Let’s face it, we’re not getting any younger. As you age your metabolism slows down, you tend to lose muscle mass and your hormone levels change (hello menopause!), making you more prone to belly fat. Exercise alone just won’t cut it, so diet is key. Did you know that eating antioxidant-rich foods can help you curb hunger and cravings, while improving your overall health? (Prevention Magazine) Sarah Mirkin, RDN, author of “Fill Your Plate, Lose the Weight,” a 21-day weight-loss plan for women over 40, recently shared some of her top picks. Are they in your diet?
Flaxseeds are an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids, which are essential fats for a sharp mind and healthy heart. And because they're high in fiber, they're great for your gut. Stick with ground flaxseeds as your body absorbs the nutrients better than the whole ones. I like to add them to my protein shakes and yogurt.
Mirkin says this leafy green is “packed with water, vitamin C, vitamin A, and antioxidants that kill free radicals to help you avoid wrinkles and fine lines as you age.”
Oh yes you read that right! Mirkin says, dark chocolate is “rich in flavonols, which protect your heart, reduce the risk of diabetes, lower blood pressure, and help keep your skin young by increasing blood flow.” Tip: stick to chocolate bars that contain at least 70 percent coco.
Nuts make a filling snack if you're trying to lose weight because they're high in fiber and healthy fats, low in carbs, and have satisfying amounts of protein.
Made from fermented cabbage, this tangy condiment is packed with gut-boosting probiotics, great for improving digestion. It’s low in calories and high in fiber...and high-fiber diets keep you fuller for longer. Just watch the amount of sodium in it!
Packed with healthy fats, avocados can help keep your skin plump and wrinkle-free, nourish your hair, and help lower blood pressure, thanks to its decent potassium content.
Dark leafy greens like kale and spinach, contain high amounts of vitamin K, lutein, calcium, and beta carotene, which can help with memory function. Aside from just having them in your salad, get an extra dose in your smoothie, protein shake or omelette.
Berries can supply hunger-curbing fiber to satisfy sweet cravings. “Dark pigmentation and rich color means the berries are high in disease-fighting antioxidants and phytochemicals,” says Mirkin.
Wild salmon is loaded with protein and the two omega 3s — DHA and EPA — that helps with brain, nerve and eye development. These fats are responsible for many cardiovascular benefits such as reducing inflammation.
But just like anything that may be good for you, watch your portion control. You’d be surprised how quickly a handful of nuts can turn into half a bag! Mindful eating is a great opportunity to develop healthy eating habits and create a positive relationship with food. Eat slower, eat with a purpose, and make healthier food choices.