Can foods possibly expedite aging?
Yes. There’s no question that foods and nutrients, or lack thereof, can “age” our cells and tissues.
There are several ways foods and nutrients can speed aging. They can cause:
Which foods are the biggest agers?
Cheap Commercial Condiments, Dressings, and Processed Foods: Any commercial food loaded with soybean oil, or other unhealthy omega-6 oils, are a problem. These cheap fat are loaded with omega-6s, which cause more pro-inflammatory hormones to be produced in our bodies.
Unhealthy TV Dinners: Most TV dinners contain both cheap oils (like soybean) and very high amounts of sodium. On top of the inflammation from unhealthy fats, the sodium can cause a puffy appearance.
High-Sugar Energy Drinks and Soda: These drinks are just as bad as you can get for nutrition. Most of them have high fructose corn syrup as a sweetener, and often it’s a very large amount. Regular sugar is linked to skin inflammation and breakouts, damaging skin collagen. Fructose. Then, if used regularly, the caffeine can dehydrate the skin and increase the appearance of wrinkles and sagging.
Deep-Fried Foods, Especially from Fast Food Restaurants: When oils are heated to very high heats, they can actually produce free radicals that are harmful when eaten. Just like the free radicals that enter the body from the environment, these free radicals in food take aim at the body’s cells and do damage. Free radicals and their accumulative oxidative stress are the main culprits in aging tissues.
The most common food used in restaurants is corn oil. It is high omega-6 to start with, and worse when used at very high deep-frying heats.
In fact, consumption of corn and vegetable oils may impair cell respiration and reduce immune functions within the body.
Margarine and Processed Foods with Hydrogenated Oils: Hydrogenated oils are created when liquid oil is chemically altered to become a solid. This is termed “transfat” due to the new chemical structure. Transfats are highly inflammatory and thereby do damage to your heart, skin, and all systems.
Agave and Other Simple Sugars: Although agave may seem healthier than other sugars, it’s not. In fact, it is a liquid sweetener, high in fructose. Fructose is metabolized in the liver, turns into triglycerides and fat, and breaks down collagen and elastin.
What’s more, diets high in refined sugary drinks are associated with brain aging, and may even be linked to degenerative diseases (1).
Alcohol: High alcohol intake can lead to the production of reactive oxygen species (ROS), and this results in overall oxidative stress. What’s more, when alcohol is mixed with simple sugars, it’s a one-two punch for oxidative stress and inflammation.
If consumed to the point of a hangover, free radicals are significantly increased in the brain. Free radicals contribute to aging and damage to cells (2).
Chips and Snacks with Hydrogenated Oils: Just like margarine, any processed foods can contain trans-fatty acids.
These synthetic fats increase interleukin 6 in the body, and this is a sign of overall inflammation. In fact, liver cells show increased cellular stress with hydrogenated oil consumption (3).
Watch out for “hydrogenated oils” in ingredients lists EVEN IF the label states zero grams of trans fats.
High Sodium Seasonings and Canned Soup: While some canned soups are better than others, watch out for ones with really high amounts of sodium. Oftentimes, one can tops 1000 milligrams sodium, and the sodium may come from synthetic chemicals rather than real salt. High sodium intake can cause water retention and bloat, making you appear puffy and tired.
Too Much Coffee or Other Teeth-Staining Drinks: If you drink coffee, black tea, or wine, you may experience teeth-staining, which can age your smile. To prevent stains and keep these favorites off the top 10 foods that up aging, simply brush your teeth or chew a xylitol-based gum soon after your coffee. Enjoy a warm cup of tea without the aging side effects.
Foods and nutrients impact your body’s “aging” from cellular health to skin and wrinkles to teeth. Take care to treat your body well with the right nutrients, and it will reflect health. Stay tuned for the top foods to slow again – coming soon!