The best way to stay strong and healthy as you age

Here are the two most important words to live by as you get older: Stay Strong!

As we age we lose muscle strength, which often leads right to the most dangerous condition any senior can have — frailty.

That can put you on the fast track to suffering side effects including falls, broken bones, forgetfulness, lack of independence, and on and on and on.

Like the saying goes, aging isn’t for cowards.

But what if there were an easy way to fight back against the ravages of Father Time and stay as strong as possible?

Well, there is! And it’s not a drug, exercise program, or wacky diet of green shakes.

It’s something you probably know about already, and you can start doing it right this very minute!


‘Eating yourself older’

You and I both know that diet is important to good health.

But as we age, it becomes more important than ever. In fact, you might say that the best treatment for many of the conditions that make life so difficult for those in their later years could be right on their dinner table!

Now, a just-out study has again confirmed the amazing benefits of the Mediterranean diet — only this time it focused on how it helps to keep seniors from becoming frail.

Researchers at University College London crunched the data (and walnuts!) on that way of eating for almost 6,000 people, all of whom were 60 or older, from around the world.

They found that those who faithfully followed a Mediterranean diet — one high in fruits, veggies, nuts, and olive oil — were able to slash the danger of becoming frail over the next four years by a whopping 50 percent when compared to the people who consumed the least amounts of those foods.

Sure, we’ve all heard lots of good news about eating this way. And no doubt you have a very large bottle of extra-virgin olive oil in your cupboard right now! But to be a true follower of the Mediterranean diet, you need to do more than simply use that tasty oil on your salad or have a fish dinner once a week.

HSI panel member Dr. Mark Stengler has been singing the praises of the Mediterranean diet for a long time now. He calls it the “miracle ‘drug’ the world’s been waiting for” — one that can slow aging, prevent diabetes and peripheral artery disease, keep your brain sharp as a tack, and add years to your life if you have heart disease.

In fact, eating the typical American diet that includes tons of processed foods, too much red meat, and not much in the way of fruits, vegetables, and fish can fast-forward the aging process — what Dr. Stengler calls “eating yourself older.”

The Mediterranean diet also includes very little dairy, BUT studies have found that it can help your bones to stay strong — and that’s even if you already have osteoporosis!

Now, while all these benefits might sound rather magical, they’re rooted in some very sound science.

Basically, the components of this diet have powerful anti-inflammatory effects. And as you’ve read right here in eAlert, inflammation is now thought to be the spark that ignites diseases from cancer to arthritis to depression.

If you’re not sure how to begin, it’s actually quite simple. Just put more of these delicious foods on your plate:

  • at least four servings a week of wild-caught (not farmed) fish,
  • beans and lentils,
  • fruits and veggies — as much as possible, and
  • plenty of “good fats,” such as those found in olive oil, almonds, and walnuts.

You should also eat fewer sweets, processed foods, and red meats — especially hot dogs and cold cuts. Another tip is to cut your dairy intake down as low as possible.

And if a glass of wine with dinner is something you enjoy, keep on enjoying it, as that’s also a part of this way of eating.

So, next time you sit down to dinner with a selection of these healthy foods on your plate, you can honestly make a toast to a long, healthy, and strong life!

“Mediterranean diet a recipe for strength in old age” Robert Preidt, HealthDay, January 11, 2018, consumer.healthday.com