The Power of Leafy Greens: Boosting Health and Longevity - Rancho La Puerta
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Green and Leafy: A Gateway to Longevity

Leafy greens are an essential component of a healthy diet. They include broccoli, lettuce, kale, chard, collards, and spinach. These greens are particularly rich in folate, lutein, Vitamin E compounds, Vitamin K, and kaempferol, which reduce inflammation and protect cells throughout the body. While the US Dietary Guidelines recommend 4-5 servings of fruit and vegetables daily, it is wise to be sure these include a few servings of green leafy vegetables.

Recent research by Dr. Kara Fitzgerald, a renowned expert in functional medicine and longevity, has explored the relationship between a diet rich in leafy greens and their potential longevity-promoting effects. She addresses this in her most recent book, Younger You, where she explains the impact of whole foods on biological aging and overall health outcomes. 

In a recent peer-reviewed publication, Dr. Fitzgerald focused on a case series of women who followed a structured version of an 8-week bio-age-targeting protocol. The study looked at the ability of whole foods to influence participants’ biological age. Biological age includes chronological age, genetics, lifestyle, nutrition, and co-morbidities. The participants collectively reduced their biological age by an average of 4.60 years compared to their baseline. In another study with the Hellgott Institute and Dr. Fitzgerald, the research found promising bio-age-reversing effects of an eight-week DNA methylation-supportive diet and lifestyle in middle-aged men. A significant cornerstone of the bio-age targeting protocol is leafy greens.

While the exact mechanism is yet to be determined, nutrients that impact our DNA, such as those found in leafy greens, are part of the metabolome. The metabolome is a system of small molecules within a cell or organism. These small molecules interface with our genome in the metabolome, much like a piano player interfacing with the piano keys. Our genes respond differently to various molecules, yielding different results, much like playing different piano keys elicits a different tune on the piano. By influencing the metabolome, we can influence and perhaps even prevent diseases of the metabolome (metabolic diseases) like cardiovascular disease, cancer, Alzheimer’s Disease, and Type 2 diabetes. Leafy greens are also low in calories and high in fiber, which can help with weight management and maintain gut health. Fiber also has a role in the metabolome by stimulating the growth of specific bacteria that interface with our genes to enhance our health.

It is worth noting that further research is needed to understand the mechanisms through which leafy greens promote longevity fully and to investigate their effects on different populations. However, results like those from Dr. Fitzgerald’s recent studies showing a significant reversal in bio-age in a few weeks are intriguing. I encourage you to try this powerful leafy green Kale Salad by Chef Reyna Venegas as part of a healthy lifestyle that may contribute to enhanced longevity. It’s delicious!


1.       Dr. Kara Fitzgerald. An Interview with Dr. Fitzgerald on her Latest Research Publication and Protocol Design

2.       Metabolic Epidemiology Offers Insights Into Disease Aetiology