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Brain health is as important as physical health. The same way you try your best to keep physically fit, you should in the same spirit try to maintain a healthy brain. They say a healthy mind represents a happy soul, how true that is am yet to know but one thing is for sure, the brain is a vital organ and thus the need to have it in good shape is a must. As you age, a healthy brain is a must as far as aging gracefully is concerned. What then can you do? Well, apart from feeding it with the right information, you also need to feed it with important nutrients such as Omega 3 fatty acids.
Below are foods that you may include in your diet to improve brain power.
Nuts and seeds
If you are looking to increase your vitamin E intake, then with these you will be getting all of it. Nuts and seeds are well known sources of vitamin E which also corresponds with less cognitive decline as you get older. An ounce a day of these amazing foods will keep your brain in check all through. Some great nuts and seeds that you can sprinkle in your cereals include flax seeds, hazel nuts, nut butters, brazil nuts, walnuts, pumpkin seed etc. You can take raw or roasted ones. If you are on a sodium restricted diet, ensure that you purchase those ones that are unsalted.
Fish and sea foods at large are well known sources of omega 3 essential fatty acids. These fats not only boost brain function, but also contain anti-inflammatory properties. The bad thing is they cannot be made by the body and thus must be obtained from diet. One great source of these fats is the wild salmon. It comes in abundance of these nutrients and also quite clean as compared to others. Other sources include herrings and sardines. These foods will not only boost your brain power but also lower the risk of you developing Alzheimer disease and memory loss.
A study by the University of Tuffs suggests that eating blueberries both improves and delays short term memory loss. In essence, they help protect the brain from oxidative stress and reduce the effects of age related conditions such as dementia and Alzheimer disease. In addition, this berries as excellent when incorporate in a weight loss regime. You can take them frozen, fresh or freeze-dried. Did I mention they are terribly sweet?
B Vitamins and folic acid
Vitamins B12, B6 and folic acid are known to reduce the levels of homocysteine, whose high levels presence is associated with increased chances of stroke, Alzheimer disease and cognitive impairment. It helps in decreasing brain shrinkage as we age.
Green Leafy Vegetables
Take broccoli for example. It is a well known source of vitamin K, which both improves brain power and also an enhancer of cognitive function. Red cabbage on the other hand contains polyphenols, a powerful antioxidant that boosts the brain and heart. It also contains some compounds that are known to fight cancer. If you are worried about developing dementia, then spinach is your savior. A good source of vitamin and folate, spinach prevents the aging effects on the brain. Tomatoes, though not sure whether they are fruits or vegetables, prevents dementia due to their abundance in lycopene, a powerful anti-oxidant. They may also boost your mood.
Avocadoes are as good as the berries and even more. This is because they also contain mono unsaturated fats, Omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids. These nutrients offer a smooth flow of blood to the brain, reduce the cholesterol levels in the body and help the body to absorb antioxidants. These reduce the risk of developing hypertension and blood pressure. They also contain vitamin E, a brain protector from free radical damage, and Vitamin K and Potassium which reduce the chances of developing stroke as we age. A quarter to a half avocado is recommended for daily consumption.
They come in abundance of carbohydrates, fiber and omega 3 fatty acids. These nutrients are known to protect the heart and brain from damaging sugar spikes, blood clots, cholesterol among many other conditions. The presence of b vitamins in them improves the blood flow to the brain and overall your mood. In essence, whole grains are the major sources of energy for the body. They boost the concentration and focus of a person throughout the day, by providing a steady supply of energy to the brain. They are great especially when taken in the morning. Brown cereals, granary bread, brown pasta and wheat bran are great whole grain foods that you can incorporate in your diet.
The link between brain health and nutrients cannot go unnoticed. Incorporating the above foods in your diet is a sure way of maintaining a healthy brain and boosting its power at the same time. If however you feel that your diet is not really sufficient, you may incorporate brain enhancement supplement in your diet. For example, an omega 3 fatty acid supplement comes filled with all the essential omega 3 nutrients.
Another brain enhancing supplement found in the market is the OptiMind supplement. It is a nootropic that acts as a brain fog cleaner and improves mental power by keeping the brain energized and maintaining mental clarity. Customer reviews on the product are promising and you may give it a try. However, before you take any supplements, ensure you consult your doctor on the recommended options and dosages.
Mental health is paramount in living a happy life even in old age. Brain power foods will keep it healthy and more active. However, you also need to keep you overall body fit by adopting a healthy regime. Eat healthy foods and exercise regularly. Your body will thank you for it in old age. Above all, think positively. Negative energy will do you no good.
Note: – This article is guest posted by Sophie Addison. She is very passionate about health and beauty. She loves reading and researching about general health and latest lifestyle news. Apart from work she likes gardening and listening music. You can also contact her on Facebook, and Pinterest. Want to submit a guest post? Read DailyFitnessTips guest submission guidelines.