Hello My Friends
Welcome To The Vitality Project!
As a professional health coach concerned with the health and well-being of my clients it is my intention to improve your well-being and longevity by using the principles of nutrition, fitness, diet, lifestyle dynamics, and anti-aging medicine.
We all have been told that eating the right foods can allow us to live a healthier life and reduce the risk of developing chronic diseases. What about the notion that consuming certain foods can allow us to potentially live longer? Can this be correct?
Research published in the Journal of Nutrition may shed some light on this subject!
Researchers studied 807 adults over 65 years of age and followed them for 12 years. The participant’s level of polyphenols was measured by urinalysis and compared to their intake of plant-based polyphenols and this relationship compared to all-cause mortality. Foods high in polyphoenols include; nuts, berries, grapes, deep-coloured vegetables or fruits, chocolate, coffee, tea and soy. The estimated polyphenol consumption of the participants was estimated at the beginning of the study from a food frequency questionnaire as was their urinary output of polyphenols.
During the study follow-up, 274 participants died. Those who had the largest amounts of excreted urinary polyphenols survived contrasted to those who died during the study. The researchers also discovered that the participants who had the highest amounts of urinary excreted polyphenols at the beginning of the study had a lower mortality rate compared to participants who had the lowest amounts of urinary excreted polyphenols. In this study there were no significant associations found between dietary intakes of polyphenols and mortality.
Polyphenols found in foods are composed of a few different chemicals like phytoestrogens found in soy, chatechins found in tea or coffee, resveratrol found in wine skins, anthocyanins and proanthocyanidins found in fruit and vegetables. These chemicals have many unique biochemical functions within humans. According to the published research, these chemicals can decrease inflammation, improve insulin sensitivity, lower blood pressure, cholesterol and blunt the blood clotting cascade. These chemicals also have very important anti-cancer properties as they are potent antioxidants capable of fighting free-radicals which can damage our cells. The intake of these foods has been associated with a decrease risk of developing diabetes, heart disease, stroke, dementia, cancer and peripheral vascular disease.
In this study the participants who excreted the highest amounts of polyphenols had a 30% decreased mortality rate compared to subjects with the lowest excretion rates. According to the lead author, “The results corroborate scientific evidence suggesting that people consuming diets rich in fruit and vegetables are at lower risk of several chronic diseases and overall mortality.”
This is a great study to evaluate this relationship because it measured the urinary excretion rates of polyphenols and not just relied upon intakes from a food frequency questionnaire. The methodology of this study was very sound indeed and proves that people who are older and want to extend their lives can still do so with sound nutritional principles.
This would include the daily consumption of foods which contain high amounts of polyphenols. Some examples would include; blueberries, blackberries, hazelnuts, red cabbage, olives, soybeans, green tea, coffee, cherries, grapes, spinach and red wine.
Remember….the quality of life is the measurement of successful living regardless of your age.
Dr. Kevin. J. McLaughlin
Clinical Director: The Vitality Project