In our last blog, we discussed how your diet and genetics work together. Today we want to talk about a major contributor to disease – Advanced Glycation End Products (AGEs). There are many suspected contributors to disease and illness, and the one I am presenting is not the only cause. However, I believe it is a big one. Read this thoroughly, do your own research, and then make your own conclusions.
Disease and Advanced Glycation End Products
Advanced Glycation End Products (AGEs) are glycotoxins, a diverse group of highly oxidant compounds with pathogenic significance in diabetes and several other chronic diseases.
They are a group of compounds that are combinations of sugars, proteins, and other large molecules. They can be formed in the body, when food is cooked at high temperatures, or aged for a long time, such as in hard cheese. AGEs accelerate aging at the cellular level and have been linked to a range of conditions, including heart disease, diabetes, stroke, vascular disease, nerve damage, kidney disease, vision problems, cancers, and even Alzheimer’s disease.
One study conducted on mice showed that a diet high in AGEs, resembling the Western diet, led to the accumulation of AGEs in the brain, along with the formation of a component of Alzheimer’s plaques. These mice also experienced cognitive and motor decline. Conversely, mice fed a low AGE diet remained free from these conditions. Clinical studies in humans have also indicated that higher blood AGE levels resulting from a high AGE diet increase the risk of cognitive decline.
Choosing Wisely: Foods and AGE Content
To make informed dietary choices, it is crucial to understand which foods contain the highest and lowest levels of AGEs. Fats, dairy products, and meats tend to have the highest AGE content, while carbohydrates are relatively low in AGEs. Processed foods also have higher AGE levels compared to natural or homemade foods.
Let’s get real for a moment and look at a few typical foods Americans eat every day high in AGEs. Grilled meats, hot dogs, donuts, pastries, French fries, BBQ, breaded meats, potato chips, corn chips, crackers, and even baked potatoes with butter and cream are big providers of AGEs. When you eat these, you are greatly increasing your risk for future disease and illness.
There are very few AGEs in plant-based foods like vegetables, legumes, raw nuts, seeds, and fruits. Therefore, a diet rich in vegetables, legumes, fruits, raw nuts, and seeds minimizes AGE-related damage. Consequently, it is advisable to limit sugar consumption as much as possible, as fructose (found in agave nectar, syrup, and high-fructose corn syrup).
Sugar is very harmful and forms AGEs ten times faster than glucose!
A life of wellness is about balance, not perfection. Because certain foods have high amounts of AGEs, it doesn’t mean you can never consume them. Just be smart about it. Limit your intake and eat as nutritiously as you can! If you’d like to see how Vive Shake can be part of your healthy diet and lifestyle, contact us today at firstname.lastname@example.org or 877-878-3009. Next time, we’ll continue our discussions on AGEs and discuss how even cooking methods can impact them.