The most important goal of any healthy diet is to nourish your body with all the nutrients it needs to thrive. And as we age, certain nutrients become even more essential to our well-being. For example, a range of health problems can arise during menopause, such as weight gain, osteoporosis and an increased risk of heart disease. Fortunately, however, there are plenty of ways to keep these issues at bay, starting with adding powerful superfoods to your daily diet.
In short, superfoods are simply nutrient-dense foods that provide a wide range of benefits, from heart health to a stronger immune system. Eating these types of foods is a great idea for anyone at any stage of their life, but can be especially beneficial for women over 40. To find out some of the best options that can help slow aging and ease some of the symptoms of menopause, we spoke to health experts Megan Wong, RD at AlgaeCal and Kristian Morey, RD, LDN. They told us that cruciferous vegetables, prunes and black beans will all make fantastic additions to your diet.
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1. Cruciferous vegetables
According to Morey, increasing your intake of cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, kale, bok choy, Brussels sprouts, etc. is a great way to regulate your hormones, which can definitely come in handy as you get older, especially as you enter. menopause. She explains that these vegetables contain a compound called indole-3-carbinol, which produces another compound called diindolylmethane (DIM) when broken down. “DIM may have several benefits that are especially great for women, as it is thought to help balance estrogen levels in the body by stimulating the production of a more beneficial form of estrogen called 2-hydroxyestrone and reducing the effects of another form of estrogen called 16 alpha-hydroxyestrone, which has been linked to weight gain and an increased risk of certain cancers, including breast and uterine cancer,” says Morey. Pleasant! Fortunately, these vegetables can fit into a range of meals. Many are delicious when roasted. Try tossing them into grain bowls! And of course, you can never go wrong with a tasty kale salad.
If you ask us, prunes are an underrated fruit. And according to Wong, they can really provide benefits, especially for women over 40. In fact, she says, “Prunes are the perfect superfood to prepare a woman’s body for menopause.” Surprising! Indeed, this powerful fruit can help combat both bone loss and weight gain, which are two common problems caused by the hormonal changes our bodies begin to experience during perimenopause. “Research shows that eating 4-5 prunes a day can help protect your bones. In these studies, regular prune consumption was actually linked to higher bone mineral density in the spine,” Wong says, noting that this superfood is also “rich in soluble fatty acids”. fiber, which slows digestion and keeps blood sugar levels stable” to “help manage cravings that lead to unnecessary snacking and extra weight gain.” All in all, it’s a fruit you’ll definitely want to start munching on.
3. Black beans
Black beans are another fantastic addition to any diet, but especially for women over 40. “Black beans are high in magnesium and potassium, two minerals that become even more important as a woman ages,” Wong says. Eating more foods rich in magnesium and potassium is a great idea as you approach menopause, in particular. “During menopause, women lose up to 20 percent of their bone mineral density, which dramatically increases their risk of osteoporosis,” she says. And beyond menopause, it’s also essential to make sure you’re getting enough of these nutrients because, as Wong tells us, “After menopause, blood pressure increases, which increases the risk of hypertension. and heart disease. About 60% of the magnesium in our body is stored in the bone.” Indicated!
Of course, talking to your doctor to come up with a personalized diet to target your unique needs is always your best option, but when in doubt, adding these foods to the mix is never a bad idea for women over 40. year !
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