Eating a healthy balanced diet – including at least five portions of fruit and vegetables a day – could lower the risk of an early death, according to the NHS.

You could also boost your lifespan by doing regular exercise – the “miracle cure” we’ve all been waiting for, it said.

Making some small diet or lifestyle changes could help to increase your life expectancy and avoid an early death.

Eating these foods for your dinner regularly may boost longevity. How many are you eating?

Peppers

Peppers are a great source of carotenoids and vitamin C, which are good for the heart, said dietitian Juliette Kellow and nutritionist Dr Sarah Brewer.

They help to dilate arteries, who also reducing cholesterol in the body, they said.

Everyone should aim to eat three to four peppers in a single week, along with small amounts of chilli.

“Peppers boost our intake of health-promoting carotenoids and vitamin C, while chillies are linked to weight loss and better heart health,” they said in their book, Eat Better Live Longer – Understand What Your Body Needs To Stay Healthy.

Carrots

Carrots are a type of root vegetable, which regularly feature in the diets of communities that have above-average life expectancies, said the nutritionists.

They’re rich in potassium, which helps to reduce blood pressure when combined with a low-sodium diet.

Orange-fleshed root vegetables could even help to protect against some types of cancer, including oesophageal cancer.

Fish

Fish and shellfish are packed full of omega-3 fatty acids, which have been linked to a lower risk of heart disease.

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They also contain good amounts of iron, copper, zinc and selenium, which boost the immune system.

“All fish is brain food,” they said. “While omega-3 fats are often hailed for slowing cognitive decline, fish are also rich in iodine and vitamins B3, B6, and B12, all of which are important for a healthy brain and reducing the risk of dementia.”

Mushrooms

“Throughout history, mushrooms have been used as medicine to treat many ailments,” said Kellow and Brewer.

“Now, modern science backs up their many health-promoting roles, which include boosting immunity, regulating blood pressure, and reducing inflammation.”

Everyone should et two to three portions of mushrooms every week, they added.

Squash

Butternut squash is a great vegetable for boosting eye health, as well as lowering the risk of heart disease and some cancers, said the nutritionists.

The carotenoid beta-carotene has been linked with a 57 per cent lower risk of developing cancer of the larynx.

When buying a squash in the supermarket, look out for winter squashes with a dull skin, and summer squashes with a glossy skin.

Kale

Kale is rich in calcium and vitamin K, which helps to strengthen bones and teeth.

All leafy greens could lower your risk of heart disease and cancer, claimed the nutritionists.

“Cruciferous vegetables, such as broccoli, Brussel sprouts and kale, and leaves such as spinach, Swiss chard and lettuce, are powerhouses of health-protecting nutrients,” they said.

“Unsurprisingly, a large Chinese study found adults who ate the most cruciferous vegetables had a 22 per cent reduced risk of dying from any medical cause.”

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