Since the brain has such an important job, it's imperative that we provide it with an abundance of nutrients to help it function properly which will keep you alert and focused. Research shows that foods rich in vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, flavanols, polyphenols and omega-3 fatty acids can help improve memory, concentration and overall brain health.
Some of the top foods to help with brain health are:
1. Leafy Greens
Leafy greens, such as kale and spinach, are packed with nutrients, including vitamin K, folate and vitamin E. Vitamin E is an antioxidant that protects the cells from free radical damage and has been linked to preventing cognitive decline in the ageing population. Increasing your intake of leafy greens doesn't have to be difficult. You can try adding a handful of greens when preparing a smoothie or adding a serving of greens to your favoruite wrap with an organic flour tortilla.
Eggs offer an abundance of health benefits, especially when it comes to brain health. Did you know that regular consumption of eggs has been associated with improved cognitive performance in adults? Eggs are one of the best food sources of choline. Choline has been linked to reducing inflammation and promoting brain function, like maintaining memory and communications between brain cells. Even though eggs are commonly served at breakfast, you can enjoy them at any meal. Try using eggs to make a savoury dinner quiche, or fabulous creamy custard for dessert.
Out of all of the berries, blueberries are on the top of the list for brain health. They contribute essential nutrients to the body, including vitamin C, vitamin K, manganese and phytonutrients. These nutrients help to stimulate the flow of blood and oxygen in the brain, resulting in improved concentration. Evidence suggests that eating a diet containing a variety of vegetables and fruits, such as blueberries, is associated with lower risk of age-related cognitive impairment, dementia and Alzheimer's disease. There are many ways to enjoy this tasty fruit—try adding a handful to your smoothie recipe or pair them with Squamish maple syrup and your favourite yoghourt.
Nuts are a great addition to any diet regimen, but the one that contributes most to brain health is walnuts. When compared to other nuts, walnuts offer twice as many antioxidants. They contain an excellent source of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), which is a plant-based omega-3 essential fatty acid that helps to counteract cognitive decline by suppressing inflammation and oxidative stress. Inflammation and oxidative stress have been linked to Alzheimer's disease and dementia. Evidence suggests that eating about 1 to 2 ounces of walnuts per day can improve cognitive function. Try adding a serving of walnuts to a hearty salad or pairing them with a variety of roasted vegetables.
In summary, the foods you put into your body play an important role in brain health. You can help to improve your brain health, memory and alertness by including a variety of nutritious foods such as leafy greens, eggs, blueberries and walnuts in your daily diet.