It’s always important to eat healthy. As we approach our golden years, it is especially important. Most of our favorites – the fatty, sweet, fried, and calorie-dense food – are the ones seniors should eliminate. They are the root causes of many diseases. Eating healthy is the key to keeping our bodies at its prime even when we’re in our older years. Which is why a plant-based diet is becoming more and more popular among seniors.
While it’s true that switching to a plant-based diet can be a challenging transition for meat-eaters, it’s sure to give them optimal results. Everything we consume reflects in our body. Even though you may still be healthy now, the effects are cumulative. All the meat and processed food we ate in our earlier years could take a toll later in life.
- Cardiovascular disease accounts for the 610,000 deaths in the United States. It is one of the leading causes of deaths in the elderly.
- Statistics have shown that 9% of the population have diabetes and 29% of all the senior population have the disease.
- Many researchers are starting to call Alzheimer’s ‘Type 3 Diabetes” because of the link to insulin resistance
We can avoid these diseases of old-age through eating a plant-based diet.
How a Plant-Based Diet Positively Affects Your Overall Health
If you’re looking to stay healthy as you age, the best place to start is by minding your plate. Carefully choosing what you eat could help in reducing the symptoms of aging. Not to mention they can help you maintain a healthy body as well. Here are 5 reasons why you should consider switching to a plant-based diet as soon as possible. We’ve also included some examples of people who’ve achieved extraordinary results.
Slows down the aging process
Plant-based diets are popular for reversing the aging process in the elderly. Telomeres are a part of a human DNA that shorten over time. The shorter the Telomere, the older the person is biologically. Plant-based diets work to increase the production of the enzyme telomerase. Telomerase helps in rebuilding the length of the telomeres.
One perfect example of the amazing effect of plant-based diet on aging is the 76-year-old grandma, Annette Larkins.
She grows her own food in her backyard and constantly juices her produce. She is ‘raw plant-based’ which means that she only eats foods that are fresh, uncooked and unprocessed. Through her strict diet, Annette has essentially frozen her body’s aging process. At 73 years old, she doesn’t have any visible wrinkles!
Annette Larkins is one of the many who gives a true testimony of how powerful a plant-based diet really is in counteracting the aging process.
Helps in eliminating age-related diseases
Processed meat, sugar and dairy are one of the factors that contribute to the development of cancer. Cutting out these two food groups in your diet could greatly decrease your risk of developing cancer.
Beans, broccoli, and kale are great alternatives to meat when it comes to obtaining protein. Broccoli and kale provide the body with calcium that helps in fighting different diseases.
Annette considers food to be her “miracle cure”. When her friends started suffering from different kinds of diseases such as diabetes and cancer, Annette stayed in perfect health.
Still Working in His Nineties
A centenarian and former surgeon, Ellsworth Wareham, is now (2018) 103 years old. He started adapting to a plant-based diet during his mid-fifties. He did it after he learned that an animal-based diet can raise blood cholesterol levels. Ellsworth doesn’t suffer from joint pains or age-related tremors and considers his body to be in perfect shape. He also believed that eating a low-fat, plant-based diet could help to prevent coronary heart diseases.
Dr. Ellsworth kept working as a thoracic heart surgeon until he was 95!
Aids in reducing mid-life weight gain
Generally, as we grow older, our body metabolism slows down. When this happens, we also need to consume fewer calories and saturated fats. Since the plant-based diet is rich in fiber, it helps people become satisfied for much longer. Therefore, it helps people avoid unnecessary meals that add to their calorie intake for the day. Cutting down on meat also increases the absorption of essential minerals such as vitamin D, B3 and calcium.
Keeps you energized
A plant-based diet can help to provide seniors with the energy they need. Since plants take less work to digest than meat, more energy is available for the body to utilize throughout the day.
At age 80, Mimi Kirk became the “sexiest vegan ever” and it’s easy to see why. When asked what she loves most about her diet, her response was
“More energy! I spring out of bed in the morning like a 20-year old. I feel like I took ages off myself. All of my aches and pains are gone and my skin looks younger.”
Quinoa, whole grains, and almonds are perfect foods that have energizing qualities. Adding them to your diet along with regular exercise could certainly help you live a happier and more active life.
Plant-Based Diets Help in achieving a clearer mind
Dr. Ellsworth credits his good and clear mind to his plant-based lifestyle. Most people have also claimed to have a clearer mind when they started their plant-based diets.
Vegetables such as chicken peas, broccoli, and cauliflower have boost the activities of the brain. They give people a clearer insight into a lot of things. Plants also help in preventing the risks of developing dementia in older people.
Annette, Mimi, and Dr. Ellsworth are perfect examples of people who are living a fulfilling life because of a plant-based diet.
Transitioning to a plant-based lifestyle doesn’t necessarily need to be a difficult one. Mimi has suggested to start by incorporating an all-plant smoothie to your meals. Eventually, you’ll be able to move more towards plants and away from all the processed foods. Go an extra mile and add a nutritious plant-based lunch to the mix. As you maintain this routine, you’ll slowly find switching to a raw plant-based diet a not so difficult transition.
What’s the Difference Between a Plant-Based Diet, a Vegan Diet and a Vegetarian Diet?
If you’ve heard of the word ‘Plant-Based’, you may have also come across the words, ‘vegetarian’ and ‘Vegan’. The first question that comes into mind when you hear these words is, “What’s the difference between the three?”
The core differences are…
|Plant-Based||· A combination of Vegetarian and Vegan. They try to avoid eating any products that come from animals (meat, dairy, eggs etc.)
· Plant-based people are more into healthy living although they may care about animals as well
So whether you go for plant-based, vegan or vegetarian, you’re sure to reap the benefits of a plant-based diet. It’ never too late to make a change; your body will thank you.
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