On most people aging is most apparent on their skin. Ultraviolet (UV) radiation (from the sun or artificial means) ages the skin more quickly. Cocoa beans, from which chocolate is made, have a higher antioxidant capacity than any other food, and the high concentration of antioxidant flavanols in cocoa beans helps reduce inflammation of the skin caused by exposure to UV light. Eating dark chocolate can increase circulation in the skin and improve its ability to retain moisture, which can reduce the appearance of wrinkles. Ingesting dark chocolate provides the greatest benefits. As is the case with whole grains the refining process of chocolate can reduce or eliminate the benefits by stripping away the antioxidant flavanols.
Preventing degenerative eye disease may be possible because of wo antioxidants (lutein and zeaxanthin) in They have been found to protect against macular degeneration, which affects 20 per cent of people over 65 and is the leading cause of age-related. In one study, people consuming lutein-rich vegetables five to six times a week had an 86 per cent lower risk of having advanced macular degeneration than people consuming them less than once a month. Green beans and sweet corn also provide this benefit.
Quercetin, a flavonoid antioxidant found in yellow and red onions provide anti-inflammatory benefits. Inflammation is a factor in many age-related conditions, including arthritis, and possibly loss of skin elasticity. Frying onions does not reduce their quercetin content. These benefits can also be derived from green beans, apples and tea.
Garlic anti-aging benefits include lowering cholesterol and blood pressure, reducing inflammation, and protecting and maintaining cell health. Garlic is a natural way to boost the immune system. Scientific studies confirm its benefit as an anti-viral and anti-bacterial food. Garlic has also been linked to helping reduce the growth and spread of cancer cells. Several studies have shown that the more garlic — both cooked and uncooked — a person eats, the lower their risk of getting stomach or intestinal cancers. It’s also been linked to reduced rates of breast and pancreatic cancers. The health benefits of garlic appear to be from the hydrogen sulfide found in it. Hydrogen sulfide is an antioxidant that relaxes the arteries and promotes blood flow, and studies have even linked it to cancer defense.
Carrots are a good source of alpha- and beta-carotene, which help strengthen the immune system and may help ward off cancers. A high intake of carotenoids can help to protect the skin from UV damage and premature aging. Sweet potatoes, apricots and mangoes also provide this protection.
Of the above chocolate is still my favorite 🙂