How Your Diet Can Affect Your Age

How Your Diet Can Affect Your Age

No one likes to talk about aging.  For most of us, aging is associated with disease, disability, and a loss of function, so it makes sense that many people aren’t very happy about it. And of course, there is a billion dollar industry that has developed to make you feel even worse about getting older. But the secret to aging well isn’t really a secret, and it isn’t found in a cream or a pill, but in your diet.

Everyone has 2 different ages. There is your chronologic age, which is just how many years you have been alive. There is also your biological age, which is a measure of how the cells and organs in your body are functioning. Your chronologic age and your biological age can be very different. You can be a 60 year old chronologically, but your biological age could be 40, or it could be 80. Chronologic age can’t be changed, but your biological age definitely can. And the major way to stay young on the inside and keep your biological age nice and low, is through your diet and nutrition.

When scientists and researchers set out to determine the best diet for healthy biological aging, they started by studying groups of people all over the world who lived for very long periods of time without getting sick with chronic diseases like heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and dementia. They called these places The Blue Zones, and even though these Blue Zones are spread out all over the globe, they still share a few things in common. One of these common factors is that most of their diet is composed of plants. In fact, people in the Blue Zones typically consume 90% of their nutrients from whole plant foods. This makes sense, especially when you consider that science has shown us that inflammation and your immune system have a lot to do with your biological aging, and we know that unprocessed vegetables, fruits, whole grains and legumes, are anti-inflammatory and improve immune function.

Those people in the Blue Zones have several other things in common as well. They eat very little, if any processed food. They also consume very small amounts of processed sugar. Regular exercise is also an important part of their daily routine, and they have strong social support and tight knit communities.

When HEAL was developed, the people of the Blue Zones were definitely in mind. We know the science of aging tells us that getting lots of unprocessed vegetables, fruits and legumes into your daily routine is the key to disease-free longevity.  But we also knew that life happens, and consuming these whole plant foods is hard to do for many people. Many of us are just busy and on the go, or elderly and don’t have access to nutritious food. There are also those that are sick and trying to recover from illness, making nutrition even more critical. But whatever the life circumstance, HEAL makes it easier to achieve healthy aging through optimal nutrition, no matter where on the globe you happen to live.

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