Your food habits have a huge impact on your brain health. Experts recommend a diet that boosts your brain health. The brain is a vital organ in the human anatomy. For its proper functioning, it uses around one-fifth of your body's calories. However, if you want to stay focused throughout the day, you need to supply it with good-quality fuel.
Various nutrients keep the brain active and healthy, such as omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants. These nutrients help the brain fight against diseases like brain aging and Alzheimer's. We have listed the best foods for the brain below. And if you incorporate these in the right quantity, you can maintain your brain's proper structure and good health.
Oily fish is a great source of omega-3 fatty acids. What benefits do they have? Omega-3 plays a key role in building membranes around the cells in the human body, the brain cells, and improves the structure of neurons.
According to a 2017 study, people with an optimum or high percentage of omega-3 fatty acids boost the blood flow in the brain. Increased blood flow in the brain leads to improved cognitive abilities. The oily fish list is famous for its high omega-3 fatty acids content including salmon, tuna, mackerel, sardines, and herring. Those who are vegetarians can derive their share from nuts, soybeans, flaxseed, etc.
The essential ingredient of dark chocolate is cocoa which contains a type of antioxidant called flavonoids. Since the brain is prone to oxidative stress, antioxidants play a key role in boosting your brain health. Oxidative stress leads to a decline in your cognitive abilities and the development of brain diseases. Antioxidants work as a perfect antidote to that. The flavonoids present in cocoa are beneficial for the brain.
They encourage the growth of neurons and blood vessels which is essential for learning and memorizing. According to a few research works, the flavonoids present in dark chocolate might reverse the memory issues in snails. Whether humans undergo the same process or not remains to be tested.
Berries, just like dark chocolate, are popular for their flavonoids content. Therefore, berries are wonderful for the health of your brain. Antioxidants are essential for the body as it helps in bringing down oxidative stress and inflammation. Berries contain antioxidants like caffeic acid, anthocyanins, quercetin, and catechin.
If you take a 2014 study into account, the various positive effects of berries are boosting communication among brain cells. It increases elasticity, reducing inflammation, diminishing the risks related to declining cognitive abilities and neurodegenerative diseases. Berries that are laden with antioxidants are strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, mulberries, and blackcurrants.
Nuts and Seeds
Nuts and seeds again are a good source of omega-3 fatty acids. They are laden with antioxidants as well. Experts say that high consumption of nuts leads to better functioning of the brain as you grow older. Nuts and seeds also contain a high amount of vitamin E. It shields the cells of the brain from oxidative stress. Free radicals cause this oxidative stress.
As you age, the brain gets more vulnerable to oxidative stress, and this is where vitamin E comes into play. Vitamin E also boosts cognition and cuts down the risks of Alzheimer’s. The nuts and seeds that contain a huge amount of vitamin e are sunflower seeds, hazelnuts, and almonds. However, research is underway to find out the effects of Vitamin E on the brain.
Adding whole grains to your diet is an effective way to derive the benefits of vitamin E. The whole grains are a great source that supplies vitamin E. The whole grains beneficial for brain health include brown rice, oatmeal, barley, whole-grain bread, bulgur wheat, and whole-grain pasta.
The other beneficial foods that contribute to a healthy brain are coffee, avocados, peanuts, broccoli, eggs, soy products, kale, etc. All these foods and the ones listed above help to boost an individual’s concentration and memory. Besides that, some also play a major role in thwarting stroke and neurodegenerative diseases that come with old age. So, make sure to include these nutritious foods in your everyday diet. And we are sure you'd be in the pink of your health forever!