Walnuts and Vegetable Protein Might Add Years to Your Life

Peas porridge hot, peas porridge cold, peas porridge in the pot nine days old: When it comes to living a long life, it doesn’t matter how you eat your green and yellow legumes as long as you eat them. (Okay maybe not nine days old; food poisoning is no fun.) Eating whole, cooked peas and other legumes—a staple of the Mediterranean diet—may actually slow aging on a cellular level, according to a study published in BMJ. Researchers speculate it’s the fiber and antioxidants that give them their longevity powers. Here’s how eating legumes can help with weight loss.

Walnuts

Going nuts for nuts may be one of the best things you can do for your health. People who eat nuts, especially walnuts, three times a week or more enjoy two to three more years of life, according to research published in BMC Medicine. Nutty folks significantly reduced their risk of cancer and heart disease, the two biggest killers we face as we age. There is one caveat, however, as a second study found that the life-lengthening benefits did not extend to peanuts or peanut butter. Sorry PB&J fans! Walnuts are also one of a few foods shown to make you smarter.

Vegetable protein

Don’t panic, no one is saying you have to ditch your steak but doing a few meatless meals a week can extend the number of weeks in your life. Adding plant sources of protein can help extend your lifespan, especially if you suffer from kidney problems, according to a study done by the American Society of Nephrology. Foods like quinoa, rice and beans, soy, tofu, and buckwheat pack nearly as much protein per serving as meat does and you get the added benefits of fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Try some of these yummy vegetarian dinner recipes.

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