Keep your ageing brain healthy with these nutritious foods
The foods we consume have a huge impact on the health of our brain. Our brain is an energy-intensive organ, which uses around 20 percent of the body’s calories. Hence, it needs plenty of proper fuel to operate and send necessary signals across the body. Therefore, eating a brain-boosting diet is imperative to maintain both short and long-term brain function.
If you eat healthy foods for the brain, they will not only build and repair brain cells but also reduce cellular stress and inflammation. Thereby, reducing the risk of brain ageing and neuro-degenerative disorders.
According to Dr Uma Naidoo, Harvard nutritional psychiatrist and best-selling author, if you are looking for the fountain of youth for your brain, adding certain foods to your diet will help! It may help to develop a “healthier brain and fight off many of the ways our brain can get hurt over time, including free radicals, decreased blood flow, and more.”
1. Extra virgin olive oil
The usage of extra virgin olive oil is directly linked to a lower incidence of Alzheimer’s because it increases autophagy of the brain cells. It also protects the brain from free radical damage and due to the presence of vitamin E and vitamin C, it helps to maintain a good memory.
“Turmeric with a pinch of black pepper, cinnamon, saffron, rosemary and ginger can help to promote healthy brain aging and memory,” Dr Naidoo mentioned in her Instagram post. Spices apparently have an effect on the overall cognition, like the process involved in thinking, understanding, learning, and remembering.
EPA and DHA are Omega-3 fatty acids, found in fatty fish like wild caught salmon, and it helps to protect the brain from aging. ALA, the Omega-3 found in plant sources like nuts and seeds, can be also converted into EPA and DHA in small amounts.
The omega-3 fatty acids are extremely important for normal brain function and development of the brain through all stages of life. In fact, EPA and DHA have a role in developing a baby’s brain too. In older people, a lower consumption of omega-3, is often associated with smaller brain size, which is a clear sign of brain aging.
4. Leafy greens
Rich in folate, one of the most important vitamins for maintaining a healthy brain, leafy greens like spinach, Swiss chard, arigula and dandelion greens help to maintain cognitive integrity with age.
5. Fruits and veggies
It is vital to include different coloured plant foods as they contain different brain healthy nutrients and fiber. For long, plant-based diets are consistently associated with cognitive longevity.
So make sure you do not miss out on these foods in your diet!