Did you know specific chemicals in foods such as sulforaphane, a phytochemical in broccoli actually helps your genes to ratchet up your body's natural defense systems. Thus, helping to fight free radical and inactivate toxins before they can do the damage that leads serious ailments and even premature aging.

As foods scientists continue unravel the mysteries of Mother Nature, the hope is one day is to tell someone what diseases or maladies they are might be genetically predispositioned so individuals can have the knowledge for preventive treatment and an appropriate diet for their entire life.

By knowing this knowledge early in an individual’s life, one will be able to know which foods to add and which ones to avoid. Thus, allowing them to properly manage their life and have a proactive role in preventing or deterring disease. In the meantime, many foods have been determined to pack a punch to the aging process.

Lycopene is just one example. Lycopene is the pigment that makes tomatoes red and it also appears to fight free radicals. In addition, it’s also been associated in greater self-sufficiency in elderly adults. While fresh tomatoes have a good hit of lycopene, the most absorbable forms are found in cooked tomato products, such as spaghetti sauce and soup and prepared salsas. Pink grapefruit, guava, red bell peppers, and watermelon are also rich in lycopene.

Another culinary habit to enjoy in your diet is to eat at least two cups of orange fruits like sweet potatoes, squash and carrots daily. This boosts the intake of beta-carotene, which converts to vitamin A, essential for healthy skin and eyes, and which may also reduce the risk of serious ailments. Lutein and lycopene, also found in orange produce, also help reduce the risk of macular degeneration and may protect skin from sun damage and even reduce wrinkling as well. Mangos and cantaloupes are also beta-carotene endowed.

The third suggestion is to eat dark leafy greens. They have been showed to significantly reduce your risk for heart disease and may also save your eyesight. Dietary guidelines advise at least three cups of greens a week. Frozen or bagged is as good as fresh.

Don’t forget the mental aging process either. The heart-healthy omega 3 fatty acids have also recently been shown to keep your brain sharp. A recent study found that a higher intake of fatty fish significantly reduced mental decline. If fresh fish isn't an option, go for canned tuna, salmon, and sardines. In addition, to omega 3’s, the wild blueberry has also show to help maintain healthy brain function and support eye health.

Author's Bio: 

Mr. LaPointe is Director of Health and Fruit Education at Traverse Bay Farms. He is the author of several books including The Superfruit Handbook, Blueberry Health Report and How to Get a More Restful Night's Sleep Naturally. He has been a guest on numerous radio shows across the nation discussing the natural health benefits of superfoods and superfruits. You can contact Mr. LaPointe from www.TraverseBayFarms.com

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