Best Tips: Eat Smart to Stay Smart

Is there a diet to activate the grey matter? Which foods are suitable for the brain?

Just as several foods help keep your body hale and hearty, many of them can work in keeping your brain healthy. 

Some foods have antioxidants that help protect the brain and its parts from deterioration. Some foods have nutrients to aid memory and further progress. What you eat can keep your mind healthy and boost alertness, memory, and mood. 

Berries 

Berries contain anthocyanins, a group of plant compounds with anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects. Berries like blueberries, blackberries, strawberries, and dark berries contain antioxidants that help keep your memory sharp as you age. Seeds are sought after for their fiber content for bulk and glucose for its energy.

Some benefits of eating berries include slowing the aging process, improving communication between brain cells, and delaying short-term memory loss.

Broccoli 

Broccoli is principally consumed as they have antioxidants and vitamins. These are essential for forming a kind of tightly packed lipids in brain cells called sphingolipids that protect the brain from damage.

Studies on seniors have shown higher vitamin K intake to better memory. Several compounds found in broccoli give it the anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects, thus aiding in protecting against brain damage.

Coffee 

You know of coffee’s caffein effect, but coffee also contains antioxidants that help the brain. Besides making you alert and enhancing your moods, coffee is also believed to acuminate concentration. 

Dark Chocolate 

 Dark chocolate and cocoa contain flavonoids, caffeine, and antioxidants. Studies show that these compounds can enhance memory and help slow the process of aging. Eating dark chocolate is believed to improve the mood and help protect the brain. 

Fish 

What does Jeeves have that makes him the brains behind the schemes he hatches to rescue Bertie Wooster and his friends? Fish is believed to enrich Jeeves’ grey cells. 

Fish-eaters have the edge over the non-fish-eating people. Omega-3, present mainly in fish, aids in the sharpening of the brain. 

Fatty fish or oily fish is known to contain omega-3, which can be easily absorbed and used by the body. Fish is a heart and brain-friendly food. The fatty cells are believed to enhance memory, besides other health benefits. 

Whole eggs  

Vitamin B6, B12, choline, and folate contained in eggs are considered proper nourishment for the brain. 

Studies have linked higher intakes of choline to improved memory and mental function and delay brain damage in seniors. Eating eggs regulate a person’s moods.  

Green Tea

Green tea has caffeine that stimulates the brain and improves alertness, performance, memory, and focus. L-theanine, an amino acid found in green tea, goes across the blood-brain barrier and facilitates in diminishing anxiety and enhancing relaxation while ensuring the person is does not feel tired.

Chemicals in green tea give protection to the brain and aid in preventing brain decay by diminishing chances of conditions like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.  

Leafy green vegetables 

Leafy green vegetables like kale, lettuce, spinach, parsley, etc. are rich in vitamins and minerals. 

Kale contains plenty of nutrients, including vitamin K, vitamin A, vitamin C, and the mineral manganese. Spinach is rich in B complex vitamins and calcium. Fenugreek is rich in iron. 

Eating leafy green vegetables is known to reduce aging.  

Whole nuts

Walnuts contain omega-3 fatty acids. Research shows eating nuts improve heart health and aids healthy brain function.

A 2014 study showed that nuts could improve cognition and even help prevent neurodegenerative diseases.

Women who ate nuts like walnuts, almonds, etc. regularly had a sharper memory, compared to those who did not.  

Healthy fats, antioxidants, and vitamin E present in nuts account for delaying brain damage.    

Olive oil

Olive oil helps protect brain health. Olive oil contains polyphenols, which may lower the risk for certain neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and stroke. 

Citrus fruits 

The vitamin C found in oranges, lemons, and other citrus fruits is a crucial factor in preventing mental decline.  It can protect against age-related mental decline and Alzheimer’s by fighting free radicals. It supports brain health and delays brain decay as you age.  

Seeds 

Seeds like chia, flaxseeds, pumpkin, etc. are known to contain powerful antioxidants that protect the body and brain from free radical damage. They are rich in magnesium, iron, zinc, and copper.

Minerals are crucial for nerve signaling. Depriving the brain of minerals like zinc, magnesium, and copper can seriously damage brain function. Your consuming minerals like magnesium aids in sharpening your memory.

Turmeric 

The deep yellow spice is an essential ingredient in curries and dals and has several benefits for the brain.  Curcumin, a powerful antioxidant found in turmeric, helps cross the blood-brain barrier and prevents inflammation.    

It boosts serotonin and dopamine, both of which improve the mood. 

When you eat foods containing turmeric, it aids in growing new cells in the brain.  

Water 

Water is the primary source of fluids. It is a significant source of nutrition for the brain. It forms over 80% of the brain’s content. The brain requires water for chemical reactions. Loss of water in the brain can severely damage the brain. Water is responsible for the detoxing of the body, which is essential for clear thinking. 

Dehydration can lead to dizziness, fatigue, confusion, and fogging. Drinking plenty of water is pivotal to maintaining balance in the body. Consuming water is crucial to physical and mental development. 

Food Component responsible Benefit
Berries like blueberries, blackberries, strawberries Anthocyanins, antioxidants, fiber, glucose Slows aging; improves brain cell communication; delays short-term memory loss
Broccoli Sphingolipids, Vitamin K Enhances memory; protects against brain damage
Coffee  Caffein, antioxidants Whets concentration; makes one alert
Dark chocolate Flavonoids, antioxidants, caffeine Improves memory and enhances the mood
Eggs Vitamins B6, B12, choline, and folate.  Improves memory; helps in the progression of the brain, and elevates the mood
Green Tea Caffeine, L-theanine, polyphenols boosts brain function; improves alertness; performance; memory and focus; helps reduce anxiety; helps one relax; protects against brain decline; minimizes the risk of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. 
Leafy green vegetables like kale, lettuce, spinach, parsley, etc. Vitamin K, vitamin A, vitamin C; minerals like manganese, iron, calcium Reduces aging; boosts memory
Nuts Vitamin E, Omega-3 (in walnuts), antioxidants Improves cognition, slows mental decline, prevents neurodegenerative diseases  
Olive oil Polyphenols  lower risk Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and stroke
Citrus fruits like oranges and lemons Vitamin C, antioxidants Defends against brain damage from free radicals
Seeds like flax seeds, chia, pumpkin seeds magnesium, iron, zinc, and copper Improved memory and brain development
Turmeric  Curcumin Improves memory, eases depression, helps brain cells grow
Water Water Essential for all the chemical reactions in the brain and aids in detoxing

The foods and the food groups mentioned here are healthful in many ways. Dietary requirements of nutrients vary with age.

But consuming foods rich in Vitamins, minerals, and healthy proteins can boost both physical and mental well-being. Eating smart to remain smart is the new norm to be alert and competent. 

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