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Anti-Ageing Foods that pack a punch!

Berries of all types are great! Blueberries, raspberries, cranberries, strawberries -- are super rich in antioxidants, such as flavonols and anthocyanins, which promote cell health and can protect against disease. Anthocyanins in particular, found in large quantities in blackberries, are thought to help protect against cancer and diabetes. Blackberries or blueberries are particularly good as they provide the best anti-aging benefits because they have the highest concentration of antioxidants. Bluberries are thought to also strenghten memory by reversing neurological degeneration.

Olive oil also contains polyphenols, powerful antioxidants that may help prevent age-related diseases.

Like fruits but without the sugar, vegetables are one of the best sources of antioxidants available and they can go a long way toward fighting free radicals and slowing the effects of ageing. The best vegetables for finding antioxidants are green, leafy vegetables such as spinach and kale. Two of the antioxidants found are lutin and zeaxanthin, which have also been shown to protect against the negative effects of UV exposure. Vegetables are a fantastic source of vitamins and minerals, including vitamins A, C, K and E. They're also great for theimmune system, helping the body fortify itself against sickness and disease. Studies have shown that a diet full of vegetables can help prevent cardiovascular disease, lower high blood pressure and, after a heart attack or stroke, lower cholesterol and unclog arteries. Eating lots of veggies (and fruit) could even reduce the risk of cancer in the digestive tract (including the colon and stomach) by up to 25 percent!

Great news -chocolate is officially good for you! Cocoa beans, from which chocolate is made, have a higherantioxidant capacity than any other food, and the high concentration of antioxidant flavanols in cocoa beans helps reduce inflammation of the skin caused by exposure to UV light. Furthermore, eating dark chocolate can increase circulation in the skin and improve its ability to retain moisture, which can reduce the appearance of wrinkles and help you look younger.

Beans are great for your heart - the more you eat.......! They're an excellent source of low-fat protein, especially for those who don't eat meat. They also contain fibre (which can help lower cholesterol), are rich in antioxidants, and are chock full of all sorts of vitamins and minerals, including iron, vitamin B and potassium.

Eating fish, or taking fish oil supplements, provides the body with omega-3 fatty acids that help protect against heart disease, reduce inflammation, decrease the risk of arrhythmia and lower blood pressure. Omega-3 fatty acids are found largely in coldwater fish, including salmon, herring, tuna and sardines. Studies have even shown that people who eat a lot of fish live longer. One study of middle-aged American men found that those who ate fish two to three times per week had a 40 percent lower mortality rate than those who did not. In men who had previously suffered a heart attack, eating fish twice a week actually lowered their mortality rates by 29 percent.

Nuts are rich sources of unsaturated fats, so they offer benefits similar to those associated with olive oil. They’re also concentrated sources of vitamins, minerals and other phytochemicals, including antioxidants.

While the age-defying powers of yogurt never have been proven directly, yogurt is rich in calcium, which helps stave off osteoporosis and contains “good bacteria” that help maintain gut health and diminish the incidence of age-related intestinal illness.

So I conclude: the perfect anti-ageing meals for a day would be for me:-

Breakfast - Granola with yoghurt and berries

Lunch - Tuna and Bean Salad

Dinner - Salmon cooked in Olive Oil served on baby Spinach and New Potatoes with Green Beans on the side.

Dessert - Meringue with berries and cream with a little grated dark chocolate on top

Snack - Nuts and dried Cranberries

Sounds delightful!

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