401 11 111 The Crucial Decade
BANANAS: Packed with potassium (about 300
milligrams per fruit), bananas reduce the risk of
high blood pressure and stroke, and are also rich
in fiber and vitamins B and C.
SPINACH: Fresh or frozen spinach is high in
fiber and folate. Eating it helps build muscle and
protects against weight gain and heart disease.
ASPARAGUS: A rich source of protodioscin,
asparagus has been found to enhance erections
and destroy cancer cells.
OLIVE OIL: One of the best sources of
monounsaturated fats, olive oil keeps your
testosterone levels topped off and your
metabolism revved. Extra-virgin olive oil provides
the greatest health benefits. Some chefs prefer to
cook with canola oil, which is also a healthy fat,
because it handles higher temperatures better.
WALNUTS: Eating walnuts often can reverse
several parameters of brain aging, as well as age-related motor and cognitive deficits, according to
Tufts University researchers.
FLAX MEAL: Add 1 Tbsp. to yogurt, oatmeal, and
smoothies for a hefty dose of omega- 3 fatty acids.
AVOCADO: Rich in omega-3s, B vitamins, and
beta-sitasterol, the avocado is that rare fruit that
is heart-healthy and fends off prostate cancer.
GREEN TEA: Many nutritionists say green tea is the
best beverage you can drink. It is good for your
heart, improves brain function, and fights cancer.
COFFEE: Hit three nutrition goals with one bean:
Java reduces your appetite, increases your
metabolism, and gives you a shot of antioxidants.
Buy whole beans and grind them just before
making the coffee to preserve the antioxidants.
2 Change Your Oil(s)
The American Heart Association recommends
that 25 to 35 percent of your calories come
from fats, with the majority coming from
monounsaturated fats (MUFAs) and the rest from
polyunsaturated fats, such as omega- 3 fatty
acids. MUFAs are healthy oils found in olives,
nuts, seeds, avocados, açai, and even chocolate.
These fats can lower your risk of heart disease,
protect cells from damage, and increase the
amounts of valuable nutrients available from other
foods. “MUFAs are the most important upgrade
for guys who are 40-plus,” says registered
dietitian David Grotto, author of 101 Foods That
Could Save Your Life. “They also improve insulin
sensitivity and fight metabolic syndrome.”
Upgrade: Cook only with olive oil or canola oil.
Consume meat, milk, and butter from grass-fed
animals; these products are higher in omega-3s.
Switch to a spread that contains heart-healthy
plant stanols or sterols, such as Smart Balance
Omega Plus. Aim to eat cold-water fish three
times a week, says Sass. Hit this target by varying
the catch: Add canned salmon to red sauce, eat
one tuna sandwich a week, and make wildsalmon steaks your Friday-night ritual. Sashimi
on the weekend is a bonus and has you sailing
toward pescatarian territory.
3 Tweak Your Leptin
“Men in their forties need to redefine what
fattening means,” says Dr. Aronne. “Calories and
fat content aren’t what make foods fattening.
Foods are fattening if they provoke hormonal
changes that trigger cravings or rebound hunger.”
One hormone in particular, leptin, which is a
cofactor in the process that tells your brain when
you’re full, becomes blunted by starchy, sweet,
fatty, and refined-carbohydrate foods. That’s
why a bagel is fattening: It’s a high-caloric load of
refined carbohydrates. Guacamole isn’t fattening
because it is loaded with healthy fat and fiber
and doesn’t cause wild swings in insulin levels.
Fattening foods generally contain hydrogenated
vegetable oils (trans fats) and rapidly digested
carbohydrates, such as refined grains, sugars, and
starches. “You eat more of these foods because
they cause leptin resistance, and then your body
can’t tell when it’s full,” says Dr. Aronne.
but fat can
You need the
fiber to feel
full, or you’ll
The fiber in
easing blood-sugar spikes
The Perfect Day of Eating at 40+
Our all-star panel creates the ultimate health-boosting menu
BREAKFAST plus brain-boosting provides a gentle,
The ideal breakfast
choline. Cooking them sustained neural buzz,
is high in protein (to
with heart-healthy olive prevents cancer, and
keep you satiated) and
oil and adding baby lowers blood pressure.
packed with fiber-rich
spinach, which is high 514 calories, 22g protein,
vegetables and whole in vitamin A and folate, 34g carbohydrates,
grains (to prevent bolsters eyesight and 5g fiber, 33g fat
swings in blood sugar). immune function. The (6g saturated,
EAT: Scrambled Eggs 16g monounsaturated,
chili flakes reduce
and Spinach (scramble 11g polyunsaturated)
inflammation and can
1 whole egg, 2 egg
help fight prostate
whites, and 1/2 cup
cancer. The oatmeal-
baby spinach in açai combo provides
1 Tbsp. olive oil; dust heart-healthy fiber (i.e.,
with chili flakes), 3/4 cup slow-burning energy),
oatmeal with 1/8 cup more high-quality
walnuts and 2 Tbsp. protein ( 10 grams
açai pulp, green tea per 1/2 cup), and an
WHY: The eggs provide antioxidant punch (the
high-quality slow- tart berries have 10 to
burning protein (using 30 times the amount
egg whites keeps the of antioxidants in
cholesterol in check) red wine). Green tea
blueberries, 1 Tbsp.
WH Y: Consider this
combo a velvety
speedball of muscle-
(Greek yogurt has
more protein than
the regular kind),
(flax is high in alpha
serving of blueberries
delivers an average
of 6,552 µmol/ TE of
the probiotics in the
yogurt boost the
198 calories, 21g protein,
5g fiber, 4g fat
cravings with a high-
quality protein, such
as that found in yogurt.
The more protein
you eat early on, the
longer you’ll feel full
throughout the day.
EAT: Nonfat Greek
yogurt ( 6 oz.), 1/2 cup
Aim for at least three
servings of vegetables
healthy fats, and
complex carbs. Since
vegetables are mainly
water, fiber, and
antioxidants, they will
keep you hydrated and
full of healthy calories.
EAT: Side Salad
(combine 2 cups red
leaf lettuce, 1/4 cup
1/4 cup yellow peppers,
and 1/4 cup broccoli;
dress with 1 tsp. olive
oil and 2 to 3 Tbsp.
vinegar), Black Bean
Dip Sandwich (top 1/3
cup black-bean dip
with 5 sliced olives,
a handful each of
scallion greens, and
sprouts, 2 tomato
slices, and lettuce;
serve on 100 percent
and a Red Delicious
WH Y: Research shows
that starting your lunch
with a salad helps slow
digestion so that you
don’t overeat. This
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