Anti- ageing Superfoods
From dark chocolates to red wine discover nine superfoods that help slow down the ageing process.
Why it’s good for you A cup of spinach on a daily basis is all it takes to conserve your skin’s vitality and keep a check on unwanted wrinkles. This green leafy vegetable is packed with powerful doses of Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin K and beta- carotene, all of which work together to shield the skin against the ultra- violet rays of the sun as well as air pollutants. Spinach also helps to sharpen memory, improve bone density and vision. Recommended portion 30 grams in one meal Calories 7 How best to eat Add fresh spinach to salads as the nutrient value decreases significantly when fried or boiled for too long. If boiling, do not boil for more than 1 minute.
Why it’s good for you Almonds not only work wonders for the skin and hair, but also help in maintaining healthy weight because of its rich fiber and protein content which keep you feeling full and curb hunger. Vitamin E is known to increase co- ordination and agility and of the nervous system. So next time you feel like a snack during the work- day ditch the potato crisps and instead reach for a packet of almonds tucked in your office drawer for a healthy snack.
Recommended portion 8 to 10 pieces in a day Calories 80 How best to eat Almonds soaked in water overnight are easier to digest and their nutrients are more efficiently absorbed. Almond can also be added to stir- fried dishes.
Why it’s good for you Rich, creamy and full of healthful essential fatty acids, the avocado was recently hailed by scientists as the new superfood that could help fight the ageing process and prevent diabetes and cancer. With this tropical fruit now easily available all over the globe, millions now make sure they include avocados in their diet, whether in salads or sandwiches or simply as a guacamole dip. Home- made avocado face and hair packs are also extremely helpful.
Recommended portion One whole avocado in a day Calories 240 How best to eat Cut into slices or cubes or just scoop up with a spoon. For weight- watchers, replace butter and mayonnaise with avocado paste and cream and cheese- based dips with guacamole.
Why it’s good for you These tiny delicious fruits are packed with healthy nutrients. Well known for their antioxidants and vitamins, blueberries help in the production of collagen, block ultra- violet rays, promote mental health, contain the growth of cancer cells and prevent heart related disorders. Apart from this, blueberries have been known to reverse eye deterioration due to ageing and can help improve any loss in visibility. Recommended portion 1/ 2 cup in a day Calories 41 How best to eat Get a healthy start to your day with blueberries which can be enjoyed in a number of ways. Mix it in yoghurt, cereal or oatmeal, add to pancake mix or blend in a smoothie.
Why it’s good for you Here’s another reason to rejoice. Besides satisfying your craving for something sweet, dark chocolate is really good for you. It contains high levels of flavonols, a potent type of antioxidant, which helps to prevent damage to the skin due to excessive exposure to the sun. Dark chocolate is also believed to help retain skin moisture which keeps the appearance of fine lines at bay. So go ahead and indulge in dark chocolate, but do keep an eye on your waistline.
Recommended portion One square in a day Calories 27 How best to eat Choose those which contain at least 60 to 70 per cent cocoa.
Why it’s good for you What better way to slow down the march of time than with a daily glass of red wine? For ages red wine has been linked to healthy hearts and protection against certain cancers but studies now show that resveratrol, a powerful antioxidant found in the skin of grapes, has anti- ageing properties and can even boost athletic performance. Clearly you should raise a glass of red wine to a long and happy life ahead.
Recommended portion 125 ml Calories 80 to 100 How best to drink At room temperature just before dinner. According to research, the liver metabolises and detoxifies alcohol most efficiently between 5 and 6 pm.
Why it’s good for you Garlic, it is said, is at its most effective when eaten raw. But, there’s no cause for worry as its potent anti- ageing benefits do not wane even when cooked. Often called the “nectar of the gods”, daily consumption of garlic has a number of advantages. Its anti- bacterial, anti- viral and anti- inflammatory properties prevent cellular damage and promote cell rejuvenation. Garlic is also well known to reduce puffiness and dark circles under the eyes.
Recommended portion 3 to 4 cloves in a day Calories 4 for each clove
How best to eat Raw. Chop and use as salad dressing, sprinkle over butter toast, mix with guacamole, add to mashed potatoes or blend with tea to reduce the pungent taste.
Why it’s good for you Yoghurt’s biggest claim to fame is its rich calcium content which staves off bone related disorders like osteoporosis. The microorganism called probiotic present in yoghurt help remove toxins from the intestine thus improving the body’s immune system. A yoghurt mask is also effective in soothing skin, preventing discolouration and appearance of fine lines.
Recommended portion 100 to 150 grams in a day
Calories 100 for one cup non- fat
How best to eat Around- the- clock. Yoghurt can be enjoyed any time of day whether as breakfast, snack or dinner.
Why it’s good for you While it cannot mend a broken heart, eating fish regularly can certainly keep your heart beating for a much longer period of time. The main reason for this being that fish is one of the primary sources of Omega- 3 fatty acids which are probably the strongest safeguard against cardiovascular diseases. Since fish is high in protein but low in saturated fats and calories, it also helps to keep your weight in check.
Recommended portion 50 grams in one meal Calories 100 for 50 grams cooked salmon
How best to eat Steamed, poached or baked. Salmon is largely known as the healthiest of all fish for its high Omega- 3 content.