6 smoothie habits to help you live longer, dieticians say: eat this, not that

You already know some of the so-called secrets to living longer: eating a balanced diet with mostly whole foods, avoiding smoking and limiting alcohol, exercising regularly and minimizing stress by learning healthy mechanisms to cope with it. But did you know that there are also some habits that can promote longevity specifically related to those daily smoothies you’re whipping up in your blender?

True: Experts say you should pay attention to which foods you include because some have special benefits when it comes to fending off chronic diseases and other health problems that shorten your life span. Smoothies included.

“Smoothies are a great tool for promoting health and longevity because they are a tasty, fast and efficient way to harness the powers of food by mixing more delicious superfoods in a glass as a small meal or snack,” says Jenna Volpe, RDN , LD. “It’s important to make sure a smoothie still meets macronutrient requirements by adding not only fruits and vegetables, but also protein and healthy fats for satiety.”

The next time you’re making a smoothie, whether it’s for breakfast, an afternoon snack, or pre-workout or post-workout fuel, consider adopting at least a couple of the following habits to help you live longer. So, for tips on healthier drinking, here is # 1 best juice. 1 to drink every day, says science.

Almond Butter
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Pascalyn Annoh, RD of Fed & Flourishing, highly recommends incorporating plant-based proteins such as pumpkin seeds, almond butter, silken tofu and chickpeas in your smoothies, not only to make them more filling, but also to increase your chances of living a longer life.

A 2020 study published in Bmj found that plant protein intake was significantly associated with a lower risk of all-cause mortality and cardiovascular disease mortality. Notably, only a 3% daily increase in energy from plant proteins has been linked to a 5% lower risk of death from all causes.

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Sporting Smiles contributor Katie Tomaschko, MS, RDN, says smoothies should always include some kind of antioxidant-rich fruit for maximum life-extending benefits.

“Antioxidants fight cancer-causing free radicals in the body,” he explains. “Cancer is a leading cause of death in this country, so antioxidants should be a top priority for everyone.”

Although most fruits contain some form of antioxidants, Volpe notes that the berries boast one of the highest concentrations.

Berries are rich in a type of antioxidant called anthocyanins“says Volpe.” Studies have shown that these antioxidants can block DNA damage, thus delaying cellular aging when consumed regularly. “

Hemp seeds
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While hemp seeds may be tiny, they are packed with huge health benefits – in fact, Anna Rios, RD at Alliance Medical Center and founder of Healthy Simple Yum, says they’re one of the most nutritious smoothie ingredients you can use. .

Hemp seeds are rich in alpha-linolenic acid, a healthy fat that helps fight heart disease“He explains.” They also contain nitric oxide, which is a gas molecule that dilates blood vessels, leading to lower blood pressure and reducing the risk of heart attack.

Not only that, Rios also notes that they are chock full of antioxidants that can help fight inflammation, which contributes to many major chronic diseases.

If you’re not a fan of hemp seeds, recommend Johna Burdeos, RD flaxseed alternatively as they are super rich in fiber, omega-3 fatty acids and lignan—A plant compound with antioxidant properties.

“Studies have shown that flax seeds are beneficial for heart and gut health, can lower cholesterol and blood sugar levels, and have anticancer properties,” adds Burdeos.

Cocoa powder
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The cocoa, from which chocolate is made, doesn’t add a depth of flavor to your smoothies – according to Volpe, it also provides a host of nutrients.

“Cocoa is rich in a class of antioxidants called polyphenols that help reduce oxidative stress, the cell damage that contributes to aging,” he says. “It is also rich in minerals including, but not limited to, plant-based iron, magnesium for bone health and stress reduction, and potassium for regulating blood pressure.”

Remember: with this chocolaty goodness it takes very little. All you need is a spoonful of unsweetened cocoa to reap the health benefits and richer flavor.

Spinach
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According to Tomaschko, one of the best ingredients you can incorporate into your smoothie for a longer life is dark green leafy vegetables.

In case you need some proof: Justine Chan, RD of Your Diabetes Dietitian, notes that research on the blue zones, the areas of the world where people most commonly live up to the age of 100, shows that their diets are filled with 95% plant-based foods such as spinach and kale.

“From vegetable iron for blood building to vitamin K for blood and bone health, [and] the antioxidant chlorophyll for activities that promote longevity in the body, such as protecting our cells from environmental damage, adding a handful of vegetables is worth the return on investment in my opinion, “says Volpe.

You don’t even have to use fresh vegetables. Volpe suggests keeping frozen spinach or kale handy for a quick and convenient dose of nutrients.

Oats
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A 2019 meta-analysis in Hand found that people with the highest dietary fiber consumption had a 15% to 30% lower incidence of all-cause and cardiovascular mortalitycoronary heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, and colorectal cancer than people who ate less fiber.

Smoothies tend to be lower in fiber than whole foods, Chan says. However, there are ingredients you can add to boost the fiber content, such as oats, ground flaxseed, and avocado. Chan suggests adding chia seeds to your smoothie, as two tablespoons of this superfood packs a whopping 8 grams of fiber.

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