The Top Foods for Improving Cognitive Function
Your most important tool is your mind, what you eat largely effects your mind so it's important to have a careful diet.
Eating healthy is important to our physical health, but did you know that the foods we eat influence our cognitive functioning, as well? An overall healthier diet will give you more energy and enhance your concentration, but certain foods will also provide specific cognitive benefits, as well. By learning more about these superfoods and adding them to your diet, you can improve your productivity, memory, and enhance more aspects of mental health.
While supplements, like Le-Vel Thrive supplements, can enhance memory and concentration, so can avocados. The vitamin K and folate found in avocados help to boost cognitive functioning, while also working to keep blood flowing in the brain. This helps protect you against blood clots, which can ultimately cause a debilitating or deadly stroke. They also contain high concentrations of vitamins B and C, which your body uses regularly, requiring daily doses to maintain a healthy supply.
Most people avoid beets at all costs, recalling childhood nightmares of being forced to sit at the table and eat a full serving. That's unfortunate, considering how much this vegetable actually does for the mind and body. For the body, the antioxidants delivered by a serving of beets help reduce inflammation and also fight off cancer. As far as the mind, there are nitrates in beets that increase blood flow to the brain. This helps enhance mental performance and provides an overall boost to cognitive function. These benefits are especially helpful for those living a more active lifestyle, because it gives them a competitive edge.
If you're concerned about Alzheimer's disease and other forms of dementia, try adding more fatty fish to your diet. By now we all know that the omega-3 fatty acids found in certain types of fish help the body, but science has discovered they also help the mind. Omega-3 fatty acids lower levels of beta-amyloid in the blood supply. This protein causes clumps to form in the brain, which are common in Alzheimer's patients. To benefit from omega-3 fatty acids, eat fish that have low mercury contents at least twice per week. These fish include cod, salmon, pollack, and canned light tuna.
Eat a variety of berries to help improve memory and to stave off memory decline, as you age. Berries get their bright, rich colors from flavonoids, which also help to protect memory. A 2012 study conducted at Brigham and Women's Hospital at Harvard University examined the effects of berries on cognitive functioning. The researchers found that giving women two servings of strawberries and blueberries each day protected against memory decline. The decline was estimated to have been delayed by more than two and a half years.
We already know that turmeric helps the body, but it also helps the brain. If you're unfamiliar with it, turmeric is the ingredient in curry powder that gives it that extra kick. It also acts as an anti-inflammatory and antioxidant that helps to boost the levels of serotonin and dopamine produced in the brain. This helps reduce the symptoms of depression and, in one study, researchers found that regular doses of turmeric worked as effectively as antidepressant medications. The curcumin found in turmeric also helps the growth of new brain cells and this may stave off mental decline, as we grow older.
Eating more broccoli can help the brain by delivering a strong supply of antioxidants and vitamin K. The antioxidants help reduce inflammation in the brain, protecting it against damage and decline. Additionally, broccoli contains more than 100% of the daily recommended allowance, so even just one serving provides vast benefits to memory. A regular serving of broccoli can help stave off memory loss and boost brain functioning in general.
These are just a few of the natural foods that can help you protect cognitive function, as we grow older. While physical ailments can also be guarded against through a healthier diet, eating these foods regularly can keep your mind strong and healthy. Eating a wide variety of plant-based foods will help you live a longer and more satisfying life.