Wouldn’t it be amazing if you could slow down the aging process just by incorporating certain foods into your diet? We have some good news for you. It’s possible!
At The Terraces at Bonita Springs, we encourage older adults to age gracefully through a variety of outlets – from engaging activities to healthy dining. In this blog, we’ll focus on the dining aspect of our lifestyle, introduce anti-aging foods, and explore the many health benefits that come with consuming superfoods.
Start the year off on a health-positive note when you dive into the world of superfoods below.
What Are Superfoods?
“Superfoods” is a term used to describe foods that are rich in vitamins and nutrients, and are believed to have health benefits due to their high content of vitamins, minerals, powerful antioxidants, and anti-inflammatory properties.
These foods are often promoted as having the potential to improve overall wellness, boost the immune system, reduce the risk of heart disease, lower cholesterol, and even prevent cancer (Cleveland Clinic).
There is no strict scientific definition of superfoods. However, you’ll find that many of them are fruits, vegetables, seeds, and nuts that are rich in antioxidants and high in protein, and can be easily found at the grocery store.
At The Terraces, we incorporate superfoods into daily meals in order to provide different sources of vitamins and nutrients.
The 9 Best Superfoods
While there’s no magic food that can stop the aging process, certain foods are rich in nutrients and antioxidants that may contribute to healthy skin and overall well-being. Here are nine superfoods that are often associated with anti-aging benefits:
Blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries are rich in antioxidants, which help combat oxidative stress and inflammation.
2. Fatty fish
Salmon, mackerel, and other fatty fish are high in omega-3 fatty acids, which are beneficial for skin health, may help reduce inflammation, and reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.
3. Nuts and seeds
Almonds, walnuts, chia seeds, and flaxseeds are good sources of omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins, and minerals that support skin health.
4. Leafy greens
Spinach, kale, and other leafy greens are packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that promote overall health and skin vitality. Leafy greens are also linked to better brain health (Harvard Health Publishing – Harvard Medical School).
Rich in healthy monounsaturated fats, avocados can help moisturize and nourish the skin. They also contain vitamins E and C, which have antioxidant properties.
6. Green Tea
Green tea is high in polyphenols, which have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. It may help protect the skin from sun damage and improve skin elasticity.
Curcumin, the active compound in turmeric, has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. It may help protect the skin from aging and damage, as well as reduce the risk of developing blood clots.
Probiotics in yogurt support gut health, and a healthy gut is linked to improved skin health. Additionally, yogurt contains lactic acid, which can help exfoliate the skin.
9. Dark Chocolate
Dark chocolate with high cocoa content contains antioxidants, such as flavonoids, which may benefit skin health. However, moderation is key due to its calorie content.
It’s important to note that a balanced and varied diet, along with other healthy lifestyle choices such as staying hydrated, getting enough sleep, and avoiding excessive sun exposure, plays a crucial role in overall well-being and can contribute to a more youthful appearance.
You’re always welcome to consult with our culinary team in order to create the best superfood diet plan for you.
How To Cook Superfoods
Whether cooking your own meals at home or dining with us at The Terraces, it’s important that the superfoods that are being prepared are cooked properly.
Below are some pro tips on how to prepare and cook superfoods:
Use olive oil as much as possible when frying/sauteing/dressing, as it has many health benefits (Healthline).
We recommend grilling and baking over frying.
Use natural sweeteners like raw honey or date syrup.
Be generous with herbs and spices.
How The Terraces at Bonita Springs Prioritizes Healthy Eating
Director of Culinary and Dining Services, Alan Sayles, at The Terraces, shares multiple dining goals the team puts together for residents. The number one goal is to keep residents happy and healthy and provide a pleasant dining experience. Residents look forward to dining not just because of the food but also because it is a time to socialize and be amongst friends and family. Another goal is to add variety and change menus seasonally so that meals stay fresh and exciting.
How does the team consistently serve the freshest ingredients? Sayles says, “We source local produce, fish, meats, ice cream, and bread products. They are sourced on a daily basis because we choose to never use frozen products. We buy local because we choose to support local businesses.”
He adds that it’s easy to introduce new and trendy healthy foods into the menus at The Terraces because menus change weekly.
“Residents at The Terraces are made up of world travelers and adventurous personalities, so they are very open to trying new and trendy healthy products. Our executive chef keeps on top of new trends in the market by communicating regularly with other chefs in the area.”
If there isn’t an item or ingredient on the menu that residents are interested in, the culinary team is always willing to accommodate requests. “We seek out each resident’s likes and dislikes so we can be more effective in dining. This is their home, so we prepare what they like. The culinary team is in our dining rooms daily asking for input and suggestions. We adjust when possible and also add their suggestions to menus,” adds Sayles.
At The Terraces, fresh and local products are cooked to order. The exceptional kitchen staff runs each dining area like a high-end restaurant.
“We pride ourselves on fresh, exceptional food preparation and receive our products up to 14 times per week to ensure quality and freshness. We never use frozen products. The number one complaint in senior living dining is that the food is cold because it’s made in advance. We cook to order so that meals are always hot and perfectly presented. Our waitstaff goes through extensive training to add to a quality dining experience as well.”
Recharge and Live a Super Lifestyle at The Terraces
Eating a nutritious diet, staying active, and being involved in the community have never been easier at The Terraces at Bonita Springs. Call us today at 239-208-6963 to schedule a visit to our community.