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Forever Young Naturally Eating
21. Natural Nutrition Selecting good sugar
For baking and to scatter over bitter food and drinks choose dark sugars: brown sugar contains molasses, a good source of iron, and is so flavorful a little goes a long way when stirred into deserts, oatmeal, and drinks. By adding the sugar yourself, you can monitor how much you are taking on board. Buy organic and fair-trade if desired. Honey is a sweetener and an antioxidant with fantastic health-giving properties, used in hospitals for wound healing. Studies suggest it may help prevent heart disease and offer anticavity protection for teeth.
22. Natural Nutrition Avoid artificial sweeteners
Many popular artificial sweeteners contain ingredients that may be harmful to your health. Check for aspartame (E951), which produces the toxin methanol, which the body can process only in small amounts, and has been associated with headaches and menstrual problems. Saccharin (E954) has been linked with bladder cancer. Acesulfame K (E950) has also been linked with cancer, while sorbitol (E420) and mannitol (E421) are associated with bloating.
23. Natural Nutrition Discovering hidden sugar
It’s difficult to keep to the World Health Organization’s recommended daily limit for sugar (no more than 10 percent of your daily food intake) when it appears in so many forms in packaged, processed foods. If any of the following come near the top of an ingredients list or the product contains more than one in addition to sugar, leave that breakfast cereal, ketchup, or diet food on the shelf:
dextrose glucose corn syrup sucrose fructose HFCS (high fructose corn syrup)
24. Natural Nutrition Protein provision
Aim for two servings of protein a day, from meat and fish, legumes, nuts, or dairy produce. In one osteoporosis study, people with the highest intake of protein maintained bone mineral density significantly better than those who ate less.
25. Natural Nutrition Fish for health
Oily fish such as salmon, sardines, and mackerel are high in omega-3 fatty acids, which protect brain and eye health, protect the heart, can ease depression and guard against inflammation that can cause stiff, painful joints. Aim for at least two portions a week.
26. Natural Nutrition Which fish is best
Opt for small fish lower down the food chain, such as sardines, herring, and anchovies, as well as wild salmon. These contain 16 times fewer PCBs (polychlorinated biphenyls—cancer-causing neurological toxins that accumulate in the body) than farmed salmon according to a study by the Environmental Working Group. Larger carnivorous fish higher up the food chain have been found to contain high levels of environmental pollutants, including mercury, dioxins, and PCBs.
27. Natural Nutrition Red meat for iron
Red meat is a particularly good source of iron, which older people tend to be deficient in. Serve meat with green leafy vegetables and a glass of fresh orange juice to maximize absorption.
28. Natural Nutrition Choose free range
Beef from herds that graze on pasture contains more healthy fats than meat from animals fed on dry, sometimes additive-laced feeds.
29. Natural Nutrition Find a good butcher
Look for a butcher who sources locally and chalks up which farmer (and even which field) the stock comes from. A good butcher often makes his own sausages or buys them in from artisan producers. He will be able to recommend particular cuts and offer meat that is in season, such as game and spring lamb, and tends not to offer prepacked portions: vacuum-packed meat doesn’t look or taste so good. Free-range beef also contains a good amount of antioxidant selenium. Organic farmers usually keep fewer animals per acre and so their animal husbandry tends to be better. Artificial hormones and other additives are banned. This leads to better-tasting meat. If you are concerned by the expense, opt for cheaper cuts for stewing and other forms of long cooking, or eat less. Try game, such as rabbit, pheasant and quail, which tend to be free range.
30. Natural Nutrition Eating poultry
Chicken is a good source of selenium, involved in DNA repair and cancer protection; niacin, which helps protect brain function as we age; and vitamin B6 for energy and healthy heart and blood vessels. Choose free-range chicken fed an organic diet. To seal in flavor and moisture leave the skin on while cooking.
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