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Want Better Focus And Memory? 10 Foods To Boost Your Brainpower

Want Better Focus And Memory? 10 Foods To Boost Your Brainpower

Your food choices have a huge influence on your health and vitality. Some foods can help to protect your organs, whereas other types of food will damage and weaken your organs – including your brain.

Your brain is one your most important organs, yet damage to the brain can be impossible to repair. Thankfully certain foods can help to protect and strengthen the brain, reducing the chances of brain diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.

If you want to boost your brain power, try to include these 10 foods in your diet:

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1. Avocado
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    Some people avoid avocados due to their high fat content, but they are great for the brain. Avocados are filled with both folate and vitamin K, which help to improve cognitive function and prevent blood clots in the brain.

    2. Coconut oil
    coconut

      Coconut oil is known for its numerous benefits, including helping to boost brain power. This is because coconut oil can enhance the ability of neurons in the brain while slowing the production of free radicals that can damage the brain. They also contain saturated fat and antioxidants, which is an essential nutrient for brain function.[1]

      3. Beets
      beetz

        Beets contain natural nitrates that help to boost blood flow to the brain, improving mental performance. They also reduce inflammation in the body and they are filled with antioxidants that help to rid your blood of toxins.

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        4. Blueberries
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          Blueberries are known as a super food, so it may come as no surprise that they can benefit your brain. Blueberries are one of the most antioxidant-rich foods, containing vitamin K, vitamin C, fiber and gallic acid, which protects the brain from degeneration and stress, helping to improve memory.[2]

          5. Dark Chocolate
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            Dark chocolate is good for the body and brain in small quantities. This is because it is filled with flavonols which have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Dark chocolate can also lower blood pressure and improve the flow of blood to the brain.

            However it is import to make sure that you buy dark chocolate; both milk and white chocolate are highly processed and they won’t benefit your brain. Look out for chocolate that is at least 70% if you want to boost brain power!

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            6. Leafy Greens
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              Leafy greens such as spinach, kale, romaine lettuce and Swiss chard are great for your brain; recent research has found that they can even help to reduce the chances of dementia.

              The research looked at the eating habits and mental abilities of nearly 1,000 adults over a period of five years. The researchers found that adults who ate leafy green vegetables at least once a day experienced slower mental deterioration that the adults who ate no vegetables.[3] This was still true even when the researchers factored in age and family history of dementia.

              7. Wild salmon
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                Wild salmon is a great source of omega-3 oil DHA, which helps to boost brain power. DHA is an important oil that helps to maintain the health of your brain cells – it even helps to increase the growth of brain cells. This can help to reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.[4]

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                8. Almonds
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                  Almonds, much like wild salmon, contain lots of omega-3 fatty acids that benefit the brain and boost brain power. Almonds also contain vitamin E which helps to further protect the brain.

                  9. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
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                    Extra virgin oil can help to boost brain power as it contains antioxidants known as polyphenols. Polyphenols can help to improve both learning and memory, and they can even reverse the effects of age and disease. Extra virgin olive oil also fights against the proteins that induce Alzheimer’s.

                    10. Turmeric
                    spices-flavorings-seasoning-food

                      Turmeric can help to reduce inflammation in the brain, and recent studies have even suggested that it can be used to treat Alzheimer’s [5]. Turmeric has been used for thousands of years in the fight against brain degeneration; researchers have found Vedic texts that date back over 3,000 reporting that turmeric can boost brain power!

                      Reference

                      [1] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4247320/
                      [2] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2850944/
                      [3] https://consumer.healthday.com/senior-citizen-information-31/misc-aging-news-10/lots-of-leafy-greens-might-shield-aging-brains-study-finds-697909.html
                      [4] http://www.drperlmutter.com/study/fish-consumption-and-the-risk-of-alzheimer-disease/
                      [5] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2781139/

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                      Amy Johnson

                      Amy is a writer who blogs about relationships and lifestyle advice.

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                      Trending in Brain

                      1 13 Science-Backed Ways To Improve Your Memory 2 5 Proven Memorization Techniques to Make the Most of Your Memory 3 How Memory Works (And How You Can Make It Work for You) 4 15 Brain Foods to Eat Regularly for a Sharper Brain 5 How Cognitive Learning Benefits Your Brain

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                      Last Updated on October 17, 2019

                      13 Science-Backed Ways To Improve Your Memory

                      13 Science-Backed Ways To Improve Your Memory

                      Life is made up of memories – what you have seen, heard and done; and what you’re going to do. Every bit of information you take in is only useful if you can remember it at the right time. So, how can you improve your memory?

                      There are many scientific theories and observations on how memories work. These theories provide us with an understanding of how feelings, routine, context and recollection affect our memories. And here are some tips backed by the scientific insights for improving memory.

                      1. Method of Loci

                      Method of Loci is a popular mnemonic technique that helps you recollect a large amount of information.[1] It works by utilizing your spatial and navigational skills as you basically envision your memories as part of a geographical entity. This is the technique that the famous fictional detective Sherlock calls as his Mind Palace.

                      This method is extremely useful when you are preparing for a speech or an exam. Here is how you can make use of it:

                      • Visualize a space you are most familiar with. It could be your home, your favorite park or your school.
                      • Construct the rooms, shelves, furniture and everything inside it in your mind.
                      • Imagine yourself keeping the items you want to remember in each of the rooms or in places.
                      • Next time you want to remember something, walk through room by room to recall what you placed there.

                      Repeating this exercise has proven to be a great way of remembering loads of information with ease.

                      You can learn more about this method in this article: How to Build a Memory Palace to Remember More of Everything

                      2. Acronyms

                      Acronyms are proven to be very effective in memorizing a group of words. Research has shown that our brains are better at retrieving things when we associate meaning to them.[2] This is why recollecting a single meaningful word or phrase is easy compared to trying to remember a list of words.

                      For instance, to memorize the directions on the compass, you can use the acronym NEWS (North, East, West, and South); or, when you want to remember the Great Lakes basin, you can make us of the acronym HOME (Huron, Ontario, Michigan, Erie, Superior) etc.

                      Make up your own acronyms to the list of things you want to remember. all you need to do is list the things that you want to memorize and arrange them in an order such that the first letter of each word spells a real word.

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                      3. Rhyming

                      There is a reason why rhymes are still a popular way to teach kids. Because our brains are good at acoustic encoding which means – breaking down sound structures.[3] We can easily remember stuff when they sound similar.

                      The peg method can help you out. You first need to memorize the list in the exact order given below:

                      one = bun

                      two = shoe

                      three= tree

                      four = door

                      five = hive

                      six = sticks

                      seven = heaven

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                      eight = gate

                      nine = vine

                      ten = hen

                      After you have memorized this list, now connect the first word to bun, second word to shoe, and so on. This will help you in making a memorable connection.

                      Another way is to construct rhymes on the information you want to remember. For instance, if you want to remember that Mr. Jones runs a real-estate business, you can remember him with a rhyme – Mr. Jones from Homes.

                      Although this may seem a bit weird and funny, this method will help you in memorizing the stuff better.

                      4. Linking

                      This is a useful technique to help you stay sharp in many everyday scenarios like remembering shopping lists. This is a visualization and association technique where you associate meanings to visual imagery. However, it is important to ensure that the images stored in your mind are as vivid as possible.

                      For instance, if you want to remember a set of items, just link them up in a story. Let’s say that you want to remember the South England countries – Avon, Cornwall, Devon, Dorset, , Gloucestershire, Hampshire, Somerset, Surrey, and Wiltshire.

                      You can link all these countries in the form of a story. An AVON lady is looking for a house. She is sweating and thirsty due to high SUMMER (Somerset). In the way, she came across a giant CORN (Cornwall), but it is about to WILT (Wiltshire) in the heart. She reaches the house and knocks on the DOOR (Dorset), which is attended by the DEVIL (Devon).

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                      She enters inside and found that a servant is seasoning the HAM (Hampshire), and everything looks extremely GLOSSY (Gloucestershire). Frightened of the whole atmosphere, the lady says SORRY (Surrey) and returns back to her path.

                      5. Chunking

                      Very few people bother to remember phone numbers by heart nowadays. But what if you lose your contacts and need a way to recollect those long numbers? This memory technique will be handy in those situations.

                      Chunking is basically breaking down the information into smaller pieces that are easy to remember. Start with a small number say 379372518. Break it to three chunks 378 372 518. This will help you remember better. Improve your skills every day by trying to remember more numbers this way.

                      6. Write It Down

                      Writing activates your brain cells and stimulates your reticular activating system (RAS).[4] So whenever you are trying to learn something, try writing it down. Review what you have written and test yourself.

                      You can also hand draw memory maps to further develop your memorization power.

                      7. Be Busy

                      Repeat all your brain exercises regularly and keep testing yourself to get better. A recent study revealed that our brain needs to be busy to keep itself fit as well.[5]

                      Test yourself repeatedly if you want to retain the correct information for the longest time.

                      Take walks or indulge in some physical activities as well. Research shows that healthy people who exercise regularly have better memories than those who don’t.

                      8. Give Yourself a Good Sleep

                      Sleeping is very much necessary if you want to be good at memory. A tired body that lacks sleep will not be able to recollect or retain information effectively. So rest well and make sure your body and mind are rejuvenated every day.

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                      9. Eat Healthily

                      Try to include more vegetables and fruits into your diet to improve memory. A study conducted by Harvard medical school backs this as well. Scientists believe that the antioxidants and vitamins from vegetables and fruits help to reduce oxidative stress in the brain and help battle age-related memory issues.[6]

                      Learn about the brain foods you should include in your diet: 12 Best Foods That Improve Memory and Brain Health

                      10. Play Video Games and Brain Training Apps

                      Now here is a fun way to improve memory. Playing video games may not seem the best way to study for an exam but, regular video game playing can actually improve certain memory-associated regions of the brain. Studies have shown that video games helps in total knowledge recall and can reduce dementia risk.[7]

                      Considering the benefits, maybe you can make brain training apps a regular pastime or something to do on your breaks.

                      11. Think of the Ways in Which Things Relate to You

                      According to a recent research, you can boost your memory considerably by contemplating why the information is important to you.[8] This signals your brain to convert the short-term memories into the long-term ones, thus helping you remember effortlessly.

                      12. Exercise Regularly

                      You might not see this coming but people who exercise daily, whether it be leisurely walking, have better memories when compared to their counterparts who do no physical activity.[9]

                      13. Don’t Just Memorize But Also Pay Attention to Essence

                      Although practice makes perfect, this might not necessarily be true when it comes to boosting memory. Scientists have found that while repetitive practice could help you in remembering things, you might miss on the bigger picture.[10]

                      That’s indeed true. Do you remember that one presentation when you memorized everything by heart without giving much thought to it? What happened next? Someone interrupted in between and you were not able to recall anything again!

                      Thus, rote repetition will not do any good. You need to complement repetition by a proper understanding of the finer details.

                      Bottom Line

                      Sharpening your memory is not rocket science. All you need to do is follow the fun and simple ways mentioned above, and eat right to boost your brain health!

                      More About Sharpening Your Brain

                      Featured photo credit: Thought Catalog via unsplash.com

                      Reference

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