While healthy eating should apply to everyone regardless of age and gender, one must wonder – should men eat differently than women?
The short answer – depends. Even though men and women have subtly different nutritional needs, it all comes down to what you’re looking for in your lifestyle. Whether it’s to simply maintain good health well into the golden years, bulk up, or keep lean, here are some of the best foods that you can start with.
Often used as a substitute for meat, mushrooms are a great low-calorie food that can help fill you up without the artery-clogging risks. They’re also a great source of potassium, an essential nutrient that can not only help lower skyrocketing blood pressure. Mushrooms also have a positive effect on prostate health, thanks to its ergothioneine content.
Whether you like it on its own, in smoothies, or with fresh fruits, yoghurt is the perfect go-to food to supply potassium, protein and calcium to help lower blood pressure and build strong, healthy bones. This popular fermented food is also naturally rich in probiotic cultures that contribute to gut health by strengthening the digestive tract while increasing the good bacteria in your gut. Just make sure to consume yoghurt that’s plain and unsweetened, so you don’t end up introducing more sugar into your diet than you need.
Popping a cup of cherries aren’t just great for satisfying those sweet-tooth cravings, but these ruby-hued gems are chock full of B vitamins, flavonoids, and fibre to help keep your digestive, cardiovascular and nervous systems healthy. They’re also rich in anthocyanins – which gives cherries their gorgeous red colour – that act as anti-inflammatory agents to help maintain the health of your joints and muscles.
If you’re getting bored of snacking on peanuts or almonds, why not try a handful of Brazil nuts? They’re a great natural source of selenium, which may help to boost testosterone levels, support the production of thyroid hormones and aid in male fertility. Brazil nuts also boasts antioxidants like ellagic acid, which has mood-elevating properties and can aid in optimal brain function.
Sure, men can get chocolate cravings too – as long as you get the dark kind with at least 78% cocoa content to prevent blood sugar spikes. Small doses of dark chocolate is able to feed your body with flavonoids and antioxidants that may help improve blood flow and regulate blood pressure. Dark chocolate also contains compounds that can lower the risk of heart disease by protecting your body against oxidised LDL, or “bad cholesterol”.
Did you know that broccoli is an excellent vegetable to help boost male fertility and aid in post-workout muscle recovery? Broccoli actually gives you 148% of your RDA of vitamin C, an antioxidant thats linked to faster recovery from your intense workouts – resulting in less muscle aches and stiffness. These little trees can also up your intake of folate, which supports normal sperm development and maturation.
This may come as a surprise but the star anise spice can actually do wonders for your health. It’s a good source of shikimic acid, which plays a role in keeping your immune system strong against infection when combined with the other elements in the spice. If you’re prone to indigestion, you could also infuse your favourite tea or beverage with star anise – perhaps a nice, hot masala chai?
Even the most well-built men can get tired of chicken breasts at some point. Instead, make the swap with this other white meat. Skinless turkey breasts cuts are one of the leanest, most versatile meats you can find, and are packed with muscle-building protein. Turkey also ranks low on saturated fats, and contains a high amount of amino acids, B vitamins, zinc, and selenium, which contributes to sperm production and protection against cancer.