Do you believe that food products in their natural form can help delay the ageing process?
Georgios Tzenichristos: Indeed they can. Herbs, vegetables and berries in particular contain high amounts of antioxidant or anti-inflammatory chemicals that prevent damage to DNA, mitochondria, cell membranes and interstitial tissue, and can delay the ageing process and degenerative diseases.
In addition, many of those phytochemicals stimulate the natural repair mechanisms, further delaying the ageing process.
Organic food, proven to contain higher amounts of vitamins and phytochemicals, are even more effective as anti-ageing foods.
Juicing, especially that of vegetables, concentrates the anti-ageing actives and is a good way to boost intake of anti-ageing components in the body.
What is your opinion of products marketed as ‘beauty’ or ‘anti-ageing’, with those claims on the labels? Do you think these products are better or worse than consuming products in their natural form?
Tzenichristos: I would steer clear of exaggerated marketing of any kind, as it is usually a ‘rip off’ sign. Products vary wildly in their concentration of actives, so it’s very difficult for the consumer to know what’s good and what’s not, and if a product is worth a high price tag or not.
As a rule of a thumb, I would stick to eating as many of the foods mentioned above as possible and then I would research a few key products before deciding what to buy.
Having said all the above, I would say that there are some amazing products on the market that can indeed help with delaying the ageing process and boosting ‘beauty’. It all depends on concentration of actives and the overall quality of the formulation.
People have to realise, though, that a superfood supplement will take months, not weeks, to show visible results. The claims of results in a couple of weeks are totally misleading and I never believe any of them.
I have personally been taking various supplements for years, as nutrition and anti-ageing is my job and my passion, and I have not seen great results in weeks. However, being 45 and looking much younger (according to my clients!), I can safely say that my focus on anti-ageing foods and supplements has definitely and clearly worked.
So, in a nutshell, if you’re looking for amazing results ‘right now’, you will bitterly disappointed. If, however, you would love to stay younger for the next 10, 20 or 50 years, then several anti-ageing products can be of help. Just do your research.
Do you believe the term ‘superfood’ to be an inaccurate marketing gimmick, or is there truth in describing a product as such?
Tzenichristos: Many words have lost their meaning these days, as they’re overused to attract attention. Initially, super foods were things such as goji berries, blueberries and spirulina, but now even apples are called super foods.
However, I do believe that some foods are indeed ‘super’, and I would include in this category any food with very high antioxidant/polyphenol or omega-3 content, especially when combined with a low-calorie content.
Georgios Tzenichristos is a nutritionist, aesthetic therapist and skin product formulator currently specialising in skin firming, anti-ageing and cellulite reduction.
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