When you're old, screw it — you might as well hit up the all-you-can-eat buffet every day of the week. Your nearly eight decades of life have earned you the right to eat what you want. Seriously, science now says that once you hit 75, the benefits of eating healthily go out the window.
University of Alabama at Birmingham researchers followed the eating habits of 449 people aged 75 and up for five years, and categorised their diets into three classes. There's the sweets and dairy, which is characterised by lots of baked goods, coffee and tea, dairy-based desserts and very little poultry. The there's the health conscious class, which includes good grains, fish, nuts, and not much processed food or soft drinks. And the third is the Western pattern, a diet defined by alcohol, fried food, soft drinks, eggs, breads, fats, and not much fruit or protein. Researchers also cross-referenced the old timers' medical records to check for a correlation between a bad diet and cardiovascular disease, diabetes, metabolic syndrome or even death.
Researchers found no relation no matter which class of diet the person followed. There was a higher risk of hypertension for the sweets and dairy segment, and it was suggested that ascribing to a healthy diet is probably going to give you fewer problems in the long run, but it seems that once you're at that advanced age, if you're going to die you're just going to die. The results of the study are published in the Journal of Nutrition Health and Aging, as well as the next email your grandmother writes you in all caps. Respecting your elders now means letting them eat whatever the hell they want. [Penn State via Futurity]