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What foods should I eat if I want to live a long life?

Dr. Maoshing Ni, PhD, LAc
Geriatric Medicine Specialist

It is no surprise that diet is an essential factor to health and longevity. So, what should you be eating? In my studies, I found that the centenarians of two reputed "longevity capitals" -- Okinawa, Japan, and Rugao County, a rural community four hours north of Shanghai -- shared a nearly identical diet. These long-lifers eat mostly fish, vegetables, mushrooms, seaweed, corn and buckwheat -- and virtually no meat. Scientists have confirmed the health benefits of a diet high in fish and vegetables and low in other animal products. These centenarians are living examples, as they suffer from very little heart and liver disease and have negligible rates of cancer and degenerative diseases.

Dr. Joel H. Fuhrman, MD
Family Practitioner

It is not any one specific food, but a combination of all the health-promoting, high-nutrient plant foods – leafy greens, beans, fruits, etc. that slows the aging process and protects us from disease. The accumulation of oxidative damage over time is known to be a significant contributor to biological aging, and oxidative damage is limited by eating plenty of antioxidant-rich produce.

Also critically important is not to overeat on calories. There is substantial evidence that caloric restriction in animals dramatically prolongs lifespan, and also that excess weight in humans diminishes lifespan.

I discuss my list of recommended Super Foods in my book Super Immunity; they are called G-BOMBS: greens, beans, onions (and garlic), mushrooms, berries (and pomegranate) and seeds (and nuts). The health benefits of these foods are supported by plentiful scientific research; they help to prevent heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and other chronic diseases that age the body and cause premature deaths. When you follow a healthy eating style focused on these foods, you will be getting a huge quantity and variety of phytochemicals, and you will be eating for superior health.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.