Diet plays a central role in the fight against wrinkles. Many foods contain antioxidants and other substances that delay skin ageing. They provide an anti-aging effect In the most natural way.
Tomatoes and other plant foods contain the full nutritional power against aging.
Everybody ages - even the most optimal diet cannot prevent that. But it can help to delay the ageing process. How ageing takes place at the cellular level has not been fully explored to date. There are various theories about how the organism ages, including that of free radicals. These are chemical molecules that arise during normal metabolic processes in the body. They can cause damage to various structures of the cells, including the cell membrane or the genetic material (DNA). The sum of these cell damages eventually accelerates the aging process.
Antioxidants as an anti-aging weapon
The body has its own anti-aging strategies to fend off harmful radicals as they enter the body through UV radiation or pollution. These free radical scavengers, the so-called antioxidants, include vitamins A, C and E as well as phytochemicals that are supplied to the body via food. They help to keep the free radicals at bay. In this way they prevent the breakdown of cells, protect against diseases and help against premature ageing.
Researchers are still not certain about what the recommended amount of antioxidants should be. What is certain, however, is that the aging process can be significantly slowed down with a diet rich in fruits, vegetables and whole grains.
Anti-aging foods: wrinkle killers on the menu
Plant-based diet can help against wrinkling, according to studies. Those who eat a lot of meat and fat have significantly deeper wrinkles in old age than people who instead eat a lot of vegetables, legumes, olive oil, but also fish, informed the German Institute of Nutritional Medicine and Dietetics the result of a study at the Australian Manash University Melbourne.
In order to provide the body with the right and balanced amount of vitamins, trace elements and phytochemicals, all coloured fruits and vegetables should be selected. For example, red, green and yellow peppers contain different nutrients.
An important contribution to anti-aging is also provided by polyunsaturated fatty acids. These form a building block for the cell membrane. Some fatty acids can be produced by the body itself. Others, so-called essential fatty acids, cannot. These include omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. Especially omega-3 fatty acids appear to have a positive effect on blood lipid levels and thus on the lowered risk of arteriosclerosis (arteriosclerosis). They are mainly contained in linseed oil and in fatty sea fish such as salmon, sardines or herring. Vegetable oils such as wheat germ oil or sunflower oil are also rich in vitamin E, also a free radical cleaner.
The most important nutrients with anti-aging effect
Vitamin C. Ascorbic acid is probably the best known vitamin and a true all-rounder. These foods provide a lot of the healthy stuff. Vitamin C stimulates the immune system, provides strong vascular walls, helps with stress management and strengthens the cell structure. Foods rich in vitamin C: buckthorn, guava, rosehips, blackcurrants, parsley, broccoli or paprika are rich in vitamin C.
Vitamin E is an important antioxidant that protects cells from free radicals and also stimulates fat metabolism. It can be found in nuts, wheat germ, sunflower oil, liver and fish.
Zinc is involved in lipid metabolism and strengthens the immune system. It stabilizes the DNA and is involved in the function of the metabolic and sex hormones. Good zinc suppliers are seafood, nuts, lentils, cheese and green tea. The trace element is also contained in red meat.
Carotene is an effective free radical killer that supports skin functions, growth, and reduces the body's exposure to UV radiation. Above all, beta-carotene provides measurably fewer wrinkles, according to researchers from the Charité Berlin. It can be found in yellow, orange and dark green vegetables such as carrots, pumpkin, apricot, sweet potato, kale, fennel, spinach and many more.
Selenium inhibits harmful processes in the cells and protects them from degeneration. It has an anti-inflammatory effect and protects cells from attack by free radicals. The mineral is mainly in whole grains and legumes. The most selenium-rich foods are nuts, especially pecan nuts.
Polyphenols are phytochemicals. They have a strong antioxidant effect and are mainly contained in dark fruit juices, green and black tea or red wine (to be enjoyed in moderation!). The body can best utilize polyphenols when added to it via fluids. Nevertheless, many fruits and vegetables are suitable as suppliers.
Sulphides, for example, contained in garlic or onions, smell strong, but are good for the organism. They strengthen the immune system and support the body in the fight against bacteria and viruses. In addition, they have an antioxidant effect and thus protect the cells from degradation.
Phytoestrogens are plant hormones that are mainly found in soy products, but also in flaxseed, red clover, and whole grains. Phytoestrogens protect against senile conditions such as osteoporosis, heart and vascular diseases and also seem to reduce the risk of breast cancer. Furthermore, the researchers assume that the plant hormones can positively influence menopausal symptoms such as depression, hot flushes and sleep disorders.
According to a study by the Charité Berlin, lycopene (in red tomatoes) is one of the best wrinkle smoothers: study participants with high concentration levels in the skin had measurably fewer wrinkles. This is probably due to the antioxidant effects of lycopene.
Biotin (Vitamin B7) supports the body in the conversion of long-chain fatty acids, which among other things regulate the water balance of our skin. Imbalance makes the skin susceptible to harmful environmental influences.
Caution: Vitamin supplements can be harmful
Regular exercise and a varied diet are not enough to stay young for long, say at least advocates of anti-aging therapies. Vitamins and minerals are essential in the fight against ageing. But dietary supplements can contain ten times more amount of vitamins and minerals than required by individual needs.
Reputable scientists and consumer advocates therefore warn against uncritical handling of pills and powders. If taken at the same time, it can even lead to overdoses or negative interactions in individual substances. For example, a high level of phosphorus inhibits the absorption of calcium in the body. Too much calcium in turn hinders the absorption of iron. Smokers who consume more than 20 milligrams of beta-carotene daily even increase their risk of developing lung cancer.
Less calories, fewer wrinkles?
Insufficient supply of vitamins and micronutrients are not the only one that can accelerate the aging process: An oversupply of certain food components promotes aging and affects health. In particular, a high calorie and high fat diet with high levels of saturated fat, such as those found primarily in animal products (meat or butter), has a negative impact on human health and ageing.
Saving calories seems worthwhile: Researchers at the University of Gothenburg identified one of the enzymes that appears to be key to the anti-aging effect. "We found that restrictive calorie intake prevents the inactivation of the enzyme peroxiredoxin 1 (Prx1)." explains Mikael Molin from the Department of Cell and Molecular Biology, Gothenburg. This enzyme slows down ageing processes.
In previous studies, the researchers had found that monkeys live several years longer than expected by gradually reducing the intake of sugar and proteins. The same method - controlled intake of food - had previously worked with lies, fish and rats.