Today’s Modern diet. Huge helpings of meat, mountains of grains stripped of their key nutrients, and processed foods galore, filled with factory-engineered sweeteners, flavors, colors, and preservatives. Not only does the modern diet give you lots of what you don’t need, it also shortchanges you on what you do need.
Many of the classic signs of aging – including fatigue, aches and pains, memory lapses, fuzzy thinking, balancing problems, and more – may actually be symptoms of unrecognized yet easily reversible nutritional shortfalls, says Jeffrey Blumberg, PhD, of the Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University in Boston. Just because you feel that you’re aging, Dr. Blumberg says emphatically, that doesn’t mean it’s because you really are aging. It’s more how you are eating.
What do we mean my nutritional shortfalls? Consider B12, a vitamin crucial for maintaining healthy nerves and red blood cells. As you grow older, your stomach produces less hydrochloric acid, and as a result, your body absorbs less B12 from food.
Vitamin D – Once you get into your seventies, your skin synthesizes 60 percent less D than it did when you were a child. Lower Vitamin D means you may be at risk for brittle bones, muscle weakness, and stunning variety of cancers.
The Answer? Healthy foods to the rescue! Low-fat milk, seafood, and greens. But that multivitamin is also the perfect form of insurance.
And what about Calcium? People seem to think they don’t need calcium as much when they are older. They think it’s only important early in life, during the bone-building years of your childhood, teens, and early twenties. But the fact is, women and men need even more calcium after age 50 than before because absorption drops with age. And not just Dairy products provide great calcium. Kale, Broccoli and Almonds are just some examples of great foods full of calcium.
Another pitfall as you age, are prescription and over-the-counter medicines. These remedies can also create nutritional shortfalls by blocking absorption or speeding up the excretion of vitamins and minerals. Some of the big culprits are things such as Pepcid, Prilosec and Zantac) those that target heartburn and other gastrointestinal problems. Prescription drugs such as antibiotics, antidepressants, cholesterol-lowering statin drugs, diabetes drugs, diuretics, pain relievers, laxatives, and tranquilizers all can cut levels of many vitamins and minerals, research shows.
The Key point? For long life and ongoing health, it’s mostly about food. Diet experts say Supplements may help fill in gaps, but the best way to get the nutrition you need is from the foods you eat. There are nutrients in food, thousands of nutrients, we don’t even know about yet. They’re buddies that work together in our bodies to keep us healthy – something pills can’t do. That is the beauty of food!
Giving you the most current and up to date advice on living a longer and active life.
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