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Eat to Live Longer: Nutrition Secrets of Okinawa

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A large part of the Okinawan diet is made up of antioxidant-rich proteins like soy. Another major protein is seafood, which provides omega-3 fatty acids. These fats are superstars when it comes to protecting against heart disease, depression, and Alzheimer's, because they reduce arterial inflammation. "Each type of protein consumed by the Okinawans offers an additional benefit. Soy offers phytochemicals; legumes, which include soybeans and lentils, provide fiber and antioxidants; seafood supplies healthy fats. These beneficial by-products help them live longer and with fewer diseases. They simply get more bang for their protein buck than we do," says Young.

Instead of your usual beef burger, slip a salmon patty or veggie burger on a whole-wheat bun once in a while. Order the shrimp chow mein instead of the pork. Find a whole soy food you enjoy and include it in your diet at least once or twice a week. (Our pick: steamed edamame pods sprinkled with toasted sesame seeds.)

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