase circulation to give you a more youthful appearance from the inside out. Below are ten easy-to-find foods that fight the effects of aging by providing your body with the extra nutrients it needs to repair damage and encourage the absorption of organic compounds essential to maintaining a healthy and more youthful you.

1. Blueberries

Blueberries are often called a “super food” because they contain the powerful plant compound anthocyanin. Anthocyanin is what gives these berries their beautiful blue color, but it’s also an antioxidant, meaning that it helps to protect cells in the body from the damaging effects of environmental factors like UV exposure and pollution. Blueberries are high in vitamin C, so much so that hundreds of years ago Native Americans used them to treat coughs and colds, and today they’re still powerful boosters that can help improve bone, skin, and heart health by encouraging the growth of healthy collagen and reducing the risk of certain cancers.

Because these berries are also a natural anti-inflammatory, consuming higher quantities can help combat the effects of rheumatoid arthritis and other age-related inflammations. And as an extra added bonus, blueberries are very low in calories and contain a high level of nutrients, so adding these little berries to your diet can be incredibly beneficial to weight loss and management. As an anti aging food, blueberries can increase skin elasticity and eliminate skin-damaging free radicals, as well as provide a host of other health benefits to battle the effects of osteoporosis, slowed metabolism, hypertension, and type 2 diabetes.

2. Dark Chocolate

Another surprisingly beneficial food in the fight against aging is dark chocolate. Quality dark chocolate, that which contains a high percentage of cocoa and minimal amounts of sugar, provides a number of minerals that have been proven to aid in overall health as well as antioxidants and flavanols, which can lower blood pressure. Powder made from the seed of the cocoa tree, which is the main ingredient in dark chocolate, can also help decrease oxidized LDL cholesterol, lowering the risk of damage to the heart and arteries. And because certain proteins found in cocoa improve blood flow to the skin, eating more of it can help guard against damage caused by exposure to the elements, and give your skin a healthy, hydrated glow.

3. Nuts

Dark chocolate isn’t the only anti-aging food that helps improve heart health. Many varieties of nuts have also been proven to lower bad cholesterol levels by introducing Omega-3 fatty acids and unsaturated fats. Nuts are also a great source of fiber, so can you feel full faster and lose weight, and nuts are also one of the best foods to help improve the effects of metabolic syndrome and reduce blood sugar levels, important factors in a managing type 2 diabetes. Certain nuts, like almonds, pistachios, and walnuts, are proven anti-inflammatories, making them powerful allies in the fight against arthritis and joint pain.

4. Figs

Probably one of the most underrated foods with huge anti aging properties is the fig. Figs are packed with minerals and nutrients that are greatly beneficial to overall wellness, and were once so valued as a dietary staple that the ancient Greeks made laws concerning their export. Not only are figs high in calcium, which can prevent bone loss, but they also contain significant levels of potassium, a mineral proven to help combat osteoporosis by increasing calcium retention in the body. Figs are also rich in prebiotics, which contribute to better digestive health, and contain high levels of dietary fiber that can aid in maintaining a healthy waistline.

5. Collagen Protein

Collagen is the most important protein your body processes, making up more than a quarter of your connective tissue. This includes skin, corneas, cartilage, teeth and bone, so collagen protein is essential in the fight against aging because it’s directly responsible for skin elasticity, vision, bone density, and joint health. While collagen is widely used in food products like gelatin, a number of collagen protein supplements are also available to maximize the benefits of this important protein on its own. Collagen protein can help reverse the effects of aging by promoting improving liver health, strengthening hair and nails, and boosting metabolism.

6. Chaga Mushrooms

One of the latest findings in foods with anti aging properties comes from the re-discovery of the unassuming chaga mushroom. Chagas are prevalent throughout the northern hemisphere, where they grow in clumps on the bark of birch trees. These dense mushrooms are a powerhouse of vitamins and nutrients, but their antioxidant properties make them indispensable in reducing the effects of oxidative stress, the damage inflicted on the body by environmental factors and responsible for accelerating the aging process in the skin. Chaga mushrooms can help to slow this process, combatting the physical signs of aging such as wrinkles, graying hair, and sagging skin.

7. Salmon

Salmon has long been valued as a healthy source Omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants, both of which can help with certain age-related health issues, but salmon is also an amazing source of protein, and protein can help maintain the muscle mass you generally lose as you age. Loss of muscle and elasticity in the skin can cause sagging along the jawline and underarms, and a lack of high-quality protein can also contribute to bone loss and fatigue. A single serving of salmon provides plenty of B vitamins, which can improve energy and promote a healthy heart, and selenium, a trace mineral necessary for proper thyroid function.

8. Bone Broth

Another great source of protein can be found in bone broth, which is relatively simple and inexpensive to make. Bone broth has been used for centuries because of its health benefits, and because this broth is basically a concentrated version of all the nutrients found in bone and marrow it’s an excellent source of collagen-rich gelatin, calcium, and phosphorus. Bone broth also contains proline, a mineral that can dramatically improve skin health. And bone broth is easy to make: simply simmer bones in water for several hours, then use the resulting liquid on its own or as a base for soup or stew.

9. Avocado

Avocados have gained in popularity over the past few years, but that doesn’t change the fact that these nutrient-rich fruits have been valued for their anti aging properties since ancient times. Avocados are packed with healthy fats and potassium, making them an excellent addition to a heart-healthy diet, and avocados are also high in fiber which has been shown to improve metabolism and support weight loss. Recent studies have shown that consuming avocados in addition to other foods can actually help your body absorb nutrients and antioxidants better, and extract from the fruit may actually help lessen the symptoms of osteoarthritis.

10. Apple

That old adage “An apple a day keeps the doctor away” may not be so far-fetched. This humble fruit contain high levels of dietary fiber, and they’re exceptionally rich in antioxidants, so eating them can help prevent cataracts and a whole host of digestive issues. New research suggests that consuming apples can also foster the production of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, meaning that apples might hold the key to fighting damage to the brain caused by aging, as well as deter Alzheimer’s. And if that’s not enough reason to start eating more apples, recent studies have also shown that eating the fruit can significantly reduce your risk of developing certain cancers, like pancreatic and colon cancer, and inhibit the growth of cancer cells in areas like the liver and breast.