Advertising
Advertising

Supercharge Brain Health With These Foods

Supercharge Brain Health With These Foods

Eating for brain health[1] might sound like a strange concept, but science has shown that your diet can play a major role not just in health, but in brain function and prevention of common cognition disorders. Eating power foods for the brain can help you improve cognitive function, including memory, decision-making ability, mental response time, and mood. Brain power foods contain antioxidants and other nutrients that protect the brain.They also provide essential fatty acids that stimulate and strengthen brain cells.Try including some of these healthy brain foods in your diet and see an improvement in your mental focus while you protect your brain’s health.

Omega-3s

Fatty fish like salmon and tuna contain healthy fats that feed the brain.The natural oils of these fish are full of Omega-3 fatty acids like DHA,[2] which are essential for brain health. Eating salmon, tuna, and other fatty fish has been shown to stimulate brain cell growth. It also has links to improving mood and reducing stress, which can help improve cognitive ability. Additionally, the Omega-3s in salmon and tuna may reduce the risk of cognitive and memory disorders like dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.

Advertising

Plant oils are also a great nutrition source for your brain, as it has been shown to protect the brain.[3] It also has a number of antioxidants that improve brain function and reduce the risk of brain health concerns.The oil has been linked to reducing the risk of depression and dementia as well. It also has anti-inflammatory properties, that can speed healing and improve overall health. Much like salmon and tuna, this is an excellent source of Omega-3 fatty acids and lean protein, both of which help support brain function and improve brain health.

Soy

Soy is also rich in iron, an essential nutrient important for overall health as well as brain function. Iron deficiency can affect memory, attention span, and learning ability. A diet high in products like edamame, tofu, and soy-based protein can help support brain cells, improve memory, increase cognitive function, and help with learning.

Advertising

Almonds and Walnuts

Almonds and walnuts[4] are another excellent snack or meal addition that can improve brain health and protect brain cells. These healthy nuts are full of the Omega-3 fatty acids your brain needs, along with lean protein to strengthen brain cells and improve cognitive function. Almonds and walnuts are also great sources of antioxidant vitamin E, which has been shown to be a powerful brain protector that has been linked to reducing dementia and Alzheimer’s risk.

Eggs

Eggs are a real powerhouse when it comes to brain health. They are packed with nutrients that help the brain in a variety of ways. Eggs contain choline, an important compound, which helps the chemical makeup of the brain’s neurotransmitters and can help improve brain function. They also contain cholesterol, which helps form brain cell membranes and can strengthen the brain’s cells and structures. Additionally, eggs contain several antioxidants, have protein, and include healthy fats, all of which contribute to protecting the brain.

Advertising

Coconut Oil

Coconut oil is another food that has received a lot of recognition for being healthy. Its benefits to the brain are also well known. Coconut oil has been connected to improvements in brain function because the fats in it break down into ketones, which the brain can use for energy. It also reduces free radicals that can damage brain cells and affect cognition.

Greens

Leafy greens like spinach and kale are also powerful brain boosters. Full of antioxidants and nutrients, leafy greens help protect the brain and improve its function. Vitamins A, C, and K help reduce free radicals, boost brain power, and improve cell health. Folate and lutein are also found in abundance in these vegetables, helping strengthen the brain. High levels of potassium and iron also improve brain function and increase oxygenation, protecting the brain and making it work more efficiently. Foods like these are brain power foods because they contain nutrients that strengthen the brain, improve its function, and protect it from damage and disease.

Advertising

A diet high in antioxidants, Omega-3s, healthy fats, iron, and other nutrients can supercharge your brain and aid in preventing dementia, Alzheimer’s disease, and other brain disorders. Keep your brain young by including these brain power foods next time you go grocery shopping.

Featured photo credit: Jesse Orrico via unsplash.com

Reference

More by this author

Tammy Sons

Master Gardener, Horticulurist, Arborist

There’s No Such Thing as Unconditional Love. You Either Love Someone or You Don’t To Really Overcome Grief, You Have to Experience These 5 Stages Supercharge Brain Health With These Foods Anxiety and Depression Are Linked To Chemical Brain Imbalances Motovational Tips For Procrastinators

Trending in Brain

1 What Causes Brain Fog? (7 Things You Can Do to Prevent and Stop It) 2 How to Improve Your Brain Memory Naturally: Foods to Eat And Skip 3 7 Natural (And Highly Effective) Ways to Improve Memory 4 15 Ways Meditation Benefits Your Brain Power and Your Mood 5 Do Memory Supplements Work? 10 Supplements to Boost Brain Power

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising

Last Updated on October 29, 2018

What Causes Brain Fog? (7 Things You Can Do to Prevent and Stop It)

What Causes Brain Fog? (7 Things You Can Do to Prevent and Stop It)

Brain fog is more of a symptom than a medical condition itself, but this doesn’t mean it should be ignored. Brain fog is a cognitive dysfunction, which can lead to memory problems, lack of mental clarity and an inability to focus.

Many often excuse brain fog for a bad day, or get so used to it that they ignore it. Unfortunately, when brain fog is ignored it ends up interfering with work and school. The reason many ignore it is because they aren’t fully aware of what causes it and how to deal with it.

It’s important to remember that if your brain doesn’t function fully — nothing else in your life will. Most people have days where they can’t seem to concentrate or forget where they put their keys.

It’s very normal to have days where you can’t think clearly, but if you’re experiencing these things on a daily basis, then you’re probably dealing with brain fog for a specific reason.

So what causes brain fog? It can be caused by a string of things, so we’ve made a list things that causes brain fog and how to prevent it and how to stop it.

1. Stress

It’s no surprise that we’ll find stress at the top of the list. Most people are aware of the dangers of stress. It can increase blood pressure, trigger depression and make us sick as it weakens our immune system.

Another symptom is mental fatigue. When you’re stressed your brain can’t function at its best. It gets harder to think and focus, which makes you stress even more.

Stress can be prevented by following some simple steps. If you’re feeling stressed you should avoid caffeine, alcohol and nicotine — even though it may feel like it helps in the moment. Two other important steps are to indulge in more physical activities and to talk to someone about it.

Advertising

Besides that, you can consider keeping a stress diary, try relaxation techniques like mediation, getting more sleep and maybe a new approach to time management.

2. Diet

Most people know that the right or wrong diet can make them gain or loss weight, but not enough people think about the big impact a specific diet can have on one’s health even if it might be healthy.

One of the most common vitamin deficiencies is vitamin B12 deficiency and especially vegans can be get hid by brain fog, because their diet often lacks the vitamin B-12. The vitamin B12 deficiency can lead to mental and neurological disorders.

The scary thing is that almost 40 % of adults are estimated to lack B12 in their diet. B12 is found in animal products, which is why many vegans are in B12 deficiency, but this doesn’t mean that people need animal products to prevent the B12 deficiency. B12 can be taken as a supplement, which will make the problem go away.

Another vital vitamin that can cause brain fog is vitamin D. More than 1 billion people worldwide don’t have enough vitamin D in their diet. Alongside B12 and vitamin D is omega-3, which because of its fatty acids helps the brain function and concentrate. Luckily, both vitamin D and omega-3 can be taken as supplements.

Then there’s of course also the obvious unhealthy foods like sugar. Refined carbohydrates like sugar will send your blood sugar levels up, and then send you right back down. This will lead to brain fog, because your brain uses glucose as its main source of fuel and once you start playing around with your brain — it gets confused.

Besides being hit by brain fog, you’ll also experience tiredness, mood swings and mental confusion. So, if you want to have clear mind, then stay away from sugar.

Sometimes the same type of diet can be right for some and wrong for others. If you’re experiencing brain fog it’s a good idea to seek out your doctor or a nutritionist. They can take some tests and help you figure out which type of diet works best for your health, or find out if you’re lacking something specific in your diet.

Advertising

3. Allergies

If you have food allergies, or are simply a bit sensitive to specific foods, then eating those foods can lead to brain fog. Look out for dairy, peanuts and aspartame that are known to have a bad effect on the brain.

Most people get their calories from corn, soy and wheat — and big surprise — these foods are some of the most common foods people are allergic to. If you’re in doubt, then you can look up food allergies[1] and find some of the most common symptoms.

If you’re unsure about being allergic or sensitive, then you can start out by cutting out a specific food from your diet for a week or two. If the brain fog disappears, then you’re most likely allergic or sensitive to this food. The symptoms will usually go away after a week or two once you remove the trigger food from the diet.

If you still unsure, then you should seek out the help of your doctor.

4. Lack of sleep

All of us know we need sleep to function, but it’s different for everybody how much sleep they need. A few people can actually function on as little as 3-4 hours of sleep every night, but these people are very, very rare.

Most people need 8 to 9 hours of sleep. If you don’t get the sleep you need, then this will interfere with your brain and you may experience brain fog.

Instead of skipping a few hours of sleep to get ahead of things you need to do, you’ll end up taking away productive hours from your day, because you won’t be able to concentrate and your thoughts will be cloudy.

Many people have trouble sleeping but you can help improve your sleep by a following a few simple steps.

Advertising

There is the 4-7-8 Breathing Exercise, which is a technique that regulates your breath and helps you fall asleep faster. Another well-known technique is to avoid bright lights before you go to sleep.

A lot of us are guilty of falling asleep with the TV on or with our phone right by us, but the blue lights from these screens suppresses the production of melatonin in our bodies, which actually makes us stay awake longer instead. If you’re having trouble going to sleep without doing something before you close your eyes, then try taking up reading instead.

If you want to feel more energized throughout the day, start doing this.

5. Hormonal changes

Brain fog can be triggered by hormonal changes. Whenever your levels of progesterone and estrogen increases, you may experience short-term cognitive impairment and your memory can get bad.

If you’re pregnant or going through menopause, then you shouldn’t worry too much if your mind suddenly starts to get a bit cloudy. Focus on keeping a good diet, getting enough of sleep and the brain fog should pass once you’re back to normal.

6. Medication

If you’re on some medication, then it’s very normal to start experiencing some brain fog.

You may start to forget things that you used to be able to remember, or you get easily confused. Maybe you can’t concentrate the same way that you used to. All of these things can be very scary, but you shouldn’t worry too much about it.

Brain fog is a very normal side effect of drugs, but by lowering your dosage or switching over to another drug; the side effect can’t often be improved and maybe even completely removed.

Advertising

7. Medical condition

Brain fog can often be a symptom of a medical condition. Medical conditions that include inflammation, fatigue, changes in blood glucose level are known to cause brain fog.

Conditions like chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, anemia, depression, diabetes, migraines, hypothyroidism, Sjögren syndrome, Alzheimer’s disease, Lupus and dehydration can all cause brain fog.[2]

The bottom line

If you haven’t been diagnosed, then never start browsing around Google for the conditions and the symptoms. Once you start looking for it; it’s very easy to (wrongfully) self-diagnose.

Take a step back, put away the laptop and relax. If you’re worried about being sick, then always check in with your doctor and take it from there.

Remember, the list of things that can cause brain fog is long and it can be something as simple as the wrong diet or not enough sleep.

Featured photo credit: Asdrubal luna via unsplash.com

Reference

[1]Food Allergy: Common Allergens
[2]HealthLine: 6 Possible Causes of Brain Fog

Read Next