Eat Smart for a Healthier Brain

Add these ‘superfoods’ to your daily diet, and you will increase your odds of maintaining a healthy brain for the rest of your life.

There’s no denying that as we age chronologically, our body ages right along with us. But research is showing that you can increase your chances of maintaining a healthy brain well into your old age if you add these “smart” foods to your daily eating regimen.

Blueberries. “Brainberries” is what Steven Pratt, MD, author of Superfoods Rx: Fourteen Foods Proven to Change Your Life, calls these tasty fruits.

Wild salmon. Deep-water fish, such as salmon, are rich in omega-3 essential fatty acids, which are essential for brain function, says Kulze.

Nuts and seeds. Nuts and seeds are good sources of vitamin E, says Pratt, explaining that higher levels of vitamin E correspond with less cognitive decline as you get older.

Avocados. Avocados are almost as good as blueberries in promoting brain health, says Pratt.

Whole grains. Whole grains, such as oatmeal, whole-grain breads, and brown rice can reduce the risk for heart disease.

Beans. Beans are “under-recognized” and “economical,” says Kulze. They also stabilize glucose (blood sugar) levels.

Pomegranate juice. Pomegranate juice (you can eat the fruit itself but with its many tiny seeds, it’s not nearly as convenient) offers potent antioxidant benefits, says Kulze, which protect the brain from the damage of free radicals.

Freshly brewed tea. Two to three cups a day of freshly brewed tea — hot or iced — contains a modest amount of caffeine which, when used “judiciously,” says Kulze — can boost brain power by enhancing memory, focus, and mood.

Dark chocolate. Let’s end with the good stuff. Dark chocolate has powerful antioxidant properties, contains several natural stimulants, including caffeine, which enhance focus and concentration, and stimulates the production of endorphins, which helps improve mood.

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