Fit for Our Lives - Blog

Longevity: Living a Long, Healthy and Active Life - Part Three
Posted 3/28/2012 9:47:00 AM

Part 3: Preventing Disease through Disease-Fighting Foods

In Part One of this series, we discussed the importance of living now for the life you want to lead when you are in your 60s, 70s and 80s, and surrounding yourself with healthy “mentors” who are currently living the life you wish to live. In Part Two, we looked at the foods that directly hurt us - sugar, fat and salt - and learned some ways to replace those with healthier alternatives.

In the final part of this series, we take a look at the foods that actively fight against certain diseases and how we can integrate those into our daily lives as a way of to prevent disease. Below is a chart of the eight healthiest disease-fighting foods. Try to include these foods in your diet at least 2-3 times per week.                                      

Fights Against:

BERRIES: specifically blueberries, cranberries, blackberries, raspberries, and strawberries

Antioxidants, vitamins Cancer, heart disease

FISH: specifically salmon and tuna

( Important: Make sure the salmon is wild Alaskan or Atlantic. Do not eat farmed salmon, which contains toxins more damaging than any benefits you get from eating it.)
Omega-3 fatty acids, protein Heart disease, obesity
DARK LEAFY GREEENS: particularly spinach, kale, bok choy and dark lettuces Vitamins, minerals, beta-carotene, folate, iron, magnesium, carotenoids, phytochemicals, protein, antioxidants Diabetes, obesity
WHOLE GRAINS: particularly oatmeal Folic acid, selenium, B vitamins, fiber, protein Heart disease, obesity, diabetes
SWEET POTATOES and YAMS Antioxidants, vitamins, phytochemicals, minerals, folate, fiber Digestive issues, heart disease, cancer
TOMATOES: including fresh tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste and V-8 juice Lycopene (antioxidant), vitamins, potassium, phytochemicals Cancer


( Important: Be careful with canned beans that have a high sugar content. Stick with the recommended serving size for maximum benefit.)

Phytochemicals, minerals, folic acid, protein, fiber

Cancer, high cholesterol, high blood sugar, obesity

NUTS: particularly almonds and walnuts

( Important: Be careful to stick with the recommended serving size. It’s easy to over-indulge on nuts, but they are packed with calories.)

Healthy fats, vitamins, selenium, protein, fiber

High cholesterol, heart disease, obesity

For more information on disease-fighting foods, check out And remember, eating in moderation and making wise choices in what you eat - at least most of the time - is your best defense against chronic diseases. See you next time!

Posted By: Leanne Bateman  

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About the Author - Leanne Bateman

Leanne Bateman, Running for Our LivesLeanne Bateman is the Founder and Director of Running For Our Lives, an organization of men and women who participate in athletic events that raise awareness for life-threatening illnesses. After many years of experiencing firsthand the link between what you do, what you eat, and how you feel as a result, Leanne maintains an active and healthy lifestyle while encouraging others to do the same. She completes various events each year, including 5ks, 10ks, half-marathons, century bike rides and triathlons.

Leanne is committed to the belief that being “fit” is about quality: the quality of exercise you do, the quality of food you eat and the quality of your overall wellness, physically, mentally and emotionally. The level of this quality contributes to one’s ability to prevent disease, which is what Running For Our Lives is all about: staying active and fit for our own health, while helping others achieve a lifestyle of wellness and longevity, without disease. We also sponsor cancer and other survivors to participate in their first event, whether it be a 5k walk or run, a long bike ride or a triathlon.