Today’s Health Tip ~ Are You Eating Enough Superfoods?

What is a superfood?

Superfoods are not a distinct food category on their own. Rather, this heroic-sounding name simply describes whole, minimally processed foods that are nutrient dense. Generally, superfoods contain healthy fats, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and other compounds found to promote good health and prevent illness and disease. While most are plant-based, certain fish and dairy products may also be considered superfoods.

Are there anti-aging superfoods? Here are some superfood rockstars known to contribute to healthy aging.

1. Dark leafy greens – Dark-colored leafy greens like kale and spinach are rich in carotenoids, which have been shown to protect the eyes against oxidative damage. Spinach is also loaded with vitamins A and C, which help protect the heart and moderate blood pressure levels. Vitamin K is another leafy-green nutrient, found to play a major role in preventing osteoporosis. Leafy greens are delicious in a salad, in a sandwich, or sautéed with a splash of healthy oil.

2. Cruciferous vegetables – This veggie family includes broccoli, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, and turnips—all of which are great sources of fiber, vitamins, and cancer-preventing phytochemicals. Cruciferous vegetables are tasty and extremely versatile.

3. Blueberries – In an interview with U.S. News & World Report, Reema Kanda, a registered dietitian nutritionist with the Hoag Orthopedic Institute in Irvine, California, says studies show that blueberries have positive neurocognitive effects in both animals and humans. As a result, Kanda says, they may help delay age-related cognitive decline. Blueberries are also rich in antioxidants, compounds that help protect our cells against free-radical damage and reduce the risk for heart disease and cancer. These flavorful, versatile berries can be added to smoothies and desserts, sprinkled over cereal, and of course, eaten all by themselves!

4. Nuts and seeds – From almonds and pecans to hazelnuts and pistachios, nuts are packed with antioxidants, fiber, and plant protein. They also contain monounsaturated fats, which are thought to help lower heart disease risk. . . . A 2016 study found that chia seeds—rich in omega-3 fatty acids, fiber, and antioxidants—may help prevent cancer and protect the heart and liver. Other tasty seed options include hemp seed and flax seed, which are also high in inflammation-fighting omega-3 fatty acids.

5. Eggs – Eggs have been a source of dietary controversy over the years due to cholesterol found in the yolk. However, skipping the yolk could deprive older adults of key nutrients such as vitamin B12, vitamin D, and selenium. Egg yolks also contain choline, a nutrient and neurotransmitter responsible for regulating mood and memory. Unless otherwise instructed by their doctor, older adults can consume up to three eggs per day. Since eggs are high in protein, this senior superfood is an ideal choice for a hearty breakfast—scrambled, poached, hard-boiled, or sunny side up.

6. Salmon – Fatty fish (e.g., salmon, herring, mackerel, trout, and tuna steak) is an excellent source of protein—a nutrient vital to maintaining muscle mass in older adults. It’s also loaded with omega-3 fatty acids, which can help reduce the risk of heart disease. A great way to enjoy a fresh fish filet is to lightly season it, bake it, and serve with a side of cruciferous vegetables.

7. Plain Greek yogurt – When it comes to protein, Greek yogurt delivers. Just one cup has 17 grams of protein as well as 20% of the daily recommended intake of calcium. Greek yogurt contains probiotics, which help us maintain gut health. Probiotics have been shown to aid in digestion, boost immune function, and even prevent infection. Look for yogurt made with whole milk or reduced-fat milk with no added sugar.

8. Avocados – Avocado is a nutritional powerhouse, loaded with nourishing fats, antioxidants, and other nutrients that support head-to-toe health. This creamy-textured fruit is delicious in guacamole or spread on toast. If the older adult you care for doesn’t like the taste of avocado, consider blending it into a fruit smoothie for a subtle nutritional boost.


Today’s Poem ~ [i carry your heart with me(i carry it in]

[i carry your heart with me(i carry it in]

BY e. e. cummings
i carry your heart with me(i carry it in
my heart)i am never without it(anywhere
i go you go,my dear;and whatever is done
by only me is your doing,my darling)
                                                      i fear
no fate(for you are my fate,my sweet)i want
no world(for beautiful you are my world,my true)
and it’s you are whatever a moon has always meant
and whatever a sun will always sing is you
here is the deepest secret nobody knows
(here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud
and the sky of the sky of a tree called life;which grows
higher than soul can hope or mind can hide)
and this is the wonder that’s keeping the stars apart
i carry your heart(i carry it in my heart)

Kindness Works ~ Connecting with Others Is Kindness in Action

Connecting With Others is an Act of Kindness

Connecting with others benefits us in several ways

Improve your Quality of Life: If you’ve ever moved away from your social “home base” then you probably understand the degree to which social connections shape your everyday life and well-being. One study showed that a lack of social connection is a greater determinant to health than obesity, smoking, and high blood pressure. Social connection doesn’t necessarily mean physically being present with people in a literal sense, but someone’s subjective experience of feeling understood and connected to others. One scale that experts use to determine a person’s subjective level of loneliness is the UCLA Loneliness Scale.

Boost your Mental Health: Friendships offer a number of mental health benefits, such as increased feelings of belonging, purpose, and confidence, amplified levels of happiness, reduced levels of stress, and improved self-worth. A study conducted at a free health clinic in Buffalo, New York found that respondents with insufficient perceived social support were the most likely to suffer from mental health disorders like anxiety and depression.

Help you Live Longer: Research has shown that social connections not only impact your mental health, but your physical well-being as well. A review of 148 studies (308,849 participants) indicated that the individuals with stronger social relationships had a 50% increased likelihood of survival. This remained true across a number of factors, including age, sex, initial health status, and cause of death.

Decrease your Risk of Suicide: There are a variety of factors that can either increase or decrease your risk for suicide. Boost your chances of staying safe by raising your level of connectedness, which the Center for Disease Control (CDC) defines as “The degree to which a person or group is socially close, interrelated or shares resources with other persons or groups.” Relationships can play a crucial role in protecting a person against suicidal thoughts and behaviors.


Today’s Positive Thought ~ Give It Your Best

Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can (Arthur Ashe).

The starting line is not equal. Wherever you are on the starting line focus on the finish line. Ignore everything and everyone else. Don’t look back or to the side. Give it your best effort, don’t quit. 

Today’s Photo ~ Spring, the Season of Hope





I love spring. I always have. It’s the season of new life, new dreams, and hope. Spring returns next month. I’ve already seen signs pointing toward an early spring. Robins have appeared. A red bud tree in the neighborhood is starting to show signs of new life. Yes, winter is still hanging on, but it won’t be for long. 

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