Traditional foods fight against ageing: Academicians

Food diversity has changed and the traditional foods that were rich in nutrients are missing from the diet, adding to ageing problems, say local academicians and botanists.

“Earlier greens with rich medicinal value and herbs were part of the diet, but now toxins have become a part of our diet,” explains Professor D. Narasimhan, department of plant biology, Madras Christian College.

“Going back to the age-old food practice and addition of natural foods such as spirulina can be an extraordinary supplement in the fight against ageing.

The single cell protein of spirulina serves as an alternate for those who often skip healthy vegetables and greens in their diet”, says Professor Manikandevelu, Tamil Nadu Veterinary and Animal Sciences University, who has been researching on spirulina for the past three years.

“Even fish respond well to spirulina when it is added to their feed. Their skin glows and mortality rate decreases,” confirms the academician.

Spirulina serves as an anti ageing food, as it is rich in tyrosine, vitamin E and selenium. The blue-green spirulina is a great source of gamma linolenic acid (GLA), usually found in mother’s milk, an omega-6 fatty acid with enormous health benefits with strong antioxidant and anti-inflamatory properties, he said.

“The need of the hour to fight ageing is to avoid stereotype foods and farm foods that are processed with high calories and go for naturally available food grains and greens,” adds Prof Narasimhan reiterating that herbs have been missing from our dining tables.

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