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Kick-off 2015 the right way: Anti-aging eats for the young at heart

Catharine L. Kaufman

As another calendar year rolls around, that means we will all get one year older, but that doesn’t mean we have to look our true birthday age. (Yes, Christie Brinkley will be turning 61 next month!) Real age, that is, how old you really look and feel, can be kinder and more forgiving than your chronological age thanks to eating choice foods that will artfully fool Mother Nature. Here’s the A-(nti-aging) List to help you grow young gracefully.

Say Cheese!

Bone up on calcium-rich foods, especially Greek yogurt, goat and fresh mozzarella cheeses, dark leafy greens, broccoli and sardines with the skin and bones intact for a dazzling, youthful smile. A mother lode of calcium sources will create brighter, whiter teeth by fortifying the enamel and boosting saliva production to help ward off bacteria that causes yellow staining.

Use your Bean

That morning java jolt might actually erase years from your face. The caffeine’s the thing that constricts blood vessels creating a more even and attractive skin tone.

Nature’s Collagen Factory

Guava is a tropical treat with a rich store of Vitamin C to help build and plump up droopy cells for a more taut, glowing complexion. So start the day with a coconut cream and guava smoothie, or slather some guava jelly on a slice of whole-wheat toast. Whip up a guava chutney with crunchy jicama, Persian cucumber and a squirt of lime juice to top off a seafood cocktail or wild caught grilled fish. Or eat it straight up for your daily dose of anti-aging.

Brazilian Bombshell

Although a tough one to crack, two Brazil nuts a day will keep the plastic surgeon at bay. The magic ingredient is the trace mineral selenium responsible for replenishing damaged cells ravaged by free radicals. But watch out--they’re fattening, so make the cut-off two.

Other nutty alternatives include, omega-3 rich walnuts that will boost moisture content in your skin helping to plump up those creepy lines. Whip up a bunch of candied walnuts and sprinkle on oatmeal, salads or eat them solo as a satisfying and regenerating snack.

Or indulge in the versatile almond packed with vitamin E to alleviate free radical damage caused by UV rays and environmental toxins. This mighty nut that can be pulverized into a spreadable butter, tossed in an Asian chicken or shrimp stir-fry, or finely ground into flour for gluten-free baked treats has a triple boon for healthy skin, hair and nails.

As Cool as a Cucumber

Whether you eat this cooling fruit or place a pair of refreshing slices over your tied and puffy eyelids, you will be pampered with an anti-aging boost from the high water and silica content. Having both antioxidant and antiflammatory properties the cucumber will help impart a glowing and youthful complexion. Add cukes to a Greek salad, blend into a green smoothie, or enliven sandwiches or burgers with dill or bread and butter pickles.

Get the Wrinkles Out

The crinkly, wrinkly little raisin with a slew of vitamins and minerals, including iron, magnesium and potassium will add a sparkle to your eyes, prevent squinting (along with those nasty creases) and endow radiance to your complexion. Antiviral and antibacterial, the shriveled powerhouse will detox your system while maintaining a healthy balance or homeostasis.

Sew Some Wild Oats

Regular old-fashioned oatmeal (not instant) or steel cut oats have a load of Vitamin E and amino acids to provide cellular regeneration from sun damage, and bulldoze harmful free radicals. Oats also spur nitric oxide production to boost circulation, feeding cells and the skin with a rich supply of oxygen. So toss some oats in your meatballs, stuffings, cookie batters, or bake a batch with orange blossom honey and dried cranberries for a hearty granola cereal or snack. Or cook up a pot of creamy oatmeal for a hearty age-reversing treat.

( / Courtesy)

Oatmeal up!

Ingredients

1 cup old-fashioned oatmeal or rolled oats

2 cups liquid, your choice (milk, almond milk, coconut milk, hazelnut milk)

1 tablespoon honey, brown sugar or maple syrup (and extra for topping)

Pinch of sea salt

Toppings (your choice)

1 tablespoon dried fruits (cranberries, cherries, raisins, chopped dates or apricots)

1 tablespoon fresh berries (wild blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, strawberries)

1 banana, sliced

2 guavas, cubed

1 tablespoon nuts or seeds (chopped walnuts, slivered almonds, crushed Brazil or pistachio nuts, flax, pumpkin, sesame or sunflower seeds)

2 strips of crispy turkey bacon

In a heavy saucepan combine oats and milk and bring to a slow boil. Simmer and stir frequently until oats soften and the mixture thickens. Add salt and sweetener and simmer another few minutes for your desired consistency. Top with your faves.

For additional divine holiday recipes, email kitchenshrink@san.rr.com


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