9 Foods That Are Great For The Brain

There are countless benefits of eating healthy. Having a good diet — especially when coupled with a regular exercise regimen — can prove valuable for all of our organs, but are there foods that are especially good for the brain? Yup, there are particular foods we can eat to achieve the ultimate level of brain health. This, in turn, helps us greatly in regards to memory, thinking skills, creative power and much more.

Dementia, and particularly Alzheimer’s disease, is such such a common health issue today in the US. According to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, as many as 5 million Americans age 65+ may have Alzheimer’s. It is expected that number doubles at every five-year interval beyond 65. Knowing that now, it’s only natural we would want to strive to beat the odds and keep our mental health well into our 70s, 80s, and beyond. Personally, I sort of can’t wait to drink tea all day on my front porch in a rocking chair with, like, little old lady slippers on — this can’t be a normal young person thought, right? We all want to grow old healthily, though. That said, we should take precautions wherever we can to make sure our brains are in tip-top shape as we grow old.

According to various researchers and those in the medical field, there are select foods that provide super power to the brain. Here are nine foods that are surprisingly good for our brains.

1. Tomatoes

Tomatoes are refreshing, delicious, and they help our brain. What could be better, for real? The great thing about tomatoes is that they contain the antioxidant lycopene. According to LifeExtension.com, studies have shown lycopene helps our bodies fight against cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and Alzheimer’s disease. Specifically, according to a study from Neurochemistry International, lycopene could protect against brain cell damage that leads to these health issues like Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia.

2. Nuts

Our brain loves vitamins! When considering which are most vital for our brain health, we can’t overlook vitamin E. Nuts provide a ton of vitamin E necessary for our body. According to a study from the American Journal of Epidemiology reported on by the California Library Association, consuming vitamin E could help prevent cognitive decline. For those who are unaware, cognitive decline can refer to loss in memory and/or thinking skills, according to the Mayo Clinic.

3. Whole Grains

Whole grains are also rich in vitamin E, according to the Minnesota Department of Health. That said, they can have the same types of positive effects on our brain as nuts. Next time you’re beating yourself up over eating a whole grain bagel for no reason at all, stop in your tracks and remember that you’re technically helping your ability to remember.

4. Oily Fish

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The word “oily” isn’t my favorite, but oily fish are actually really delicious. These include salmon, trout, mackerel, kippers, and herring. The great thing about these kinds of fish is that they contain super effective omega-3 fatty acids — EPA and DHA. These omega-3s are optimal for brain health for those of all ages, according to LifeExtension.com. They can fight against memory loss and be helpful in regular brain development. Additionally, these fish have benefits on the heart and joints.

5. Broccoli

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Vitamin K is so good for our brains, and broccoli is an excellent source of it. According to a study out of the Neurobiology of Aging Journal, vitamin K can enhance cognitive function. So, do as your mother once said, and eat all of your broccoli before leaving the table.

6. Blueberries

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Interested in improving or delaying short terms memory loss? Well, who wouldn’t be! According to a study conducted by Tufts University, consuming blueberries may lead to slower mental decline. Ultimately, according to Tufts findings, blueberry consumption can help with short-term memory, navigational skills, balance and coordination.

7. Oranges

Vitamin C really seems to be good for everything. Common knowledge tells us getting enough Vitamin C is good for our overall health, healing of wounds, and our skin, according to WebMD. But did you know it also helps our brains significant? According to Jean Carper, author of the book Your Miracle Brain, getting an adequate amount of vitamin C can improve our IQ, our mood, and our memory. Oranges are the epitome of vitamin C, so throw an orange in with your lunch each day, or a glass of OJ in with your breakfast each morning.

8. Pumpkin Seeds

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For the ladies out there who are with me in loving everything pumpkin, here comes some great news… eating a handful of pumpkin seeds every day helps give our bodies our daily need of zinc. Why is zinc so important? It can benefit our bodies in terms of immunity, wound healing and skin health. When it comes to our brain, it can help enhance memory and how we learn, according to a study out of University of Toronto Scarborough, MIT and Duke University.

9. Celery

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Celery is very rich in luteolin, a compound that is said to help fight against the aging process in our cells. A study from the Journal of Nutrition that looked at luteolin in mice proved the compound slowed the cognitive decline in older mice, such that their brains now functioned much closer to the young group of mice. Of course, this might not be identical to how human brains would react, but it’s still worth amping up our luteolin consumption. If you’re anything like me, and find celery to be a bit bland, try it with a little peanut butter, and there you have it — it’s fun again.

By easily incorporating some of these simply foods into your diet, you might be gradually helping your brain fight against many cognitive issues. Remember that what you put into your body now could have long-terms, positive effects, so might as well consume the right things — especially for our brains.

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