17 Foods That Can Accelerate the Aging Process 

None of us want to feel as though we’re getting older. If we could, then we’d all want to stay looking young for the rest of our lives. While aging may not be reversible, there are foods to avoid that speed up the aging process, helping us to live happier and healthier lives.

High-Salt Foods

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Foods that are high in salt retain water in the body and this can lead to puffy and tired-looking skin. Eat This, Not That writes that salty foods can damage your DNA due to the dehydration they cause in the body. High-salt foods can also create bloating, which can be uncomfortable for the body.

Pepperoni Pizza

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One that may be sad for some to hear is pepperoni pizza. This processed meat contains nitrates which cause inflammation in the body. Pepperoni pizza is high in saturated fats, and these can age the heart. But it’s not all bad news, a healthier option for this favorite food is a homemade version.

French Fries

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This is aimed at French fries that have been deep-fried. It’s the fats from the oil that can speed up the ageing process. It can make free radicals and Healthline says these create an action called cross-linking which reduces the skin’s elasticity. Instead of deep frying, French fries can be cooked in the air fryer or oven.

Fast Food

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Fast food is often cooked in corn oil, which also releases free radicals. These free radicals will release oxidative stress, having a negative effect on the body and contributing to aging. MedicineNet writes that fast food can “constrict the arteries and blood vessels,” which is due to high amounts of trans fat.

Agave Syrup

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Agave is high in fructose, and too much of this can break down collagen, increasing wrinkles. Many people choose to eat agave syrup because they believe it’s healthier than sugar because it comes from a plant. However, this isn’t the case. To bring down sugar intake, opt for sweeteners instead.


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Eating too much sugar can increase the body’s response to insulin and cause weight gain. An article on Health says excess sugar can produce advanced glycation end products, which can damage the skin’s collagen. Too much sugar can also harm dental health, further accelerating aging.

Charred Meats

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Charred meats are high in free radicals, and these accelerate the aging process. These kinds of meats are usually cooked on barbecues, where the fat drips onto an open flame. Charred meats contain pro-carcinogenic compounds which are also known to cause cancer.


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Alcohol can dehydrate the skin, making it appear tired and dry, and increasing the formation of wrinkles. In fact, Activebeat says alcohol pulls water from the body. While it may be okay to have one glass of wine in the evening, excessive amounts of alcohol can dry out the skin.

Trans Fat

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Trans fat is found in many processed foods. It increases inflammation and can higher bad cholesterol and lower good cholesterol. Trans fat can be found in foods such as cakes, cookies, frozen pizza and margarine. If you to want slow down your aging process, then make sure to check the backs of food labels for any trans fat.

Refined Carbs

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This means white flour carbohydrates such as white bread, rice and pasta. These carbs increase the production of advanced glycation end products (AGEs) which can slow down skin cell repair and collagen production. Swap white carbs for wholegrain versions to slow down aging.

Energy Drinks

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These drinks are high in both sugar and caffeine, both of which can accelerate the aging process. Along with dehydration, the sugar in these drinks can also contribute to poor dental hygiene. Furthermore, an article on Vinmec writes that the sugar in energy drinks can “produce acids that erode tooth enamel and cause tooth decay.”

Instant Noodles

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Instant noodles are high in sodium and preservatives. Both of these can lead to water retention, meaning the body is unable to maintain water levels, leading to dehydration. There’s also little nutritional value in instant noodles which can only increase the aging process.

Ice Cream

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This favorite dessert is high in sugar and fat which contributes to weight gain and inflammation. The high sugar and fat content will also slow down the production of collagen, which the skin needs to stay firm. Healthier options are sorbet or frozen yogurt.

Processed Cheese

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Processed cheese contains high amounts of sodium and artificial preservatives. Cheese can cause bloating and the fats it contains may harm your heart’s health. As it’s a fatty food it can also higher cholesterol. Instead of choosing processed cheese such as cheese slices, opt for natural options instead.

Vegetable Oils

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Jejune Magazine writes that a vegetable oil’s “chemical composition is altered due to heat” and “harmful free radicals are formed as the oil starts to decompose.” These radicals can lead to wrinkles, hair loss and loss of skin elasticity. Try switching to more natural options like olive oil.

Canned Soups

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Canned soups are often high in preservatives and sodium, both of which accelerate aging. The increased sodium may lead to high blood pressure and dehydration. If the body becomes dehydrated then it can lose its elasticity, leading to wrinkled skin. Instead, try fresh or homemade soups for a healthy lunch.

Flavored Yogurt

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This is commonly mistaken for being a healthy food option, but higher sugar levels lower the yogurt’s nutritional value. The excess sugar can cause weight gain and skin issues which accelerates the aging process. Plain yogurt with added fresh fruits is the best option to reduce signs of aging.


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