London: Once we reach 40, the way our bodies cope with everything we eat begins to change, and the risk of heart diseases and diabetes increases, but some food items that everyone in their fourth decade must stock up on may help fight these concerns.
Oats contain beta-glucans, a soluble fibre that can help lower the unwanted form of cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein (LDL). Avenanthramides, which are antioxidants unique to oats protect against atherosclerosis giving it an advantage over other grains.
Cherries are useful in combating several conditions common in middle age, including gout and arthritis. They are a rich source of the antioxidant anthocyanin, the Daily Mail reported.
According to Ian Marber, the benefits of almonds range from improved blood-sugar levels to reducing cholesterol.
Omega 3 fats in oily fish can help lower heart rate and blood pressure, and reduce the risk of irregular heartbeat – arrhythmia.
Soy - isoflavones in soy beans have been linked to lowering cholesterol, increasing bone density in post-menopausal women and improving male fertility.
Since soy can influence hormone levels and over-consumption is not recommended for pre-menopausal women without the advice of an endocrinologist. In men, the isoflavones can have a mild effect on testosterone.
Tomatoes are an excellent source of the antioxidant lycopene. They offer a degree of protection against the formation and spread of cancer cells as well as protecting arteries from atherosclerosis.
Whole milk – full-fat milk can help combat the reduction in muscle mass associated with getting older, especially after the age of 50.
Chicken is a great source of protein – one 200g skinless breast provides 60g and helps contribute to effective weight-management and muscle-building.