Improve your brain function with these nutritious fruits and vegetables.
With work and family life blending together these days, it's important to keep our brains sharp! But you don't need to just rely on puzzles and games. You can improve your brain function with your diet. Here are just five of the best brain-boosting foods you can eat.
Egg yolks contain choline, which does two things for your body. It helps maintain cell structure, and produces acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter for memory, mood, muscle control, and other brain and nervous system functions. Some researchers have theorized that higher levels of choline could reduce the progression of dementia in people with Alzheimer's disease. And for those without dementia, one study of over 1,300 people found that those who consume higher amounts of choline in their diets may perform better on memory tests, and are less likely to show brain changes associated with dementia.
Men should have 550 mg of choline a day, and women should consume 425 mg a day.
These little fruits are packed with brain-powering benefits. They help improve or delay short-term memory loss, as well as slow cognitive decline. No wonder they're called "brainberries!"
Omega-3 fatty acids (found in fatty fish) are healthy polyunsaturated fats that help build brain and nerve cells. They have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects, and evidence suggests that it can help prevent deterioration of the brain. They may also be associated with slowing down age-related cognitive decline. Our bodies do not independently produce sufficient omega-3 fatty acids, so the best way to get a daily dose is to eat foods high in omega-3s. Fatty fish like salmon, cod, trout, sardines and pollack provide are great sources.
Don't let your kids slide this one around their plate (and don't you skip it either). With its antioxidant powers, it helps reduce your risk of neurodegenerative disease. It's one of the healthiest foods around
Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
The Mediterranean diet consists of high intake of vegetables, legumes, fruits, nuts, cereals, and olive oil. And it has a low intake of saturated lipids and meat. This diet is thought to reduce cognitive decline and dementia. But within the Mediterranean diet, one study found that consumption of extra-virgin olive oil protects memory and learning ability. This study also found that extra-virgin olive oil reduces brain inflammation and activates a process called autophagy, which breaks down and clears out debris and plaques in the brain.
This Indian spice has been shown to help repair brain cells. It may even help reduce the risk of Alzheimer's. So there's one reason to order curry for dinner.
One study has shown that cinnamon can increase cognitive functioning, even just through smell alone. And it is being considered as a possible treatment to enhance cognition in the elderly and people with symptoms of dementia.