How to Eat Your Way to a Healthier Life (And Are Body Part-Shaped Foods Good for Them?)
The old saying suggests that you are what you eat.
While it may just be a catchy slogan to promote good nutrition habits, there is some truth to the fact that your body responds to the foods you eat. An abundance of certain foods can promote positive health in certain areas. So, how can you eat your way to a healthier life?
Food for Your Brain
The shape of the walnut gives weight to the idea that foods that are good for the part of your body resemble the body part itself. The nut is packed full of the fatty alpha-linolenic acid and polyphenolic compounds. These work in tandem to combat inflammation and oxidative stress, which are catalysts of a decline in cognitive functions. The omega-3 fatty oils in fish are also conducive for brain development and can help improve memory functions.
Indeed, the American Academy of Neurology found in 2008 that eating fatty fish (such as tuna) three or more times a week led to a 26% lower risk of dangerous brain lesions that worked towards cognitive impairment in older age. As well as eating food rich in omega-3 and other oils, it’s important to keep the brain active. Daily puzzles can help keep the brain agile. This should be accompanied by adequate physical exercise, which will help overall fitness.
Food for Your Eyes
The old wives’ tale that carrots are good for your eyes does have some merit in scientific fact. Invented by the British during the Second World War in order to deal with the carrot glut and also to mask the invention of new radar technology, it claimed that eating carrots supposedly helped you see in the dark. Night vision aside, carrots are packed full of beta carotene and lutein, which do in fact help the eyes. Vitamin C, found in fruits such as oranges, can also be hugely beneficial for boosting blood vessels in the eyes.
Carrots might help your eyes to an extent, but when your vision starts failing, no intake of root vegetables can limit the damage. There are many options for fending off further damage to the eyes – or to help you live with the inevitability that comes with genetic or age-related eyesight issues. For example, as the range of progressive lenses show, your eyesight can be boosted by bifocals that are tailored to your specific vision needs. Adding carrots and other eye-boosting foods such as leafy vegetables, spinach, nuts, fish, and berries, can provide good support to any prescription eyewear you may require.
Food for Your Heart
Food and drink and its effect on your heart is oft-debated in science. One minute eggs are good for boosting high levels of positive cholesterol one day, and the next they are dangerous and can contribute to heart damage. Red wine and coffee are also lambasted one day, and hero-worshipped the next for the effects on the heart. But what foods are actually good for the heart? Well, some say that tomatoes are reminiscent of the heart and as per the theory, they are actually good for the heart. High levels of lycopene in this veggie mean that they lower levels of LDL (bad cholesterol).
Green leafy vegetables that are crammed full of vitamins, including vitamins E and B, are especially useful for heart health, while studies have shown that coffee is actually beneficial to the heart as it helps protect cells from degenerative damage. Moreover, berries are filled with phytonutrients, which are good for heart health, while red wine does actually improve HDL levels (good cholesterol). Chocolate can also provide benefits for the heart – as long as it’s dark and has a high cocoa content. The higher the amount of cocoa, the lower the sugar.
Almost every body part has a corresponding food that will help its function or prevent further degenerative damage. For the main organs – the brain, the heart, and the eyes – there are a plethora of foods that can help you live a healthier life. Luckily, a lot of these foods are in your diets anyway and some clever switches could help you prioritize filling your plate with good nutrients.