If you’re trying to reduce pesky menopause symptoms before they get out of hand, the solution might be right on your dinner plate. According to new research, following an antioxidant-rich diet could be linked to lower menopause symptoms. The good news? This "diet" actually sounds delicious.
The upcoming November/December 2018 issue of the journal Nutrition announced the results of a study that analyzed 400 postmenopausal women. Researchers studied the participants’ menopause symptoms using a “menopause rating scale” questionnaire, which investigated common menopause symptoms such as hot flashes, sleep issues, and irritability. Researchers also looked at the women’s dietary habits, as well as their waist circumference, physical activity level, and other numerous factors.
As it turned out, postmenopausal women with dietary intakes higher in “total antioxidant capacity” had a lower occurrence of hot flashes, sleep problems, anxiety, exhaustion, and concentration issues. Researchers told Life Extension that the key components of these participants' diets included fruits, vegetables, tea, and juice. Interestingly enough, folks following this type of eating plan got the same menopause-related benefits regardless of what their waist circumference was or how active they were on a regular basis.
The researchers wrote, “Recommendation of diets high in antioxidant capacity may be effective to ensure experience of fewer menopausal problems in postmenopausal women.”
While there are quite a few diets out there that emphasize antioxidant-rich foods — such as the Mediterranean diet or the portfolio diet — it’s good to be aware of which healthy food choices are really giving you the most benefits.
Foods With Antioxidants
As you might expect, fruits and vegetables are some of the most antioxidant-rich foods out there. However, certain choices stand out among the pack. According to the Mayo Clinic, here are some of the absolute best (and downright tasty) options.
- Berries. Of course, blueberries tend to get the most attention for their high antioxidant content, but they aren’t the only berries with this benefit. Strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, and cranberries all boast antioxidants as well.
- Greens. Artichokes and kale are a couple of vegetables with the highest levels of antioxidants. Asparagus and broccoli are also good options to add to your meals.
- Sweet potatoes. Go ahead and enjoy a healthy serving of this tasty starch for an antioxidant boost. Just be sure to skip the marshmallows on top.
- Nuts. If you go nuts for nuts, you’ll be even more excited to hear how many of them are packed with antioxidants. Some of the best choices of nuts with antioxidants include walnuts, pistachios, pecans, hazelnuts, and almonds.
- Legumes. Lentils are so good for you that you hardly need another reason to eat them, but they also include antioxidants. Kidney beans and edamame are also good legumes packed with antioxidants.
Next, learn about the tastiest superfoods that can actually help you live longer in the video below: