Eat your way younger with nutritionist Rick Hay’s top youth-enhancing edibles
“Lets start with my favourite of all of the anti ageing foods - it's berries and I don't care which ones,” Rick explains. “You can consumer regular raspberries, blueberries or blackberries or go more exotic with goji, macqui or acai. The key to these is that they are antioxidant-rich to help fight free radicals as well as being high in vitamin C to help with collagen cross linking.” Hello tighter and plumper skin.
“Foods that are orange or yellow in colour are also great for anti-ageing,” Rick adds. “Often rich in vitamin C again, these foods are high in beta carotene too which is great for skin health. It also helps increase vitamin A levels, too.” Think oranges, lemons, sweet potatoes and the ever-powerful turmeric. “Turmeric is the super spice of the moment with some great anti-ageing research behind it,” Rick adds. “Papaya and pineapple deserve a mention as well as they are packed full of vitamins and good digestive enzymes to combat inflammation which can put years on our bodies.”
“While we're on the subject of vitamins, let's throw in seeds and talk minerals. Pumpkin, sunflower and chia are just a few key seeds which are rich in essential fatty acids which help to moisturise and nourish the skin - like a natural hydration system,” says Rick. “Many seeds are rich in zinc too, which is great for wound healing and skin health in general.”
“This next group may sound odd but I'm including them as a collective as their bright pigments make them fab antioxidants,” says Rick. “They boost circulation which is key to skin health and they're great for cardiovascular health which is a biggie if you want to live longer and roll back the years.”
“I like plant based proteins as anti ageing agents - they help the whole body and are rich in fibre which is important for good digestion which means better skin and also a better absorption of nutrients,” Rick explains. “We could also include fermented foods such as tempeh, kefir, natural yoghurt and sauerkraut, too for similar reasons.”
“We need foods that are high in magnesium to help decrease our stress levels as there's nothing more ageing than a stressed-out mind,” Rick says. “Consume more spinach, kale and leafy greens as they're high in calming magnesium as well as iron.”
No this is not a drill, go pour yourself a glass of Malbec. “Red wine, in moderation, is good for reeling back the years as it contains resveratrol,” Rick adds. This powerful antioxident is key to cardiovascular health and research shows that it can reduce oxidative stress and inflammation. “Dark chocolate is another anti-ageing food as it gives us digestive assistance as well as the feel-good-factor,” Rick adds. And we all know that nothing screams young at heart more than a beaming smile.
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