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What Foods Should We Eat to Boost Brain Function?

While there are no magic foods or supplements that can reverse cognitive decline or prevent aging, despite claims made for certain products, there are plenty of well-studied foods scientifically shown to slow down the effects of aging and enhance brain function. From those rich in antioxidants to omega-3s, Nature’s Garden has curated a list of foods and products that will be your brain’s best friend, all backed by science.

What foods help improve brain function?

There are plenty of foods that we can rely on to help improve our brain function. Some of the most common ones that we can incorporate into our diets are:

  • Berries are rich in flavonoids (the natural plant pigment that gives them color) and has been shown to help improve memory.
  • Fatty Fish are great sources of omega-3 fatty acids, as well as healthy unsaturated fats that are known to lower levels of beta-amyloid in the blood. This protein is commonly associated with Alzheimer’s disease.
  • Green Leafy Vegetables including kale, spinach, and broccoli are packed with vitamin K and other healthy nutrients like folate, beta carotene, and lutein. These foods have been linked to help slow cognitive decline.
  • Turmeric contains curcumin which is a vibrant yellow chemical produced in plants. Curcumin has been linked to improved memory and clear amyloid plaques in the brain which are associated with Alzheimer’s disease.
  • Nuts, especially walnuts, almonds and roasted hazelnuts like the ones offered by us here at Nature’s Garden, are rich in antioxidants, protein, healthy fats, and vitamin E which are proven to be beneficial for brain health.
  • Eggs are stacked with several nutrients like choline that works to preserve memory function and brain development.
  • Dark Chocolate contains flavonoids, caffeine, and antioxidants which help improve not only memory and focus, but overall cognitive function.
  • Tea and Coffee have been known to promote brain function due to their caffeine concentration.

These foods can be easily incorporated into our everyday diets, by being proactive.

How does nutrition affect the brain?

Our brains require a constant source of fuel because they are “always on.” Eva Selhub MD, Contributing Editor of Harvard Medical School’s health blog writes, “It takes care of your thoughts and movements, you’re breathing and heartbeat, your senses – it works hard 24/7, even while you’re asleep.”

 Food = Brain Fuel

What we eat directly affects the function of our brains, our daily mood, and the structure of our brains. This is why it is crucial for us to eat higher quality foods that are rich in minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants that work to nourish our brain.  These foods also help protect our brains from the “waste” produced when the body uses oxygen, called oxidative stress, which can damage cells.

Do the Foods We Eat Affect our Brain Chemistry?

Gary Gibson and John Blass of National Library of Medicine write that, “the brain is sensitive to changes in diet. It depends on a continuous supply of nutrients from the blood, some of which are synthesized in other organs of the body, such as choline. Others, which cannot be synthesized in mammalian systems at all, are ‘essential’ components that must be furnished by the diet. These essential nutrients include vitamins, amino acids and fatty acids.” With factors like our diets, having the potential to change our brain health and other mental functions it’s important to focus how we can always be our best selves.  An easy way to do this is by incorporating the above foods and drinks into our regular diets. The same way that we can negatively alter our cognition by intaking nutritionally poor foods, we also have the power to positively enhance our cognition through making the healthy choice instead.

Where To Find Snacks That Give My Brain a Boost?

At Nature’s Garden, you’ll find a wide variety of brain-boosting snacks that are rich in antioxidants and omega-3’s. Take a look at our wide selection of premium nut blends and trail mixes made with health in mind. Boost your brain by including more of these healthy foods in your diet. You can also use the guide listed at the beginning of this blog to add options to your grocery list.  Although supermarkets can be daunting when we want to try and improve our diets because of the endless choices, it gets easier as we get into a rhythm of being conscious of what we put into our and our families bodies.

What does lack of nutrients do to the brain?

Not eating enough foods that contribute to healthy brain function can increase the risk of nutritional deficiencies like brain fog, anxiety, and depression.

How does nutrition affect brain function?

Nutrition can alter brain function in short time frames, for example, by altering neurotransmitters and neuronal firing, and in the long-term, such as by altering membrane structure.

Do the foods we eat affect our brain chemistry?

The foods we consume have a direct impact on our brain chemistry. Essential nutrients like vitamins, amino acids, and fatty acids obtained from our diets play a crucial role in maintaining optimal brain function. For instance, certain foods rich in antioxidants and omega-3 fatty acids can improve memory, focus, and overall cognitive function. Making healthy food choices can positively influence our brain health and mental well-being.
Michael Padovani
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