Can you lose weight by eating Sirtfoods?
The famous singer Adele revealed her secret for weight loss – Sirtfood Diet. After that, the interest in Sirtfoods was raised immediately.
What are Sirtfoods that are the core of the SIRT diet and is it true that they can help with weight loss? These are the topics that are covered in this article.
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What are Sirtfoods?
‘Sirtfoods’ is a term applied to foods that contain naturally occurring compounds known as polyphenols that have the potential to activate sirtuins.
‘Sirt’ is a short term of sirtuin. Sirtuin is a class of proteins in the body that are important for regulating biological pathways that can affect our weight and health.
Dr. Kushal Banerjee from Harvard Medical School says ‘Foods don’t contain sirtuins, but they contain compounds that activate sirtuins.’
What are sirtuins?
Sirtuins first came to light in a study in 2003 when researchers found that resveratrol – compound found in red wine and red grape skin, dramatically increased the life span of yeast.
After this discovery, it was found that resveratrol had the same effect on longevity as calorie restriction. And the good thing is that this effect can be achieved without reducing energy intake.
Since this discovery, many studies were made first on worms, flies, fishes, after that on mice and humans, and these studies showed that resveratrol protects against the adverse effects of high-fat, high-calorie, and high-sugar diets.
At the same time promotes healthy aging by delaying age-related diseases and it has been shown to mimic the effects of calorie restriction and exercise.
As a result of all of this red wine with its rich content of resveratrol was hailed as the original Sirtfood. We can say that this is the beginning of the Sirtfood story.
Now there is a question why are sirtuins so important and how they help with weight loss?
You probably reading this article about Sirtfoods because you’ve heard about Sirtfood Diet that helped Adele to lose weight.
Well, these proteins in the past 10 years have been the subject to anti-aging researchers, until now. There are seven identified sirtuins: SIRT1, SIRT2, SIRT3, SIRT4, SIRT5, SIRT6, and SIRT7.
Researches investigate specific roles of sirtuins such as the implication of SIRT3 on cardiovascular disease, the impact of SIRT6 on the stress response. Clinical evidence demonstrates the impact of sirtuins on oxidative stress mechanism, glucose metabolism, caloric restriction process, and fat loss.
Until now studies suggest that only SIRT4 may be the only one of sirtuins that have no role in oxidative stress. From all seven SIRT1 is the one that we know most about.
Why is SIRT1 important when it comes to weight loss?
We all know that if we want to lose weight we must restrict our calorie intake, fewer calories equal falling pounds, right?
But in that process or mechanism of losing weight sirtuins are an important factor. When ‘switched on’ by exercise or calorie restriction the result is fat loss.
Banerjee explains this so simply – When you restrict calories, SIRT1 is activated and tells your body to switch from glucose as an energy source to breaking down fat and using that, rather than storing it.
He also adds to this ‘ SIRT1 speeds up the metabolic rate and therefore the rate at which your food is burnt.’
Following the Sirt Diet and eating sirtfood-rich meals encourages SIRT1 activation. This ignites the body’s natural properties of burning fat and warding off disease.
List of top 20 Sirtfoods
- Medjool Dates
- Red Chicory
- Red Onion
- Red Wine
- Green Tea
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Parsley is a versatile herb that is easy to add to many dishes. Commonly used to elevate the flavor of dishes like soups, salads, and fish recipes.
Low in calories yet rich in nutrients like vitamins A, C, and K. Contains folate and potassium. Adding parsley to your dishes is good for your heart and kidney health and also may improve blood sugar levels.
It’s easy to add to your SIRT meals, just chop it up to add to salads or hot dishes.
Kale is now more popular than ever. This superfood has been used since Roman times.
Packed with Vitamin A (important for eye and bone health), vitamin K (good for blood clotting and bone-building), vitamin C, and folate ( B vitamin that’s key for brain development).
Also rich with omega-3 fatty acids, lutein, and zeaxanthin – nutrients that protect against macular degeneration and cataracts.
It’s one of the high-quality foods that belong to this list of sirtfoods that supply you with nutrients that we are usually lacking.
#3. Medjool Dates
Medjool dates are a tasty and delicious fat-free snack that keeps you going throughout the day. They are rich in antioxidants, filled with fiber, magnesium and contain more potassium than a banana, among many other vitamins and minerals.
They are included in the SIRT diet, and you can eat them as a snack on their own, stuffed with nut butter or included in your favorite recipe.
They are also great as a sweetener alternative and we recommend these Organic Pitted Medjool Dates, they are fresh and great for snacking straight from the box, or for adding to your SIRT smoothies, oatmeal, and dipping in nut butter!
Celery stalks are rich in cellulose – carbohydrates found in the cell walls of the plants, that are edible but indigestible for humans. For his high water content, you may ask yourself if it’s worth eating it at all.
Celery provides several micronutrients making it a valuable addition to any meal. Besides being an amazing snack your tummy loves it thanks to its high fiber content and helps your body control bleeding. Vitamin K controls your ability to stop bleeding and celery is full of it.
There are two types of celery: blanched/yellow and Pascal/green. Blanching reduces the sirtuin-activating properties of celery. It is a technique developed to reduce celery characteristic taste which was believed to be too strong.
You should use green celery for green juices, smoothies, and meals.
Good To Know
Freshly chopped celery retains its nutrients better than if you chop and store it even for a few hours. Steamed celery retains its flavor and up to 99% of its nutrients. Store it in a refrigerator for not more than 5-7 days. Do not freeze it! The darker the color, the stronger the flavor.
Walnuts are one of the best omega-3 that you can find. As one of the best food sources of omega-3s, a one-ounce serving of walnuts provides 2.5 grams of ALA (alpha-linolenic acid), the plant-based omega-3 essential fatty acid.
These nuts are naturally low in sodium and sugar but packed with nutrients: healthy fats, protein, fiber, antioxidants, as well as vitamins and minerals.
#6. Red Chicory
The red chicory mostly known as radicchio is a staple food of both Mediterranean and SIRT diets. The red variety can be harder to find but the yellow variety of chicory is also SirtFood and it’s easier to find.
You can add chicory leaves to a salad where the tart flavor adds crunch to an extra virgin olive oil-based dressing. You can eat raw or cooked.
For many people, chicory is probably better known for its roots which can be roasted, ground, and used as a coffee substitute.
Strawberries may become one of your favorite Sirtfoods. They contain very low sugar content, just one teaspoon sugar per 100 kg.
Strawberries are in the list of top Sirtfoods because they are a notable source of the sirtuin activator fisetin (flavonoid that has direct antioxidant activity and can also increase the intracellular levels of glutathione, the major endogenous antioxidant).
Also, this fruit offers an amazing 129% of the daily requirements of vitamin C. They are also packed with manganese and folate, potassium with its co-factor enzyme superoxide dismutase.
This low-calorie fruit can aid in immune support, brain function, blood pressure. Plus they are an easy snack, late-night treat and you can use them in every smoothie or juice.
The little-known herb lovage is one of the top 20 healthy foods according to the authors of The Sirtfood Diet Book.
It posses flavors of both parsley and celery but is much stronger. Lovage is extremely high in the sirtuin-activating compound quercetin and is one of the main ingredients of the Sirtfood Green Juice.
It is often used as a replacement for celery, leaves make an excellent salad and the seeds are used as a spice and often sprinkled over salads and soups.
Lovage is safe, natural and sometimes it is hard to find in local supermarkets, but you can buy dried lovage leaf online here.
#9. Red Onion
Red onions are rich sources of the major sirtuin-activating nutrient quercetin and the polyphenol antioxidant anthocyanin.
Red onions contain twice as many antioxidants as any other form of onion and this is making them a powerful part of the Sirtfood Diet and belong in the list of top Sirtfoods.
Even soy is on this list of Sirtfoods, and is approved for the Sirtfood Diet it is still a controversial food and you should educate yourself and earn more about it before start using it.
If you decide to eat soy it is crucial to get it from whole foods and never rely on vegan chicken nuggets for every meal.
Capers are the immature, unripened, green flower buds of the caper bush. If you didn’t know capers are like salty, dark green pellets and maybe they belong to the most understated of foods.
These small green buds can lend a sour and salty flavor to many recipes. They can be simply added to salads, used as condiments or garnish, or chopped for dressings and sauces.
Capers are one of the highest plant sources of flavonoid compounds rutin and quercetin. Both of these flavonoids work as powerful antioxidants. Capers are important as a Sirtfood because these flavonoids are sirtuin-activating ingredients.
For your Sirtfood recipes try adding these hand-harvested organic capers and make a delicious Sirt salad.
Buckwheat is a great alternative to bread and noodles. Despite the name, buckwheat is not related to wheat, as it is not grass. Instead, it is related to sorrel and rhubarb. Buckwheat is referred to as pseudocereal because its seeds’ culinary use is the same as cereals, owing to their composition of complex carbohydrates.
Gluten-free, high in fiber, the protein in buckwheat has all 9 essential amino acids, high in the amino acid lysine makes buckwheat a perfect Sirtfood.
#13. Red Wine
Drinking a glass of red wine with a meal could decrease a person’s chance of having a stroke, heart attack, bowel, and aero-digestive cancer as well as other diseases.
How come alcohol, red wine is part of Sirtfoods? Well, if you remember when we talked about resveratrol up in this article, red wine contains this major sirtuin-activating nutrient plus it contains piceatannol.
Remember, to drink any alcohol in moderation, even it is approved by a diet, or professional. Those who are allergic to histamines, pregnant, or have a history of alcohol abuse should not be considering this as part of their Sirtfood Diet.
#14. Green Tea
When we talk about Sirtfoods and green tea, we’re talking about matcha! Matcha green tea differs from regular green tea due to the way the leaves are produced.
Leaves for matcha tea are less processed than for green tea and are never heated and kept under shade to preserve the natural nutrients found in the leaves.
Here is a great reading for you 5 Best Herbal Teas For Weight Loss, see who they are and how matcha green tea helps you with weight loss.
Spice up your Sirtfood recipes with Bird’s Eye Chili. They contain the major sirtuin-activating nutrients luteolin and myricetin.
If you can handle a little bit of spice Bird’s Eye Chili also called Thai Chillies’ is a unique way to increase your daily sodium and potassium intake, improve heartburn symptoms, and balance weight.
Be careful, if you aren’t used to spicy food, you can start with half the chili amount stated in the recipe as well as deseeding the chili before use.
Like all other foods on this Sirtfoods list, a rocket is a great source of vitamin C and A. Maybe known more by the name arugula or roquette, is commonly used fresh for salads or added pasta and sauces.
It tends to sauté faster than its tougher cousins kale and collard greens. Because of its tenderness, and it lends more flavor to a dish than spinach or Swiss chard.
Turmeric or ‘Indian saffron’ belongs to the ginger family and gives curry its yellowish color and warm, bitter taste. With the amazing health benefits, it offers it is no wonder that is part of the Sirtfood Diet and belongs on this list of top 20 Sirtfoods.
Curcumin is the primary bioactive substance in turmeric. It is a polyphenol with anti-inflammatory properties and the ability to increase the number of antioxidants that the body produces.
Somewhere you will find turmeric and curcumin as the same but the difference is that turmeric is a popular root/spice and curcumin is a highly potent chemical in turmeric.
#18. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Oleuropein and Hydroxytyrosol are the main sirtuin-activating nutrients in extra virgin olive oil. The average Greek consumes 20 liters a year and the average person who lives in Western countries just 2 liters per year.
This is because extra virgin olive oil is mostly used in Mediterranean Diet and because is antioxidant-filled, immune-boosting contains sirtuin-activating nutrients and above all, it is a tasty addition to every meal now it is part of the Sirtfoods list for the Sirtfood Diet.
We are sure that chocolate will be your favorite Sirtfood if you decide to start with the Sirtfood Diet. Just like the Red Wine, Dark Chocolate has captured the most attention amongst the top 20 Sirtfoods.
Dark chocolate is rich in a specific group of polyphenols called flavanols. Flavanols have been shown to support the production of nitric oxide that helps to relax the blood vessels and improve blood flow, thereby lowering blood pressure.
Dark chocolate contains 50-90% cocoa solids, cocoa butter, and sugar, whereas milk chocolate contains anywhere from 10-50% cocoa solids, cocoa butter, milk in some form, and sugar. Dark chocolate contains 2-3 times more flavanol-rich cocoa solids than milk chocolate.
So let’s be clear chocolate used for Sirtfood Diet is dark, which means it contains 85% cacao and above.
The good news is that coffee is allowed on the Sirtfood Diet.
If you don’t like coffee or want to find a good alternative for your morning drink that increases your energy levels and boosts metabolism, here is a great reading for you: Best Tea Alternatives To Your Morning Coffee With and Without Caffeine.
To make delicious and tasty meals using Sirtfoods try some of the recipes from the Sirtfood Diet Recipe Book. There are recipes for smoothies, what to prepare for lunch and breakfast, and how to combine these foods.
Other benefits of consuming Sirtfoods
Are Sirtfoods the new superfoods?
There is no denying that Sirtfoods is good for you. High in nutrients and healthy plant compounds, these foods recommended on the Sirtfood Diet are associated with many health benefits, not just helping to lose weight.
There is growing evidence that sirtuin-activators may help with suppressing appetite, building muscle, helping the body better control blood sugar levels, and cleaning up the damage from the free radical molecules that can accumulate in cells.
Sleep – Activating sirtuins helps your circadian rhythm ensuring you produce the hormones for sleep and waking when you’re supposed to.
Diabetes – Sirtuins make cells more insulin sensitive, which means they can remove more glucose from the bloodstream.
Anti-inflammatory properties – Turmeric has anti-inflammatory properties that have beneficial effects on the body and may even protect against chronic, inflammation-related diseases.
However, evidence of the benefits of increasing sirtuin protein levels is preliminary. Research in animals and cell lines has shown positive results.
While studies in mice and human cells have shown positive results, there have been no human studies examining the effects of increasing sirtuin levels.
Whether increasing sirtuin protein levels in the body will lead to a longer lifespan or lower risk of cancer in humans is unknown.
To learn more about Sirtfood Diet and how it works read this article The Sirtfood Diet: Lose 7 Pounds In 7 Days By Eating Chocolate. Here you will find information about phases of the diet, hen to eat your meals, and why smoothies are important with weight loss.
Final thoughts about Sirtfoods and their role in weight loss
If you are not interested in Sirtfood Diet it doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t add Sirtfoods to your daily meals.
Matcha, dark chocolate, Medjool dates, berries and all other foods mention in this list are all delicious and can do wonders for your well-being when consumed responsibly.
The most important thing to know is that every diet is not for everyone. Before starting a diet it’s recommended to consult with your doctor or nutritionist first. maybe your body is not prepared for restrictive diets.
Because the Sirtfood Diet is considered new diet research into its effectiveness and how sirtuin-activating foods contribute to wellness continues.
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