Nutrition is a key factor. Not only does it help to improve and keep our body shape, it is also important for our brain’s health. In this post I am going to show you which are the best foods for a good brain health.
Having healthy eating habits is essential in order to prevent neurodegenerative diseases. As a matter of fact there exist a few brain-friendly foods, that, if eaten consistently, help keep it young and improve its cognitive functions.
10 best foods for a good brain health
1 –Pine nuts
100 gr of pine nuts contain 440 % of manganese RDA (Recommended Daily/Dietary Allowance), 47% of vitamin E RDA, 66 % of copper RDA and 63 % of magnesium daily intake. 100 gr of pine nuts contains 20 times as many omega-6 fatty acids as an avocado.
Omega-6 fatty acids are known for their antioxidant properties, helpful above all in order to keep our brain young and healthy.
Vitamin E is a valuable antioxidant as well, protecting brain cells from oxidative stress and promoting cognitive abilities.
Magnesium helps battle anxiety and makes us more resistant to stress.
Copper improves our cognitive abilities, attention, concentration and learning process. Yet copper excess may be dangerous and its daily requirements shouldn’t be exceeded.
Manganese is helpful for individuals with a very active lifestyle; individuals taking much physical exercise and being put under extreme psychological stress.
2 – Beetroot
Beetroots are rich in nitrites, substances that improve circulation and boost blood flow to the brain. Research has shown that drinking beetroot juice consistently boosts neuronal elasticity and brain adaptability, which is essential especially in old age.
Beetroots contain another substance, called betanin, responsible for the red colour and that protects from Alzheimer’s disease by slowing down the buildup of toxic substances in the brain.
Beetroots are packed with 3 times as much vitamin B9 as oranges. This vitamin is essential in order to keep cognitive functions healthy and prevent dementia.
3 – Yerba Matè tea
The substances contained in this kind of tea boost the nervous system, battle fatigue and drowsiness, improve mental functions and long-term memory. Matè tea may also be a good replacement for coffee.
Besides boosting our brain, this tea helps battle depression and protects neurons, and may prove helpful in preventing and treating Parkinson’s disease. Matè tea is richer in antioxidants than green tea.
4 – Pomegranate juice
Pomegranates are packed with three times as many antioxidants as red wine and green tea. These antioxidants are essential to battle free radicals and inflammation, and to protect neurons.
Pomegranates are also rich in polyphenols, that improve both verbal and visual memory. Consuming 240 ml of pomegranate juice a day helps keep our brain functions healthy.
5 – Turmeric
Turmeric is known for being rich in antioxidants, which improve our memory, especially if you suffer from Alzheimer’s disease.
Turmeric boosts neuronal regeneration and synapses. What is more, turmeric is a natural antidepressant, promotes hormonal balance, battles anxiety is a mood booster. Adding a little turmeric to our daily dishes may help handle stressful situations.
6 – Lentils
200 gr of lentils contain 90% of vitamin B9 RDA, 49% of manganese RDA, 37% of iron RDA and 17% of zinc daily intake.
Vitamin B9 promotes brain development, boosts memory and proves valuable when we approach the old age. Manganese and iron are helpful to prevent the nervous system from working improperly and to improve energy balance.
Zinc is needful to keep memory and cognitive functions healthy.
7 – Grapes
Grapes peel is packed with resveratrol – a valuable antioxidant, which keeps our brain healthy, prevents cognitive decline, turning out to be helpful when it comes to Alzheimer’s disease.
Grapes are valuable anti-inflammatories, and help battle stress, anxiety, hypertension and improve memory. A cluster of grapes a day may help prevent the onset of several disorders and neurodegenerative diseases.
8 – Strawberries
100 gr of strawberries are packed with 98% of vitamin C daily intake.
Vitamin C is needful for proper brain functioning. It is a very valuable antioxidant, that promotes neuronal activity, after-surgery recovery and protects neurons from decline.
What is more strawberries are extremely rich in flavonoids, valuable substances to preserve both memory and clarity of mind.
9 – Raisins
100 gr of raisins are packed with 21% of potassium RDA , 150 % of boron RDA, 18% of copper RDA, and 16% of vitamin B6 daily intake.
Boron is essential to preserve both long-term and short-term memory, improves perception, and brain performance. Raisin contains three times as much boron as walnuts and one third as much as almonds.
Potassium is essential for nerve cells. Potassium deficiency (hypokalemia) may lead to weakness, fatigue, confusion, mood changes etc.
Eggs are packed with 2 very valuable antioxidants: zeaxanthin and lutein, carotenoids essential to battle ageing and keep brain functions healthy. New research is being carried out in order to better understand the beneficial properties of these carotenoids and evaluate their antiaging effect and their impact on cognitive deterioration, which is the root of some neurological disorders like Alzheimer’s disease.
Not only brain-friendly foods
“The human brain has 100 billion neurons, each neuron connected to 10 thousand other neurons. Sitting on your shoulders is the most complicated object in the known universe.” – Michio Kaku
In order to prevent neurodegenerative diseases and preserve brain health, it is essential not only to eat the right foods, but also to have a healthy lifestyle, take regular physical exercise, promote cognitive performances and have an active social life.
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