For the mere mortal, eternal life is entirely out of reach. But that doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t make the most out of the here and now. Philosophical and religious differences aside, all of us have only one shot at this particular lifetime — there’s no reason for not living it to the fullest! Go out there and fall in love, even if it means getting your heart broken. Take that terrifying roller coaster ride and scream as if it’s your last. Or extend the limited time that we have by eating the best quality foods that life has to offer us and staying healthy. Start with the following.

 

Salmon & Other Fatty Fish

Fatty fish such as salmon, mackerel, and even canned sardines are perfect for prolonging life, the healthy way. A major reason for this is their high omega-3 fatty acid content, which can strengthen the heart by preventing fat from clogging your arteries and lowering blood pressure as well as the risk of abnormal heartbeats. This way, your odds of heart disease can be greatly reduced. Your heart isn’t the only organ that stands to benefit from this, either. Studies also found that omega-3 fatty acids can keep your brain healthy, slow down cognitive decline and even lower the risk of dementia.

 

Nuts With Minimal Salt

It’s seriously nuts how nutritious this simple snack can be. Research has found that people who eat at least 3 portions of nuts per week tend to live much longer. This comes as no surprise to anyone aware of the fact that nuts provide protein, antioxidants that can preserve your youthful visage, fibre as well as multiple essential vitamins and minerals such as folate and vitamin E. So, add that pack of baked nuts to your basket the next time you’re out grocery shopping. Don’t forget to check the nutritional label to ensure that you choose only the ones with low sodium. Certain manufacturers tend to get a little too salt-happy with their nuts.

 

Coffee

Although not truly a food per se, coffee drinkers may be pleased to learn that their cup of joe can make them live longer than the average Joe. Recent findings indicate that drinking two cups of coffee per day can enjoy approximately two extra years of life. Do you realise how much extra time that is? Two years means that you’ve got an additional 17,000 hours to make the most out of life. Imagine all the movie marathons you can do! Or perhaps you can use the time to improve yourself such as enrol in an academic course or volunteer. Anything that makes life worth living.

 

Tofu

Love tofu? So do the people of Okinawa in southern Japan, where their diet is a major reason for why they tend to live longer than most others around the world. Short of packing up and moving to Okinawa, you can begin by emulating their diet to really live the best life. Start by eating more protein-rich tofu on a regular basis.

Another reason to add more tofu to your kitchen is the soy product’s incredible versatility. They tend to absorb flavour easily, which means that you can cook them as part of your soups, indulge in the occasional fry or sauté, or even add them to your salads. Whatever floats your boat!

 

Sweet Potatoes

You haven’t truly lived if you’ve never tried sweet potatoes. These are yet another favourite among the people of Okinawa. Although some people caution against consuming carbs, the Okinawa diet actually consists primarily of carbs. The only catch here is that they favour carbs found in vegetables, whole grains, and, of course, sweet potatoes. Rich in antioxidants and vitamin A, sweet potatoes are so delicious that you won’t even have to do much to eat them.

An easy way to prep sweet potatoes for consumption is to poke some holes in them with a fork, wrap them in aluminium foil, and pop them in the oven for fifteen minutes. They’re naturally sweet, which means that once the beep goes off, you can eat them as they are. Simply cut the sweet potato into half and scoop the flesh with a spoon. It’s seriously as easy as that.

 

Olive Oil

The people of Okinawa aren’t the only role models for leading longer, healthier lives, of course. Yet another exemplary diet is the Mediterranean diet, where olive oil is a common denominator in many of their dishes. As one of the best sources of polyphenols and healthy fats, olive oil is one of the many reasons why people who live in Mediterranean countries are among the healthiest. Some allegedly even drink a cup of olive oil before setting off for work. If the thought of doing that bothers you, just prepare more dishes with it, instead. Drizzle some over your salads or use it in your marinade when you’re cooking salmon.