What a loaded question! As a holistic nutritionist I am constantly asked — what is the best diet for (fill in the blank)? The best answer that I can give you is… it depends. It depends on so many factors, only a handful of which are, what is your goal? What is your current diet consist of? Do you have any conditions that you are trying to improve? Any restrictions? Any medical conditions to take into account? What is your standard of living? What are your cooking skills… and the list goes on and on. Now, that having been said… there are some commonalities or trends that appear when you start to look at the scientific data and that’s the best answer I can give you here today! Still interested in the answer – let’s read on!
As a holistic nutritionist, I help my clients feel better by supporting dietary and lifestyle changes that help to contribute to optimal wellness – at any age. And as we age, we all know that what we eat changes. How much we eat, where we eat it, and how much all change as we get older. But did you know that there are groups of people that tend to live longer on average? Yep… it’s true. Groups of people, living longer than average have emerged in pockets around the globe. These people have a few things in common that we could introduce into our everyday lives. If you’d like to dig into this further, you can study the Blue Zones.
In addition to having moderate amounts of wine, a real sense of community, daily movements and not eating to excess, most of the diets in these areas have one thing in common. They centre around a diet comprised mostly of plants – that is vegetables, fruits, whole grains, nuts and seeds. Aim to have your diet consist of at least 80% plants, with the balance coming from lean meat sources, fermented dairy and choose fish sources over beef.
If you want some bonus points, aim for a diet that is full of dark leafy greens, has lots of colour (eat the rainbow) includes mushrooms and berries, incorporates seaweed and fermented vegetables (sauerkraut). The key is diversity, so see if you can eat at least 25 different plants a week!