Fruits for Life is a blog that offers the best information about health, fitness and wellness. Fruits are a natural resource of the planet that help you in strengthening your body and brain. They come in various varieties, sizes, tastes and textures. They are one of the best natural gifts nature has to offer and their benefits cannot be denied.
10 fruits and vegetables that will extend your lifespan
There are no superfoods, which may come as a surprise to regular readers of health journals. While spectacular headlines frequently mention miraculous foods that might change your life, no one food can actually treat a condition unless your illness is brought on by a deficiency in a certain nutrient that a particular food may contain.
Scurvy, for instance, which is caused by a lack of vitamin C, might be cured by consuming oranges. No single food will add years to your life, make you jump higher, melt your body fat, erase your crow’s feet, or smooth your cellulite. Scientific studies have shown us that no particular diet, be it high-protein, low-carbohydrate, vegan, paleo, low-fat, gluten-free, low-glycemic, dairy-free, or any combination thereof is the best diet. Rather, it seems the magic bullet is choosing a variety of real foods and avoiding processed foods as much as possible. Eating a diet rich in a variety of the right foods will increase the odds in your favor of living a longer life free of chronic illness.
All the items in your grocery store that are packaged in jars, cans, cartons, and other varying containers and are primarily found in the center aisles are considered processed foods. These foods lack the nourishment that actual foods, the ones you often find on the outside of your supermarket, have, despite the fact that the lengthy list of additives in them won’t generally damage you (unless you have a specific allergy).
Vital elements have typically been removed from processed foods to preserve them and make them fit into containers. Then, to improve their flavor, a ton of sugar and salt has typically been thrown back in. Contrarily, real foods are crucial for preserving your health because they are full of the required macro- and micronutrients. Unsurprisingly, fruits and vegetables are at the top of the list of genuine foods we should consume frequently.
Here are 10 fruits and vegetables that you should consider including in your diet.
Raspberries are a good source of quercetin and gallic acid, flavonoids connected to a healthy heart and anti-obesity agents. Additionally, it has been demonstrated that raspberries regulate regular cell death and support healthy cell survival.
Oranges are high in vitamin C, a powerful antioxidant that helps protect the body against free radicals, which are roaming atoms with an unpaired electron. Free radicals can damage cells. Vitamin C renders free radicals harmless by pairing off the free electron. Oranges also contain a flavonoid called herperidin, which is contained in the white part of the orange peel. Hesperidin has been shown to help regulate blood pressure.
The banana, which is technically not a fruit but a plant, is a fantastic source of potassium, which is important for a healthy heart. Bananas are an excellent source of vitamin B6, which helps the body manufacture serotonin, a brain chemical that can help prevent depression, and they also aid in the body’s absorption of calcium.
Along with vitamin E and other antioxidant elements, kiwi has even more vitamin C than oranges. Kiwi is a nutritional powerhouse thanks to these as well as potassium, fiber, magnesium, and zinc.
Pomegranates, another fruit high in vitamin C, also have the appeal of being calorie-efficient. A variety of polyphenols, which are micronutrients related to a potential decreased risk of cancer, are also present in them.
Low in calories, high in vitamin C and other elements that support healthy skin, control digestion, and improve cardiovascular health, grapefruits are also low in calories.
Tangerines have a higher concentration of antioxidants than oranges do. Tangerines are a great dietary option when plenty of soluble and insoluble fiber is added to assist support weight management and digestive health. Additionally, they include flavonoids that may reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease as well as the minerals lutein and zeaxanthin, which promote eye health.
The substance that gives blueberries their distinctive color is anthocyanin, a potent antioxidant that may aid boost memory and blood sugar control as well as visual health.
Chlorogenic acid, one of the most potent antioxidants present in food, is one of the many phytochemicals contained in eggplant that benefit health.
Forget the rumor that avocados are loaded with fat. The avocado actually includes almost 20 vitamins and minerals, and the fat it does contain is healthy fat that decreases cholesterol.
Living a Longer, Healthier Life
The month of September is Fruit and Veggies—More Matters Month, making it the ideal opportunity to recognize the advantages of eating fruit and vegetables for your health.
A balanced diet that includes fruit and vegetables can help you prevent chronic diseases including heart disease, bone loss, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, and some cancers (like colorectal cancer), as well as lengthen your lifespan.
Many individuals prioritize living longer, healthier lives, and a lifetime diet high in fruits and vegetables can help you achieve this goal. In fact, a research in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition suggested eating fruits and vegetables, particularly cruciferous ones, may increase longevity and lower the risk of heart disease. Broccoli, kale, collard greens, cabbage, cauliflower, bok choy, Brussels sprouts, and rapini are examples of cruciferous vegetables.
Foods loaded with “superpower” antioxidants have also been found to help prevent chronic disease. Try these …
- Berries – blueberries, cranberries, strawberries, raspberries and blackberries (don’t forget the dried versions of fruits such as dried cranberries, raisins and apricots – these are ideal for on-the-go snacks)
- Beans – especially red and black beans
- Other fruits and veggies such as artichoke hearts, plums, red bell peppers, sweet potatoes, onions and apples
Cauliflower & Broccoli Gratin w/Goat Cheese
Makes: 4 Servings
Cook time: 10 minutes
- 2 cups cauliflower florets
- 2 cups broccoli florets
- 4 ounces soft goat cheese
- ½ cup fat-free plain yogurt
- ¼ cup sliced almonds, toasted
How Many Servings of Fruits and Vegetables Add Years to Your Life?
Centenarians in the Blue Zones region consumed a 90–95 percent plant-based diet that was high in beans, greens, grains, and nuts for the majority of their lives. Numerous research on healthy diets and longevity diets have been conducted in recent years, but one piece of advice seems to apply to all of them: eat more fruits and vegetables.
Less than 14% of Americans, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, eat enough fruits and vegetables each day.
How Much Longer Do Fruit and Veggie Eaters Live?
“Subjects who eaten five fruits and vegetables a day lived an additional three years compared to their non-plant-eating counterparts,” claims research in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
According to a different study that was published in the Nutrition Journal, buying fruits and vegetables for just 50 cents a day could prevent nearly 10% of deaths.
Plant-based meals immediately affect your chances of developing chronic diseases in addition to lengthening your lifespan. Eating even the recommended two and a half servings of fruit and vegetables each day is linked to “a 16% reduced risk of heart disease, an 18% reduced risk of stroke, a 13% reduced risk of cardiovascular illness, a 4% reduced risk of cancer, and a 15% reduced risk of premature death.”
Servings is Good But More is Better
According to a study published in the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health, eating seven or more servings of fruit and vegetables each day can significantly reduce your chance of dying young by 42%. The preventive advantages rise with more fruit and vegetable consumption, so seven is not the upper limit.
An Imperial College London-led study found that daily consumption of 10 servings of fruits and vegetables is linked to:
- 24 percent reduced risk of heart disease
- 33 percent reduced risk of stroke
- 28 percent reduced risk of cardiovascular disease
- 13 percent reduced risk of total cancer
- 31 percent reduction in premature deaths
“Although five portions of fruit and vegetables is good, 10 a day is even better.”—Dagfinn Aune, School of Public Health at Imperial College London.
Fruits and Vegetables Can Lead to a Longer Life, Study Shows
A recent study from the American Heart Association suggests that eating fruits and vegetables can lengthen life (AHA).
According to the study, which was released on Monday, consuming around two portions of fruit and three servings of vegetables each day increases one’s likelihood of living a longer life.
Lead author Dr. Dong Wang, an epidemiologist and nutritionist at Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, said that this amount “likely delivers the highest benefit in terms of prevention of major chronic illness and is a very feasible consumption for the general public.”
The researchers of the study discovered that eating five servings of fruits and vegetables each day was related with the lowest risk of premature death after analyzing data from more than two million people in the US and other nations.
The study found that those who consumed five servings per day had a 13 percent lower risk of death from all causes, a 12 percent lower risk of death from heart disease and stroke, a 10 percent lower risk of death from cancer, and a 35 percent lower risk of death from respiratory disease than those who consumed only two servings per day.
There were no additional advantages to eating more than five servings of fruits and vegetables.
According to a recent survey, Americans are sneaking nutritious food into the diets of their loved ones.
The study’s findings show that while some types of fruits and vegetables are linked to a lower death rate, others had no impact.
Life expectancy was found to be increased by eating green leafy vegetables (such as spinach, lettuce, and kale) and foods high in beta carotene and vitamin C (such as citrus fruits, berries, and carrots).
In contrast, the study showed no correlation between starchy vegetables like peas and maize, fruit juices, and potatoes with a reduced risk of premature mortality.
According to a survey, Americans now love vegetables more than ever, particularly broccoli.
Only 9% of adults consume the necessary amounts of vegetables, and only 12% consume the recommended servings of fruit, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Food hacks to help you eat more fruits and vegetables
Numerous studies have shown that consuming more plant-based diets makes the human body healthier. But it might be difficult to switch to a diet that includes more vegetables overall and a wider variety of them.
Here are a few easy suggestions to help you boost the amount of fruits, vegetables, nuts, spices, and other plant foods you consume every day.
Put fruit within reach: According to a Danish study, when fruit is readily available in an office setting, employees eat more fruit overall. Instead of going to the snack area, I reach for the fruit bowls that I’ve placed on my office desk and dining table.
Add some crunch: Nuts and seeds are a quick and easy method to boost the variety of plants in your diet, which is beneficial to your microbiome.
To add crunch to salads, I recently bought a shaker of toasted sunflower seeds. I’ve noticed that when I do, I eat much more salad and less of the other items on my plate.
Spice it up: According to Anahad O’Connor, a columnist for Eating Lab, seasoning your food with a range of spices is an easy method to broaden the variety of plant foods you consume. To yogurt or coffee for morning, add a dash of cinnamon. Use the six-herb spice known as herbes de Provence on grilled chicken or fish.
Vegetable fattening: I’ve often complained that healthy eating is frequently connected with bland, uninteresting vegetables. Vegetables contain a number of vitamins and phytonutrients that are fat-soluble, meaning your body needs a tiny amount of fat to fully absorb them. Making your vegetables more flavorful by adding avocado, olive oil, or a little dressing is OK.
Boost the caliber of your morning meal: For many people, breakfast is the most delicious meal of the day. Sugar and other additives used in food processing are abundant in pastries and many breakfast cereals. A great treat for you and your microbiome may be made by switching to plain yogurt in the morning and topping it with sliced bananas, strawberries, a sprinkle of cinnamon, and a handful of mixed nuts.
Train your body to seek comfort food by reaching for an uncommon fruit that you might not normally eat when you’re under stress. You can also try deep breathing or relaxation exercises. It could consist of sliced blueberries, honeydew melon, pears, or pineapple. By combining the fruit with a stress-relieving workout, your brain will start to see the fruit as a comfort food that lowers tension.
Our most recent Eating Lab study has further information about stress and eating:
stress eating Here’s how to make your brain yearn for nutritious foods.
Some surprising news about your brain
Richard Sima, a columnist for Brain Matters, invites you to recall the last time you were ill. Perhaps you experienced a fever, body chills, fatigue, and loss of appetite. Like many of us, you could have believed that those symptoms were brought on by your immune system’s defenses warding off infections like viruses, bacteria, and other invaders of your body.
However, your brain likely also played a significant part and was in charge of many of the symptoms you experienced.
According to two recent research published in Nature, certain regions of the brain quickly react to disease and coordinate the body’s defense mechanisms. This new knowledge could also provide insight into why some people continue to experience chronic conditions like prolonged illness months after an infection.
You can read more about this in Richard’s column: Your brain is helping you heal when you’re ill, so thank it for that.
Everyday life coach
Jaime Kurtz, an expert in mindful photography and a psychology professor at James Madison University, is the go-to life coach of the day.
The recommendation is to practice thankfulness by posting a daily snapshot of something you’re grateful for.
Reasons to give it a try:
Savoring is the act of observing and enjoying your environment, and it is connected to general pleasure and wellbeing. In the one, tiny study, college students were asked to snap photos of significant things they encountered throughout the day. Students in the control group were asked to randomly photograph campus landmarks like bike ramps with their phones. The college life was more enjoyable for the students who took thoughtful images than it was for the control group.
How to: While at work, on the subway, or out for a walk, be aware of your surroundings. Take a picture whenever the mood strikes you. It might be a flower, an amusing incident that happened on the street, or your cup of coffee. The act of snapping the picture gives your mind a chance to reflect on your thankfulness.