How not to become(in youth) an old grump, and preferably never?

Do you ever wonder what the secret of fully functional, positive, life-oriented 100-year-olds?

Probably not… because I didn’t neither – until I met two women in London who are over 100 years old. The age is impressive – especially as these people are in a good physical and mental condition.

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I asked them what their secret was for longevity and their good condition. It was honey to my dietician’s ears. The first lady said good food and a happy life. The second one, eat simply, small portions and live slowly and modestly.

For a moment I thought that maybe this amazing conversation scenario was happening just in my(fixed on a healthy lifestyle) head.

I asked more questions to clarify what these wonderful women meant. One of them by the concept of good food meant – HOMEMADE, SIMPLE, UNPROCESSED meals, cooked traditionally WITH HEART. Lots of vegetables, fish and sometimes meat. The second one told me another thing, that is really important to ENJOY LIFE and don’t fall into the trap of overthinking(especially about the past). Some example? Here we go:

                          it made me crazy about it

I started to explore the subject of long-lived people. I was studying dependencies related to longevity. When I was looking for information, it turned out that they are more people in the UK about more than 100 hundred years of life experience.

Have you heard about the blue zones?

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These are the places where most people who live over a hundred years were recorded.

I would try to serve you a mix of their dietary conclusions and conclusions of many researchers who have been involved in researching the community of the blue zones, among others.

It will be the answer to the question – what affects long-term human life? This is influenced by the spectrum of activities: WAY OF EATING(for my own dietary satisfaction and support my ego), but of course different part of life as the mental, physical and social sphere.

For some obvious reason, I will focus on diet sphere.

YOUR DIET

(if you would like live long and happy)

EAT 80%

One of the rules of people living in Okinawa (blue zone) is – “hara hahi bu” – which means eat just enough to feel full in 80%.

80%

From a dietary point of view, this might be crucial. If our portion is too large, the body will digest less efficient. The large meals might cause several issues: for example with your digestion, hormones balance or level of glucose in your blood. Usually, one very large meal, causes other large meals, due to the habit of serving sizes(physical and mental).

In addition, as many people know, the body needs time to notice that what has been eaten is actually sufficient, so it’s worth taking advantage of the 15-20 minutes available for eating. A longer eating time not only affects satiety but also improves digestion.

APPRECIATE POWER OF VEGGIES

Maybe 100 years old people will be more convincing. “eat more vegetables, vegetables are very healthy because of fibre, vitamins,…” We – dieticians, are constantly repeating this principle, but for our voices, many of you have been taught how to ignore unconsciously.

vegetables also have a bad reputation when it comes to taste

 

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I meet with the fact that some people desperately don’t want to eat vegetables, as below:

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Not only blue zones are proof that eating a lot of vegetables brings health benefits, but also the food pyramid –  emphasized this healthy relation:

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In the first place when it comes to nutrition, we can see – vegetables and fruits. We should eat vegetables and fruits in the largest amounts in our diet in a ratio of 3: 1 in favour of vegetables.

 

DIVERSIFY PROTEIN SOURCES

This rule is also promoted by the Institute of Food and Nutrition. In recent years there has been an increase in meat consumption by the population. Overconsumption of saturated fatty acids that are found in fatty meat can have a key impact on the development of cardiovascular disease.

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In Europe, the source of protein is mostly: poultry, beef, pork, but we should also remember about fish, dairy products, eggs, and vegan sources beans, grains, tofu, seitan, tempeh etc. – that should be used alternately with meat.

vegan protein

 

FOLLOW SIMPLICITY

We should choose those things whose have been processed as little as possible, and stay away from unfriendly ingredients (sugar, saturated fat, preservatives).

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If we cook or order something – we should choose a simple meal, and most natural. Try to avoid frying things, or at least limit it to a large extent. If we already choose ready-made products – look for a high level of fibre, whole grain food, natural sources of healthy fats, natural ingredients.

RED WINE

Many of these elders recommend drinking small amounts of red wine. We have confirmed research on this. Research suggests that drinking an occasional glass of red wine is good for you. It provides antioxidants, may promote longevity, and can help protect against heart disease and harmful inflammation, among others benefits.

However, it’s important to remember that drinking wine is not healthy for everyone, nor is it necessary.

BE ACTIVE

Regular physical activity is essential for our health. Physical activity improves metabolism, mobility, condition of the circulatory system, our cells are better oxygenated. Activity participates in the production of happiness hormones and helps de-stressing. A good mood can contribute to better food choices.

The healthy eating pyramid emphasizes how important for our health is physical activity(is the first thing in the pyramid):

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Regular exercise should be tailored to our abilities and preferences. For example, for someone, it will be a regular walk or swimming in the pool, for others yoga or running.

 

TRUST THE NATURAL PHARMACY

A healthy balanced diet prevent and support the treatment of many diseases!

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For example, the pre-diabetes thanks to a radical change in lifestyle: diet, physical activity – allows significant risk reduction transition into diabetes. It is good to minimize pharmaceutical treatment as much as possible.

SUMMARY

Wonderful centenarians advise:

  1. EAT 80%
  2. TRUST THE NATURAL PHARMACY
  3. DIVERSIFY PROTEIN SOURCES
  4. BE ACTIVE
  5. APPRECIATE POWER OF VEGGIES
  6. FOLLOW SIMPLICITY