Your daily and weekly food choices can make a huge difference on how you ‘age gracefully’ as a woman in your 40’s. Whether the current nutrition buzz is superfoods or brainfoods, the ultimate goal is becoming more beautiful from the inside out and celebrating a stronger body filled with renewed youthfulness.
This antioxidant is like an ‘armed detox machine’ in your body helping to fight the harmful effects of chemicals, pollutants and free radicals that are known to promote aging. This vitamin fixes and heals tissue and wounds along with making collagen. Vine-ripened tomatoes and delicious berries are two great sources of vitamin C. Choose tomatoes that are brilliant in color to provide a rich source of this nutrient along with all kinds of juicy and vibrant berries like blueberries, cranberries, raspberries or strawberries. A ½ cup portion of berries may sound small, but it’s mighty in providing a concentrated amount of powerful antioxidants and phytonutrients in just a handful of sweet tasting fruit.
Most of us know fiber can help to reduce cholesterol but it has other amazing roles in helping to prevent diabetes, heart disease and some cancers. Fiber provides a feeling of fullness which is helpful with weight management especially as women move into menopause. A daily fiber goal is to eat at least 25 grams daily. One vegetable that ‘fills the bill’ for a high fiber superfood is the sweet potato. Just one medium sweet potato provides almost 5 grams of fiber. Load up on this concentrated vitamin and mineral-filled vegetable since it does make a colorful meal with its carontenoid qualities that prevent chronic illness.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
How many times have you declined a handful of your favorite nuts with the excuse, “I’m not allowed to have any; they are full of fat.” Yet, nuts are little powerhouses rich in protein, minerals, phytonutrients, unsaturated fats, vitamins and fiber. They are an anti-aging food brimming with omega-3 fats, which have been shown to give a heart-healthy energy boost and partially lower blood pressure. Important in women’s heart health, omega-3 fats from fish help with inflammation and improve mood. If you’re not a fish or shellfish (sources like salmon, anchovies, lake trout, herring, Pollack, catfish or canned light tuna) eater and like to mix up your meal and snack choices, get creative and add an omega-3 plant source from walnuts, flaxseed or oils (sources like canola, flaxseed, soybean and olive oil). Both walnuts and flaxseed have high concentrations of omega-3 fatty acids and minerals. Add nuts to salads, vegetable wraps or pasta dishes while staying in moderation wi
th nuts and oils in your diet. Try toasting nuts to get the most flavor – simply put them on a cookie sheet in a warm oven or toaster oven and serve as a snack or in a fruit or vegetable salad.
Who said you couldn’t eat the Fountain of Youth?
Guest Post by Kindy Peaslee, Registered Dietitian and Nutrition Coach for EverydayHealth.com and its calorie counter tool. She also loves creating family-friendly recipes at her personal nutrition site healthy-kid-recipes.com.