Who doesn’t want to get smarter? Who wants to look better or be healthier? Many recent studies have shown how specific nutrients have positive effects on the brain especially in those areas of the brain related to cognitive processing or feelings and emotions. Generally speaking, you want to follow a healthy diet for your brain that will lead to good blood flow, help maintain mental sharpness and reduce the risk of heart disease and neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and dementia.
We know how foods play a great role in our brain. This is the conclusion of several studies led by a phenomenal neuroscientist at UCLA, Gomez Pinilla.
According to one study, the super fats your brain needs most are Omega 3 fatty acids. Your brain converts them into DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) which enhances neuronal communication and promotes neuronal growth.
Food and nutrients represent fuel to our body the same way that when we use our car we need to fill the gas tank. Unfortunately, we tend to take better care of our cars than our bodies. Why is that? We are hearing more and more that ingesting the right nutrients can help not only our health, but with better aging and quicker brain body functioning.
Top 10 Foods for Better Brain Health
1. Apples: Eating one apple a day protects the brain from oxidative damage that causes neurodegenerative diseases such Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. This magical nutrient that act as protection is quercetin, which is a phytonutrient.
2. Asparagus: Asparagus is rich in folic acid, which is essential for the metabolism of the long chain fatty acids in your brain.
3. Lean Beef: Lean beef is rich in vitamin B12, iron and zinc. These vitamins and minerals have been shown to maintain a healthy neural tissue.
4. Blueberries and strawberries: Studies show that people that eat berries improve their memory and their motor skills. In addition, their antioxidant properties can protect your brain from the oxidative process.
5. Dark chocolate: Dark chocolate has incredible concentration powers. It is a very powerful antioxidant containing natural stimulants increasing the production of feel good endorphins. Trick: you need to find dark chocolate with less than 10 grams of sugar per serving for optimal benefits.
7. Dried oregano: Certain spices have powerful antioxidant properties. In several studies, this powerful spice has shown to have 40 times more antioxidant properties than apples, 30 times more than potatoes, 12 times more than oranges and 4 times more than blueberries or strawberries.
8. Walnuts: Walnuts are rich in protein and contain Omega 3-fatty acids, vitamin E and vitamin B6 which all promote healthy neural tissue.
9.Whole grains: Whole grains deliver fiber and vitamin E that help promote cardiovascular health helping improve the circulation to the brain.
10.Yogurt: Yogurt and other dairy foods are filled with protein and vitamin B that are essential to improve the communication between nerve cells.
Make sure that from now on you select and plan a great menu of brain foods in your diet. Life is about choices and selecting the right nutrients can play a key role in your health.
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June 19th, 2011