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Eat to Stay Young!

Make sure your diet includes these 6 foods that slow aging and prevent disease

Fresh vegetables, fruit and fish are essential elements of a healthy diet. — Bill Hogan/MCT/Getty

Try as we might to find one, there's no magic bullet that can stop the aging process. But scientists have identified certain foods that can boost your health and even help slow down your biological clock.

See also: Eat for a healthy heart.

Since all of these foods have great nutritional benefits, why not add more of them into your diet to see if they put a spring in your step?

1. Fish

Recent research suggests that the Omega-3 fatty acids from certain fish can lead to improved mood and mental capacities. These oils have antioxidant properties, meaning they attack the cells that cause the body to decay. Omega-3s are the same acids that combat chronic inflammation, which can lead to all sorts of health complications. Finally, fish oil is great for your skin, preventing dryness and eczema, and promoting firmness and elasticity. Salmon and tuna are two of the most popular and readily available fish with high levels of Omega-3.

Try these fish recipes:

Salmon Stew with Corn and Quinoa by Judith Finlayson

Grilled Tuna Steaks by Joe Piscatella

Tuna Fish Salad Sandwich with Scallion and Pickled Ginger by David Ricketts

2. Whole Grains

Avoiding all carbs makes no sense, when whole grains such as whole wheat, oats, brown rice, farro, barley and wheat berries are so rich in fiber, which keeps your digestive system regular and helps you feel full. Their low glycemic levels mean that they don't play havoc with your blood sugar levels. Choose bread, pasta and cereals made from whole grains, and incorporate whole grains into your cooking. Whole grains have been widely accepted as a smart way to combat all types of illnesses, such as heart disease, colon and breast cancer, diabetes, high blood pressure, and stroke. Refined grains filter out the many nutrients intrinsic in natural whole grains, and therefore don't provide the same benefits.

Try these whole grain recipes:

Farro with Butternut Squash and Chestnuts by Joyce Goldstein

Whole Wheat Vegetable Muffins by Nava Atlas

Mushroom Barley Soup by David Waltuck

3. Cruciferous Vegetables

This powerhouse family includes broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, kale, turnips and Brussels sprouts. They are an effective aid to the body in fighting toxins and cancer. And they have a high concentration of antioxidants and sulfur, which provide energy and can keep your skin healthy. If you eat them raw or lightly cooked their protection properties are even more effective.

Try these veggie recipes:

Brussels Sprouts with Maple and Walnut Vinaigrette by Sheila Lukins and Julee Rosso

Asian Broccoli Almond Slaw by Debbie Meyer-Gore

Roasted Cauliflower with Apple and Dill by Jerry Traunfeld

Next: More foods to help you stay young.>>

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