How to Fix An AGE'ing Diet

It seems everyone is looking for the fountain of youth…the ticket to add live to your years and years to your life.

What many people do not realize is your diet is responsible for 80% of your body composition and the secret to healthy aging, and at times what appears to be anti-aging- is what you DON’T EAT.

We have been talking a lot about elevated blood sugar, insulin resistance and hyperinsulinemia, and how it puts a wrench in one’s metabolic engine. Now I want to share with you what are known as Advanced Glycation End Products, or AGE’s.

AGE’s are a byproduct of glycation, which is a result of elevated blood sugar and insulin, where sugars attach to proteins or fat, leading to damage of cells, organs and body systems.

AGE’s also accumulate naturally as you age, and are created when certain foods are cooked at high temperatures.

The acronym, A.G.E.s is perfect, because AGE’s essentially accelerate the aging process.

While low levels are generally nothing to worry about, high levels have been shown to cause oxidative stress and inflammation in the body, and have been linked to diseases, such as diabetes, heart disease, kidney failure, Alzheimer’s and even premature aging.

Studies have shown that in diets and lifestyle actions that keep AGE’s in check, participants benefited from increased insulin sensitivity, a modest decrease in body weight, lower AGE levels, lower levels of oxidative stress, inflammation, reduced risk of heart and kidney disease and premature aging.

So how do we keep AGE’s in check?

We want to follow a low glycemic and whole foods diet. Keeping with healthy blood sugar and insulin levels will reduce the risk of glycation, thus producing more AGE’s.

Consume antioxidant rich foods and supplements. Like they do with free radicals, natural antioxidants such as vitamin C, polyphenols, and flavonoids have shown to hinder the formation of AGE’s. The rule of thumb is generally to consume a diet full of colorful vegetables, moderate fruits (due to high sugar content) herbs and spices, while topping off with quality supplements such as curcumin, resveratrol and green tea.

Avoid high heat and charred cooking. AGE’s are created from cooking and blackening foods with high eat. Consider different methods such as stewing, poaching, boiling and steaming.

Lastly, we want to move. Active lifestyles have been shown to reduce the amount of AGE’s in the body, while a sedentary lifestyle creates a breeding ground and climate for AGE’s to flourish.

I am not asking you to run marathons, or train hard at the gym every day, actually, I rather you not. Consider incorporating regular movements throughout the day, including mini breaks from work, a light walk at lunch or after dinner. It’s the consistency throughout the day which has shown profound benefits over a structured workout followed by an otherwise sedentary lifestyle in the office cubicle, extensive commuting and traveling, or in front of the TV.

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