In a small, eight-week study conducted by the University of Copenhagen, researchers put 27 men "around 65 years old" on a "high-intensity exercise" routine, according to a press release. Half of the healthy, yet physically inactive, group had their exercise regimen supplemented with 250 mg of resveratrol, the other half were given a placebo.
Contrary to the results from previous animal studies, researchers found resveratrol diminished the positive effects of exercise in humans. This reportedly included "blood pressure, plasma lipid concentrations and maximal oxygen uptake," said Lasse Gliemann, a PhD student who worked on the study.
Though a study leader noted that the amount of resveratrol participants received was far more than what they'd get in their normal diet, it does beg the question: Just how effective is resveratrol, anyway? In 2011 another small study found that taking resveratrol had a positive effect on metabolism, similar to exercising and restricting calories, but the compound remains steeped in controversy.
"If you believe that resveratrol will help you live longer and healthier, get it from food or wine, not by choking down resveratrol pills. Why? Eating red grapes, blueberries, and pistachios, or having a glass of your favorite red wine, are pleasurable ways to take in resveratrol. Plus you get all the other healthful plant products that come with the resveratrol. ... It’s worth keeping an eye on resveratrol research. But it’s far too soon to be promoting it as a fountain of youth or wonder drug."
<a href="http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/druginfo/natural/554.html">Lycopene</a> is what gives tomatoes and watermelon its red hue, as well as its antioxidant properties. The substance has been linked to <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/10/09/tomatoes-stroke-risk-foods_n_1948289.html?utm_hp_ref=fifty&ir=Fifty">lowering stroke risk</a> and preventing heart disease.
The beta-carotene found in sweet potatoes, squash, carrots and corn have <a href="http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/antioxidants.html">antioxidant properties</a>, protecting your body from cell damage wrecked by free radicals.
You can reduce inflammation in your body thanks to the flavonoids found in citrus fruits, Dr. Heber said. The anti-inflammatory substance has also been linked to <a href="http://www.realage.com/food/flavonoids">repairing cell damage and keeping arteries healthy</a>. Also the <a href="http://www.livestrong.com/article/420509-best-vitamins-for-anti-aging/">vitamin C found in these fruits helps produce more collagen</a> in your skin to help with the outer signs of aging: wrinkles.
Load up on avocado, spinach and other yellow-green vegetables, Heber says. "These foods have lupene, which goes to the macula, the part of the retina that is exposed to the most ultraviolet lights. A common cause of blindness for people over 65 is age-related <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jim-t-miller/macular-degeneration-help_b_1812726.html?utm_hp_ref=fifty&ir=Fifty">macular degeneration</a>. It’s believed the antioxidant [lupene] localizing there prevents further damage to the eye."
Vegetables like broccoli, brussel sprouts, bok choy, mustard, wasabi and horseradish are in this family, according to Heber. "They have isothiocyanates in them, which have a lot of preventative and detoxifying effects in the body."
Onion, garlics, chives and asparagus... They're all rich with the antioxidant allyl sulfide, says Dr. Heber.
Grapes, blackberries, blueberries, pomengranates and cranberries are rich in polyphenols, which are anti-inflammatory.
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