THIS simple diet change can increase life expectancy by up to 10 years, study suggests
(NaturalHealth365) We all know that we are what we eat; it’s knowing what to eat that can prove difficult. Your diet is a critical factor in your long-term health, and the overwhelming number of options by which we’re surrounded makes it hard to know how to choose.
Around every corner is another diet craze, another food to avoid, another one to add. It’s all pretty dizzying. Luckily, there is a simple solution to greater health and longevity. In fact, this one simple diet change can increase your lifespan by as much to 10 years, a recent study says. So what have you got to lose?
Ditching the Western diet could add 10 years to your lifespan
Definitions for the Western diet vary. Authors studying microbiota and immune response defined the Western diet as “high dietary intake of saturated fats and sucrose and low intake of fiber.”
The last hundred years have drastically increased the amount of processed wheat, sugar, dairy, and meat worldwide. At the same time, fresh fruits and vegetables – especially of an organic nature – are harder to come by. As a result, in some places, food deserts prevail, making it difficult for families to pursue a healthy diet.
That doesn’t mean it’s impossible, of course. The first step is a simple substitution that anyone can do, such as:
- Tea and herbal drinks for soda and fruit juice
- Apples and bananas (available almost everywhere year-round) for snacks or treats
- Whole grains for processed ones
- Red and processed meat for fish or plant-based foods
- Spices and herbs for processed table salt
Not sure where to start? Here is what to add to your diet immediately
According to the authors of the diet and longevity study, it takes more than simply getting rid of bad foods. The next step is to add in better ones.
Many people, for example, do not have a high ratio of nuts and seeds in their diets. Boosting your nut intake increases antioxidants to fight cancer-causing free radicals, ups anti-inflammatory compounds in your body, and adds loads of protein and good fats.
Legumes are similarly beneficial, full of protein and collagen as well as antioxidants and fiber. This keeps your digestive tract moving, slows digestion (which leads to fewer cravings), and increases nutrient absorption.
Lower inflammation by eating foods containing THESE unique plant compounds
Polyphenols are especially important to longevity. They fight cancer, raise antioxidant levels and reduce inflammation.
The good news is, they’re hiding in plain sight. Researchers have identified more than 8,000 phenolic compounds in a wide variety of plants. Found in nuts, legumes, cereal, coffee, and tea, you can accrue more simply by subbing plant-based whole ingredients in traditional Western ones.
Making healthy food choices does not have to be difficult
You don’t necessarily have to get rid of everything you love. We all enjoy a slice of birthday cake now and again, after all.
However, it’s important to minimize that “pick your poison” mentality, If you treat everything as for your health vs. for your enjoyment, you will continue to struggle with food choices.
Instead of axing the Western diet as a whole, consider instituting rules regarding when you’ll eat those traditionally Western foods and stick to them. Making better choices will take you far in life, quite literally, for years to come.
Sources for this article include: