AGEs come from foods that are processed, heated to high temperatures, sugary, or browned. When these foods are eaten too often, AGE levels increase and build up in the body. This can cause damage to the internal organs and accelerate the aging process.
The A.G.E. Foundation recently conducted a survey of Americans and discovered that 76% knew that processed food could accelerate aging. Thirty-two percent indicated that the way food was cooked had an effect on aging. However, only 11% knew that food cooked at high temperatures impacted the aging process.
The foundation recommends cooks limit the amount of sauteed, barbecued, and toasted food they eat. Instead, they recommend cooking meat at a lower temperature for a longer amount of time. Also, adding more water and acid helps. Using vinegar, lime, or lemon-based marinade can cut AGEs by half.
Whole grains, and brightly colored veggies and fruits are low in AGEs. Vegetables and fruits like blueberries, noni, olives and cornelian cherries contain natural elements called iridoids, which can lower AGE levels.
Editor’s Note: Glycation is the binding of sugar and protein molecules, and is part of what contributes to the aging process as well as cataract formation. It is particularly a problem for those with diabetes, though it is a something to be concerned about for everyone as we age.