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8 superfood essentials for seniors

8 superfood essentials for seniors – Live Great – Great Eastern Life

As we age, our nutritional needs change - we require fewer calories, but more antioxidants, vitamins and other nutrients to stave off disease and signs of aging. Here are some great Superfoods - nutritionally dense food sources - to include into your diet.

  1. Salmon and tuna
    These favourites of sashimi- and sushi-lovers pack an Omega-3 power punch. Frequent intake of omega-3 essential fatty acids (called DHAs) can reduce bad cholesterol and raise good cholesterol. This reduces the risk of clogged arteries and heart attacks. Other oily fish such as mackerel and sardines also contain lots of omega-3. Eat oily fish such as salmon, tuna, cod, sardines or mackerel about three to four times a week.

  2. Walnuts and almonds
    Though nuts are a relatively high-calorie food - a handful of walnuts or almonds a day can be beneficial in reducing the risk of heart disease. Not only are these nuts high in omega-3, they also contain vitamin E - useful in lowering the risk of Alzheimer's disease. Homemade almond or walnut paste - a favourite Chinese dessert - or in the form of almond or walnut butter is a great way to enjoy these nuts as well! Try to eat a handful of walnuts or almonds a day - or have a tablespoon of almond butter on toast with apple slices or on its own, as a creamy snack.

  3. Carrots
    Full of natural vitamin A, vitamin C, zinc and beta carotenes, carrots may be able to substantially decrease the risk Alzheimer's disease and protect the eyes. To preserve the goodness of carrots while ensuring they're still easy to eat, steam them lightly or juice them! But don't overdo it as well - about three carrots a day is the suggested maximum amount!

  4. Eggs
    Full of easily digested protein and suitable for a wide variety of preparations, eggs are a great source of nutrition - especially for anyone who is ill or has a small appetite. Eggs also contain lots of iodine, phosphorus, calcium and zinc that help keep bodily functions at their peak. Although the yolks are relatively high in cholesterol, eating eggs in moderation won't affect blood cholesterol. In fact, egg yolks contain lecithin, a natural emulsifier and may reduce cholesterol absorption! About 3 to 4 eggs a week is an acceptable heart-healthy amount. Better yet, opt for fortified eggs for a bigger nutritional boost.

  5. Flax seeds
    Flax seeds look like brown sesame seeds and contain high levels of lignans, a type of omega-3 fatty acid. The seeds are also high in fibre. Research has found that flax seeds may have anti-cancer proper ties, help stabilise blood sugar (good for managing diabetes) and aid in relieving constipation. Add a little freshly crushed flax seeds into your cereal, salad, smoothies or baked goods. Crushing flax seeds before use releases the goodness and increases its bio-availability (absorption). Because of its laxative and high phytoestrogen content, be sure to speak with your doctor before including flax seeds into your diet. Try adding a teaspoon into your diet and building up to about a tablespoon a day.

  6. Blueberries
    Great as a snack, in a salad or a smoothie, blueberries are packed with antioxidants and vitamins B6 and B12, folic acid and phytoflavinoids, potassium and vitamin C. This super combination of nutrients helps combat heart disease, cancer and inflammation. Eat a handful of fresh berries a day for a dose of vitamin C goodness other nutrients.

  7. Dark chocolate
    Not only does chocolate help relieve stress, its high antioxidant profile makes it great for you. Dark chocolate especially has more antioxidants. Opt for dark chocolate that's 60% or higher in cocoa content. Darker chocolate is also lower in fat and sugar. It's okay to have a small square a day - go on, treat yourself.

  8. Oatmeal
    Packed with nutrition, a typical serving of oats (about 1 cup) is packed with protein, fibre, vitamin B and magnesium. Oatmeal also has the benefit of lowering cholesterol, alleviating constipation, and control blood sugar levels. Cooked into soft and fragrant porridge with milk, oatmeal is also easy to eat and quick to prepare. Combine your superfoods for a superbreakfast: try an oatmeal porridge with flax seeds and fresh blueberries!
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