The idea of “anti-aging” is funny. You are never going to stop aging; there is no food you can eat that will stop you from aging. On this matter, Father Time reigns supreme. For this reason, I can’t help but laugh at all the websites that talk about anti-aging foods. There is no food that can stop you from getting older! One of the funniest examples of this, I just can’t help sharing: one site claims that dermatologists say that aging begins in our early twenties. Seriously?! I’m pretty sure that aging begins right from the womb, if not conception itself!
What these sites are talking about, really, is the visible signs of aging such as wrinkles, weight gain, hair graying, and so on. These things are not “aging” though, and I honestly don’t understand how the word “aging” can be used in this way, to refer to these visible signs or affects of aging which are perceived as undesirable in our society for such-and-such reasons.
That being said, I do not think that there are any foods that can stop or even slow down the aging process; you are just going to age, period. On the other hand, if you eat well and otherwise generally take care of yourself, then of course you will look healthier, fitter, and younger. There is a reason why we associate certain visible signs of neglect with age, or why we think people who don’t take care of themselves look older: we associate age with neglect because, typically, people as they get older in our society stop taking care of themselves. This is completely particular to the type of society that we have; there is no reason that, in itself, neglect of oneself should be associate with age.
So, if you are at the stage where you are concerned about the visible signs of “aging” (which may actually just be signs of neglecting yourself) and you are not already in the habit of eating vegetables (an idea that boggles my mind) then you may want to consider some of these alleged “anti-aging” veggies:
1.) Spinach: It boasts flavanoids that act as antioxidants, which have been suggested to be good for your skin. Also, the Vitamin C in Spinach allegedly keeps you skin looking smooth and wrinkle free. Spinach also helps to prevent cancer of the liver, ovaries, colon, and prostrate, and has lots of Vitamin A, B, D, and K.
2.) Carrots: Has Vitamin C on board as well. Also, beta-carotene which is supposed to be good for the visible affects of aging. Carrots also, believe it or not, protect your DNA. They also help to fight against cataracts (Mom was right! They are good for your eyes!). On top of the other vitamins, carrots also have Vitamin A, B, in addition to calcium, potassium, and sodium.
3.) Broccoli: This one is unstoppable: Vitamin C, sulfur, amino acids, beta-carotene, and Vitamin E – all of which have been tagged as tireless soldiers in the fight against the visible signs of aging. Broccoli also helps fight diabetes, and protects against brain damage.
4.) Cauliflower: This one helps prevent breast cancer. It is also good for your heart, and helps to prevent strokes. It contains allicin, and is high in Vitamin C.
5.) Red bell peppers: These, in addition to helping prevent sunburn, are good for cardiovascular health. Again, a good source of Vitamin C as well.
6.) Green cabbage: This one aids blood clotting, and helps lower blood pressure. Apparently, green cabbage is the best vegetable there is for fighting cancer. It contains Vitamin C, calcium, and fibre.
7.) Butternut squash: This one is prevents wrinkles, helps you see better in the dark, and is good for your heart. It contains Vitamin C, A, potassium, and niacin.
8.) Arugula: This is good for your eyes, lowers the risk of birth defects, as well as helping bones to resist fracturing. It contains Vitamin C, folic acid, potassium, and fiber.
9.) Tomatoes: These ones have something called lycopene, which help reduce degenerative diseases (something which could be confused with the visible signs of aging). Tomatoes also help to stop inflammation.
10.) Pumpkin: This one is good for arthritis (an invisible but still unpleasant sign of aging). It also decreases inflammation. It is high in Vitamin C as well as fiber.
To make a long story short: vegetables are good for you. If you are looking for vegetables that will be good for you particularly in their ability to fight or hide certain signs of aging, then the ones listed above might be good ones to start with. Be aware, however, that none of these vegetables is a miracle cure or quick fix that will magically fix all of your health problems. If you generally don’t take care of yourself, but then try to fit in some broccoli or pumpkin here and there to make up for it, then they probably aren’t going to do much for you. Your best bet for fighting the signs of aging is simply to eat healthy (including lots and lots of vegetables) all the time, on top of just generally taking care of yourself in other ways like regular exercise or engaging in fruitful activities and having a happy life.
As we said above: there is no way for you to stop aging, and you do not start aging in your twenties. You are always aging; Father Time is unstoppable. But, of course, so long as you do not neglect yourself, as many people in our society do as they grow older, the signs of your age will perhaps not be so noticeable to yourself or others. If I wanted to go a step farther, I would even suggest that there is nothing wrong with aging in the first place, and that there is something strange about our youth-obsessed culture. Or, to put the question another way, why, by the time that we are old enough to be worried about our age, have we not become sophisticated enough to know that things like wrinkles and grey hair are totally unimportant?