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Yet another reason to sit back with a nice hot cup of cocoa

hot chocolateYou’ve got to hand it to Mother Nature. She’s provided us with everything we need to stay healthy as we age. In fact, if you follow her lead, getting older never has to mean feeling (or looking) old. And a new study shows just how simple it can be.

Researchers analyzed data from the Nurses’ Health Study on 13,818 women in their late 50s at the start of the trial (1984–1986). The women had no chronic diseases at the start of the study, and were followed for an average of 15 years. They found women with the highest intake of flavonoids had the greatest odds of healthy aging. That means no major chronic diseases or major impairments in cognitive or physical function or mental health. All just by eating lots of foods rich in flavonoids. Things like fruits, vegetables, cocoa, and green tea—just to name a few. (Sound familiar? These are all staples of my New Hamptons Health Miracle.)

Flavonoids help combat chronic diseases and maintain physical, cognitive, and mental health thanks to their ability to reduce oxidative stress and inflammation—two of the main culprits in so many age-related chronic diseases and health conditions. They also work wonders for improving your microcirculation (blood flow through the small blood vessels and capillaries that run throughout your body).

So, needless to say, flavonoids are a critical part of staying healthy at ANY age. And actually, this is another example of how promoting proper nutrition and supplementation can save healthcare dollars while it’s also saving lives.

Luckily, if you’re following my New Hampton’s Health Miracle, you’re likely already getting plenty of these life-saving compounds. But it can’t hurt to add an extra serving of vegetables…or even a nice, hot cup of cocoa (perfect for a festive night of tree-trimming or watching holiday specials). I make mine with dark unsweetened cocoa powder, almond milk, and a little bit of stevia.

Sources:

“Dietary flavonoid intake at midlife and healthy aging in women.” American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, epub ahead of print 10/29/14


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