How To Eat For Your Health
Your health is important to you. You want to have energy. You want to wake up each day excited for what the day brings. You want to feel and look good. You want to enjoy your favorite sports and activities. This is why we want you to understand the importance of eating for your health. You can do all the running, bodybuilding, stretching, and yoga you want – but without a healthy diet, you’re missing the cornerstone to a healthy life. Small changes in your diet can add up to huge benefits for you immune system health, your joint health, your ability to recover from injury, and your chances of preventing illness. It’s important to remember that the diet so many of us enjoyed in our 20’s is not the one that will see us all living well into our 90’s. While there aren’t any guaranteed ways to prevent disease, we do know that eating a healthy diet goes a long way in aiding in the prevention of and recovery from disease, illness, and injury. And yes, we all know the person who ate super healthy and ran every day, who still died suddenly from heart problems or cancer. But, we want you to put this negative example aside and think about what you want from life and how you’re going to achieve it. Could you make small changes to your diet that would lessen your joint discomfort or make it easier for you to play tennis? Signs Of Poor Nutrition Because our bodies need different nutrients as we age, it’s easy to accidentally fall into eating habits that result in poor age-related nutrition. What you ate and could live well on in your 20’s and 30’s, is not the same now when you’re in 50’s and beyond. It’s important you’re aware of these signs of poor nutrition. We want you to talk to your healthcare provider if you recognize any of these signs of poor nutrition.
- Fatigue and tiredness. Constant feelings of fatigue, exhaustion, and tiredness can be indicators that you’re not getting enough iron and/or protein.
- Dry hair and skin. Your body sends much needed resources such as vitamins, iron, and protein to your largest organs. This means that when you’re low on key essentials, your hair and skin can suffer.
- Dental and mouth problems. A deficiency in vitamin C can cause bleeding gums and gum disease.
- Digestive problems. Diarrhea and constipation can be signs that your diet is missing key nutrients and essentials including zinc and fiber.
- Berries. Blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, and blackberries are sweet little nuggets of antioxidants that help fight inflammation. Berries contain ellagic acid and anthocyanins, both of which have been proven to help decrease inflammation.
- Nuts. Many people fear nuts due to the high fat content, but your body needs this fat to support the immune system and defend against inflammation.
- Vibrant orange vegetables. Vegetables such as carrots, butternut squash, and sweet potato get their vibrancy from vitamin A and beta-carotene. These key nutrients are essential in reducing inflammation, and they taste delicious.
- Greens. You’ve been told countless times to eat your greens, and for good reason. Dark green vegetables such as kale, bok choy, Brussel sprouts, and broccoli are jam-packed full of goodness including sulforaphane, a compound that can block enzymes associated with joint discomfort and inflammation.
- Oily fish. Salmon, sardines, mackerel and other oily fish are high in omega 3 fatty acids. Omega 3 fatty acids have been shown to help reduce joint discomfort and reduce inflammation.
- Red apples and onions. These two common foods are high in quercetin, an antioxidant that has strong links to reducing arthritis and associated joint discomfort.
- Turmeric. Turmeric is gaining in popularity for the health benefits of curcumin. Curcumin has been shown to help reduce inflammation and to aid in the recovery of the impacts of delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS).
- Tomatoes. Rich in antioxidants, vitamin C, and lycopene – these red fruits (yes tomatoes are a fruit not a vegetable) are so good for you and easy to eat.
- Zucchini. You or someone you know is likely dealing with an abundance of freshly grown zucchini. Eat this vibrant green vegetable raw or cooked and reap the benefits of pectin in helping to support heart health.
- Watermelon. It’s super easy to get dehydrated in the summer. Sliced watermelon, watermelon granita, or watermelon smoothies are a great way to get a sweet treat and rehydrate on a hot summer day.
- Apples, figs, and pears. These highly portable fruits are high in fiber and easy to eat wherever you are. Make sure you eat the skin to get the full fiber and nutritional benefits from these fruits.
- Avocado. More than a food trend with the ever-popular avocado toast, this creamy and versatile vegetable is rich in monosaturated fat. Enjoy avocadoes on toast, in guacamole, in a salad dressing, in a smoothie, or simply sliced with some salt and pepper.