29th June 2022
California Prunes Ambassador Jo Travers highlights how to ‘age well’
Government statistics show that the chance of living to 100 will double in the next 50 years. Yet, according to the State of Ageing 2022report, there is a notable decline in those later years being spent ‘living well’, especially for women.
In response to the report, California Prunes’ health ambassador, Jo Travers, has shared her tips on how a balanced diet and active lifestyle can help contribute to healthy ageing. Registered dietitian and professional nutritionist Jo explains: “Our food choices, and when and how much we eat, impact our health. Lifestyle factors are also important – taking regular exercise, cutting out drinking and smoking, reducing stress, and even socialising more can also help contribute to living well in older age.”
Here, the California Prune Board ambassador outlines some key factors that contribute to ‘ageing well’:
The food we consume can impact our weight, cholesterol, and blood pressure and lead to diet-related diseases. It’s important to eat well across all food groups at regular intervals throughout the day. Don’t starve yourself, instead ‘treat yourself well’ by choosing foods that leave you feeling nourished. Eating foods that are high in fibre, such as prunes, keeps you feeling full. Fruit, vegetables, and wholegrains also contain vitamins and minerals needed for every process in the body so it’s important to consume at least five portions a day.
Keeping properly hydrated has a positive effect on many bodily systems. Temperature control, excretion of waste, transportation of nutrients, and blood volume all depend on hydration status. If you are dehydrated, cells can’t function as well and the blood becomes thicker, which can cause fatigue and leave your head feeling ‘foggy’. Aim for 2-2.5 litres of water every day.
Look after your bones
The amount of bone tissue we have begins to decrease as we age. Research funded by the California Prune Board has revealed the positive effects prunes can have on bone health. High in vitamin K and as a source of manganese, which contribute to the maintenance of normal bones, studies have shown the beneficial impact prunes may exert on bone mineral density.
California Prunes have been successfully awarded “Bone Health Approved” status by the Royal Osteoporosis Society (ROS). They are the first natural food to have been given this accreditation by the UK charity.
Get gut friendly
Fibre plays a key role in gut health, which in turn contributes to overall health, with increased intake linked to a lower risk of strokes, heart disease, and bowel cancer. Eating fruit and vegetables such as prunes is an easy way to get more fibre. Prunes also contain sorbitol and polyphenols, all of which are thought to combine to create a prebiotic effect in the gut. Prebiotics are food for good bacteria that live in the gut and the more variety and quantity of fibre, the more variety and quantity of good bacteria. These bacteria work hard for us, keeping our guts and immune systems healthy and reducing inflammation.
Exercise doesn’t have to mean going to the gym; anything that gets your heart rate up will be good for your cardiovascular system and help your immune system too. When walking, walk fast enough so that you breathe a bit harder. 30mins a day of this type of activity has been shown to be protective against dementia as well as heart disease, cancer, and diabetes.
Cut out bad habits
As we get older and our risk of developing diseases goes up, it’s even more important to develop healthy habits. A lack of sleep, a poor diet, and exposure to toxins like pollution, cigarette smoke, or alcohol can increase inflammation in the body leading to non-communicable diseases like cancer, heart disease, and dementia. Consume as much fruit, vegetables, beans, and wholegrains as possible and get into a good sleep routine.
For more information on California Prunes, visit www.californiaprunes.net
ABOUT THE CALIFORNIA PRUNE BOARD
The California Prune Board was established in 1952 to represent growers and handlers under the authority of the California Secretary of Food and Agriculture. California is the world’s largest producer of prunes with orchards across 14 counties in the Sacramento and San Joaquin valleys. Promoting a lifetime of wellness through the enjoyment of California Prunes, the organisation leads the premium prune category with generations of craftsmanship supported by California’s leading food safety and sustainability standards. California Prunes. Prunes. For life. www.californiaprunes.net
ABOUT THE ROYAL OSTEOPOROSIS SOCIETY
The Royal Osteoporosis Society is the UK’s only national charity dedicated to bone health and osteoporosis. We work to improve the bone health of the nation and support everyone with osteoporosis to live well through our support services and advice.
Osteoporosis causes bones to weaken and break more easily. There are 3.5 million people living with it in the UK today. Through our work with healthcare professionals and policymakers, we influence and shape policy and practice at every level. We are also driving research and development of new treatments, working towards a future without osteoporosis. Royal Osteoporosis Society – Osteoporosis Charity UK (theros.org.uk)
FOR CALIFORNIA PRUNE BOARD MEDIA ENQUIRIES PLEASE CONTACT:
Kathryn Swinglehurst, Apple Tree Communications (ATC) Ltd E: firstname.lastname@example.org / T: +44 (0) 7775 814156