If you stumbled upon a genie who offered to grant you three wishes, wouldn’t one of them be a longer, healthy life? Of course it would. Fortunately, we don’t have to fantasize about what-ifs and magical phenomenons, because stretching your longevity is actually attainable. And the fountain of youth just happens to lie in your own fridge.
According to a new international study by the Prospective Urban Rural Epidemiology (PURE), people who ate a diet full of healthy fats and focused on produce lived longer than those who mostly consumed carbs. To come to this finding, PURE researchers studied 135,000 adults in 18 different countries with varying income levels for over seven years on average. They discovered that participants who were 23 percent less likely to have died during the seven years consumed 35 percent of their daily calories from fat while those who were more likely to have died had the lowest fat intake, which made up 10 percent of their daily calories. What’s more, participants who consumed a high-fat diet had a decreased risk of getting a stroke.
And when looking at carbs, folks whose daily calorie intake was made up of 77 percent carbs were 28 percent more likely to have died than those who got 46 percent of calories of their daily calories from carbs. “These results point to the fact that human biology is very similar across the globe,” Dr. Eric Rimm, professor of epidemiology and nutrition at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health explained. “It’s not healthy to eat highly processed carbohydrates no matter where you live.”
Instead of stocking up on unhealthy packaged foods tainted with questionable additives, researchers strongly recommend eating more natural, unprocessed foods. While veggies definitely fit the bill, the study also discovered that noshing on more fruits, seeds, and beans resulted in greater benefits than consuming more vegetables. And that participants who ate eight or more servings of fruits and veggies daily didn’t extend their lives any more than those who ate just three to four servings.
“One of the most important take-home messages from the PURE study is that bioactive foods that give rise to new plant life, like fruits and seeds, should be an important part of everyone’s diet,” Dr. Dariush Mozaffarian, dean of the Tufts Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy said. “Cutting back on starch and sugar, and adding more fat and more foods from plants, especially bioactive fruits and seeds, is where we should be headed.” Another place we should be heading to? The supermarket, to grab some of these 57 Healthiest Foods On The Planet!