Healthy Foods to Boost Your Brain Power

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Healthy Foods to Boost Your Brain Power

Blue berries are known for their antioxidant properties and can help boost one's immune system / Photo by Getty Images

 

It is easy to remember to take protein after going to the gym to make you recover faster, or carbo-loading before engaging in strenuous activity. According to bicycling.com, do not also forget to fuel a vital organ in the body—the brain. Here are some foods that can promote brain health and protect your brain too.

 

Dark Chocolates

They are known as antioxidants and can reduce inflammation. Dark chocolates can also help boost memory. Based on research in the FASEB Journal, consumption of dark chocolate that has at least 70% cacao causes an increased gamma wave frequency in the brain. This has something to do with memory recall. Epicatechin is a flavonol found in cocoa that is said to give cognitive benefits to older adults. 

Chocolates are even said to help alleviate feelings of depression and anxiety because they increase the serotonin.

 

Mushrooms

They are not the first food that comes to mind, but these have been found to lower MCI or mild cognitive impairment. MCI is the stage between the cognitive decline related to aging and dementia. Based on research from the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, eating two or more 150-gram servings of mushroom every week for six years resulted in a 57% MCI risk reduction for those who are over 60 years old. 

 

Blueberries

They are also known for their antioxidant properties and can help boost one's immune system that manages inflammation in the body. There was a study that found out that eating blueberries can slow down the aging of both cognitive and motor functions. 

Aside from blueberries, strawberries and blackberries are also good for your mental health. Those who ate berries experience slower cognitive decline since berries are high in anthocyanins, which are antioxidants that can cross the blood-brain barrier that is associated with memory and learning. 

 

Walnuts

Walnuts are the only tree nut that is a good source for ALA or alpha-linolenic acid. ALA is an omega-3 fatty acid that is plant-based. This can be converted to DHA and EPA in the body. Generally, nuts are helpful for brain health, and it is also linked to improving one's cognitive ability. Rd.com noted a study where adults who eat more walnuts perform better in tests. 

 

Coffee 

A study in Biomed Research International found out that regular consumption of coffee can improve one's memory and concentration. Those who drink about 2 cups of coffee a day get higher tests scores in focus and attention.

 

Fish

The brain needs a lot of omega-3 fatty acids to stay healthy. Salmon, trout, herring, sardines, tuna, and mackerel have omega-3s EPA and DHA. DHA and EPA are essential because the brain is the organ that has the most fats. DHA is said to be crucial for older people. Other research, such as the one published in the American Journal of Preventative Medicine, found that consumption of baked or broiled fish can increase gray matter volume that can improve cognition and memory. This can reduce the risk for diseases of the brain. 

Antioxidants in avocados can help protect you from neurodegenerative diseases related to aging / Photo by Getty Images

 

Avocado

Bicycling.com noted that the research published in the Benefits of Natural Products for Neurodegenerative Diseases found that there are antioxidants in avocados that can help protect you from neurodegenerative diseases related to aging, such as Parkinson's and Alzheimer's. Consumption of healthy fat in avocado promotes healthy blood flow that also decreases one's risk of heart disease. 

 

Pumpkin Seeds

Pumpkin seeds are suitable for the brain because they have ALA omega-3s, zinc, and magnesium. These play a role in having a better brain function. 

 

Kimchi

This is a traditional fermented dish favorite in Korea that has plenty of probiotic bacteria. Kimchi promotes brain health. According to ncbi.nlm.nih.gov, kimchi is a source of probiotic LAB or lactic acid bacteria, which has a lot of benefits, such as "anticancer, antiobesity, anti-constipation, colorectal health promotion, probiotic properties, cholesterol reduction, fibrinolytic effect, antioxidative and antiaging properties, brain health promotion, immune promotion, and skin health promotion."

 

Jicama

This is a good source of prebiotic fiber. Jicama is also known as Mexican yam and is high in vitamin E, B6, and folate. 

Kale

This is quite the popular food—so popular that there is even a day dedicated to it. Kale has a lot of nutrients, such as vitamin A, C, K, and the mineral manganese. These can help in one's cognitive function. So always remember to eat your green, leafy vegetables. 

 

Broccoli

This cruciferous vegetable contains sulforaphane that can help protect the brain. Broccoli has vitamin K, important for having a healthy brain function. Rd.com noted that there was a study wherein early-stage Alzheimer's have lesser vitamin K intake than those who did not have the disease. 

 

Eggs

Eating an egg a day can provide you with brain power because of the choline it contains. Regular egg eaters are less likely to have dementia in 22 years based on a study as noted by rd.com. 

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