The basics of healthy eating are pretty straight forward - dark, leafy greens are a must, lean protein is recommended and plenty of fiber is beneficial. However, there are certain (beloved) foods that have a bit of a bad reputation when it comes to healthy aging. Although any senior care plan should include healthy fruits, veggies, whole grains and other known "good-for-you" foods, it might also be a good idea to incorporate a few of the items you might have been skeptical of, too, according to U.S. News & World Report.
Here are three foods you might have avoided that can actually do you some good.
These natural energy powerhouses might be known for the high cholesterol content in their yolks, but experts agree that the many health benefits outweigh this detail. A great source of protein, eggs will fill you up and keep you full so you eat less throughout the day, promoting a healthy weight. Plus, while they have relatively high levels of cholesterol, they have no saturated fat, which means they won't influence your blood cholesterol levels. According to the Women's Health magazine, they have the power to reduce your risk of cancer and ward off macular degeneration - boons for seniors!
It's true that beef can be high in fat, saturated fat and cholesterol. However, it's also a great source of protein and is the single best source of iron in the human diet, according to the U.S. News & World Report. Beef also has tons of zinc and B vitamins for brain power and energy, and contains some good fat, too - the news outlet reports that nearly half the fat in beef is from oleic acid, the kind found in olive oil. It's still a good idea to practice moderation with red meat, and always buy organic, lean beef.
Too much alcohol can have detrimental effects on your liver and other parts of the body, and has been linked to liver, breast and other types of cancer. However, in moderate amounts, it can raise your levels of HDL cholesterol - the "good" kind that protects your heart.
If you choose wine over beer or liquor, you can soak up even more benefits. The phytochemicals in wine - flavanoids and resveratrol - act as antioxidants in the body and prevent free radicals from damaging cells, effectively fighting cancer and improving cardiovascular health. However, Harvard School of Public Health points out that you should not start drinking if you do not already, since heavy drinking has so many health risks.