I have heard repeated arguments about how some foods are good for you only until a certain age. The best example would be milk – some say it can only be digested by children, others consider it a healthy source of protein and calcium at any age, and some consider it the evil incarnate, the worst thing a man can put in his or her mouth. A friend of mine even said, while keeping an eye on his game at the royal vegas online casino, that Santa is so big because he’s bloated due to the lots of cookie and milk he is forced to consume every Christmas… who knows, he might even be right. But this debate had me thinking: is there a relationship between age and the foods one should consume? I did some digging, and here are the foods I found to be good for people of a certain age.
1. For a healthy heart
“There really is an abundance of fruits and vegetables in many colors, shapes, sizes that are good for your heart,” says Julia Zumpano, RD, LD, a dietitian with the Preventive Cardiology Center at The Cleveland Clinic. “You can definitely reduce your risk of developing cardiovascular disease by eating these foods every day.” For a healthy heart at any age, Zumpano recommends a “whole foods diet” consisting of whole grains (for fiber), beans and legumes (for protein), nuts and fat fish (for healthy fatty acids) and teas (for antioxidants and various beneficial components). A heart-healthy diet is not just fiber and omega-3, but the best heart-healthy foods have an abundance of both: salmon, flax seed, oatmeal, beans, almonds, walnuts, plus legumes and whole grains to complete the healthy diet.
2. For a healthy brain
Improving brain function and maintaining a good memory is becoming vital at a certain age. For this you need to add some vitamins, iron and magnesium to your daily diet. You could start popping pills, of course, but the more natural way is to consume these elements and vitamins through your food. As a general rule, keep your fat intake low and your fiber intake high. Shellfish and eggs are a great source of the Vitamin B complex, iron, magnesium and potassium, while lean beef and beef liver add choline to your diet, also good for a healthy brain.
3. For healthy bones
Bone health comes down to calcium, silicon and Vitamin D. While Vitamin D is produced by your body when you are exposed to sunlight, the other two need to be introduced into your body from the outside – and the best way to do that is through your food. Cheese, beef liver, fatty fish and mushrooms are all tasty sources of Vitamin D. While for calcium, you can either choose fortified foodstuffs, or choose a more natural way to add it to your diet: dairy, leafy greens, seafood and legumes. While for silicon you should consume red wine, beer, raisins, fiber, green beans and mineral water (a recent study found that beer is the best source for dietary silicon – just make sure you don’t have too much of it!).