Important nutrition tips for longevity and better health

 Important nutrition tips for longevity and better health 

With the amount of nutrition information available, many people face difficulty and are confused about which information to rely on. The contradicting views on nutrition make it more difficult to know the right information. 

Below are proven tips to help you live a healthier and longer life.

Nutrition tips on food 

The following nutrition tips will ensure you make healthy food choices. 

  • Include protein in all meals 

Adding protein to all your meals helps to balance your blood sugar. Some studies report that diets rich in protein benefit those with type 2 diabetes. Research also indicates that balancing blood sugar benefits cardiovascular health and weight management. 

  • Eat oily fish 

Research found that omega-3 fatty acids in oily fish are vital for gene expression and eye and brain development. Some studies suggest that omega-3-fatty acids help minimise the risk of cardiovascular disease. 

Other research shows that the anti-inflammatory properties of omega-3 fatty acids may effectively manage the early stages of degenerative diseases like Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease. 

  • Eat whole grains 

Doctor UK recommends eating whole grains as substitutes for refined grains. Whole grains are rich in iron, fibre and B vitamins. These are essential nutrients for the proper functioning of the body, such as immune system regulation, balancing sugar and transporting oxygen in the blood. 

  • Eat varieties of foods 

Eating varieties of food should include different coloured vegetables and fruits. With these wide ranges of plant foods, you will get different antioxidants that benefit your health. Common antioxidants in fruits and vegetables include anthocyanins and carotenoids. 

  • Eat greens

Eating dark green leafy vegetables is an excellent source of good nutrition. They contain antioxidants, minerals and vitamins. Doctor London suggests that leafy vegetables protect against cancer and vitamin K prevents osteoporosis. 

  • Eat healthy fats 

Ensure you reduce your consumption of saturated and trans fat, but you can include unsaturated fats in meals. Unsaturated fats are available in vegetable oils, oily fish and avocado. 

  • Use extra virgin olive oil 

Extra virgin olive oil has several benefits to your heart health and helps maintain your weight and blood pressure. You can use extra virgin olive oil by adding it while cooking foods at low temperatures or in vegetables or salads. 

  • Eat nuts 

Health experts suggest eating a serving of nuts daily instead of processed or red meat, dessert or French fries to prevent long-term weight gain. 

Brazil nuts are especially helpful in keeping you full and maintaining blood sugar levels. 

  • Take lots of fibre 

According to doctor Harley Street, fibres can improve blood cholesterol and reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes, obesity and heart disease. You can get high fibre in pulses, beans, vegetables and whole grains. 

  • Eat more plant foods 

Research shows that plant-based diets help prevent obesity and overweight, and obesity is linked to several diseases. 

Some studies suggest that adding more plant foods to your meal can reduce the risk of diseases like cardiovascular disease and diabetes. 

  • Eat pulses and beans 

Pulses and beans are excellent protein sources for those on plant-based diets. However, people who eat meat can take beans and pulses on days they do not eat meat. Pulses and beans also contain minerals, vitamins and fibre. Some studies also suggest that pulses make people feel full and aid in weight management. 

Nutrition tips for drinks 

Several health benefits are available from drinking healthy fluids. Some expert health tips on what you should drink include:

  • Drink lots of water 

Drinking lots of water daily benefits your overall health and aids in weight management. It also prevents dehydration, which puts older adults at risk of different conditions. 

If you do not like drinking plain water, you can add mint leaves and some citrus slices to help you drink more water or take herbal teas. 

  • Take coffee 

A study in 2017 suggests that moderate intake of coffee, 3 – 5 cups daily, can reduce your risk of;

  • Cardiovascular diseases 

  • Type 2 diabetes 

  • Parkinson’s disease 

  • Alzheimer’s disease 

The same study recommends pregnant and lactating women reduce coffee intake to two cups daily. 

  • Drink herbal teas 

Research shows that black, green and other herbal tea containing catechins may hold antimicrobial properties. Herbal teas like chamomile, rooibos and mint do not contain caffeine and can keep you hydrated during the day. 

Nutrition tips for drinks and foods to avoid

Reducing the consumption of certain foods and drinks with harmful health effects is vital for proper nutrition. Some tips on foods and drinks to avoid include the following

  • Reduce sugar 

Research shows that dextrose, high fructose corn syrup and dietary sugar can increase the risk of metabolic syndrome and cardiovascular disease. 

Ensure you check the labels of foods that end in –ose, such as glucose, sucrose and fructose. Natural sugars like maple syrup and honey may also contribute to weight gain if you eat them often. 

  • Drink moderate amounts of alcohol 

Dietary recommendations from experts advise people who take alcohol to do so in moderation. Experts advise one drink for females and two drinks for males daily. Excessive intake of alcohol elevates the risk of violence and chronic disease. 

Over time, it may impair long and short-term cognitive function. 

  • Avoid sugary drinks 

Health experts link frequent consumption of sugary drinks with the following. 

  • Heart disease 

  • Gout – a type of arthritis 

  • Cavities and tooth decay 

  • Kidney disease 

  • Type 2 diabetes 

  • Non-alcoholic liver disease 

  • Obesity and weight gain 

Reduce your sugary drinks consumption and preferably take water. 

  • Eat less processed and red meat 

A large prospective study shows that adults eating more processed and red meat had higher mortality rates. 

Participants of this study who substituted meat for other proteins like eggs, nuts, and fish had a reduced risk of death within eight years of the study. 

  • Avoid eating processed foods 

A review found that eating highly processed foods can elevate the risk of several diseases, such as irritable bowel syndrome, depression and cancer. You can substitute processed foods with whole foods and avoid foods containing several processed ingredients. 

Other beneficial health habits 

You can take several steps to enhance your health in addition to taking healthy drinks and foods. They include:

  • Support your microbiome 

A review in 2019 suggests that a healthy, balanced diet supports diverse health microbes and can affect the risk of chronic diseases. Including fibre and vegetables in your diet also helps your microbiome. 

Eating an excess of refined carbs and sugar can adversely affect your microbiome. 

  • Take vitamin D supplements 

Adults need 15mg or 600IU of vitamin D daily. Most people get some vitamin D from sunlight, but it is also available in certain foods. Older adults, those with reduced exposure to the sun, like in less sunny climates and during winter, and people with darker skin may require vitamin D supplements.

  • Eat the right portion sizes 

The right portion sizes to aid in weight management. You can get expert recommendations for portion sizes of different food patterns, particularly those suitable for your personal or cultural preferences. 

  • Use spices and herbs 

Using spices and herbs to cook can help your foods taste better and also has other health benefits. A review in 2019 reports that the active compounds in ginger may aid in preventing inflammation and oxidative stress, which are common to ageing. 

Turmeric contains curcumin which has anti-inflammatory properties and may protect your health. Garlic also has several benefits, including antimicrobial, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties

  • Rest your body by fasting 

Intermitted fasting requires not eating on some days or overnight. It may help reduce your energy intake and has several health benefits. 

A review in 2020 reported that intermittent fasting could improve heart health, cholesterol levels and blood pressure. 

  • Have a journal for your food

Health experts suggest that keeping a food journal helps you track your calories and know your food habits and how much you eat. 

Having a journal for your food can also help you eat healthier foods and maintain a healthy weight. 

  • Wash vegetables and fruits

Raw vegetables and fruits often contain harmful germs that may make you sick. Listeria, E.coli and salmonella account for more foodborne illnesses. Ensure you waste all fresh produce properly if you want to eat them raw. 

  • Avoid microwaving in plastic containers 

Research shows that microwaving food in plastic containers releases phthalates, which may disrupt hormones. Experts suggest heating foods in ceramic or glass containers is safer. 

  • Eat different meals 

Most people need the same foods regularly. Eating various foods and exploring cuisines can help you meet your nutrient requirements. A varied diet is particularly helpful when you eat a wider range of protein and vegetables. 

  • Be mindful of what you eat 

In 2017, a study found that mindful eating helped adults with obesity manage their blood glucose levels and eat fewer sweets. Another study suggests that mindful eating makes people with diabetes aware of food triggers and habits. 

Other aspects such as stress strategies, adequate sleep, activity and exercise are also important aspects of your health. 

If you are concerned about your nutrition and need advice from an experienced doctor, visit Private Doctor London. You can also call us on 020 7183 2792 for an online appointment of private doctor UK

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